Skip to comments.Extremism in the defense of RINOism is no virtue
Posted on 10/07/2012 5:15:05 AM PDT by Yashcheritsiy
Politics is a funny thing. Sometimes, the seemingly counterintuitive can become the reality, what you would not expect based upon common sense nevertheless is what happens. Much of this has to do with the fact that in a political system such as ours, it is easy for factional interests to become entrenched, pursuing politics for the sake of remaining in power rather than for the good of those they claim to represent. In such cases, you will find the entrenched power acting in ways that, to the uninitiated, often seem obtuse and nonsensical.
Such seems to be the case with the Republican Party. Conservatives have observed time and time again that the Party which supposedly represents their interests in our system nevertheless seems to take them for granted. Worse than this, often the entrenched interests within the Party hierarchy commonly referred to collectively as the Establishment or the "GOP-E" seem to be actively hostile to conservatives within the Party, often going to great lengths to stifle and block them at every turn. There are few places where this becomes more apparent than in the way the GOP-E deals with conservative candidates who defeat moderate, Establishment candidates in primary races, or who misstep and provide an opening to the GOP-E for attack. Indeed, the Republican Party seems to be the only Party in living memory that actively seeks to destroy the electoral chances of its own candidates just to enforce the entrenched Establishment's vision for the Party. In doing so, they don't just hurt conservatives within their Party, but they actual help the Democrats retain seats and have greater opportunity to damage the nation as a whole.
The Democrats certainly don't do this. Instead, that Party is more than happy to run seemingly right-leaning candidates in conservative districts in an effort to bolster their own chances for taking and retaining power. In 2008, a goodly portion of the Democratic wave was made up of quasi-conservative office-seekers attacking Republicans from their right flank, taking conservative congressional districts all across the South, the Midwest, and the Mountain West traditionally areas of Republican strength. The GOP-E, for its part, has no problem reminding conservatives that in left-leaning districts, the Republicans who run need to be more towards the center and in this they have a valid argument, up to a point. Yet, the GOP-E seems to also want centrist or liberal candidates for the Republican Party even in districts and states that conservatives can easily win. Hence, the seemingly nonsensical push for thoroughly unnecessary "moderate" Republicans, which only ends up undermining conservative enthusiasm, loyalty to the Party, and ultimately donation and turnout on Election Day. The GOP-E goes to great lengths to undercut conservative candidates across the country, placing its own narrow Establishment interests ahead of those of the nation and the Party as a whole.
Take, for instance, the curious case of Todd Akin, running for the Senate in Missouri. Back in August, when Akin made his "legitimate rape" gaffe, I was among those who initially said that he should withdraw from the race, writing the day after the gaffe was made. My argument was two-fold: 1) His comment showed that he lacks "fire control," and hence doesn't qualify for the "statesman" role that (theoretically) should be necessary for a higher office like the Senate, and 2) his comment, regardless of what he meant by it, threw a wide-open door for the Left to attack him and hurt the chances for us to take this seat away from a left-wing Democrat. On this score, I was in fact correct Akin fell way behind, and has only now fought his way back up to a statistical dead heat with McCaskill. This, in a race which should have been a milk run for any Republican running.
However, the behavior of the GOP-E, from the Party moneymen down to the pundits like Hannity and Ann Coulter, has not made it any easier. After all, Akin was under no obligation to withdraw. He did win his primary. He wasn't "selfish" for remaining in the race. After he made his decision, that should have been the end of it Republicans should have rallied around him because he is their candidate...in much the same way that the Establishment types tell us we have to rally around the latest RINO they manage to get into a nomination. After the deadline for dropping out of the race passed in August (which if he had at this time, this would have allowed him some input in who his substitute would be), the only option was then for Akin to have to appeal for a court order allowing him to leave the race, giving him no input in who his replacement would be, putting that into the hands of Establishment politicos. Even thought I agreed that he should have dropped out when it was easily done and another conservative could have been chosen to replace him, after he refused to do so, I also agreed that this was his choice to make, not that of bureaucratic Party officials and East Coast pundits.
Despite all of this, Akin's race was and is still easily winnable...if the GOP-E would stop using his gaffe as an excuse to undermine a conservative candidate. Yet, the Party leadership has prevented him from receiving the type of funding from the Party that other senatorial candidates typically get, and continued to undermine his candidacy in the media long after the issue should have been dead and gone. With that same level of Party support, Akin would still be thrashing McCaskill gaffe or not gaffe. Yet, they act like they want for him to lose, like they'd rather that McCaskill retain the seat than have a solidly social conservative candidate win this race. At this point, no serious person can believe that the continued intransigence of the Republican Party bigwigs toward Akin is about "the rape comment." No. It's about the fact that they'd apparently rather knock off a conservative candidate from their own Party than try to unseat a very liberal one from the other Party.
Todd Akin isn't the first victim of flank attacks from his own Party's leadership and apparatus, however. In 2010, a banner year during which the GOP had a very good chance of taking back the Senate, as well as the House, the Establishment machinery kicked into gear against several conservative Senate candidates, and managed to prevent some from winning. Ken Buck in Colorado, Sharron Angle in Nevada, Joe Miller in Alaska each one had a solid chance to win their races, but was undermined by constant opposition from establishment elements within the GOP. In Miller's case, he was shot down by an actual independent run by the RINO he had beaten in the primary, who refused to accept the verdict of actual Republican voters in Alaska. Each of these candidates was the Republican rank-and-file's choice. Each was deemed unacceptable by the GOP-E because they were "too conservative," and were therefore frozen out, undermined in the media, and mishandled by their own Party. If these three had won their races, that would have tied the Senate and made it even easier for the GOP to gain the majority this year. But the GOP-E and the "moderate" elements within the Party would rather complain that the people's choices are "too conservative and Tea Partyish" and hamper them than work together for the common good of defeating leftist Democrats.
Let's not forget the way the GOP Establishment abused Christine O'Donnell, the rank-and-file's choice in the Delaware Senate race. I will grant that she was too conservative to win in that state. But still, Karl Rove and the rest of the GOP-E undercutting her, threatening independent runs against her, endorsing her Marxist opponent, and doing everything else they could to hamstring her campaign didn't help matters. She was their Party's candidate, like it or not. They could have at least given it the old college try. But they didn't.
And while we're at it, let's not forget the efforts by the GOP-E to lose even more Senate seats for the Republican Party in 2010. Remember Bob Bennett and the Establishment's reaction to Mike Lee's victory in the Utah nominating process? Allowing himself to be used as a media tool to attack Lee? Freezing him out of a lot of national Party support? It didn't work in Utah, but mainly because that state is so solidly Republican that no amount of implicit GOP-E aid to Democrat was going to defeat Lee. Remember Florida? Rubio beat RINO Charlie Crist, who promptly took his toys and ran as an independent, in a naked attempt to destroy Rubio's chances in the race. Fortunately, Floridians disliked Crist enough that it didn't work. But not for a lack of trying.
They do the same thing in the House, as well. Remember when Michelle Bachmann made the perfectly legitimate observation that Huma Abedin, a longtime aide to Hillary Clinton, had possible ties to the Muslim Brotherhood (a claim which appears to be true)? This was yet another "gaffe" that gave the GOP-E the opportunity to try to undermine, attack, and destroy a conservative thorn in their sides. Bachmann became the target of a smear and hate campaign, not only from Democrats who love the Muslim Brotherhood, but from "mainline" Republicans who professed to be shocked, offended, and horrified at Bachmann's assertion of fact. And once again, we see her campaign, like many others, now having trouble getting support from the national Party that claims to want to "win one for the Gipper."
They did the same thing to conservative Tim Walberg, who represents the 7th district in Michigan. A solid conservative who bucked the Party leadership on many issues during his first term in office (Jan. 2007 Jan. 2009), Walberg defeated incumbent Republican representative Joe Schwarz in the 2006 primary, and went on to win that November. Now Joe Schwarz was a very model of the RINO, Establishment type Republican that the GOP-E just swears they have to run to win in "swing" districts. He is a member of the centrist Republican Main Street Partnership, as well as Republican Majority for Choice, Republicans for Choice, and Republicans for Environmental Protection, so his "moderate" (really, leftist) bona fides were above reproach. Because Walberg defeated the RINO choice and stood against the excesses of the Republican "leadership" during the 110th Congress, they rewarded him by deep-sixing his campaign, allowing left-wing Democrat Mark Schauer to take the seat. Just be glad that Walberg was able to ride the Tea Party wave back into office in the 2010 election, so that this seat is conservatively represented once again, despite the best efforts of the Republican Establishment.
Then, in what Republican state level Party officials from Nevada called "a Marxist power grab," the GOP-E attempted to upend the delegate selection process and allow the Party nominee to remove delegates to the national convention that were chosen by their state conventions, and replace them with delegates hand-picked by the nominee himself once more, the GOP-E seeking to negate the choice of the rank-and-file and replace it with their own. Though the "cover story" was that this was intended to be a way to keep Ron Paul supporters from subverting the final delegate count, the move was widely viewed as a way of suppressing grassroots, Tea Party influence within the official Party apparatus. Sarah Palin described it as "a direct attack on grassroots activists by the GOP establishment, and it must be rejected." Fortunately, the move largely was, though some changes to the rules were still able to make it through the convention process.
Keep in mind that all of this follows a historical trend. The present Establishment trying to lose Todd Akin's race for him and trying to bump off the Tea Party movement is the same one that tried to knock off Ronald Reagan's electoral chances throughout the 1970s and then served as termites undermining his conservative revolution in the 1980s even if some of the names are different, the spirit and the substance are the same.
Let's be frank all of this talk about the GOP-E and the Establishment is not just so much conspiracy theorizing. There are simply too many historical patterns of behavior to chalk all of this up to crazy conservative hardshells trying to explain why their candidates sometimes lose. The GOP-E whether they're called "Rockefeller Republicans," "Mainstreet Partners," "moderates," "centrists," or "Reasonable Republicans" really and truly do fight against members, activists, and candidates within their own Party who represent the conservative majority in the Party. They've entrenched themselves, and continue to use the rules, created by themselves, to keep themselves in power and effectively disenfranchise conservatives within their own political party. Now, I sincerely hope and pray that Mitt Romney will win in November. This country simply cannot survive four more years of the Oval Office's present occupant. But after the election, conservatives and liberty lovers need to stop talking about it, and start getting serious about cleaning house in the Republican Party at every level, or if prevented from doing so by GOP-E legerdemain, then creating a new Party that will represent the common man who is himself represented in the Republican base. If the GOP-E wants to keep the Republican Party as their own personal yacht, then maybe we should let them, while we build our own electoral speedboat.
Conservatives are going to have to face facts, the GOP has no desire to represent us and our future with the party looks pretty bleak.
Just the other night I saw some young republican leader on the History channel announcing that he’s gay and he wants to get married some day.
“Just the other night I saw some young republican leader on the History channel announcing that hes gay and he wants to get married some day.”
As long as he tells the woman he intends to marry that he’s queer, I’m fine with him marrying.
“But after the election, conservatives and liberty lovers need to stop talking about it, and start getting serious about cleaning house in the Republican Party at every level, or if prevented from doing so by GOP-E legerdemain, then creating a new Party that will represent the common man who is himself represented in the Republican base. If the GOP-E wants to keep the Republican Party as their own personal yacht, then maybe we should let them, while we build our own electoral speedboat.”
The writer has a good point here.
Excellent Article. Thank you. I am told by the elite Republicans, and others, that I MUST vote for Romney. I believe I was told the same thing in 2008 when McCain was definitely not my choice — MUST vote for him even though he wasn’t trying to be elected.
These elites have probably told me this every time I have voted for a president. All elections are MUST vote Republican elections. This way they force conservatives to vote the way the elites want. And we stay on the their plantation and say “Yes, Master.”
This certainly brought back memories of Barry Goldwater and his indelible quotes. THis one applies even more today:
“I have little interest in streamlining government or in making it more efficient, for I mean to reduce its size. I do not undertake to promote welfare, for I propose to extend freedom. My aim is not to pass laws, but to repeal them. It is not to inaugurate new programs, but to cancel old ones that do violence to the Constitution, or that have failed their purpose, or that impose on the people an unwarranted financial burden. I will not attempt to discover whether legislation is “needed” before I have first determined whether it is constitutionally permissible. And if I should later be attacked for neglecting my constituents’ “interests,” I shall reply that I was informed that their main interest is liberty and that in that cause I am doing the very best I can.
Seems to me that both sides have lost sight of our founder’s vision. They want everything done immediately when our founders designed a system that is supposed to work slowly. They want a strong president who can force our will when our founders created a system where all branches are supposed to be equal.
Someday beaten spouse conservatives will finally get the one head stomping from the GOP-E that convinces them to leave the house and not look back. In the meantime the apologies, flowers and candy days are here again and oh, by the way, the GOP-E is having it’s latest good best friend Willard over for dinner- so suck it up, get busy conservatives cleaning house and cooking up a meal.
Pragmatism is superior to socialism
Right after conservatism gets slapped in the face one more time. This was a great article until this point.
To paraphrase Ronald Reagan, "If not us, who? If not now, when?"
Nobody's telling you you MUST vote Romney - they're just pointing out that for every two that don't, it counts as a vote for Zero. If you are fine with Zero having another term, with no reason to try to "moderate" himself, then pull the lever for
Perot whoever you feel good about.
No one’s telling you that. We all know what we’re getting with Romney. No one’s fooled here. But we also know that this is a constitutional Republic with divided powers, and it is not Romney that makes the laws, but rather Congress. A conservative Congress will give Romney conservative bills for Romney to sign. Will he veto them? I lean to the side of doubtful.
Contrast that to Zero. He doesn’t care who’s in Congress, because he has no respect for separation of powers, and will continue to act in a dictatorial manner if he gets a second term, except this time he will act with impunity. And if he does crash the economy as he is trying to do, good luck getting him out of there in his lifetime.
So on that note, what have YOU done to get a conservative Congress in the event that Romney should win? Have you gotten involved, or sat around and run your flap-trap? There is no entitlement here, no ‘someone needs to’ out there to make it happen. It’s up to you and me, simple as that.
Get off your butt and make it happen.
We are already cleaning house, and we are winning. Maybe not the Presidency yet, but we certainly can influence congressional races, like beating Lugar in Indiana. Don’t confuse a short term speed bump with the long term goal.
Such plain constitutional speech, and those who would speak it, have been virtually eradicated from the GOP.
One of the most important things for conservatives to do is to “separate the sheep from the goats” in and in the proximity of the Republican party.
This does not mean just officeholders and candidates who are establishment RINOs, but also the legion of consultants, Beltway bandits, Hill Rats, lobbyists, spin doctors and pundits.
In effect, we need a 100-point worksheet for each and every one of these individuals, so that they can be rated from “conservative”, through “mixed”, to “entrenched party parasite” and “RINO”.
Importantly, it is *not* just a snapshot of what we think they currently are; but also a history of what they have been and done in the past.
The list also has to be broken down into “cardinal sins”, “ordinal sins”, “duplicity”, who they have formed alliances and enemies with (the company they keep), and willingness to compromise core values.
It would take quite a while to create such biographies, but the end result will be that, for example, when a conservative finally becomes president, he will know that certain Republican “fixtures”, are in fact malignant forces that will work against him.
He will not want them in his administration, or working for or being paid by the party, representing the party in public, or having their campaigns funded by the party.
This in turn will create an essential thing to political success: party discipline. You only hire people you can trust, and from the start they know that if they cross the line, they will not only be out on the street but will never work for the party again.
Pragmatism leads to socialism, and socialism leads to communism.
What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?
That one question, asked by Jesus Christ Himself, leaves every supposedly "pragmatic" Utilitarian argument lying in smoking ruins.
If one looks at the long term, it turns out they weren't practical at all. They were simply short-sighted unto blindness, to their own destruction.
The natural law is that you reap what you sow. Everything reproduces after its kind. That is simply the way God made the world we live in.
Well, at least they haven’t crucified you yet, like they did the original Questioner.
Your tagline is the reason I’m voting for you, dear Tom.
Thank you for representing me.
This close to the election, there's basically nothing we could do about this, anywise.
Let's face it - most Republicans and conservative independents are going to vote for Romney. You're not going to be able to change that in the 31 days we have left before the election. And let's face it - for all his flaws, Romney is far better than Obama. That's why I dropped all this third partyism nonsense and am going to vote for Romney.
Third partyism CANNOT be about presenting an alternative to the two major parties. To be successful at all, it will have to be about convincing people to LEAVE one of the parties, and replacing that party with a new one. Anything else is just self-congratulatory backpatting for how special we are, while nothing useful gets done.
To do something on that magnitude is going to take more than a month, and isn't going to happen when your target demographic is white hot to replace Obama at all costs. "Hey, I know you really, really don't like Obama, but instead of voting for the guy who a reasonable chance of defeating him, why don't you vote for my candidate, Shrimpy McOnepercent, instead!"
Yeah, like that's going to happen. Colonel, you can wish in one hand and spit in the other, and see which on gets filled first.
Agreed. So it’s a good thing I’m accountable for my vote, in the end, to God. Rather than to people.