I asked a question. I did not yell “Fire!” in a crowded movie theater. I did not propose adding more speed cameras in low income areas of Washington, DC or demand that Obama Care be implemented even if the Supreme Court rules it un-Constitutional. I merely asked a question. Yet, the response was awe-striking. It was as if I’d unlatched the box upon which all evil was held. Indeed, it is a thought provoking one. However, I believe more people are afraid of the answers than the question itself. These answers lead me to one stark conclusion: Stop Blaming the Republican Establishment for the Futility of the American Conservative Movement.
The Establishment GOP Asserted Itself in 2008. We Got John McCain. The Establishment GOP Asserted Itself in 2012. We Got Mitt Romney. If Conservatives Are So Powerful and Represent 40% of the Electorate, Why Is There No Competitive Conservative Party in American Politics?
Political Commentator and Mitt Romney Endorser Ann Coulter defines the “actual Republican Establishment” as “political consultants, The Wall Street Journal, corporate America, former Bush advisers and television pundits.” New York Times columnist David Brooks had a new, and specific, definition of “Republican establishment” — “anybody who knows what Newt Gingrich is really like.” Rush Limbaugh refers to the Republican establishment as the “elites” that want to redefine conservatism. Rush contends:
You and I know that the establishment Republicans don’t like conservatives. They didn’t like Reagan. They were embarrassed of Reagan. They were embarrassed of us. They didn’t like the Moral Majority, they didn’t like the Christian right, they don’t like the pro-lifers. They don’t like the social conservatives at all. They’re embarrassed by us, in many ways, with their other buddies, the establishment Democrats — which combined gives us the Washington establishment, and they very much prefer to be members of that club than ours. But they know that it doesn’t help them to be called “establishment Republicans.” So they’re trying to take the term “conservative” and co-opt it and define it as they behave, write, speak, and even vote on matters of politics.
Do Speaker of the House John Boehner, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and GOP Presidential Nominee Mitt Romney fit within the fabric of the “Establishment” or Washington Politboro that seeks its own sufficiency? Based on the definers, the answer is clearly, ”YES!”
Simply, those that preserve their interests of excessive government rule and intervention into the daily lives of Americans fit the bill of the “Establishment”. Those that resist the excesses of governance and imposition of state and federal taxation into the lives of individuals, families and private organizations are “conservatives”. Talitha McEachin, in her essay The Black Community’s Distrust of the Government, provokes her readers with this question, ”How can some of us say we don’t trust the government, yet vote for more of it in our lives?” Blogger Dan McLaughlinwrote a seminal piece about the separation of Establishment and Conservatives entitled, What The Republican “Establishment” Really Means. In it he advised that a key matter separtes us: ”it’s almost entirely about spending.” For those following along at home, the analysis is clear. There are three groups that empower politicians in general elections: Conservatives, the Establishment (Republicans and Democrats) and Liberals. Conservatives believe that Americans are better stewards of their finances than government and that spending should be reduced as austerely as possible. The Establishment believe that you could not possibly build a home, receive medical care or flush a toilet with out some form of government intervention. The Establishment may not want all of your money but a goodly sum of 50 – 60% would go a long way towards a civil society. The liberals do not believe that you have to vote as a central planning agency will give you what you need and cover all of the costs. The State becomes the provider and protector of the individual and family. A simple 100% of your wealth and commitment would improve the quality of everyone’s life.
I guess we can never change the outcomes of our political lives. Surly the liberals and the Establishment outnumber us. Right?! Wrong! According to a 2007 Associate Press (AP) Poll, 36 to 42% (Average: 38%) of the Nation is Conservative and 19 to 26% (Average: 22%) of the Nation is Liberal. Let us deduce that 30% of the Nation is a part of the Establishment or shares a Pro-Government bent towards public policy. These are individuals that believe we can make it with out government but won’t ask government to stop providing security for their erroneous unbelief. Amazingly, Pew Research Center asserts that 62% of Pro-Government Conservatives are women. Hmmmmm! I wonder why the War on Women? Here, in a nutshell, is the oxymoron: Pro-Government Conservative. Listen, we, in individual battle, outnumber liberals and The Establishment on everyday of the year. Even collectively, we could pull enough from the Establishment group out of shame or fear to garner a majority. So hear is the ultimate question, “If Conservatives Are So Powerful and Represent 40% of the Electorate, Why Is There No Competitive Conservative Party in American Politics?”
The Establishment GOP asserted itself in 1996 and we got Bob Dole. In 2000, People had had enough of Bill Clinton and The Establishment GOP gave us George Bush. The Establishment GOP Asserted Itself in 2008. We Got John McCain. The Establishment GOP Asserted Itself in 2012. We Got Mitt Romney. Let me be clear! In these unprecedented times, any vote for a GOPer is certainly better than one for the Urban Leninist Barack Obama. However, there must be a time in GOP History when the Message of Conservatism was equally matched by a Conservative Messenger. There had to be a day when ideology was etched from the fires of the US Constitution and the King James Bible. Indeed, the crossroad was filled by Ronald Wilson Reagan. The Message and the Messenger were One. Is this a “We just gotta have someone that is Reaganesque!” essay. NO! However, perfect unity of effort and efficiency in action comes when one is not deciding on whether to be a liberal, moderate or conservative depending on what state he s in or what group he is talking up. So why do conservatives entrust their power to an organization that has a worst won-loss percentage than the early Tampa Bay Buccaneers? I believe that my question reveals the most prudent answers.
DAVID BROOKS may be right! I want to eliminate any pretense that from here on we will be singing the Sesame Street theme song. I am as faithful to conservatism as any. However, we must examine why so many have choose to follow the Establishment GOP rather than BUILD a conservative brand. I know, I know! Third parties will only produce liberal candidates. No. People produce liberal candidates as their only options. Sure, you can point to 1992 when George H W Bush, William Jefferson Clinton and Ross Perot slugged it out as a reason against. However, the two party system gave us bot Jimmy Carter nad Obama within four (4) decades of each other. So I ain’t buying that only a three party fight will result in a liberal victor. The second answer is that the GOP will eventually let conservatives have a candidate. How weak does that sound to you? Conservative, you are the real elephant in the room and yet, you have been trained by harsh rhetoric and propaganda over the years that your social agenda and call or fiscal restraint are offensive to the electorate. I suppose a 9% unemployment rate and $16 trillion deficit are more inviting words of wisdom. We do not believe that because the Establishment has told us that such efforts are feeble. You need money to make this happen. Amazing how tons of money can be raised for a liberal GOP Governor of a Northern state but the GOP would have had a difficult time raising money for a conservative GOP Governor of a Western state. How weak conservatives must be if they must wait another forty (40) years for a conservative candidate and you represent more than 60% of the GOP. Here’s another brilliant response to the question: We would just produce a Do-Nothing Congress! Somehow, stern conservatives would ave to work with liberal and moderate coalitions to get bills passed. That would be almost impossible as there is no willingness to work together. Yeah, that only would happen in a three party system. Are you kidding me? Holding someone accountable does not begin after you vote but before. The person that desires to represent you should not be figuring out their political ideology and belief system while completing the GOP Nomination Form. They should have core principles that allow you to discern whether a person is liberal, moderate or conservative in their political beliefs. A Conservative Coalition, out of numerical power, would certainly have greater influence on collaborating with Moderates than Liberals coalescing with Moderates. Saving multiple coalitions slows down poor legislation and focuses greater attenion to the voting records of each group.
Not the best question to ask, Ken. And one has to learn that a conservative from the East, Midwest, South, and West will not see ‘eye to eye’ on every issue. You also have to deal with local influences that create movements that produce different candidates for others to vote for. If you even look within the libertarian ranks, you don’t even have unity there; which causes some – who are more conservative – to run in the Republican party; and those who are more liberal – to run independent, or Democrat. And the major issue with the selection process is: having few states decide who the party’s nominee is going to be; as they all change their dates for caucuses/primaries. This needs to be reformed. That, and the ‘winner takes all’ delegates; along with unbound and ‘super’ delegates. It disenfranchises voters from participating — and when voters don’t engage the candidates, while PAC’s hand money to them, you see what you have as a result. ~~C.A. of Illinois
Finally, the latter answer speaks to the heart of a people with great potential but little motivation. Starting a conservative party would be too much of a hassle. Wow! e can thrill millions with a speech in Tampa tat says we can solve a $16 trillion deficit, overturn Obama Care and return us to the Values of the US Constitution but, we can not dream and even dare creating an alternative party. Have we become so lazy as conservatives that we won’t someone to gives us a Party and Power and Wealth to exploit our new Party and Power without sweat upon brow or pen pressed to paper? Our Nation is at its greatest risks, domestic and foreign. Our Constitution is a laughingstock to our own Supreme Court Justices. The Establishment and the Liberals want to accelerate the onset of the socialism cancer and, because there is no ease, we choose to avoid necessary to save our Nation. Listen, I pray that this Nation Rallies to Common Sense. However, I pray even more that people that deign the title Conservative will come to the understanding that the Reagan that they seek is them and them alone. In you, Mr. and Ms. Conservative, the Message and the Messenger are One. Now your answer becomes more important to the generations that will follow you than the question I asked.