THE "MODERATE" AGENDA: A DANGEROUS PROSPECT
By Christopher G. Adamo
Unfortunately, an equivalent danger faces the Republican Party. If it fails to recognize the reasons for its success during this election cycle, it may once again stumble at a crucial time, and face dire consequences in upcoming elections. With the grim specter of a Hillary Clinton candidacy looming in 2008, America can ill afford such a blunder.
Before the votes were fully counted, forces were working to undermine the message sent forth so clearly by the electorate. Any attempts to ignore the real meaning of this election, or to take for granted the loyalty of the Conservative base who made it happen, could ultimately backfire on Republicans, as happened in 1996 and again in 1998.
The landslide Republican Congressional gains in 1994, much like 2004, directly resulted from involvement by grassroots Conservatives. And that involvement was a reaction to the obvious contrast between the agendas of Liberals and Conservatives. Unfortunately, once the Conservative victory had been achieved, Republican insiders immediately embarked on a program of blurring the distinctions between the two.
“Business as usual” overtook the Conservative revolution. The public responded with disappointment and cynicism. Bill Clinton, with less than half of the lowest voter turnout in decades, did not win his 1996 race as a result of enthusiasm for his political philosophies. Rather, as uninspired as the nation was with him, the Republican base was even less inspired to support the constant waffling and capitulation of Bob Dole.
It is highly significant that the last Democratic President to receive greater than fifty percent of the popular vote was Jimmy Carter, in his 1976 race against Gerald Ford. While some of Carter’s support resulted from public disgust with the Nixon administration, much of it was a direct response to Carter’s open professions of his Baptist roots.
It was this perception of a moral component to Carter’s philosophy that convinced the public to support him. Such a case was relatively easy to make, when Carter’s professed virtue was contrasted against the darkness of the Nixon White House.
Of course, once Carter’s “spirituality” turned out to be nothing more than empty rhetoric, his popularity plummeted, and never recovered.
Over the past three decades, a consistent pattern in the political landscape has emerged, though Republican Party insiders, at the prodding of socalled “Moderates,” or "Centrists," continually seek to ignore the pattern. Every Republican President’s success in office can be directly correlated to the degree of morality and Conservatism that he espouses. But sadly, the “conventional wisdom” from party hacks is that the politically safe ground is at the philosophical “Center.”
The pro-homosexual organization known as the “Log Cabin Republicans” (not named for any allegiance to Abraham Lincoln, but as a reference to the human anatomy), showed their true colors this past Summer when they refused to endorse President Bush. Their goal, with his defeat looking likely at the time, was to position themselves to make the claim that he lost, in part, because of their lack of support. Thus they could ever after hold the Republican Party hostage to their agenda.
Yet, not only did this ruse backfire, other evidence of electoral antipathy towards their agenda is inarguable. In all eleven states where same-sex “marriage” bans were on the ballot, the initiatives passed by overwhelming margins.
Although a shift to the Right may be smart politics for Liberals, it does not follow that a shift to the Left will similarly benefit Republicans. In truth, nothing could be more absurd. Yet for more than a decade, such thinking is exactly what Republican “Moderates” have promoted, and with consistently disastrous results.
In South Dakota, John Thune’s victory over Tom Daschle sent an unambiguous message to Washington, D.C., that America takes a very dim view of those who would subvert the U.S. Constitution through the encroaching tyranny of judicial activism.
If Senate Republicans, after witnessing such deep-seated fervor from the electorate, choose not to take on this battle as if the very future of our Constitutional Republic depends on it (which, in fact, it does), the anger vented against Daschle will shortly be transferred to them.
A great victory has been won. This is no time to let “Moderates” take the reins once again and thus squander it.
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