Friday, January 25, 2008

Take a hint, Republicans...

AJ-Strata has discussed a very good post in which the Anchoress takes the GOP to the woodshed, in particular, she goes after the purists.

Her money quote:
If Ronald Reagan were alive right now, watching the GOP split into these tantrum-throwing factions (whereby “perfection” is duly defined as “pro-life, pro-gun, pro-free-market, pro-worship, pro-Bush-doctrine, pro-tax-cut, pro-ship-back-all-illegals” and then, as each less-than-perfect candidate’s failure on one or more issues is noted, each are thus deemed unworthy of the support of the pristine and uncompromising “base”) I think he’d be disgusted with the lot of you.
I know how she is feeling, although I would also be very willing to mention the way that far too many remained quiet in the face of Huckabee's Mormon-baiting.

But let's be serious, when those who dissented from the base on the Harriet Miers issue got labeled party hacks who had sold their souls, whereas those who forced her withdrawal before there were even hearings to determine if she was qualified were principled. Then there was the labeling of those who supported the President's approach on immigration as traitors on multiple occassions.

Yeah, I can't blame AJ for remaining an independent,. I really cannot blame the Anchoress for her decision to hit the loud handle.

I've been close, too. If, for no other reason than comments like this one from Redstate:
Some vocal supporters and sycophants of the Romney campaign have deluded themselves into thinking that if a voter does not like Mitt Romney, he must be anti-Mormon bigots.
Yeah, sure - let's pay no attention to that Vanderbilt study that shows that some of the reasons he cited may have just been code words. Let's ignore the fact that Huckabee's own research director said that most evangelicals would hang their hats on "flip-flop" as their reason to vote for someone else, but that the real reason would be that Romney was Mormon. And it is hard to dismiss the apparent coincidence of Huckabee's strongest showings (winning Iowa, a close second in South Carolina) coming in states where the politics of religious identity came into play. And Huckabee clearly was playing those politics.

Sorry, but if it looks like anti-Mormon bigotry and sounds like anti-Mormon bigotry, there's a good chance that such bigotry is a factor.

Maybe the bigotry is over-emphasized, but the perception of bigotry exists. That perception is not just happening vis-a-vis religion, but it also seems to end up being perceived by Hispanics in the recent debates on immigration, and that has Karl Rove worried:

HH: You’re a student of American political history. Religion has played more of a role in the Republican primary than at anytime since 1960, or even 1928. Do you think, if Romney’s not the nominee, that the LDS, which is a significant portion in some states of the Republican values base, or on the other hand, Evangelicals who are literalists, are easily brought back in if their guy isn’t on the ticket?

KR: Oh, I think so. I do think so. And I think, look, again, it’s, they’re not drawn into politics simply because of the presence of Mitt Romney as LDS, though they applaud that. They’re brought in by the fact that he’s a person of deep personal faith, who has espoused socially conservative values, and fiscally conservative values, and has a life record that they find attractive. I don’t think it is the only thing, or even the principal thing that drives a lot of LDS to vote Republican. And so you need to be worried about does it look like if, does it look like 1928? I think it did hurt the Republican Party long term, that it looked like we were anti-Catholic. And so we’ve got to make certain that we don’t look anti-anything. We need to be for something. And to the degree that that happens, depending on what, you know, if a Huckabee doesn’t win, or Romney doesn’t win, or if their supporters who are going to feel…if they feel welcomed, are going to remain and be enthusiastic in the fall, particularly given a choice between our likely nominee, whoever that is, and the Democrats’ likely nominee, whom I suspect will be Hillary Clinton.

HH: We’ve got a minute left, Karl Rove. You warned about the cliff of turning Latino-Americans against the Republican Party. Have we gone over that? Or are we dancing on it? Or have we drawn back from it?

KR: Well, we’re dancing on it. I don’t think we’ve drawn back, and I don’t think we’ve gone over the cliff. But we are, we are at a point where we’d better be very careful about this. I understand people’s deep concerns about securing our borders, and about being overwhelmed by a wave of illegal immigration, and about giving amnesty, which is the forgiveness of an offense without penalty. But we have to be very careful about not looking like we…look, we did this once before. We did this in the 1920’s when Republican congresses and a Republican president passed legislation that essentially shut the door to Jews and Italians coming into the United States. And we suffered for thirty years, forty years as Jews and Italian-Americans remembered sort of the closing of the door to people who looked and acted and thought like them, and came from the same part of the world originally in order to become Americans. We’ve got to be very careful about that.

Will the GOP take the hint? The party's future may depend on it. Folks like AJ-Strata, Anchoress, and I ought to be folks the GOP should count on for votes at least. AJ has, however, chosen to remain unaffiliated, the Anchoress is going to go back to being unaffiliated, and I have been considering it.

The GOP needs to think about its course very hard.


Shermpotter said...

Now a Romney supporter, and I am everything you mention at the start of your piece, except I don't blindly follow Bush. War on terror, check, tax cuts, check, end of story. I am pro-gun, anti-abortion, anti-political correctness and very much against everything the Democrats have to say. It's a fantasy world they live in, and Romney comes to play with a full hand of reality. I could care less about his religion, and I am as evangelical as they come. I want someone who can keep us on the track of greatness, if I wanted Europe I would live there.

James H said...

The accusation of Bigotry are getting old on all sides. I guess I need to a post reminding people all the things that Huckabee said in defending Romney.THose are often ignored by the Article 6 blog that I follow a good bit. In fact I can't help but note(,even though it run by a evangelical) that it distorts Huckabee's words all the time.

That being said we all need to practice what we preach. Huckabee will back the Republicna nominee no matter who it is. If we wish to declare each other bigots and wackos we might as well hang it up.

THe Huckabee campaign very well could be coming to a end on Super Tuesday. Many have pro McCain and Pro Romney. However I think at some point the McCain camps and Romney camps would perhaps want to try to set the groundwork for getting these people in their camp.