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The PJ Tatler

by
Bryan Preston

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August 6, 2013 - 1:01 pm
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Republicans have nominated moderate, cross-the-aisle candidates for president in two successive elections, John McCain in 2008 and Mitt Romney in 2012. They lost both elections. While ascribing the defeat to a single cause — the GOP nominees’ centrist records and stances — would be folly, it surely contributed to the losses by depressing the party’s conservative base. A candidate has to inspire people to turn out and vote; moderates don’t inspire the grassroots of either party.

Many conservatives rightly conclude that a nominee who hasn’t fought for their values consistently is unlikely to fight for them under the pressures of the presidency. So they stay home, or decide not to donate their time and treasure to electing that candidate. They stay home rather than walk blocks or make phone calls. They don’t plant a yard sign. They sit out, feeling that their party isn’t representing their values. It’s an entirely rational choice.

The Associated Press’ Charles Babington doesn’t see things that way. He’s carrying water today for those establishment Republicans who think Romney was just too darn conservative to win.

WASHINGTON (AP) — After Mitt Romney‘s 2012 loss, many senior Republicans concluded the party must moderate its image on issues such as immigration and reproductive rights.

But some GOP lawmakers have done the opposite.

They imposed new restrictions on abortion in several states. They are strongly resisting a broad immigration bill in the U.S. House. They’re waging a steady assault on “Obamacare,” with some House and Senate Republicans vowing to shut down the government if that’s what it takes to choke off the health care law Congress enacted in 2010.

These trends worry establishment Republicans. And they expose a growing split in the GOP, which is driven more by campaign strategy than ideology.

That split has always been there. The establishment resisted Ronald Reagan back in the day. They resist Ted Cruz now. They’re freaked out by Allen West and think conservative blogs and talk radio are nothing but trouble. Same old same old.

They also fret when Republicans in red states get elected and then do what they campaigned on doing. The voter ID, abortion and anti-Obamacare bills that have won passage in state legislatures and the U.S. House reflect the will of the majority of voters who handed Republicans their majorities.

They fret when Republicans in blue states get elected and they do what they campaigned on doing. Rick Perry, Bobby Jindal and Scott Walker all put establishment Republicans in panics to one degree or another. Their gaudy records count for far less than the fact that none of them tend to go along with everything the Beltway types deem within bounds.

A reasonable question never crosses their lips: Should Republican candidates just lie to voters, and immediately abandon their campaign promises and principles?

The mainstream media and establishment Republicans’ answer would be “yes,” but they’ll never be honest enough to say it.

What they’re rejecting are flyover country values. The MSM doesn’t understand them and doesn’t care to, and the Beltway GOP tends to avoid open fights with the MSM while casting its eye on flyover Americans as backward and embarrassing. We got a little glimpse of the values gap in the different reactions to rumors that the billionaire entrepreneur Koch brothers were considering buying the L.A. Times, versus the warm reaction that billionaire entrepreneur Jeff Bezos’ purchase of the Washington Post is getting. The Koch brothers’ possible purchase was greeted as a scandal by itself. Bezos’ actual buy of the Post at a bargain price generated suck-up tweets from Post staff and mostly positive press elsewhere.

The Post itself noted that Bezos’ “values” played a role in the sale going forward.

Post publisher and CEO Katharine Weymouth noted the “values” at play in Monday’s letter announcing the sale.

Mr. Bezos has asked that I remain as Publisher and CEO of The Post. I am honored to continue in that role. Our mission does not change. Nor do the values that have been at the core of The Post’s enduring strength over many decades. Mr. Bezos shares the principles that have guided the Graham family’s proud stewardship of this great news organization.

The love-fest continued in Bezos’ letter to staff:

“The values of The Post do not need changing,” he wrote. “The paper’s duty will remain to its readers and not to the private interests of its owners. We will continue to follow the truth wherever it leads, and we’ll work hard not to make mistakes. When we do, we will own up to them quickly and completely.”

Those alleged values include trashing Mitt Romney, the man the media says Republicans should emulate, for boyhood antics in prep school, while avoiding any serious research into Barack Obama’s background. Just Google “Washington Post Romney school bully” and you’ll see the Post’s “values” on plain display. The Post is consistently hostile to traditional values, small government, individual responsibility, Christianity, and Second Amendment rights. Establishment Republicans are just as consistently hostile to Republicans who espouse those same values and ideals.

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
The RNC establishment's fatal flaw is arrogance; they think the conservative base exists to finance a portion of the party and vote for whomever we tell you to vote for...then just shut up. You're (the base) not sophisticated enough to understand "the game" in D.C. They are too arrogant to look at states with conservative governors and model a national platform from their success(es). The "establishment" is looking at a real shock in 2014...you hear me Rove, with your gay little white board?

Remember BENGHAZI!
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
I want them to nominate someone who's willing to ruin and destroy the lives of progressives the way that progressives gleefully are doing to the rest of us.

Nominate someone willing to cull and liquidate Progressives the way that they're trying to do to us.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
I've stopped giving money to the GOP. You know what would get me to open my wallet again? I want them to offer me a Conservative Barack Obama.

What I mean by that is I want someone who's going to advocate for my beliefs completely without apology. I want someone willing to call the other side out and say their beliefs are wrong (though if he stops short of calling them evil that's ok). I want someone willing to use political strongarm tactics to get transformative legislation through Congress.

But I'm never going to get that from the GOP, because the ones calling the shots in the GOP are embarrassed by me and my beliefs. Not so embarrassed that they won't ask me for money of course, just embarrassed enough to refuse to represent me. Frankly the Republican party can't die fast enough for my taste. They clearly want to govern like Democrats so let them go join the party already.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (37)
All Comments   (37)
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If the far right Republican "base" triumphs, they will see that the sitting an election out philosophy works two ways. .....which will just result in another loss. The Tea Party strategy in Nevada and Delaware will become more wide spread. It's one thing to want financial conservatism but another to believe all the stuff the far right preaches.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
In the middle of the country, "Fly-Over Country", the people do have different values than those on the coasts. Many of the people in the middle of the country moved inland from the coasts long, long ago. They came to these shores as colonists, pioneers, explorers. There were few cities—even those were small—and vast amounts of unclaimed land. They worked their land hard and didn't depend on anyone, except maybe their neighbors and church when they were sick. They read Locke and Paine. When it was decided to throw off the yoke of an unjust British rule, they responded. When they moved inland they kept alive this self-reliance, care for neighbors and freedom from excessive and unjust government.

The people who lived on the coasts also started this way. But as the coastal cities grew, people became surrounded by crowds of people who neither knew them nor cared. Some churches fed and helped the misfortunate. Immigrants began arriving in numbers. They came to established cities. Churches and ethnic groups helped them get settled in to a home and job. They helped with legal and societal issues. People learned to not know anyone who lived more than a few doors down. They depended on societies and missions and such to help them through hard times. They expected the city to provide all sorts of services and benefits. When the owners and managers saw lots of profits to be made from people they didn't know, they began working their laborers longer hours for less pay. The managers knew there was always someone waiting to work cheaper if anyone protested. So on the coasts, immigrants and low-skilled workers began forming unions—another society to care for them.

Meanwhile out in the middle of the country, we were still working hard for our own living, knew everyone in town, helped our friends, our neighbors, in misfortune and basically cared for ourselves. And we still read Locke and Paine. The managers of the mills and factories knew their employees because they had all gone to the same schools and churches since childhood. If the manager did something wrong, he didn't have to deal with a union steward, but with his own family and friends.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
If the "Left" is made of a mix of far-left and moderate-left people and the "Right" is made up of far-right and moderate-right people, when a bill is presented in legislature and both sides stand firm on principle, when a compromise is finally reached, it is in the middle. Both sides win some and both give in on some.

However if the "Left" is as described above and the "Right" is in the middle, when a bill is presented in legislature, it will always end up being leftist. The left always wins and the right always loses.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Yeah, Medved drives me insane with this crap. Hugh Hewitt is only somewhat less idiotic in dismissing the "crazies" . Bryan has nailed this deep seated psychological craving for acceptance that infects our GOP ruling class. Also, with respect to the Senate candidates named, there are a number of circumstances and particulars with each of these candidates, but the one given which none of our establishment voices seem willing to confront is the reality of an actively hostile media that is committed to creating and amplifying gaffes and/or embarassing episodes, whether they exist or not when it comes to actual principled conservatives running for office. So, the solution per the Medveds and Roves, is to give our enemies a veto over who we nominate. The only solution, really, is to embrace the hatred from the media and confront it head on on Radio, on line, and in the MSM (which often includes FOX) when we can. Shame & denounce the pundits & consultants on our side who feed this incestuous stew.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Medved is a two faced idiot.
He says work from within the party to change the party, but as soon as you do he says "Now is not the time" or "This isn't a good thing."
Medved believes in electing republicans for the sole purpose of electing republicans - yet he opposes tooth and nail electing republicans for the purpose of accomplishing something.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
We have a shorter name for a "Why Won't Those Horrible Conservative Republicans Take A Lesson From Romney And Move To The Center" story: we call it a Rick Moran piece!
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
The GOP acts as if they're being paid by the Dems to take a dive in the last two Presidential elections, and we still have GOP shills coming out the woodworks to berate us for not supporting them enough.

36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
A serious party would never tolerate 'leaders' like Boehner and McConnell. The voters keep them in office and then blame the RINOs for not being firebrand slash and burn warriors. Outside of the Tea Party there is no fight in the heart of Republicans, in office or back home. They see Liberals as the popular kids in school. The non-Tea Party Republicans (NTPR) are desperate to hear some liberal agrees with us or might like us or understands us. Those are the problem in the party. Those people turn to quislings like Rove and Boehner to try and win, but don't threaten our chance of being liked by the Left.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
The Republicans fight, just not for the GOP or conservatives. If they keep supporting the Democrat Party, I may do so too in the next election. I'm tired of Benedict Arnolds, Quislings and Chamberlains.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
The problem with those conservatives who are more principled than pragmatic is that they think the Republican Party belongs to them. It doesn’t. Any more than it belongs to the moderates. Or any more than the Democratic Party belongs to the far left or to its moderates. Both major parties are broad coalitions of voters, one leaning right, the other left. Primaries are where conservatives work to get the party to nominate the most conservative candidate possible. At that point, they have a decision to make: vote for the Republican nominee, or vote for the Democrat, or sit it out. If you were a conservative in 2012 and you sat it out—if you walked away from Romney because he wasn’t “conservative enough”—two things must be said: (1) you helped re-elect President Obama, and (2) President Obama is the President you deserve.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Well, I would personally argue that the permanent harm to the Republican party of a Romney presidency would be worth being rid of the current occupant for the next four years. Still, its not unreasonable to sit an election or vote Libertarian as part of a larger calculation to maintain the principles of the party, depending on the circumstances.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Rearranging the deck chairs in a conservative manner on the USS Titanic isnt pragmatic, it's stupid.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Call it "stupid" all you want but it's a fact that due to so many conservative voters sitting it out in 2012, Obama is serving a second term. Perhaps the Titanic analogy works in a manner not consistent with the way you used it but because our numbers are simply no longer sufficient to render victory for our side. Perhaps the tipping point has been reached despite all those lovely folks who did not vote in 2012.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Obama, Reid, Pelosi, Holder... you're telling me the Democrats don't serve their far left base? Did you actually have a straight face when you typed that?

Here's the unfortunate truth: Democrats and establishment Republicans want exactly the same thing. They both want the power bigger government gives them. Power to enrich themselves, power to tell their fellow citizens how to live and power to live like royalty. The problem is that even though both parties want that only one party represents voters who feel that way, and it ain't the Republicans. Say what you will about the Democrats, at least they don't constantly betray the people that sent them to Washington.

Even the "ultraconservative" G.W. Bush presided over a massive increase in government that included the Patriot Act, no child left behind and the medicare drug plan.

That's why the GOP needs to be torn up root and branch. As long as they're around our elections are going to be "heads they win, tails we lose", and between one-third and one-half of the country has no hope of being represented in the government.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
You are factually accurate that conservatives sitting at home most likely ensured Dear Leader's reelection, along with massive fraud...BUT, the GOP also is culpable by forcing such a weak candidate upon the base and ignoring their/our wishes completely out of hand; the GOP deserves what it got and will continue to lose until they recognize that they need their base to win. Boehner-Cantor-Ryan-McConnell-McCain-et al ACTIVE COLLUSION with and their pusillanimous capitulation to the America-hating dems is only making matters worse. We need a true leader and we need him or her FAST! Senator Sessions....you listening?

Remember BENGHAZI!
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
The 2012 non-Tea Party Republicans nominated the man that lost to the previous loser and they want us to follow the geniuses that came up with that strategy in the next election.

I don't think Romney even got 50% of the vote in any primary until he had almost all the delegates necessary for the nomination. The voters were sending a big loud signal and the GOP, as usual, refused to notice. Every day since that failure the GOP/RNC has doubled-down on stupid and feckless.

When the Ruling Class calls you stupid for wanting to defund ObamaCare the only necessary response is 'where's your plan?'
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Another pure BS excuse for the GOP. YOU helped elect Obama by allowing the GOP to continue it's business as usual, we're not quiet as bad as they are routine. And by promoting the same party line YOU will be responsible for electing the Hildabeast in exactly the same way.

Primaries that allow democrats to vote in them will never, ever give the GOP a candidate worth voting for.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
I though Medved was a lib. I never knew he was supposed to be Conservative. I just thought he was a Blue Dog lib.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
In Medved's world he is the closest thing to a conservative. But, that is like being called the prettiest girl on the East German Olympic team.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
The RNC establishment's fatal flaw is arrogance; they think the conservative base exists to finance a portion of the party and vote for whomever we tell you to vote for...then just shut up. You're (the base) not sophisticated enough to understand "the game" in D.C. They are too arrogant to look at states with conservative governors and model a national platform from their success(es). The "establishment" is looking at a real shock in 2014...you hear me Rove, with your gay little white board?

Remember BENGHAZI!
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
You are right. The Ruling Class fought Reagan. The only politician to win back to back landslides was dismissed and denegrated by the people asking for money.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
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