How the GOP got its groove back

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Well, sportsfans, I don’t know what the McCain folks have planned for tonight, but it’s going to be difficult to top Governor Palin’s speech, which electrified the crowd last night. I cannot even begin to describe how amazing it was to be on the floor as a delegate from Georgia.

So, what are we to make of last night and the impact of Governor Palin’s speech? Well, in my humble opinion, I truly believe that Palin will end up being a huge asset for John McCain and the Republican Party. She energizes the base in a way that I haven’t seen since Ronald Reagan (and I am barely old enough to remember or appreciate what that must have been like). We love her. Governor Palin is one of us, and there is no doubt in my mind that she is absolutely committed to fostering a culture of life in the United States. I know that some people wish that she had said more about the issue of abortion (and other life issues), and I would have liked that as well. But I can certainly understand why Governor Palin didn’t directly address the issue of abortion in this particular speech. This was her “coming out” moment, and she had a great deal of ground to cover. That having been said, there was a part of Governor Palin’s speech that dealt with the sanctity of life, and demonstrated her commitment to a culture of life in this country:

Our family has the same ups and downs as any other … the same challenges and the same joys.

Sometimes even the greatest joys bring challenge.

And children with special needs inspire a special love.

To the families of special-needs children all across this country, I have a message: For years, you sought to make America a more welcoming place for your sons and daughters.

I pledge to you that if we are elected, you will have a friend and advocate in the White House.

Now, is that as specific as I and many other prolifers would like? Of course not. But Governor Palin’s prolife views are well known (as is her amazing life story), and there will be plenty of time for her to express them as the campaign moves forward. What I am curious about is whether the same people who are criticizing Governor Palin for her lack of specificity on life issues last night will condemn Senator Obama for immediately attacking her prolife record as a means of galvinizing his proabort base.

(cue chirping crickets)

The bottom line is this: For all of Senator McCain’s faults (e.g., his support for federal funding of ESCR), his prolife record is light years ahead of Senator Obama. More importantly, Senator McCain has chosen a true-blue prolife conservative as his running mate, and in doing so has positioned her for a White House run of her own in the future. That alone ought to seal the deal with any prolife Catholics and Evangelicals who are on the fence about supporting Senator McCain. The maverick may not have given us everything that we wanted, but by choosing Palin he has signaled to the social-conservative base that our voice has been heard loud and clear and that we will have a place at the table in a McCain administration.

And consider the alternative, folks: Senator Obama, a man who has pledged that his first act as president will be to sign the “Freedom of Choice Act” into law–which will remove any and all restrictions on abortion at the state level, and roll back years of progress made by the prolife movement. Is that something you can live with my fellow Christians? And don’t even get me started on the looming Supreme Court vacancies.

In sum, I honestly do not see how a faithful Christian, Catholic or Protestant, can–given the addition of Palin to the ticket–justify voting for a man like Barack Obama, a third party, or sitting this election out. The stakes are simply too high. It is time for Christians of all stripes to get on board and help elect Senator John S. McCain as the next president of these United States.