A caller to a morning (east coast) talk show identified himself as a conservative and a social conservative. He called to make it clear that after CPAC announced Rand Paul was straw poll winner that he “and people like me” won’t vote. I understand this, and I do believe him. I am convinced that starting in 2006 many conservatives, in my opinion social conservatives, pulled their nuclear option and refuse to participate until the Republican party changes.
The problem is, in my opinion, that the error of their ways has not been revealed to the Republican nobility by this tactic. Before the battle even starts, the caller has given up his only point of influence. I look at the Democrat party and see chaos. How can the Sierra club and private sector unions exist in the same sphere of influence? The answer is simple, they understand they can’t always get what they want, but if the don’t remain engaged they will be ignored. They hold their nose and vote on the outside chance they can get some improvement in the conditions that motivate them. And that has happened. No one is ever satisfied but each group when Democrats are in power can be placated.
The position of Republican Nobility toward social conservatives refusal to participate was made very clear by Mitch McConnell. Conservatives will be crushed. I too trust in God to provide, and believe strongly I will be rewarded in the here after, but I am not willing to cast aside my opportunity to make the world a better place simply because my demands are not met. I want a place at the table to argue for more than laws against someone else’s sins.
Which brings me to the question. Why do we fight?
Perhaps I have spent too much time studying military strategy but I will explain it in terms of history. It strikes me that there is a leg of the Reagan triad. the social conservative leg, that will only be motivated when the end goal is within grasp. Partisan fighters who will be there for the capture of Berlin, but want to sit out the invasion of Italy. What we need to focus on is the fight before us. And for that we need allies who are willing to fight and who bring to us the resources we need to weaken our opponents.
The battle ground today is on the fringes. It is similar to the struggle to liberate Normandy, not capture Berlin. If that means, for a time, that we, like McConnell must disregard those who will only vote for a strongly pro-life candidate then we will need new allies, and for that we need to understand our immediate objective. Why do we fight?
Do we want to cut the size and influence of the federal government and restore the strength of the states? Or perhaps we fight to restore America’s rightful place as an industrial nation and put to work in potentiallly lucrative careers the large percentage of people with skilled hands but no interest in college, building the worlds consumable and durable goods? Perhaps we fight to free the constraints on our natural resources that we might once again take our place as the industrial leader of the world?
That would be my goal. What is yours?
– Federalist and Fiscal Conservative. Republican.