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Election 2012: The GOP Base Must Cope With Hard Truths

Written by Richard Falknor

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Blue Ridge Forum
“It’s about the Senate.  It’s about being in charge of the money.  It’s not about cutting spending.  The Republican establishment is not signed on to the cutting spending business.  People ask me, ‘What do you mean, who is this Republican establishment?’  Two things.  They don’t like conservatives and they’re not really all that concerned about spending.  They want to be in charge of it.  That’s who they are.  And they are not gonna be in charge of it if they don’t hold the House and if they don’t pick up the Senate.  And that’s what they really want.  They’re not and never have been convinced that Obama can be beat.” (Underscoring Forum’s.)  Rush Limbaugh

Rush_Limbaugh_Golden_IEBThe Tea Partiers and the conservative grass roots brought theGOP back from its 2009 irrelevance — exemplified by then-GOP Whip Eric Cantor’s “listening tours” — and gave the GOP a commanding majority in the House of Representatives in November of 2010.

Rush Limbaugh at the Golden EIB

The GOP base is right to feel their efforts were wasted by Speaker John Boehner’s inept performance with that historic majority, but also indignant that they are mocked behind their backs (barely out of hearing) by the Beltway GOP.

The Attack on Allen West

Worse, independent strong conservative voices in the House like Republican Study Committee chairman Jim Jordan and nowTea Party hero Allen West have recently been or are the targets of the wrath of the GOP Establishment.

Establishment vs. The Base?

The Jurassic-Park-like political encounters between former Speaker Gingrich and former governor Romney for the GOP presidential nomination are seen as a struggle between Mr. Romney as the voice for the GOP Establishment and Mr. Gingrich as a seeming advocate for the Party’s conservative base.

Rush Limbaugh explains

“Politics is about passion, and the Republican Party doesn’t seem to have it! There’s always fear of somebody. Fear of the media, fear of Democrats. Well, Newt doesn’t act like he’s got any fear. So how many wives does he got? ‘I don’t care!’ What did he do for Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac? ‘I don’t care.’ What are his national disapproval ratings? ‘I don’t care! Finally somebody’s telling the bad guys who they are, what to do and that we’re not gonna take it anymore — or that we don’t want to take it anymore.’”

Looking at the policy side,  Mr. Gingrich has apparently confessed error about his support for the individual mandate in health-care financing, but his current support for what is a murky but substantial amnesty for illegal immigrants diminishes him as a reliable voice for the conservative base.

As we have nonetheless written, the former Speaker is clearly unafraid of challenging the Islamist threat, unlike the Beltway voices who fear doing so, and he articulates perhaps better than any other candidate the need for a serious national defense.

Yet his record advancing green statism (the foregoing link is full of useful information apart from a puzzling endorsement of Romney) has been appalling and, to our knowledge, Mr. Gingrich has not revisited his earlier positions on key land-use issues so important to employment today. Here is Myron Ebell (ALEC): “then-House Speaker Newt Gingrich was a Sierra Clubber before he was a Republican.”

Overall, one senses that the former Speaker’s heart belongs to celebrating new techniques and technologies more than to talking up our (by now) unique and historic freedoms.

Believing that governor Romney is any kind of conservative, however, is surely a triumph of forlorn hope over experience.

But the Beltway GOP apparently sees the sometime Massachusetts governor as that nominee most likely to help downstream by electing or re-electing Senate and House candidates to take back the Senate and to keep the House GOPmajority through Mr. Romney’s supposed appeal to “moderates.”

This morning RedState chief Erick Erickson observes

“Gingrich and Santorum will have to fight both for the conservative vote and to make up ground against the Romney money machine. The odds are long that either can do it. Together, they cannot. One of them will have to depart the race if they want to stop Romney — assuming they do. In all of this, I get the real sense that there are wounds opening up that will not be healed by November of 2012. Mitt Romney, in deciding to run the McCain strategy from 2008, may be doing himself more damage than McCain ever did to himself. We knew what we were getting with McCain. But the Romney of 2012 is a different creature from the Romney of 2008. That has energized many to stop him and kept his support an inch deep. It’s like we’re facing Jimmy Carter and nominating Alf Landon.” ( Alf Landon link supplied; emphasis Forum’s.)

Of course, the immediate objective on November 6 is to elect a replacement for president Barack Obama.

Will the Next GOP President Act At All Like A Conservative?

But consider a case where a newly elected GOP president simply prunes the rough edges of Obamacare, doesn’t take the necessary, if controversial, steps to restore a weakened military, doesn’t use his political capital to reform entitlements, doesn’t rein in the administrative state or slash the regulatory agenda or clean out troubling Obama appointees by then well burrowed into the “career” service, and doesn’t relinquish the new White House powers asserted by president Obama — especially with regard to illegal immigration, and a new president who makes his governing theme avoiding conflict with the Other Team and especially with the Legacy Media.

Would the current GOP Congressional leadership do anything to put such a new president back on track? They may not even recognize that he has gone off track.

SOURCE: Bule Ridge Forum

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