Getting back to Base

Cross Posted From Hang Right Politics 

Peggy Noonan’s column Too Bad at the WSJ discusses some of the issues that divide Republican Party leadership and the base of the party.  That divide is likely the reason behind the decline in contributions to the RNC, COgirl posted on this earlier in Shooting the Messenger.  Here is an excerpt from Ms Noonan’s column:

The White House doesn’t need its traditional supporters anymore, because its problems are way beyond being solved by the base. And the people in the administration don’t even much like the base. Desperate straits have left them liberated, and they are acting out their disdain. Leading Democrats often think their base is slightly mad but at least their heart is in the right place. This White House thinks its base is stupid and that its heart is in the wrong place.

For almost three years, arguably longer, conservative Bush supporters have felt like sufferers of battered wife syndrome. You don’t like endless gushing spending, the kind that assumes a high and unstoppable affluence will always exist, and the tax receipts will always flow in? Too bad! You don’t like expanding governmental authority and power? Too bad. You think the war was wrong or is wrong? Too bad.

But on immigration it has changed from “Too bad” to “You’re bad.”

The president has taken to suggesting that opponents of his immigration bill are unpatriotic–they “don’t want to do what’s right for America.” His ally Sen. Lindsey Graham has said, “We’re gonna tell the bigots to shut up.” On Fox last weekend he vowed to “push back.” Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff suggested opponents would prefer illegal immigrants be killed; Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez said those who oppose the bill want “mass deportation.” Former Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson said those who oppose the bill are “anti-immigrant” and suggested they suffer from “rage” and “national chauvinism.”

From President Bush’s first term, the White House has pushed expanded government programs like No Child Left Behind, and the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act. Both of which dramatically increased Federal Spending and expanded government bureaucracies. It is not conservatives who have turned thier back on the Republican leadership, but Republican leadership in Congress and the White House that has abandoned the Conservative base.  To get back in the drivers seat we need candidates for public office that reflect our conservative principles, not those who insist the only way forward is to seek compromise solutions that erode our freedoms and jeopardize the basic foundations that made this country as great as it is.

The Republican Party needs to get back to its base. Ms Noonan’s final Paragraph says volumes.

Now conservatives and Republicans are going to have to win back their party. They are going to have to break from those who have already broken from them. This will require courage, serious thinking and an ability to do what psychologists used to call letting go. This will be painful, but it’s time. It’s more than time. 

Judging from COgirls post, I’d say it has already started..   


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