There are a lot of meetings going on attended by some Republicans trying to figure out what went wrong on Election Day and how the party needs to respond.
None of them involves what the media like to call the base, the folks at the grass roots whose votes, after all, determine the outcome of elections.
The gatherings get a lot of media attention because the media mistakenly believe that the people attending them represent the grass roots of the GOP.
What they represent is the coterie that led the party into eight years of ignoring the traditions and principles of the party pursued so avidly by the Reagan administration, with which they have the effrontery to identify themselves.
They represent the big-government, big-spending Republican Party that turned its back on the grass roots. Many of them say that what the GOP needs to do is to do more of the same things that put us where we are.
I have news for them. They are not the Republican Party. They remain wedded to the idea that the party is a party of moderation — the party that can’t make up its mind about what is right to do and what is wrong to do. So they try to come down in the middle.
They forget that Abraham Lincoln, the first Republican president, warned us not to believe there “is some middle ground” between what is right and what is wrong.
The grass roots haven’t forgotten that, and the election results prove it. The “values voters” are alive and well, and they spoke loud and clear where values were at stake.
As Brad O’Leary has noted, a majority of Americans still support traditional American values. He cited initiatives to uphold traditional marriage that were on the ballots in two states carried by President-elect Obama: California and Florida.
O’Leary says, “In both states, voters passed measures to ban gay marriage. In California, where Obama beat McCain 61 percent to 37 percent, ‘values voters’ beat special interest voters 52.5 percent to 47.5 percent on the issue of same-sex marriage.”
In Florida, which he recalls Obama won, the margin of victory for values voters was even more substantial — 62 percent of Floridians voted against gay marriage, while only 38 percent voted in favor.
Most damning for the GOP moderates was Obama’s ability to portray himself as a tax cutter. Obama constantly told the voters that his economic plan would cut taxes for 95 percent of Americans, which would equate to 274 million Americans receiving a tax cut.
Yet the big-government, big-spending Republicans whose voice is David Brooks, The New York Times columnist who insists that the GOP must abandon its traditions and values and go merrily down to road to the land of moderation where nothing is really right and nothing is really wrong.
He neglects to tell his readers that this is the road that leads to lost elections.
The future of the Republican Party is in the hands of the party’s grass roots. In the months to come, some of us will be concentrating on organizing the people who are the real base of the party and fighting to restore the party’s values as represented by my father’s administration.
What we stand for is worth fighting for. And it is what will save the party of Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Reagan. Let the moderates have their meetings. We’ll be busy taking over the reins and restoring the GOP.
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