Conservatives Adrift with Romney at the Helm

Small boat adrift at sea

Conservatives Adrift.

Our illustrious and caffeinated leader, Shane Vander Hart, has correctly pointed out that Mitt Romney appears to be ready for a lurch to the left. But I say, who can blame him? In 2008, Romney tried to cater to social conservatives and where did it get him? He lost to Mike Huckabee by a large margin in Iowa, and went on to finish third. This time around, he moved to the center of the GOP, barely lost Iowa (34 votes!), then fended off or outlasted many conservatives and is now running away with the delegate count. Since the New Hampshire Primary, he has only had to look back at chasers, never ahead to another front-runner. In other words, since he will have won the GOP nomination without conservatives, why should he change strategies when there are fewer conservatives by percentage in the general electorate than in the primaries? It is not gonna happen.

There are two possible explanations for Romney’s success:

1. Conservatives don’t make up as great percentage of the GOP as we thought.

2. “Conservatives” aren’t really that conservative.

I think principled social conservatives actually make up a minority of the Republican party. Winning the nomination is not proof enough that our numbers are small, for I grant that social conservatives did not coalesce around a single alternative to Romney, but there is no guarantee Santorum, for example, would win even in a two-man race from the start. Romney has won nearly half the delegates even though the party is supposedly conservative. This “split-vote” theory also doesn’t tell us why conservatives are now gathering around Romney so quickly, not even playing hard to get.

Many of them have admitted that he is “not the best candidate”, but a few have pledged to no longer speak of his flaws for the sake of beating Obama. Soon they will be touting him as the next Ronald Reagan, even as he will continue to move to the left, especially on abortion and the protection of marriage. And those without moorings and without Christ at their helm will continue to drift leftward, right along with him.

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Further Reading:

In my book, With Christ in the Voting Booth, I lament the advance of Libertarian social philosophy on the Republican party and wrote:

“Are we so desperate for conservative icons and economic freedom that we don’t care what poison we have to accept in the mixture?” (p. 84)

 

 

 

 

 

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Comments

  1. True Consevative says

    Conservatives are not adrift. Far from it. We have our eye on the target and we are barreling towards it with Romney taking the lead. Most people recognize that in 2008 Mitt Romney was the runner-up, not Huckabee. The one and only reason Huckabee ended up with more delegates than Romney is because Romney dropped out early, something that Santorum should have done long ago. And what about the third explanation for Romney’s success? That Mitt Romney is a Conservative himself, and a majority of Conservatives recognized his conservative credentials and decided to vote for him over other Consevative candidates.

    • David Shedlock says

      Romney thinks its dandy to kill 1500 or more babies a year (that is a conservative figure) for the sins of their fathers. That is his OFFICIAL position. He never admits he was ever pro-choice and thinks he was always pro-life.

      He also “likes” mandates  – that is hardly a conservative position. He was for bailouts before bailouts were cool (wanting to bailout the auto industry in January of 2007). He has tried to woo the Log Cabin Republicans with his pro-homosexual rhetoric. .

      • says

        Mandates of ObamaCare are simply a response to the unfunded mandates of ReaganCare. I’d post a link to a post that elaborates but those comments with links are blocked by the blog’s filter. If interested go to kansasbob dot com for last Saturday (Apr 14).

      • David Shedlock says

        They aren’t blocked, but just delayed. Why hasn’t Romney called for a repeal of Reagancare, then? No, he likes mandates.

      • says

        Making folks pay for services they use is a conservative value. Unfortunately ReaganCare mandates medical care for people who cannot pay. Far as I know I am the only one that sees ReaganCare as the problem. None of the candidates would ever speak against something St Ronald signed. :)

  2. 13amiga says

    There are but two choices: Ron Paul and the Constitution  or  Obamneyrich and the status quo megastate.

  3. says

    I think, on the whole, conservatives aren’t really that conservative, as you said–or at the very least they’re not very discerning.  And Christians seem to be ruled more by fear than trust in God, which you mentioned in another article a while back.  Another big reason for Romney’s success:

    MONEY.

    He has basically bought his victories so far, with the corrupt GOP backing him up all the way.  

    Well, Romney doesn’t have all the delegates yet, and the Bible says we don’t even know what’s going to happen tomorrow.  God is more than capable of throwing a wrench in the works, especially if we pester him enough about it.  :)

    • Kypur says

      Amazing at the (voting) hands of Christians, we bestow the GOP nomination on a man “devout” to a Church who has doctrinally taught,as Brigham Young so indefensibly stated: “Cain slew his brother … and the Lord put a mark upon him which is the flat nose and black skin” (Journal of Discourses,vol.7 p. 290). George W. Bush received 11% of the Bkack vote, how much do we think Romney will receive?

      Romney knows this is a potentially BIG problem. Just YouTube and look at what he and his campaign did to a voter in Wisconsin asking about the black “curse” issue in a public Romney town hall meeting the day before that primary.  

      • says

        Interesting point, Kypur.  Although I do think Mormonism is a cult, I would rather vote for a devout Mormon than a sleazy Christian, like Bill Clinton.  Or at least he claims to be a Christian.  However, nothing Romney does leads me to believe that he is a “devout” Mormon.  :)

        So did Romney try to shut down that voter in the town hall meeting?  I wouldn’t be surprised.  Romney’s all about secrecy and dirty tricks.  He’s the most ruthless Republican candidate out there since Richard Nixon IMO.   

  4. says

    Explanation #3: Conservatives are more interested in fiscal conservatism than the social flavor embraced by spendaholics like Prez GW Bush.

    • David Shedlock says

      We were not limited to an either/or choice this time. Bachmann is both socially conservative and fiscally conservative. But conservatives care about either too much, I’m afraid..

      • says

        I am confused. Bachmann is no longer running. Did you mean to say someone else? Either way, it will be Romney v Obama in November and Romney will be more able to deal with fiscal issues than Obama.

      • David Shedlock says

        I am saying that GOP voters HAD the choice of someone who was both fiscally and socially conservative and they rejected her (or as the point i was making earlier, social conservatives are in a distinct minority.)

      • says

        Yes, GOP voters have rejected candidates who seem to major on social conservatism . So why would it be wise for Romney to major on those issues now? Especially when those issues are less popular with moderates and independents who will be voting in November?

      • David Shedlock says

        Why are you arguing with me, Bob? You agree that “social conservatives” don’t make up as much of the party as they think. The difference is, you celebrate it; I lament it.

      • says

        Arguing? All I did was ask you a question (why should Romney now focus on social issues) that you do not want to answer. I am happy to simply agree to disagree about Romney though.

      • David Shedlock says

        I didn’t say he should focus on social issues. On the contrary, I am also saying he has no reason to go to the right, he won without social conservatives.

  5. says

    You look at the numbers and Romney’s gotten about 40% of the vote so far. You can say that conservatives haven’t been particularly wise and they’ve gotten pushed around by the media. That’s how Romney won places like Wisconsin, Ohio, and Michigan. Also, I think many conservatives are afraid to vote for what they really would prefer, viewing  electability and modest goals as an ideal. Political Conservatives tend to be conservative in how they choose their candidate. Mitt Romney is the CD yielding a guaranteed 0.65% APY while Rick Santorum was the hot new stock pick that could rally to great heights or crash and burn. Somehow conservatives need to find some courage and vision.

  6. David Shedlock says

    Kansas Bob wrote:

    “Making folks pay for services they use is a conservative value.”

    Except Bob, that is not what Romneycare does.

    First, it make people pay for insurance who may never use it. That is not conservative.

    Second, it makes insurance companies cover people who are already sick. That is not conservative.

    Third, it mandates that insurance companies cover conditions that they may not want to cover: drug abuse, contraception, Viagra, psychological counseling, etc.  It also forbids the most cost-effective insurance available: catastrophic insurance.  That is not conservative.

    Fourth, it created layers and layers of state bureaucrats who do resemble Sarah Palin’s death panels, determining the most cost-effective things to cover and not cover. Except the best decisions are made between a doctor and patient (not the government, not our employer, not your insurance company)

  7. says

    Two possible explanations? According to who? There’s one explanation and it’s so obvious you’d have to be blind not to see it. The systemic bias in campaign coverage. Romney gets a lot of airtime, his shortcomings (many policy-based, others moral) are glossed over, and the other candidates are ridiculed. It’s not minor, it’s major. It has occurred on a mass-scale. He was sold to the American public as moderate, capable of drawing in independents and of winning the showdown with Obama, as the golden boy, the inevitable winner, etc. The American people are so stupid it’s remarkable. The same people that buy water, H2O, IN A BOTTLE!!!, for five dollars at a baseball game. I mean how many times are they going to fall for the same tricks? Romney is owned by the same multinationals, banks, weapons manufacturers etc. that own the news. Get it? Do you get it yet? Turn off your television. You’re a very sick person if you’re still watching it. “Two explanations”? Come on man, you must be living under a rock. The American people have absolutely no idea at this point what’s happened to their country and why. They still think it’s Obama and the progressives. So, so sad. People are dolts. They can easily be manipulated by the corporate press. It’s so obvious to see. Hoodwinked again! Just look at how the media sold Santorum, the smug theocrat, as the obvious and genuine alternative to Romney, and his numbers jumped tenfold right before Iowa in order to pull votes away from true conservatives. Americans are fools. What happened to their country, they did to it. They are the problem.
    Not Obama, not progressives, them. Now the establishment Republicans are playing with the elections, toying with the counts, to keep the gravy train rolling for the multiple parasitic complexes that survive and indeed thrive off government intervention and hand-outs. And not a peep from the supposed patriots. Washington itself is a cancer on the back of America, and in truth, a cancer on the back of the whole world, as the American imperial base of scum and douchery; the headquarters of the American military, the most violent, vicious wing of America’s corporate kings, and all the corporate lobbyists eating the dead carcass of a once great nation. They are the problem. The American people. Anyone who sits idly by and ignores the reality of our situation is a fool and a coward. America is a dying, desperate nation, flailing out in desperation, gasping for the air of others. Let it not strike any more innocent people, Americans or others. Let it not steal any more money from the honest to give it to the dishonest. Be honest with yourself, you know it to be true. So be a coward, but don’t be a coward to yourself. What is the alternative? Ok, then go ahead, and bow to your Zionist overlords. Forget it, it’s hopeless. How can articles like this even exist at this point? Go ahead, vote for your financial criminal and war criminal masters.
    Ron Paul 2012

  8. says

    I wouldn’t worry about Romney. Romney has this locked up and the media knows it. With Rubio his running mate, he wins florida easy, including the jewish vote there. The other states: OH, IA, NV, IN, VA, NC, probably WI, etc are all in the bag. Many of the libertarians will vote for him, and the others would never vote for Obama. The media knows its all over, which is why they keep putting out bogus polls with obama leading.