Reading Kathleen Parker’s rant in her Washington Post column yesterday is an example of what shouldn’t be the way forward for the Republican party. Apparently the blame for the GOP’s loss on is to be laid at the feet of evangelicals. She writes:
As Republicans sort out the reasons for their defeat, they likely will overlook or dismiss the gorilla in the pulpit. Three little letters, great big problem: G-O-D. I’m bathing in holy water as I type. To be more specific, the evangelical, right-wing, oogedy-boogedy branch of the GOP is what ails the erstwhile conservative party and will continue to afflict and marginalize its constituents if reckoning doesn’t soon cometh.
First off the degrading of social conservatives is not what the GOP needs. The GOP is successful when candidates successfully unite social conservatives (by the way they are not just evangelicals), fiscal conservatives, and national security conservatives. McCain didn’t do that, and that is one of the reasons why he lost. To think that you can regulate these voters to “to wooden crates on street corners,” and still expect to win election is asinine.
This is actually the type of language I expect from the left. You know the one’s who feel average American’s cling to their “guns and religion.” The hostility with religion, and Christianity in particular does no good. No one was applying a litmus test for our presidential nominee. Sarah Palin was chosen at the VP candidate because of her faith, but rather for her conservatism – social, fiscal and national security.
Also Parker needs a wake up call – the social conservative causes that many evangelicals hold dear were not in the forefront of this election. It was “the economy, stupid.” That was the top concern for the majority of voters and Obama won those voters. Period. McCain’s message on the economy didn’t resonate. He didn’t make a great case. Also Republicans lost credibility on the economy and being the party of “fiscal responsibility” through the big government and spending increases that we saw with the Bush administration and which a Republican majority pre-2006 passed through.
That is why Republicans lost. I’m not sure who Ms. Parker is writing to, but to throw evangelicals/social conservatives under the bus would be to throw the Republican Party under the bus as well. Let’s get to the heart of our problem, and it isn’t a politician bringing up God on occasion.
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