All who are disappointed in Hoffman’s narrow loss … do not despair any longer. Hoffman may have lost the election, but those who stand for conservative principles won last evening. The results sent a clear message to the Republican Party – a message that apparently needed to be repeated and will continue to bear repetition until Republican leadership understands that liberal candidates are toxic.
Doug Hoffman not only fought against his Democrat opponent, Bill Owens; he also fought against the Republican National Committee – the committee that spent $1 million backing their liberal candidate Dede Scozzafava and ran ads AGAINST him. The Republican’s “one million dollar baby,” Ms. Scozzafava, was pro-bailout, pro-tax, pro-stimulus and leaned toward supporting a public option for healthcare. In spite of these very liberal positions, the Republican National Committee (RNC) felt she was worth a $1 million investment. After all, RNC elites concern themselves only with party affiliation – not the candidate’s principles and core beliefs. After Dede benefited from the RNC’s lucrative investment, she turned around and endorsed Bill Owens after she dropped out of the race. Mr. Owens owes the RNC much gratitude for his victory.
The RNC still has not learned from its painful past – the 2006 and 2008 elections. I wrote in the first column I published after Barack Obama won the election that conservative principles (especially fiscal) will make one of the most prominent comebacks in decades. The Republican Party still doesn’t get it, which is why America just witnessed an independent running against TWO parties almost emerge victorious. RNC chairman, Michael Steele, can continue his “big tent” policy with calamitous consequences. All he will have in the end is an empty tent. The key factor here is to have a political party that actually stands for something and has core principles. Deviation from core principles or letting liberals define what the party should stand for will allow Democrats to continue to win in areas of the country that had a century of Republican leadership.
This past election is about short-term pain for long-term gain. Either conservatives are going to take back the Republican Party so it will stand as the party of personal and fiscal responsibility or there will be plenty of independents following in Doug Hoffman’s footsteps. Mr. Hoffman’s bravery showed that it is VERY possible to win as an independent – to defeat BOTH political parties. As the U.S. dollar continues to weaken, as more people begin to see that the third quarter GDP results were artificial, as the reality of inflation or stagflation sets in, voters will reject liberal fiscal policy as well as any politician that advocates it regardless of the “D” or “R” after their name. The newly elected Republican leaders and governors in New Jersey and Virginia should keep this in mind.
Michael Steele’s “big tent” Republicanism and George W. Bush’s “compassionate conservatism” has failed on every level. History has shown over and over that “Liberalism Lite” is not the formula for success and leads to disastrous losses for Republicans. Herbert Hoover’s abandonment of conservative economic principles led to decades of Democrat reign in Congress along with four terms of FDR. George W. Bush followed in Herbert Hoover’s footsteps, and America now has one of its most liberal Presidents. If “Liberalism Lite” leads to “Ultra Liberalism,” then conservatives are better off going to war with Republican elites because the elites will soon realize that the tent doesn’t expand or even exist without the base. It is better to lose elections in the short-term than allow radicals to give America an economic makeover.
The near-term is going to be a bumpy ride. However there is a greater danger in giving liberals the opportunity to paint liberal Republicans as conservatives and convince voters that fiscal conservatism is to blame. American citizens need a real option, and when that option exists, blame will be distributed properly. If it takes an independent third party to stand for the kind of economic and monetary policy America needs, then the country is better off being run by Democrats until things get sorted out. Both political parties steering the country in the SAME direction (one faster than the other) is a far worse fate. It is possible that Mr. Owens may be more conservative than Ms. Scozzafava – the Republican Party’s $1 million baby!
Congratulations to Doug Hoffman and everyone on his staff for an eye-opening election that caught the entire nation’s eye. Whether one is a Reagan Republican, a Ron Paul Republican or whether they are socially liberal, libertarian or conservative, one thing that unites all of these constituents is ECONOMIC POLICY. If the Republican Party doesn’t change its ways, this is only the beginning of the rise of the independent conservative and libertarian candidates.
ICYMI: Jeffrey Ostler, The Lakotas and the Black Hills - At Amazon, Jeffrey Ostler, *The Lakotas and the Black Hills: The Struggle for Sacred Ground*.
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