Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Hoffman, Palin at Center of GOP Future

It's not a big deal for anyone who's been toiling away all year in the trenches of conservative activism. But for the press, the ideological insurgency against the Republican Party in New York's 23 congressional district is political apostasy.

Here's a look at the headlines:

* Chris Cillizza, "NY-23 as 2012 Litmus Test?"

* The New York Times, "
Right Battles G.O.P. in a Pivotal Race in New York."

* The Politico, "
Gingrich: NY-23 'Purge' 'Guarantees Obama's Reelection'." (Via.)

* The Washington Post, "
Ideology Trumps Party for Palin."
But Janet Hook's piece at the Los Angeles Times really captures how different establishment thinking is from conservatives on the ground and in the know, "New York Race at Epicenter of a GOP Mutiny":

Silvan Johnson adores Sarah Palin, belongs to a conservative discussion group and fumes at President Obama's spending policies. But when it comes to picking a new congressional representative for her upstate New York district, she is in no mood to help the Republican Party.

In fact, Johnson and many other conservatives want to use a Nov. 3 special election to teach the GOP a lesson about sticking to conservative values -- even though that lesson could mean the party loses a House seat it has held for decades. The conservatives are backing a third-party candidate, splitting the Republican vote and giving the Democrat a lead in some recent opinion polls.

"Both parties seem to be more for big government," said Johnson, a probation clerk in Fulton, N.Y. "The Republicans need to learn that the people they are running [for office] do not represent the views of the people."

The conservative rebellion in northern New York is showing that the anger among disaffected voters, which became prominent this summer during the "tea party" anti-spending rally in Washington and at town hall meetings on healthcare, has become a baffling political force that even Republicans are having a hard time harnessing.

The fight on the right has also made this district the epicenter of a national debate about the future of the Republican Party -- leaving party leaders to ask whether they are better off emphasizing the GOP's small-government and socially conservative values, or trying to broaden their appeal to reach independent and moderate voters.
That part about a "third-party candidiacy" is factually correct, but it misses so much of the reality at issue. Dede Scozzafava's RINO. Virtually the entire modern conservative establishment - including top personalities in the Republican Party - has backed Doug Hoffman in the race. Newt Gingrich - whoa to him - continues to berate the right-wing; but from California to New York, activists are telling the GOP where to put it.

Frankly, for conservatives, winning office in 2010 and 2012 will be less important than upholding moral values of protecting life, limiting government, and securing ethics and competence. Dede Scozzafava's the exact opposite for anyone with a brain in partisan politics today. If there's any lesson for the GOP from last year's presidential race, it's that Sarah Palin was the necessary ingredient to McCain's campaign; her addition to the ticket prevented a Democratic rout of genuine landslide proportions.

It's mindboggling today that folks like Newt Gingrich have forgotten how utterly wrenching were the Republican primaries last year. Perhaps the Democratic drama of identity politics overshadowed the shakeout on the right. But the right's ideological fissues were bright and lasting, particularly when it became clear that the Arizona Senator would be the party's standard-bearer. There's simply not going to be room in the GOP coalition for half-hearted big-government, open-borders Republicans. Someone like Olympia Snowe - who's currently enjoying fleeting power as a swing-vote Republican on health - is the last of a dying breed. It's totally inconceivable that a pro-ObamaCare, bailout-backing Republican today will have any truck with the tea-party/town hall base. Folks on the ground have seen the enemy, and he's both Blue and Red.

But check out J. Robert Smith for more on that, "
A Conservative Earthquake, in New York and Beyond":
Smug GOP establishmentarians are proving again that their political seismographs are badly calibrated. The GOP has lined up behind the wrong candidate at the wrong time. Conservatives aren’t going to follow their lead, in New York or elsewhere, anytime soon. Party bosses need to get back in touch or risk hard-to-fix ruptures with conservatives in 2010 and beyond. Conservatives, great and small, are coalescing behind Doug Hoffman, the Conservative Party nominee..

New York allows minor parties on election ballots, giving the establishment Republicans a false sense of security as most other states don’t make such allowances. But the old logic that conservatives will have to fall in line elsewhere or risk electing Democrats may not hold. Conservatives are playing by new rules now, and the GOP isn’t showing any signs of getting it.
And one more thing about that "third party" deal. Doug Hoffman is really the legitimate conservative in this race, and he'd be the GOP candidate had not county Republicans picked Dede. This is not a moment of third party ascendency in American politics. If Hoffman loses in New York, he'll immediately emerge as the conservative frontrunner for the 2010 primary, and activists will redouble their efforts elsewhere. RINO's are dead meat. Nationally, Sarah Palin's got the pulse of the party. Her decisionmaking's been exquisite since leaving office earlier this year, and the timing of her new book couldn't have been better. It's just a bit over 12 months until the 2010 midterms. After that, the race for the GOP nomination will begin, and then as now, folks like Doug Hoffman and Sarah Palin will be at the center of the GOP future. Establishment RINOsaurs better get with the program or face extinction.


Dave said...

Frankly, for conservatives, winning office in 2010 and 2012 will be less important than upholding moral values of protecting life, limiting government, and securing ethics and competence.

Dr. Douglas, I respectfully disagree. I believe 2010 is our last chance to preserve the America we all grew up in within the confines of the voting booth.

The day after the 2010 election, we are going to either wake up in the United States of America, or somewhere else.

Should the "opposition" fail to win enough seats to stop Obama cold, by 2012, well...


AmPowerBlog said...

I think we have a little more time, Dave. The clean up project will just be a lot larger when we get there ... and I'm surprised you of all my commenters disagreed with that line. That's practically written for you!

Grizzly Mama said...

You've got it just right about the GOP. WE get it. Why don't THEY get it???? Dang - how many times do they have to lose?

The democrat winning is the consequence of their stupid behavior. This goes back a ways. Remember when the party backed Specter over Toomey? Then I think even Bush himself made a speech begging us to vote for Specter - WE HAD TO - it was imperative that we retain the Senate majority. Damnation - but we did vote for that bastard and look where it got us with that slimy one-bullet theory whack job changing parties.


Rich Casebolt said...

Why don't they get it, Grizzly Mama?

Because they -- like the "chart-men" of Wall Street -- believe their best chance to attain their objectives (altruistic or selfish) is to work-the-numbers of a model of human behavior in order to maximize their "market cap" ...

... rather than dealing with the fundamentals: the principles of sound governance that will resonate with We the People if they are honestly and consistently presented.

The pros, as always, seek a shortcut to power, instead of taking the risks and doing the work needed to take -- and keep -- it legitimately.

This time around, that is their error.

JD said...

Sarah Palin is a quitter.

Rich Casebolt said...

JD ... there is a big difference between quitting and strategic retreat, followed by the pursuit of a greater objective.

Citizen Palin is now poised to become a major nightmare for the Left, in ways that would not be available to Governor Palin ... and she has removed the state she loves from the bullseye of the Left's poo-flinging chimps in the bargain.

That is a public service to her state, and the entire nation.

We are about to see the juxtaposition of the misplaced worship of intellect on the part of our Best and Brightest vs. the principled respect of plain-and-simple wisdom on the part of so-called "simpletons" like Ms. Palin, in our public discourse.

The Best and Brightest are being exposed as the narcissistic dim bulbs they are ... as the light of simple wisdom places the the dim bulbs and the wise in a high-contrast comparison.

Get ready for an education on a national scale, brought to you by wise leaders and the MILLIONS of ordinary Americans who support them ... a gathering that will overturn the conventional wisdom that the Best and Brightest have tried to pass off as the real stuff.

Dave said...

Dr. D,

Believe me, you have no idea how wrong I hope I am.


Clay Barham said...

This is great! High profile Republicans support a non-Republican against a Republican while Libertarian Democrats are sticking it to their party, leaning back to the 19th century Democrats following Jefferson and Jackson, unlike modern Democrats and some Republicans following Rousseau and Marx, as cited in THE CHANGING FACE OF DEMOCRATS on Amazon and www.claysamerica.com.

Bob Belvedere said...

Quoted from and linked to at: