We like to think that the GOP and conservatives are one, but there is a lot of ground between some of the Republican hypocrites calling the shots and the conservative voters they rely on. Eric Cantor just found out what happens when you step over the line. Was the majority leader a hypocrite? That was an issue for Virginia to decide.
Is conservatism dying? Is it already dead?
The Republican Party is still the most viable force for pushing a national conservative agenda. It is also the biggest liability faced by American conservatism.
The left pushes a platform that seldom waivers backed by Democrats well-versed in machine party politics. Republicans are fragmented, a loose collection of conservatives with nowhere to go. They seem more determined to undermine each other than to implement the kind of vision that turns agenda into policy.
Right battles far right
The Republican failure to accommodate the right wing of the GOP is perplexing. Democrats are terrified of the potential of the far right and taunt the House with accusations of pandering to their more conservative elements whenever liberal legislative plans go awry. Charges that the Trump White House is backed by white supremacists are based on politicized incidents, but the left has successfully turned the fallout into a national trend.
Can conservatism survive the age of Trump?
Does conservatism have a future in this country? Donald Trump proved that the right rallies when it hears what it wants to hear. It is also true that conservative voters are their own worst enemies, distracted by divisive issues like gun control and abortion that sacrifice the big picture.
What is the Conservatism category about?
The conservatism category examines how we can reconcile the goals of America’s right with the tepid response we so often get from Capitol Hill. President Trump took the White House with promises that are not being realized by lawmakers in the House and Senate. If his agenda dies at the hands of majority Republican lawmakers, does conservatism still have a chance to survive?
You can trust Obama to do what he says if he thinks he can get away with it. Don’t confuse trust with honesty or integrity, though. They are not the same. In most cases being trustworthy is good. There are exceptions. Barack Obama is one of them. We can trust Obama to do what it takes to get his way.
Is it easier to destroy conservative career politicians than ruin the lives of liberal Democrats? We like to complain about media bias and railroading, but the press is not always as forgiving of the left as we like to think. In Illinois we delight in watching Democrats fall down hard. Jesse Jackson Jr. and Rod Blagojevich took well-earned beatings at the hands of the media, as did Republican ex-governor and ex-con George Ryan before them (see: Why Illinois Should Reward Political Corruption).
The worst thing about Republicans is that they don’t act like Democrats. Sticking together has never been their strong point, but John Boehner’s doublespeak is undermining America’s conservative party after each new attack from the left. It doesn’t sound like a strategy anymore. It sounds like desperation.
We already know how the newest unemployment insurance scuffle will end.
Conservatives need to be careful how we pick our shots. We can thank the Supreme Court for striking a unifying blow with last week’s same-sex marriage decision, but will we end up shaking our heads after taking up a losing battle we shouldn’t have wasted our time with? A fight over traditional marriage is just the kind of inflammatory attention-getter that will divert conservatives when we should be worrying about keeping the Republican Party from sinking into obscurity.