From, I need hardly say, The American Conservative's Post-Right blog:
And, for that matter, Animis Opibusque Parati.
Fascinating emails (firstname.lastname@example.org – keep them coming) from people saying, either that they have been thinking these things for while, or that it had never occurred to them to become Democrats but it certainly has now, or in a few cases that they had already done so for the reasons that I set out. Well, what can I say? Sometimes the spectator sees more of the game. And a party is strictly a machine, a device, a means to ends. It can never be an end in itself. What ends does the Republican Party now serve? Certainly not yours.
Bob Conley had had quite enough of the Republican Party’s completely closed attitude to conservative views on trade, immigration, war, and actually doing anything about abortion or in defense of marriage. So that Ron Paul activist and traditional Catholic (which latter presumably inoculates him against the more virulent strains of Paul’s libertarianism) changed his registration. He became a Democrat. Classy.
But then he went, not one, but two better. He entered the Democratic Senatorial primary. And, against a liberal Democrat from central casting, he won it. Narrowly. But he still won it. Okay, so he did not win the general election, at his first attempt and against a very well-known incumbent. But he managed a creditable showing under the circumstances. Not least the circumstance of the wider movement’s failure to get behind a Ron Paul-supporting, traditional Catholic Democrat as it would have gotten behind a Ron Paul-supporting, traditional Catholic Republican. Remind me, which Ron Paul-supporting, traditional Catholic Republican was running for the United States Senate last year, or indeed any year? Including next year.
On the matter of winning the Democratic primary, just how black is the Democratic Party in South Carolina? You may know better, but I am betting that it is very, very black indeed. And you may know better, but I am betting that those politicized preachers did plenty of work at the grassroots to secure the nomination of a man who shared their own and their congregants’ views on protecting blue-collar jobs, on immigration, on English as America’s national language, on war, on abortion, and on the nature of marriage. Is there any state in which no such alliance could be forged? Are there not many in which it could be decisive?
Not that that is the only such possible, and therefore morally and politically obligatory, alliance. For example, there are also the labor unions overtly on job protection, with plenty of their members broadly or entirely sound on the other issues, too. And there are others besides.
Do you, or do you not, ever want to get anything done on trade, immigration, the status of English, corporate power, corporate welfare, big lobbyists, the constitutional rights violated by the Bush Administration, helping those on low and middle incomes, reducing abortion, defending traditional marriage, a realistic foreign policy, and a strong defense capability used strictly for its properly defensive purpose? Who could disagree with you on those issues? The Republicans, that’s who. Only on abortion and on marriage do they even so much as make the right noises. And noises are all that they are.
Yes, you would have to put up with some things that you did not want but your allies (the preachers, the unions, whoever) did. And yes, you would have to do without some things that you wanted but they did not. To be in that position would indicate your acceptance as part of the coalition, as part of the family. As things stand, you are forced to accept everything that you do not want and to forego everything that you do. You are part of no coalition. You are part of no family. You are cast out.
It is very high time to come in from the cold. Come into the party in which anyone agrees with you, if not about everything, then at least about anything. Come into, come home to, the party of Bob Conley. The Democratic Party.