Wednesday, October 10, 2007



Yesterday one of Bush's most astute political advisors, Dan Bartlett, let loose with a brutally candid assessment of the front-runners in the Republican sweepstakes to replace his old boss. It wasn't as vicious as Newt Gingrich's classic condemnation of the entire pitiful field as "a pathetic bunch of pygmies," and he didn't endorse "None of The Above," but he sure didn't bolster Republican hopes for winning what would-- in effect-- be a third disastrous Bush term.
Fred D. Thompson is the campaign's "biggest dud," Mitt Romney has "a real problem in the South" because of his religion [and constant flip flopping on core values issues], Mike Huckabee's last name is too hick, and John McCain could pull a repeat of his 2000 performance by winning New Hampshire yet losing the battle.

Nor did yesterday's sad winnerless debate-- remarkable only by the number of lies and distortions repeated in so short an amount of time on national television-- do anything to help clarify anything... for anyone.

Like Bartlett, many Republicans are just giving up and figuring they might as well let struggling frontrunner Rudy Giuliani win the nomination and then bear the onus of an electoral thrashing from Hillary. Despite the dire and ominous warnings/threats from the religionist loons on the far right edge of the GOP to start a third party if Giuliani gets the nomination, most Republicans are just settling in for what they see as the unpleasant inevitable.

This morning former Gingrich aide/current right wing propagnadist Tony Blankley attacked the religionist nuts in an editorial, and attacked them with the kind of venom usually reserved for Democrats.
[T]he possible conservative religious resistance to Giuliani on the basis of his opposition to outlawing abortion at the federal level -- and their willingness to accept a Hillary presidency, if necessary, as a result-- points out how little partisan loyalty may have been built up in the past quarter century of the coalition's dominance.

...It remains to be seen whether the bonds that have been formed between religious conservatives and the GOP will partially dissolve in 2008. Clearly, a year before the election, some of their leaders are threatening to break. And more than a few of their folks outside of Washington have informed me unambiguously that they share that sentiment.

I still believe that a powerful moral argument can be made for compromising on behalf of one's coalition in politics. I made that argument against my own cherished policy goals when I was inside government in the Reagan White House and as Newt Gingrich's advisor and press secretary. And I plan to continue to make it publicly now.

It is the same argument that Barry Goldwater made so many years ago, when he told the conservatives of his time to grow up politically and not always threaten to walk off with the ball when they didn't like every play their team called. Only a supreme dictator can get everything he wants out of politics. For the rest of us, politics is a team sport. Even vastly popular presidents-- from FDR to Ronald Reagan-- had to compromise on things they felt passionately about.

Those of us who have stayed in the fray have had to wrestle constantly with our consciences as to whether we are making a reasonable compromise or whether we are becoming power-mad political hacks. Those arguments went on constantly in the Reagan White House among many of us who came into politics not for power, but to return America to its founding principles, values and greatness.

No doubt, there is a danger of becoming precisely the sort of swamp creatures we came to Washington to rid the nation of when we said we wanted to drain the Washington swamp. But perfect purity of principle in application is not a functioning governing process-- it is a posture.

...Politics is the zone where one's religious and ethical habits are not always the only and best guides. We can make a 100-percent commitment to, for example, obey our marital vows or adhere to the teachings of our churches-- and consciously strive never to fall short.

But in the practicality of democratic elections, we cannot make such a similar commitment to every one of our governing ideals. Elections are very specific and limited choices between different outcomes. The decision not to vote or vote for a third-party candidate with no hope of winning is itself a moral choice for the outcome such a vote will effectuate. People of conscience will have to decide whether feeling pure by voting "none of the above" is the highest ethical act or not.

And, right on cue, several of the most venal of the GOP nutjobs started backing away from their screechy threats. "Evangelical leaders Gary Bauer and Tony Perkins said Wednesday it is still possible for social conservative Republican voters to find a candidate to rally behind, and painted another Clinton administration as the worst outcome of the 2008 election." Each kook "backed away from earlier threats that Christian conservatives would consider a third-party bid if a pro-abortion rights candidate wins the GOP nomination. They both agreed that supporting such a bid next year would virtually 'guarantee'" an electoral victory for their biggest boogyman... er... woman, Hillary Clinton. Spoketh Bauer: “Politics by nature is a messy business. And you rarely find somebody who agrees with you all the time.” Perkins agreed and added that "social conservatives have not found a candidate who stands out on their issues."


Republican religionist loon Tony Perkins is still raising the hater-hackles that dominate the GOP presidential nomination process. Today he said that in many ways crucial to the kook vote, Hillary and Giuliani are "indistinguishable" and threatened that his people "are not going to get excited about Giuliani."
Many social conservatives view Republican Rudy Giuliani and Democratic Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton as "indistinguishable" on key social issues such as abortion, Family Research Council President Tony Perkins just told reporters during a telephone conference call.

Because of that, he said, "it would be very problematic" for many social conservatives if Giuliani wins the GOP presidential nomination. "To sing the ABC song-- anybody but Clinton-- is not enough to rally social conservatives" behind Giuliani, Perkins said.

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At 12:05 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I always vote how my televangelists tell me to. They're such impervious reservoirs of all God's words in their double leakproof wetsuits.

Whoever can question their bonds with The Word surely will have to struggle for the breath to do so, as mmph....mmmmmmmmmmmmmnn!........MMM! MMM!...mfffffffffffffffffffffffffffffff.. coff, coff.... ahhhhhhh......


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