Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Battle For Heart And Soul Of GOP Has Begun

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A tale of "weeds and winners."

The New York Times (login required) has reported that, "The biggest donors in the Republican Party are financing a new group to recruit seasoned candidates and protect Senate incumbents from challenges by the far right conservatives and Tea Party enthusiasts who Republican leaders worry could complicate the party's effort to win control of the Senate."

The group's name, "Conservative Victory Project," appears to be somewhat misleading.

The "Project" and its super PAC's mission is to remake the Republican Party around the notion that true conservatives can't win.

Apparently they are searching for safe, "moderate" candidates like Rob McKenna, Reagan Dunn and Bill Finkbeiner here in Washington State. Now I understand why Randy Pepple, McKenna's manager, told Republicans in a Seattle Times article after the election, "There's no need for panic."

Relax. Just keep running so-called "moderates" who support abortion and are, at best, wobbly on marriage, while asking for evangelicals votes. Sounds like a winning model to me.

The New York Times is also reporting that "Karl Rove and his allies...will start by intensely vetting prospective contenders for Congressional races, to weed out candidates who are seen as too flawed to win general elections."

Weeds and Winners.

Are true conservatives seen as flawed "weeds" who can't win by the Republican Party?

Was John Koster, although highly qualified, denied support from the state GOP in the 1st Congressional district last November because he was seen as flawed? Or a weed? Or simply a true conservative?

Some thoughts by me and others:

Ben Shapiro says, "It is the American Crossroads [Rove's Super PAC] and its ilk that have run the GOP into the ground."

Shapiro says it was that kind of thinking that led to Barack Obama's first victory and the disaster in 2012.

He says, "If the Tea Party candidates lose, it's because they weren't good candidates; if GOP candidates lose, it's because they weren't good conservatives."

"The choice for actual conservatives," he says, "should be easy."

Grover Norquist says the Rove mission is nonsense.

Last November we spoke to this issue in a blog published November 27, 2012.

Now it has become a national issue. I stand by what we said then and what Shapiro, Norquist and others are saying now: A true conservative who understands the issues, can articulate true conservative policy and values, can win, if he or she is not shot down by their own colleagues.

The enemy is often within.

Could this be a new bumper sticker? WEEDS Can Win. Maybe not. "Weed" has already won in Washington State.

But I do think all us flawed weeds should, to quote a Founder, hang together or we will all hang separately.

Be Informed. Be Vigilant. Be Active. Be Discerning. Be Prayerful. Be Blessed.