I read a post recently on the Washington Post that stated that Mitch Daniels, Gov. of Indiana, suggested to fellow Republicans that maybe they should call a truce on social issues, such as gay marriage, pro-life, etc. and instead focus efforts and attention on fiscal issues.
When I saw this, I suddenly had compassion for the poor man. Back in the late 90's, I was a prolific poster on Free Republic. I had it in for Clinton and wanted a good ole' American, individual rights protecting, fiscally conservative President. I also suspected, before it was public knowledge, that Hillary was lining up to run for the 2008 Presidential race. So, having the foresight that I felt I had, I opened my mouth and said exactly what Daniels suggested. The party needed to back away from these intrusive social positions and start focusing on fiscal policy.
I was banned from FreeRepublic three times. Apparently, I was a RINO (Republican in Name Only). I was in shock. I was born and raised a Republican. I had never in my life cast a vote for a Democratic candidate. If I had a choice for an Independent, I might select him or her but I never voted for a Democrat. Suddenly felt like I had to prove I was a conservative. I hung in there through Bush's first term and voted for him during his second term.
After a couple of years, I realized that Bush was feeding the dogmatic ideology of the people that supported him. He himself may not have fully embraced it but he at least led his followers to believe he did and it fed their confidence in their own bigoted, misogynistic, homophobic agenda. I couldn't stomach it anymore, I had to jump ship. I did it, I left the Republican Party and voted FOR a Democrat. And I liked it!
I don't know who these Conservatives think they represent anymore. They are becoming the Christian version of the Taliban and I think they are equally dangerous.
So, Mr. Daniels, I applaud your attempt at trying to pull the party off the social issues but I'm afraid that the underbelly of the party is who you are going to have to appeal to in order to get the momentum for election. Really, I don't think that Obama is doing that poorly a job given the hand he was dealt when he was elected. So, you are going to have to sell your soul, swallow your sense of right and wrong, and become the bigoted, misogynist, homophone your extreme constituents want you to be. I'm hoping your self-respect and dignity gets the better of you, though and that you stand your ground. You may not win the election against Obama but you might very well be able to bring the Republican Party around to what it has great potential to be.