I've received a lot of surveys from various entities in the Republican Party over the last couple of months. they're all request for money, thinly veiled by the cover of a genuine desire to know what I think. The first one I received was from Mr. Michael Steele himself and he specifically asked what the party could do to restore my trust. Subsequent solicitations, sorry I meant surveys, asked similar questions. In my reply to Mr. Steele I specifically laid out what the party requires to do to restore my trust. Judging from the actions of the party I have to assume my reply was lost in the mail. I suppose it is possible that the reply was delivered, but I want to think not. So, here is a slightly updated form of my response.
I believe the answer is simple though somehow it seems to be complex. Simple in that adherence to basic conservative principles and values is all I ask, but complex in that, for some reason which I am unable to understand, the party cannot seem to grasp this simple concept. The last few years have been painful as I watched the country slide deeper and deeper into a morass of ever-growing government, corruption swept aside as unimportant, fiscal irresponsibility on a colossal scale, and an ever deepening, nevertheless entirely unnecessary recession.
As I said, this seems too complex for party operatives to grasp, so here are some specific examples of where the party has let us down.
1. After the victory of the "Republican Revolution" in 1994, our new found leadership in the congress turned out to be anything but leadership...at least not what we would have expected. Our leaders floundered and did not lead well, ignoring those principles that took them to victory. however, some very good things were accomplished in the first couple of years following the "Revolution" but the party was never able to elucidate to the American public what they had accomplished.
2. We were dismayed that, even when the Republican Party controlled both houses of congress, the Democrat minority seemed to be setting the agenda and taking all the public air time. It became increasingly unclear who was in reality in charge. By the time the Democrats regained control, it seemed they had only formalized what was already happening.
3. While I didn't agree with everything President George W. Bush did while in office, I appreciated that we had a truly decent gentlemen in the White House, one with clear convictions and the courage to follow those convictions. So, I became increasingly appalled when his own party first didn't support him, and so in reality seemed to turn on him. How can this party expect our trust when they show a complete lack of loyalty to their own leader? Under President Bush, we recovered quickly from what could have been even more disastrous consequences of September 11, 2001; we took the fight to the enemy in Afghanistan, then decimated the Al Queada organization in Iraq, freeing the Iraqi folks from a terrible life of tyranny. We enjoyed years of economic growth and historically low unemployment, and nevertheless, as the bells of economic disaster began to toll, as was to be expected with an election drawing near, there was no Republican effort to make sure the American public knew the correct information with which to make an informed decision. Instead, the party shamefully turned away from the President.
4. The current economic situation is the result of a lot of things, but I firmly believe the situation would never have sunk to the current level if it were not for the scandalous and duplicitous action by a couple of Democrats. Where was the Republican voice to make sure the record was correctly reported? Why do so a lot of Americans believe the entire situation was caused by "Wall Street Greed" and nevertheless very few understand the root causes in the mortgage industry, specifically the disgraceful actions of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and their Democrat sponsors?
5. Elections are brutal. I understand that so the Democrat savaging of Governor Palin was certainly not unexpected. What I found shocking was the Republican response, or maybe I ought to say lack of response. Once again, how can you expect us to trust the party which failed to support its own candidate? The actions of the party were, in my opinion, unconscionable and inexcusable.
6. I don't understand why the rules allow open Republican primaries in some states. Those rules provided the Republican presidential candidate to be selected by folks who don't hold the party's values. This have to be fixed! How can we trust a party that doesn't fight for its own principles?
7. Polls have repeatedly shown that a large portion of American voters hold to basically conservative values. President Reagan showed the power of tapping that conservative pedestal. Why then does this party now insist on turning its back on the very thing that made it most successful? When we discuss politics with friends and relatives with opposing viewpoints, only the most rabid leftists dare malign the Reagan presidency because they know it was successful.
8. The Republican Party has demonstrated a stunning inability to get its message out. Granted, a lot of the media makes it hard, but that is not an excuse. Ronald Reagan didn't have the media on his side, and didn't even have the benefit of talk radio or Fox News. Neither Presidents Bush enjoyed great media relations and the media certainly wasn't with Congressman Gingrich as he led the "Revolution" in 1994. The media was most assuredly not behind the Republican Party as it increased its lead in the Congress in 2002 in an unheard of midterm election victory. There are more media outlets accessible today than ever, nevertheless the party seems to be unable to find its voice.
9. I watch in dismay as the Republican Party increasingly panders to various minority and special interest groups, most of which don't have anyone's interest at heart but their own. I find it hard to trust any organization that is willing to chase shadows and sway with the winds of political correctness.
As I said, the party is really searching my money. The answer is no. Recent response to the Sotomayor nomination which seems to have settled on tepid at best, and the great Republican "Listening" tour with none other than the tone deaf Senator McCain, show that you are nonetheless unworthy of my restricted, but difficult earned dollars. Oh, that does not mean I won't give money and support. The 2010 election is the most significant I've seen in my lifetime. The folks we elect to congress will have two critical responsibilities; first to hold the line on the current governmental debacle, and second to begin to reverse the shameful constitutional disaster that has occurred so far. so, I will look for candidates who express, and more importantly act on genuine conservative values. Those are the ones I will support.