Saturday, May 9, 2009

Huckabee on the GOP

CNN reports that Mike Huckabee warns that the GOP is "at risk of becoming as 'irrelevant as the Whigs.'" That's not exactly an uncommon fear (or hope in the case of Democrats) these days. But what is different is Huckabee's take on the reason:  
Huckabee said the GOP would only further decline in influence should it alienate social conservatives — largely considered the most energetic and loyal faction of the party.

That's pretty funny. It's social conservatives who call everyone else in the party RINOs, cheer when moderates like Specter leave the GOP, wish others could be kicked out, and who demand ideological conformity. But somehow moderates are the problem. Moderates aren't calling for expelling people from the party. They simply want some say in the direction of the party in the aftermath of electoral disaster. The entire party is looking for ways to restore the GOP to power, and ideas differ. But only one part of the GOP, social conservatives, thinks that it alone represents "true" conservativism, and demonizes anyone who disagrees. Most moderates respect the big tent principle, and understand that social conservatives form an important part of the party. Unfortunately the same cannot be said for social conservatives, many of whom see moderates as enemies within the GOP.

If the GOP becomes irrelevant, one of the reasons will be that politicians like Huckabee are what pass for leaders in today's Republican party. 

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