As the Republican Party continues to adopt more unity of thought on flagship issues, certain members of the party seem to be less and less willing to stand by those principles. This worries me. Many members of the party seem to be forgetting that the Republican party is a vehicle that acts as the glue to hold together a coalition of voters that share common values. The goal is for our coalition to be strong enough to defeat the left wing coalition of demographic groups known as the Democratic party.
The democrat party acts as the umbrella uniting enviros, union workers, minorities, civil liberty advocates, pro-aborts, intellectuals and the poor.
The Republican party acts as the umbrella uniting evangelicals, war and defense hawks, pro-lifers, small government types, tax cutters, the middle class and ironically, libertarians and neo-cons.
My concern stems from the fact that I am an evangelical Christian that stands for life and smaller government. Nation building abroad holds little interest for me. Going to war with unions, enviro's or civil liberty advocates holds little interest for me. I care about restricting the size and scope of government and not simply holding the line on social issues but pressing forward on the front. I am part of the Republican coalition because I believe in small government and conservative social values. With Romney and Gingrich leading in the presidential primary polls, I am becoming increasingly concerned that neither of these candidates represent me. A few short years ago, Mitt Romney was a zealous advocate for the pro-abort movement and his record of shrinking government is non-existent. Yet, the pressure is mounting on voters like me to "support the party" as not voting for the "R" candidate is essentially a "vote for Obama."
Conservatives cannot turn their back on their brothers and sisters in the Republican coalition. If you nominate Romney, realize that we won't be with you. If you nominate Gingrich, realize that we won't be with you. We have no allegiance to the Republican party so please do not take us for granted. Republican does not equal Christian. We have to draw a line somewhere. Just because Mike Castle has an "R" next to his name doesn't mean he represents me. I, like many of colleagues in the Church feel more comfortable fighting on the front lines than shielding ourselves from friendly fire.
Many intellectually void leaders of the party (Ann Coulter for example) continue to force people like Chris Christie, Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney down our throats. No Thanks. The Democrat party will never run Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) or Representative Heath Shuler (D-NC) for president. Instead, they nominate northeastern Senators with the most left-leaning records. It isn't even a question that they will do otherwise. So why is it that we are expected to support pro-aborts, adulterers, big government republicans and flip-floppers?
Come November, you can blame us when Romney or Gingrich loses, but you have no one to blame but yourselves. When you nominate Bob Dole or John McCain, the burden is on you. But nominate a true conservative and we will be with you. With that, I leave the ball in the court of caucus and primary voters in Iowa, South Carolina and Florida.