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Why Rick Santorum was right on BOTH counts…

The kerfuffle Santorum has since apologized and explained for over saying on the stump:

“You win by giving people a choice. You win by giving people the opportunity to see a different vision for our country, not someone who’s just going to be a little different than the person in there. If you’re going to be a little different, we might as well stay with what we have instead of taking a risk with what may be the Etch A Sketch candidate of the future,” Santorum told a crowd at USAA.”

…has been wrongly analyzed by most observers.

Fact is, he was probably trying to allude to the fact that when given the choice in a contrast cycle where voters feel ambivalent toward the incumbent but not 100% sure they will throw the bum out, they want a clear choice, and if the two men up for review are sufficiently similar to each other the typical voter (not usually partisans though) will select the “devil they know over the one they do not and are gambling on in the replacement” etc.

Today he issued a clarification, saying he would support the nominee even if it were Romney, etc.

However, he was closer to the truth on the other claim, than is immediately obvious.

As conservatives, our goal is to elect clear choices encompassing our core values.

Romney is so at odds with these, to such a degree on very big issues that define the choice between right and left wing ideological views, that nominating him is not only a probable election loss for the reasons Santorum gave, but in the end Romney winning may ultimately harm movement conservatism more in the long run than another Obama win, PROVIDED he is kept in check by a Republican (and conservative, sadly not always the same thing) congress.

It’s tempting for all of us, whether at Red State or anywhere, who are conservatives to look at the immediate gain, but the left has been successful, arguably more so than us, because they are willing to sacrifice an election cycle in a critical situation as needed, for long term gains.

Here, the choice is bleaker and not tactical or strategic in ideal terms.

We should not have nominated Romney to begin with, and either Santorum or Gingrich, while both quite flawed, would have been better and not deal breaking conundrums.

But it is what it is. Romney is statistically likely, at worse, to be the ultimate nominee.

The problem is many are arguing “Obama is worse, no way could Romney, even though he stinks, be WORSE than Barack” and that’s probably true, in the short run. It’s also true in the long run in the sense of legislation he could sign and court choices.

The mistake conservatives are making here is in understating the degree of damage someone who is in effect a liberal like Romney will have on the Republican brand, reputation, and credibility going forth for years, possibly DECADES.

You see, when you argue against socialized medicine, then about face and place as the FACE of your party the father of Obamacare, a person who even backed mandates applied to all 50 states, you are not only taking away the seminal issue of our day and putting up somebody against Obama that cannot contrast himself on this and other huge issues, thus increasing greatly the odds of a loss in November via that lack of contrast as Santorum noted, but you are also ensuring that we as conservatives and Republicans have NO CREDIBILITY when we protest liberal fascist ideologies, such as Obamacare, global warming and it’s anti-human proposed remedies, cap and trade, gay marriage, abortion, etc.

Whenever we approach talk show hosts, fence sitters, independents, moderates, etc. and complain about those unjust and ideologically flawed ideas, and claim OURS as conservatives are CORRECT and BETTER, they will laugh in our faces and point to a nominee, and especially a PRESIDENT Romney who supported all of those things, and we look like liars and hypocrites, which, sadly we are since exit polls showed beating Obama was more important than being a true conservative, by huge margins.

Nobody, even on our side, believes Romney on his flip flops, he just promises he’s RUNNING as a conservative, and rank and file Republicans are hoping he keeps his word, regardless of his real opinions, and “plays the part” as long as he is a GOP office holder.

Romney’s true record is atrocious, and every reason in the universe suggests he will continue to knife conservatives in the back, compromise with leftists and Democrats at every struggle, and will be tempted to likely try to “fix” Obamacare, rather than get rid of it outright. It’s just his style.

Romney employs John Sununu, a name familiar to conservatives as one who helped Shepard the David Souter SCOTUS nomination. It’s incredibly naive to assume Romney will appoint Scalia’s to the bench when his history in MA in that area and his choice of advisers is so flawed.

What is gained by supporting Romney over Obama?

Voting for Obama directly is insane, but supporting somebody likely to appoint court choices almost as liberal or perhaps equally so over time, coupled with his views on seminal issues of our time being so similar to Obama, with its attendant consequences, is long term equally or more insidious.

It’s not just about keeping one’s principles inviolate, though it is.

It’s not just about stopping the battered wife syndrome the GOP Establishment is determined to foist upon us (“pick us as we are not as bad a he Democrats, they want to take you over the cliff at 120 MPH and we are going over at 94 MPH) etc. though it is.

It’s about the future.

We cannot accept the leadership’s arguments anymore that our liberal guy with an R next to his name is better than their socialist with a D next to his name since they would beat us up as wives twice weekly and they offer to beat us up only once a month.

We can do better. We should insist upon a lot better.

Many of us will say “it’s all very good to make a statement, but this cycle, with the worse leftist in history riding on the outcome as our potential  president, is NOT the time to do it!” etc.

Fair enough.

But when is the right time to stand up for your principles. That’s why they are called that.

Romney really is that bad, folks. Examine his total record. It’s almost mind blowing he got this far.

The Rockefeller wing cannot expect large numbers of conservatives not to stay home, as they did for McCain. Many of us said never again, if a moderate slipped though, we would not hold our noses again. Well one did. And what are many of us willing to to do? Hold our noses again, and encourage the Republican leadership to take us for granted, to expect our vote because, as they expect, “we have no other place to go” so we should just STFU and vote for Obama-Lite.

The leadership will never learn to stop trying to cram Romney’s down our throats if we keep obediently caving into them in the fall out of fear. They need to know we have had enough and no more wife beatings are freebies on the house.

We cannot keep sacrificing the future for immediate gain, arguing lesser of 2 evils, etc. That does not work anymore when your nominees are McCain’s and Romney’s. That fails when they are almost indistinguishable from the other side.

The left under those terms wins the long term war for issue framing and parameters. It wins because our side freely nominated and had a president on board with their faulty ideological views and we cheered it on as hypocrites. It wins because 3rd parties see us as identical or nearly so to the left, and they are no longer wrong about us.

It wins because over time, Republicans moderate their stances and soften them, on huge defining issues of our time, like entitlements have been adopted as being good to Republicans when our original views were to privatize and get rid of them. This is the BIGGEST danger, the one that will ultimately cause the left to win the battle over time for the soul of America, because they eventually get Republicans and conservatives to adopt liberal mindsets over issue analysis.

A Romney nomination is a disaster. He is a likely loser, and it will not be because of our fighting or a long drawn out nomination process, though if he loses the leadership will of course blame us, the base, soc-cons, etc.

A Romney presidency is even worse long term, possibly even than Obama winning under certain conditions. He could destroy a lot more from the inside as a liberal mole than an enemy we know and can place all the blame on going forward, clearing the decks for a huge Republican majority in 2016. If Romney wins and has one or even 2 terms, we end up taking the blame for his likely liberal infected fatal policy stances that we must defend and claim as owning. Predictably, they will fail, we will be blamed, and we then lose big in ’16 or ’20. That could have implications for years and even decades.

Is that a hill you want to die on, for Mittens? At least die for someone nominally worth it. Not a liberal mole.

Rick Santorum was right. About this. About us.

It’s sad that when we hear the truth, we neither want to recognize it or accept it, because we are afraid of it, its meaning, and its implications…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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