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I know I said that I would no longer post here, but I guess I am just a glutton for punishment. The race in Indiana is heating up, and I just cannot stay on the sidelines. I thought I would take this opportunity to better explain why I am so concerned with the issue – and I even fixed my formatting.
First, let’s examine the argument by many Tea Party members and Mourdock supporters that Senator Lugar is not conservative “enough,” so he might as well be a Democrat. This could not be a less informed point of view. For the sake of argument, I will concede that Senator Lugar has taken some votes that many Tea Party folks do not like, so please do not flood up the “Comments” section with righteous indignation about Lugar’s record (because Mourdock barely has one and it ain’t so great).
Let’s start with one of the basic procedures of Congress: the majority party controls what legislation is brought to the floor. This means that all the fantastic, government and deficit shrinking bills drafted by Republicans have no chance of seeing the light of day as long as Harry Reid is the Majority Leader.
Some of you may be wondering what this has to do with the race in Indiana. Simply put, Republicans have a very good chance of taking control of the Senate in November and consequently directing the legislative priorities of the Upper Chamber. However, if Mr. Mourdock wins on May 8th, that chance greatly decreases. Don’t believe me? Check out what Roll Call has to say about it:
“Majority PAC, a Democratic super PAC, spent $17,500 on online advertisements targeting Lugar. Democrats waded into the primary because they see a better chance of picking up the Senate seat if Mourdock is the GOP nominee.”
Essentially, by supporting Mr. Mourdock, his backers are choosing ideological “purity” over the actual chance to enact change that is achieved by controlling the majority in Congress. Even if you don’t believe it, the Democratic campaign machine does and is putting its money where its mouth is.
This brings me to my second issue: Richard Mourdock’s supposedly conservative bona fides. Ms. Robinson covers this better than I ever could in her piece here, but I will give it the old college try. In his 1992 campaign for Congress, Richard Mourdock completed a candidate questionnaire that paints a very different picture of the man that has been campaigning as the conservative alternative candidate the past few months.
In this questionnaire, Mourdock indicates that he supports the “Fairness Doctrine,” which would require media outlets to give equal time to opposing political views. While this legislation would have made sense in the days when only two or three media outlets existed, the Fairness Doctrine was a shameless attempt by Democrats to lessen the influence of conservative talk radio. Coincidentally, many of Mourdock’s supporters adhere to the views espoused on the same radio waves he wanted to regulate.
Secondly, Mr. Mourdock stated he had “no position” on “legislation which would repeal sanctions against employers who hire illegal immigrants.” The questionnaire was published just days before the election, yet Mr. Mourdock still had “no position” on addressing illegal immigration? Ms. Robinson dubbed Mourdock “Mr. Softee” on the issue. I happen to agree with her.
“Mr. Softee is not the only catchy name the Ms. Robinson came up with. Based on the extreme contrast between Mr. Mourdock’s stances in 1992 and the ones he holds now, she deemed him a “Tea Party Opportunist” for shifting his views to the right in order to help him ride the anti-incumbent wave that has swept up the Republican Party. Another assertion of hers I have to agree with.
As a lifelong conservative Republican, I cannot sit by and watch my party ruin a wonderful opportunity to control both chambers of Congress. Mr. Mourdock is not the ideological purist that he claims to be, and could very likely cost Senate Republicans the majority should he win the primary.