I've been a reader of Red State for a long time, but this is my first Diary Entry. Please forgive me if it is not up to par.
In the past year or so, we have seen a purging of so called Rinos from the republican party. We all know this. I've seen many people who advocate the idea of kicking out the so called Rinos in favor of real conservative republicans. The biggest question I have, is what exactly constitues a RINO? Is it a republican that we feel is not conservative enough, or is it literally a republican who votes like a democrat? The difference between to two is in my opinion, stark. As a recent Economics major graduate, I like to look at actual data to form my conclusions.
SNOWE, COLLINS, and BROWN: According to the American Conservative Union, in 2010, both Maine Senators scored a 64 out of 100. Scott Brown scored a 74. All 3 of these senators voted more conservatively than every single democratic Senator. The most conservative democratic senators where Ben Nelson (48) and Blance Lincoln (46). So...do Brown, Collins and Snowe actually vote like democrats....I don't think so. They vote like Republican Centrists. Are they as conservative as we would like, absolutely not. Does it matter that they are republicans is blue states, so we should cut them a little slack, I'm not sure. I don't know if they qualify as RINOs or not. I guess it depends on your interpretation of the acronym.
Mike Castle - R.I.N.O. No doubt about it. According to the A.C.U., Castles 2010 rating was a extremely dissapointing 38. Several democrats voted more conservatively or as conservatively as Castle did (Bright, Marshall, Minick, Boren, McIntyre). Many other democrats can awfully close to 38. So, we can clearly say that Castle is literally a RINO. When he first lost the primary to O'donnell, I was a little concerned. However, having Castle as a potential swing vote/comprimise maker is a scary thought.
So, is there a difference between the Snowes and the Castles? I think there is a clear difference. Any comments?