The impulse to blame social conservatives arises nearly every time Republicans fail. They were blamed for the elder Bush’s 1992 defeat, as though he would have won if only Pat Robertson had not spoken at the Republican convention. They were blamed for losses in the House in 1998. And now they are being blamed for McCain’s rout.
Exactly, and without them the GOP can’t win.
If the pundits’ advice were right, Republicans would be doomed, since they are highly unlikely to take it. Luckily, that advice is misguided. No, actually, it is worse than that: The case that an overemphasis on socially conservative positions has been a major cause of Republican defeats is obviously ridiculous.