Typically a candidate for the presidency moves from the party’s core constituency towards the middle to capture independents and a portion of the other party. John McCain the so-called presumptive Republican candidate has lived in the center and sided more often with the Democrats than his own party, but now has to convince his core constituency he really is a conservative.
While Talk Radio was busy trying to build up Mitt Romney as a conservative, whom the rank and file conservatives did not trust based on his liberal social (pro-abortion, pro-gay rights) record as Governor and senate candidate of Massachusetts, McCain was able to win based on the help of independents and democrats that could cross over in primaries and national defense Republicans.
Instead of righting the wrong and getting behind the true conservative in the race, Mike Huckabee, the Republican establishment and Talk Radio are now trying to convince conservatives that McCain is one of us and far better then Obama or Clinton. Politically, the establishment Republicans and the McCain camp have ignored the third leg of the conservative base, social conservatives whom are the largest Republican voting block and are gambling that social conservatives will all of a sudden leap out of their seats to support McCain.
It is a very distinct possibility that the Republican Party is about to find out that being true to their conservative principals is more important than loyalty to any political party.
What these arrogant establishment Republicans don’t seem to understand is that Reagan did not just give social conservatives lip service, he embraced them. The tri-pod of conservatism consists of social conservatives, economic conservatives and national defense conservatives. Each leg important, but it was social conservatism that largely brought over independents and conservative democrats to Reagan. The magic of Reagan is that his love and respect for the American people coupled with his conservative policies is what brought about the Reagan revolution.
Mike Huckabee understands the magic of Reagan and is by far the most conservative of any Republican running. What is ironic is it is his social conservatism that establishment Republicans and I suspect some in Talk Radio are afraid of. The fact that Huckabee is a practicing Christian makes many establishment Republicans uncomfortable because a loud minority of liberal Democrats may make a fuss about his faith. Instead of standing tall in support of Huckabee’s right to live his faith, the establishment has tried to ignore Huckabee which only infuriates many of us social conservatives.
You would have thought that the establishment Republicans would have learned some lessons about how important the social conservative base is to the Republican party after getting trounced in the last election, but they seem to be hell bent on losing the White House too.
Out only hope is that the good people of America will defy conventional wisdom and get behind Huckabee at this last hour and save this election and our country in the process.