Reagan biographer Craig Shirley and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich recently co-authored a column for CNN titled “Republicans, stick to your principles.” In light of the civil war being waged within the GOP here in Nevada between principled conservatives and moderate Republicans, I thought some excerpts from the column would prove interesting…
“By January 1977, only 11% of citizens younger than 30 identified with the Republican Party. The party had been on fumes for years, ever since the Great Depression and only challenged the Democrats for national authority when they screwed up, as in 1946 and 1968, or when Republicans nominated an overwhelmingly popular figure, such as Dwight D. Eisenhower, in 1952.
“And with the election of Carter, a smart, moderate Democrat from the South, the prospect for Democratic rule for another generation seemed bright. The party of Andrew Jackson had smothering control of the House, a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate and in the South, there were states such as Mississippi that had almost no elected Republican officeholders.
“The only state in the country that had GOP control of the legislature and the governor’s mansion was Kansas. The other 49 states had partial or complete Democratic control.
“The old ways of accommodating the establishment by the GOP of the 1930s, ’40s, ’50s and ’60s would no longer work. Something else had to be tried. To conservatives such as Reagan, accommodation was tantamount to surrendering and they asked themselves, ‘If we surrender on everything, what is the purpose of having a Republican Party?’”
Despite hang-wringing and teeth-gnashing to the contrary, the Republican Party nationally in the United States today is nowhere NEAR as bad off as it was 35 years ago…but the question conservatives were asking themselves back then about surrendering to the moderates is every bit as relevant today.
If we surrender on raising taxes, spending more money and growing government…what is the purpose of having a Republican Party?
Shirley and Gingrich concluded:
“Reagan used to joke that without his principles, without his conservatism, he would have been just another former actor. He knew standing one’s ground when one was right was enlightening and empowering. It is a lesson from history that applies today. Fighting for principles and losing is always better than surrendering and in so doing, surrendering one’s reason for being.”
I am so sick of moderates telling us conservatives we have to compromise and go along to get along. To hell with that. Enough of the Surrender Caucus! Let the GOP primaries begin and bring on CONSERVA-GEDDON!!