The Republican Tiny Tent

The Republican Party is rapidly turning into a minority party which is becoming limited to the south and diminishing portions of the west. They have driven out their moderates and only limited views are allowed in the party. Mark Steyn tries to argue otherwise but it is clear he doth protest too much.

Steyn argues that the Republicans offer an anti-war candidate. This is true but means little. Ron Paul does support getting out of the war but he polls at only around five percent and much of his support comes from people who generally do not vote Republican. The vast majority of Republicans support the war. On related issues regarding the war on terror they only disagree on points such as whether Guitanimo should be preserved as is or doubled in size.

Steyn argues that there is a pro-abortion candidate. Giuliani somewhat supports abortion but promises to appoint judges who will help outlaw it. Giuliani also opposes so-called “partial birth” abortions, supports parental notification laws, and supports the Hyde amendment which prohibits federal funding for most abortions under Medicaid. Support for abortion remains a minority view in the Republican Party, and Giuliani’s slightly moderate views are so radical to the Republicans that many are considering supporting a third party if Giuliani gets the nomination.

Despite the attempts by Republicans to pretend they have a big tent, they have a very tiny tent which is dominated by the social policies of the religious right and the foreign policy of the neoconservatives.

Be Sociable, Share!

6 Comments

  1. 1
    absent observer says:

    I don’t know anyone who like abortions. So, Giuliani going pro-choice while still being an autocrat wouldn’t sway many libertarian-leaning voters. Maybe if he changed his stance on say… respecting other people, ferrets and all …he’d have a chance.

  2. 2
    Eric Dondero says:

    The GOP was a lot worse off in the 1980s, and 90s. I was around back then, and they would go out of their way to exclude us libertarians. I even had one guy hold the door at a local GOP Precinct Committee meeting in Florida, so that I couldn’t get in – a Bob Martinez/Pro-Life extremist.

    Today, the GOP practically rolls out the red carpet for libertarians. Those of us who’ve been active in the libertarian Republican movement since the 1980s have seen a dramatic turnaround within the Republican Party.

    There was a valid reason for the existence of the Libertarian Party in the 1970s and 80s. The Republican Party did in fact, exclude libertarians from participation.

    Today, we practically run the place! (Club for Growth, Cato, Republican Liberty Caucus, Forbes, WSJ, Grover Norquist ect…)

  3. 3
    Ron Chusid says:

    Eric,

    This gets back to the 66/66 libertarians in your other comment today as to whether you consider there to be many libertarians in the Republican Party. The Republican Party sure looks more like a party dominated by neocons and the religious right than libertarians. Of course since we differ on whether someone who supports the Patriot Act and Iraq war are libertarian we would have vastly different views as to whether the Republican Party is practically run by libertarians.

    With your broad definition of libertarianism I assume you would consider the YAF and Goldwater components to be libertarian. In that respect it looks like there was a strong libertarian component to the GOP when the LP was formed.

  4. 4
    Eric Dondero says:

    Ron, like I said, you should’ve seen the GOP in the 1980s and early 1990s. Ask anyone in the RLC. It was HORRIBLE back then, particularly in Florida and the entire South from Texas to Georgia to the Carolinas. It was blanketed with Religious Rightists, and they ABSOLUTELY HATED LIBERTARIANS. They knew exactly who we were: a bunch of “drug legalizing abortionists.” And they would do everything they could to keep us out of “their” Republican Parties.

    It’s amazing we ever were allowed in.

    I shit you not here. The Republican Party of Florida even made us sign a loyalty oath to the Party before they would recognize our right to participate in their conventions.

    Nowadays, if you follow RLC activities, you’ll see that in many States, most especially Florida, it’s the RLC who is the leading edge for the GOP.

    It’s been an astonishing turnaround in just 10 to 15 years. And it amazes me that no bigtime journalist has written the story on the “Rise of libertarians in the Republican Party.”

  5. 5
    Vince P says:

    Regarding Rudy’s abortion stance… it was stated that

    > Giuliani somewhat supports abortion but promises to appoint judges who will help outlaw it.

    That’s not true. Republicans aren’t looking to have any court outlaw abortion. What we want is for the RvW to be reversed so that this issue could be settled by the people via the legislative process. This is after all a Republic and the people deserve the right to have their wil be done via state law.

    So yes the ultimate goal would be to have abortion illegal, however, it would be done via law and not decree by judge.

    Regarding the Big or Little Tentedness of the GOP you used abortion and war support as the criteria.

    Well using those items, I dont see how the Democrats are any different. I don’t know any pro-life Dems (I’m sure there are some). Joe Liberman comes to mind regarding War Supporters.

  6. 6
    Ron Chusid says:

    “Republicans aren’t looking to have any court outlaw abortion.”

    Yes, that is an oversimplification, but I’m referring to Giuliani’s messsage. He’s telling Republican voters not to worry about his stance about abortion because he will appoint judges who will do what the Republicans want, ultimately leading to making abortion illegal again.

    “This is after all a Republic and the people deserve the right to have their wil be done via state law.”

    There is no absolute right of the majority to impose its will and deny the rights of the minority. There are limitations on the power of government to interfere in the lives of individuals and when it oversteps its limits it is a function of the courts to step in. We do have three branches of government for a reason.

    “Regarding the Big or Little Tentedness of the GOP you used abortion and war support as the criteria.”

    No, I did not use these as the criteria. The column I was responding to was using this criteria to claim the Republicans are a big tent and I’m arguing that this is incorrect.

    “I dont see how the Democrats are any different. I don’t know any pro-life Dems (I’m sure there are some).”

    There are many, including the Senate Majority Leader.

1 Trackbacks

Leave a comment