Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Little Tent

Most of my liberal friends agree that if unemployment remains at 10% or higher, banksters continue to get bailouts and high bonuses, and the health care reform bill as currently written get passed, the Democrats will lose plenty of seats in the November, 2010 elections. This will happen not because moderates and independents will flock to the GOP but because the liberal base will not only not underwrite the campaigns financially and volunteer in mass numbers, they won't even vote. The few liberals who disagree with this assessment, well, they're still naive suckers.

Still, the GOP is doing its part to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, so I guess there is some hope. Here's some background. After being rightfully humiliated by the loss of a decades-long reliably Republican congressional seat in New York, a group of Republicans on the RNC have come up with a "purity test" which candidates would have to pass in order to get campaign fund from the national party. The proposed test will be submitted for approval at an upcoming meeting of the national party officials in that exotic state, Hawaii.

I went to Hot Air, a conservative blog distinguished by the fact that it's not all that crazy to see what the test looks like. Here it is in bullet point fashion:

You need to say yes to eight if you want to get paid, per Reagan’s saying that anyone who agrees with him 80 percent of the time is his friend, not his opponent:

(1) We support smaller government, smaller national debt, lower deficits and lower taxes by opposing bills like Obama’s “stimulus” bill;
(2) We support market-based health care reform and oppose Obama-style government run healthcare;
(3) We support market-based energy reforms by opposing cap and trade legislation;
(4) We support workers’ right to secret ballot by opposing card check;
(5) We support legal immigration and assimilation into American society by opposing amnesty for illegal immigrants;
(6) We support victory in Iraq and Afghanistan by supporting military-recommended troop surges;
(7) We support containment of Iran and North Korea, particularly effective action to eliminate their nuclear weapons threat;
(8) We support retention of the Defense of Marriage Act;
(9) We support protecting the lives of vulnerable persons by opposing health care rationing, denial of health care and government funding of abortion; and
(10) We support the right to keep and bear arms by opposing government restrictions on gun ownership

Well, the list certainly doesn't contain any surprises, and parts of it are actually a little soft, given the current rhetoric being used by La Palin and suchlike. But it still is the kind of purity test which could give a few well-entrenched Republicans some trouble.

Even conservatives are a little uneasy with the test. Kathleen Parker sure is.

Just when independents and moderates were considering revisiting the GOP tent.

Just when a near-perfect storm of unpopular Democratic ideas -- from massive health-care reform to terrorist show trials, not to mention global-warming hype -- is coagulating over 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

Just when the GOP was gaining traction after gubernatorial victories in Virginia and New Jersey . . . Republicans perform a rain dance at their own garden party.

Things were just going too well. ...

The so-called purity test is a 10-point checklist -- a suicide pact, really -- of alleged Republican positions. Anyone hoping to play on Team GOP would have to sign off on eight of the 10 -- through their voting records, public statements or a questionnaire. The test will be put up for consideration before the Republican National Committee when it meets early next year in Hawaii. ...

James Bopp Jr., chief sponsor of the resolution and a committee member from Indiana, has said that "the problem is that many conservatives have lost trust in the conservative credentials of the Republican Party."

Actually, no, the problem is that many conservatives have lost faith in the ability of Republican leaders to think. The resolutions aren't so much statements of principle as dogmatic responses to complex issues that may, occasionally, require more than a Sharpie check in a little square.
[Emphasis added]

Oh, my! That's got to leave a mark.

So, if the Democrats somehow manage to squeak by in 2010, it won't be because of the sterling job the 111th Congress has done. It will be because the GOP took a page out of Newt Gingrich's play book, crumpled it up, and then re-jiggered it in Mad Hatter style. But that's what happens without reasonable restrictions on gun ownership. Stupid people shoot themselves in the foot.

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