Reflections on the concept of “party loyalty”

RINO123I was listening to El Rushbo the other day, and even he was struggling with something that a lot of us have been — the concept of sucking it up and voting for a candidate who is not very conservative, for the sake of a “majority.”  People were calling in to Rush talking about “teaching a lesson” to The Establishment.  Rush had an interesting response: The establishment is not ‘teachable.’  If you stick it to them in an attempt to teach a lesson, they don’t learn. They get indignant, and they lash back at you.

(Ask John Rhodes and Robert Brawley about that.)

Rush pointed out that — to fix the party — you will have to clear out these types with an ‘R’ next to their names who don’t mind a little more spending, a little more taxes, a little more regulation.  It may mean six more years of Kay Hagan.  It MAY mean more of Harry Reid in charge.  But it appears THAT is the only way to get back to an honest opposition to statism.  

Here, in North Carolina, we’re being hit with all kinds of calls for party loyalty.  We’re told we need to suck it up and vote for Thom Tillis — an ideologically-flexible kind of guy who has shown no interest in actual conservative voters.  

We’ve got a situation where conservatives’ choice did not win the primary.  Let’s look at what happens when the GOP establishment’s candidate does not win the primary.

In 1964, Nelson Rockefeller fans pouted over their man’s loss to Barry Goldwater in the presidential primary so they ran out and formed ”Republicans for LBJ.”  In 1980,  lefty Republicans showed their “support” for presidential nominee Ronald Reagan by running liberal Republican congressman John Anderson as an “independent” in the general election.

In Virginia, in 1994, Republicans had a great chance to knock off incumbent Democrat US senator — and LBJ son in law — Chuck Robb.  Oliver North won the GOP primary.  US senator John Warner — a capo di tutti in the GOP establishment — showed his displeasure by backing an ”independent” run by moderate Republican Marshall Coleman.  Robb got six more years in DC.  In the 2013 governor’s race in Virginia, GOP nominee and Tea Party favorite Ken Cuccinelli was left high and dry by the party apparatus.  Eric Cantor operatives were even exposed working for Democrat nominee — and eventual winner — Terry McAuliffe.  Apparently, it’s better to let the Democrat win than to have “our party” represented by one of those Tea Party types. 

Let’s not forget the shenanigans of the GOP establishment in the recently completed Mississippi GOP primary for US Senate. 

Let’s look at the 2012 elections in North Carolina.  We got establishment doyenne Pat McCrory forced on us in the governor’s race.  However, a stable of good conservatives got nominated by the GOP for the down ballot council of state seats.

McCrory defeated Democrat Walter Dalton 55 percent to 43 percent.  McCrory got 2,447,988 votes to Dalton’s 1,931,750.

Let’s step down one level to the Lt.Governor’s race.  Republican Dan Forest defeated Democrat Linda Coleman 50.1 percent to 49.9 percent.  Forest got 2,187,728 votes to 2,180,870 for Coleman. Roughly 300,000 voters picked the Republican McCrory, then went over to Democrat Coleman in the lieutenant governor’s race.

In the secretary of state’s race, Ed Goodwin racked up 2,003,026 votes in his loss to Elane Marshall. who got   2,331,173 votes.  Goodwin got roughly 400,000 fewer votes than McCrory, but Marshall outperformed Dalton by roughly the same amount.  

This pattern survives all the way down the ballot. A LOT of people voted for Pat McCrory, and then switched over to vote Democrat down-ballot.

I talked with various GOP council of state candidates and their aides.  They told me they got next to no help from the state party — logistical, financial, or otherwise –from the state party or the McCrory campaign. McCrory led Dalton comfortably in the money and vote chase for nearly the entire campaign. Yet, the ticket-header and his fellow-travelers in the state party showed little to no interest in providing some coattails for more conservative down-ballot candidates.

We conservatives are repeatedly lectured about putting away our principles, sucking it up, and voting for the ‘R’.  We’ve been pretty good about doing that when our guy or gal doesn’t survive the primary.  Ask some of these party unity cheerleaders for a recent example of when they’ve done the same.  

27 thoughts on “Reflections on the concept of “party loyalty”

  1. The RINOpublican Party is a walking carcass. It just doesn’t realize it yet. When greater effort is expended to defeat conservatives than to defeat progressives, the die is cast. Conservatives need to caste a die of their own in November 2014, rather than capitulate to the continuation of the power-hungry platforms of Raleigh and Washington.

  2. Your article states: **I talked with various GOP council of state candidates and their aides. They told me they got next to no help from the state party — logistical, financial, or otherwise –from the state party or the McCrory campaign. McCrory led Dalton comfortably in the money and vote chase for nearly the entire campaign. Yet, the ticket-header and his fellow-travelers in the state party showed little to no interest in providing some coattails for more conservative down-ballot candidates.**

    This is exactly the case, so the question should be where is all of this money that the NCGOP is raising or not raising since people are starting to catch on to the scam that is the NCGOP. Where does all that money go? It appears that there is a much more convuluded agenda at work here. Why does the GOP hate conservatives so fervently? I heard the Republican establishment turned the Democrats out in Mississippi to paint conservative Republicans as racists. Wouldn’t that be a bummer to send in your check for $100 only to fund a campaign painting you as a racist. I don’t think I’d write another check for a party that hates conseratives so much.

    1. The answer to the question of, “Where does the money go?” is “Into the pockets of paid consultants like Dee Stewart.”

      1. That would be the Dee Stewart who is infamous for his vicious smear campaigns against conservatives in primaries, often based on lies, distortions, and half truths. like he deployed against Robert Brawley this year.this year, Fern Shubert in 2010, and others.

    2. I’ve quit donating to the national GOP and the state GOP. I send donation to the candidates that match my views.

  3. I have held my nose many times to vote for Republican candidates I really did not like very much. Party loyalty was part of the reason, and another part was that the Democrats were usually worse.

    This year, with the opportunity to win the Senate, all sides should be making sure to keep the party united. Thus it was shocking to see the NRSC reverse their position from last election and decide to interfere in GOP primaries on behalf of the Big Government / establishment Republicans this time. It was shocking to hear GOP leader Mitch McConnell say of conservatives ”we will crush them everywhere”. He was not so interested in crushing Democrats, only conservatives. It was shocking to read the Politico story that the GOP establishment groups had so far spent $23 million to beat conservatives, money that will now not be availible to beat Democrats. It was shocking to see the vicious scorched earth attack ads the GOP establishment unleashed against Ben Sasse in Nebraska AFTER polling showed their candidate was dead in the water and Sasse was the certain nominee. The only purpose of the ads at that point would be to soften him up for the Democrats.

    Then there was Mississippi. It was shocking to hear the NRSC funded robocalls played on talk radio which urged black Democrat voters to ”help Obama” by voting in the GOP primary for Thad Cochran. It was shocking to learn that the Cochran campaign was throwing around ”walking around money” to buy black votes in a GOP primary. It was shocking to read in a major British newspapers of the flagrant racebaiting the Cochran campaign and its allies were doing, and the corrupt tactics like illegal PACs that were used to do it:
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2672565/The-worst-race-baiting-ads-Ive-seen-Radio-ads-Mississippi-senate-race-accused-tea-party-candidate-Ku-Klux-Klan-links-drove-black-Democrats-vote-against-REPUBLICAN-primary.html

    It is now a different world for conservative voters. The establishment keeps whacking us in the back with the hatchet. They do not wish to bury it, except perhaps in our backs. Is this how they expect to unify the party to fight Democrats? If so, it looks like they are smoking something ofher than a tobacco product.

    At this point, to get back to party unity, there is a whole lot of work to to be done, and most of it is the establishment climbing down from their anti-conservative crusade. It has gone so far, I do not even know if it is possible to pull off by November, but it won’t happen by smuggly demanding party loyalty after the things that have been done in this year’s primaries..

  4. Thillis will not be receiving my vote this fall. It will be a write in to let the establishment know they messed up again. Of course when Thommy loses the Tea Party, Greg Brannon and the Libertarian candidate will all be blamed. No introspection, just blame shifting.

  5. I am done with party loyalty. I am through with the Republican Party establishment. I have decided to vote for Aiken and Haugh. I will not vote for the Republican candidates for House and Senate. They are no better than the Democrats. Yes, Mississippi was absolutely despicable. But look at the shenanigans and corruption in the Republican Party here in NC. Behold what our governor is doing. I am outraged. And I will no longer vote for them. I will not work for them. Until and unless the Republican Party stands up for its principles and platform, which it never does any more, I will work against the Republican establishment. Come what may.

    1. I agree with most here.

      I do believe shock therapy is all that the Establishment will understand. They are too unscrupulous to be open to any other way.

      It’s Aiken and Haugh for me too. No way Thillis. You couldn’t pay me to vote for Tholl Road Thom, although some of his lackeys probably would try to.

  6. As a Republican, I have a bigger problem with Tillis the Republican as a candidate for Senate than I do with Hagan, the Democrat, getting another 6 years in office. Let her have it if the Republican establishment can’t do any better than Tillis. Hold my nose? Vote for the lesser of two evils? Never again, I will vote for Hagan. Anyone but Tillis.

  7. I like many others have tried very hard to work for important principles within the Republican Party. I have held my nose too many times for pathetic establishment primary winners that made it to the general election.

    No more. It’s hard to embrace ‘allies’ who have buried the hatchet, axe, knife, and shotgun slugs in our backs.

  8. I find I agree with most of the above comments. Having said that, as much as I am disappointed with Thom Tillis as a candidate, I can’t bring myself to vote for Kay Hagan or worse yet not vote at all. I suppose I fall into the “lesser of two evils” category. Is that “party loyalty”? Maybe but the left wing policies are so dangerous for our nation I can’t bring myself to not helping to shift the meter ever so slightly right.

    My hope and prayer is that the next election cycle will bring people that primary folks like McCrory, Tillis, etc. One election win should not mean a repeat. I believe in do-overs however rare.

  9. The biggest hit to party loyalty came when the stock market reached 17,000.

    Aunt Ag has been a loyal Republican for a long time but she sure is loving her stock portfolio under the Democrats. Kay is a female, an incumbent, has plenty of campaign money and is riding a stock market of 17,000.

    Thom may have hit the stock market head on.

    1. Fake economy being driven by the Federal Reserve. The good economic fundamentals are nonexistent.

    1. Tricky Dick Burr just keeps make it hard to vote for him if he runs again. I really hope he retires.

      1. Only to be replaced by the Washington and Raleigh GOP candidate, no matter your and my preferences. Any Raleigh or GOP nominee is fruit of the poison tree. We need to defund the GOP and replace it with Americans.

  10. I, too, am sick of being asked to set aside my Conservative principles to vote for the next-in-line establishment guy. Thom Tillis did not have the majority of the GOP vote in May — the Conservative candidates did. Imagine what would have happened if the establishment had put the same effort into supporting the Conservative candidate as they did trying to split the vote so their establishment guy could win. Earlier this year, I wrote and recorded an op-ed piece on WEEB 990 radio to this effect and immediately raised the ire of the local GOP. Shortly thereafter, I was summoned to a meeting of the powers-that-be where I was given the same tired line about party unity — my opinion fell on deaf ears. If the Republicans truly wanted to win elections, they would put up candidates that reflect the Conservative values of the majority of the party instead of next-in-line career politicians like Thom Tillis who have questionable records on key Conservative issues. I can’t in good conscience, vote for the likes of Kay Hagan and Clay Aiken, and I truly understand why many Republicans just don’t vote at all. It’s tempting given the choices.

  11. It’s time to register Unaffiliated and demand that the category be changed to Independent. The parties crafted the term to imply that one is simply to ignorant to decide which party to affiliate with rather than acknowledging that the voter is too informed to be duped by either party. There are two things that terrify both the democrats and the republicans – the tea party (small government) ideology and the unaffiliated voter. Over 1/4 of NC voters have made the decision. It’s time for the rest of us to do the same. My Vote…. My Choice!

    1. That does not accomplish anything. An Unaffiliated voter can vote in either primary, but there are rarely Democrats worth voting for, so what value is that really? What it does is mean fewer conservatives to try to take control of the party structure. Advocating people registering unaffiliated is a recipe to castrate conservative influence in out political process.

      Third party? Nobody has come up with a viable game plan to do that as yet that I have seen. A third party in the short term would likely give the Democrats the upper hand for an election or two, and that may be all it takes to destroy the country.

      Like it or not, we are going to have to battle it out with the Big Government Republicans within the party if we are to have a conservative foothold in government.

      Now, the place I have seen some viable Independent game plans is in elections, like this one:

      http://www.beaufortobserver.net/Blog-3931.112112-8513.112112-A-Tea-Party-Independent-strategy.html

      1. Unaffiliated status removes the certainty factor from the Republicans. I want them to have to fight for my vote, rather than take it for granted based on some bogus notion of ‘party unity’, and settle for the second- and third-string offerings we’ve gotten since 2008. If that doesn’t work, then I guess we start voting AGAINST the GOP.
        BTW, Clay Aiken did pretty damn well this morning on WEEB AM Radio. Renee had better push away from the quiche and chardonnay buffet line in Georgetown and pay attention.

        1. Conservatives getting control of the GOP party structure is the best way to prevent the party from running disgusting undocumented Democrats like Renee Ellmers. That cannot be accomplished if conservatives get in a snit and registering Unaffiliated. If the good guys all register Unaffiliated it just means we are going to have more elections like Ellmers vs. Aiken and Hagan vs. Tillis, where there is simply not a good candidate to vote for.

  12. We had a primary. We, conservatives, didn’t get the voters out. We lost. I’ll lick my wounds, grab what little I can get, and live to fight another day. I’m a Republican. I will not change my party because our party “leaders” won’t support our party principles. It’s my job to defeat them in the primary. A protest vote, or no vote, just puts Harry back in charge. That doesn’t help anybody. A vote for Clay and Kay??? Seriously??? Go find a windmill and have at it.

    1. Ham, I got to agree. It seems to me that some that the Tea Partiers are taking the view that if their guy cannot win they are going to punish the Republican Party for not nominating their guy.

      This same crowd hates to hear the term “Party Loyalty” but I wonder what they would think of the term “Party Loyalty” if their guy was on the November ballot.

      My preference would be to try someone different than Kay. And Harry. I prefer to elect a Senator with my vote rather than make a statement. Most of the time nobody listens to the statements I make anyway.

      1. What happened in Mississippi was not ”their guy can’t win” at all. The conservative, Chris McDaniel won among Republican voters by about 8 percentage points. The Big Government Republicans cheated to steal the nomination. Under Mississippi law, only those who plan to vote for the party in November are supposed to vote in that party’s primary and runoff. Those who took one party’s primary ballot are specifically prohibited from taking the other party’s runoff ballot. With a blatantly racebaiting and dishonest campaign, partly run through illegal unregistered PAC’s, the Big Government Republicans stampeded liberal black Democrats to illegally cross over and vote in the GOP runoff. The robocalls and radio ads told them to do so to ”help Obama”. Additionally, they passed around ”walking around money” to buy black votes, and at least one black minister has already come forward as a whistle blower. The gambit to get liberal black Democrats to vote in the GOP primary was condemned prior to the runoff by both the Republican and Democrat state chairmen in Mississippi.

        What was done in Mississippi is a disgrace to the Republican Party and should be condemned by all Republicans. The state chairman in Missouri has already called for an RNC investigation..

        The Big Government Republicans have declared all out war and take no prisoners against conservatives. They have blown party unity to smithereans. Conservatives are simply telling them that what goes around, comes around. The Big Government Republicans crossed a line in Mississippi that should never be crossed if you want to preserve party unity, and as a result, establishemt Big Government Repubicans will likely pay the price around the country.

        What was done in Mississippi was a stupid, stupid move by Barbour, McConnell, the NRSC, etc. They may have snatched defeat out of the jaws of victory in November by their asinine power grab, and they will have only themselves to blame if that happens.

        I hope that all of those responible for the illegal campaign activities are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law and get long prison sentences..

        One thing the GOP needs to do immediately is to begin steps to remove Henry Barbour, who was up to his neck in this crap, from his position as Republican National Committeeman from Mississippi.

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