Tim Dunkin
January 22, 2010
Brown's win is a victory for TEApublicanism
By Tim Dunkin

Last Tuesday was an exciting day if you are an opponent of the socialistic agenda that Obama, Pelosi, Reid, and their various and sundry acolytes in Congress have spent the better part of the past year trying to ram down our throats. In Massachusetts of all places that bright, glowing sapphire blue jewel in New England's crown a reasonably conservative Republican won the Senate seat held by the Kennedy's since 1952. In doing so, Scott Brown becomes the 41st Republican vote in the Senate, and the barrier to the passage of Obamacare in any of its present House and Senate forms. Brown, an energetic and charismatic candidate, campaigned on a platform of fiscal responsibility and opposition to the insanity we see unfolding in Washington. His victory over Marcia, er, Martha Coakley, in what should have been the single safest seat in the entire universe for the Democrats, has helped to underscore the disgust and anger on the part of the electorate for the present ruling power in the Capitol. People are angry, people don't want Obamacare, cap'n'trade', more spending, greater debt, higher taxes, and the rest of the "progressive" agenda that has hithertofore been pushed so aggressively by the Democrats.

The days and weeks to come will prove whether the Democrats learned anything from the drubbing they took in Massachusetts. So far, the signals seem to be mixed. Their handlers in the media seem to be in panic mode even Chris Matthews, one of the wackiest of the whackos on television, has urged the Dems to pull back and reassess what they're doing. But then again, Matthews also got into a shouting match with Howard Dean about it, since Dean cluelessly thinks that the real problem is that the American people are mad that the Dems haven't gone far or fast enough. Several "moderate" Senatorial Democrats, like Evan Bayh (Indiana) and Jim Webb (Virginia) publically called on their leadership to back off of universal health care, and Pelosi was forced to admit that they don't have the votes in the House now to pass the thing a sure sign that "Blue Dog" Democrats are abandoning ship, knowing that Obama isn't going to save them come November. Yet...there's also some noise that Pelosi is nevertheless going to make an attempt at passing Obamacare by reconciliation, which would serve as an end run around the loss of their filibuster-proof majority. Also, the Democrats just floated the idea of increasing the debt limit for the federal government another $1.9 trillion, so they can continue to borrow and spend more and more. So maybe the Democrats didn't learn their lesson after all.

While not as much of a red-meat conservative as I and many others would like, the general perception of Scott Brown is that he's "conservative enough," certainly as good as we can expect to see out of Massachusetts. As a state Senator in Massachusetts, he voted for Romneycare the Massachusetts state version of socialized medicine and he did so knowing it had a provision requiring the program to co-pay for abortions. His own stance on abortion, as articulated on his campaign's website, would appear to be a "soft pro-choice" position he makes noise about abortion ultimately being "between a woman and her doctor" yet he goes on to support a litany of positions which are indeed pro-life, such as parental notification and consent laws, opposition to partial-birth abortion, and support for making adoption easier. Brown stands generally for fiscal responsibility, and is on the record for supporting the right to keep and bear arms, opposing illegal immigration, and has stated that marriage is between a man and a woman. He also appears to desire to devolve a lot of these, and other, issues back to the states, so he sees to be solid on the issue of federalism as well. So I reiterate my terminology Brown is "conservative enough," about as good as we'll get from a very leftist Northeastern state. Much better than Marcia, er, Martha Coakley would have been. As a Senator, Brown will give the conservative movement many more votes than Coakley would have, though he will probably have us rolling our eyes and groaning at times, too.

As imperfect of a candidate as he was, ideologically at least (as a campaigner, he was preternaturally exquisite), Brown nevertheless garnered the support of one group that has also been taking American politics by storm the Tea Party movement. The Tea Partiers in Massachusetts endorsed and came out for Brown, which helped to put him over the finish line by delivering to him a strong majority among Independents.

This helps to illustrate the point I made earlier this month, which is that the Tea Party movement needs to "hijack" the Republican Party. The two cannot stand apart from each other, but they are unstoppable together the essence of TEApublicanism. The Tea Party movement lacks the organization to operate as a mass-movement third party across the nation, and most of its leadership doesn't seem inclined to try to do so anywise, if the example of the coolness of the Florida Tea Partiers towards the self-proclaimed "Tea Party Party" started in that state is any indication. Further, if the Tea Party movement fields its own candidates in races where there is already a credibly conservative Republican running, then all they will accomplish is to split the vote and hand the seat to the Democrats completely unnecessarily. DO run Tea Party conservatives when the GOP foolishly tries to install a Dede Scozzafava into office. DON'T run Tea Party candidates, however, when the GOP does the right thing and runs a Doug Hoffman on its ticket instead.

The Republican Party, in turn, desperately needs the Tea Party movement, and would be indescribably foolish to ignore or reject it. The Tea Party movement, as I said earlier this month, is a re-energized mass movement of conservatives who are getting active again after having gone dormant for a while. The Tea Party movement is, in essence, the rebuilding of the Reagan coalition of conservatives Republicans, Independents, "Reagan" Democrats, libertarians people who want fiscal discipline from their government and less intrusion into their own lives. If the Republican Party follows the John McCain route trying to pawn off more big-government establishment insiders onto us then it deserves to lose, and lose big.

However, that need not be the case. The election of Scott Brown shows us the way out of the wilderness. The Tea Partiers helped to elect the Republican. They united the thin-on-the-ground Republicans in Massachusetts with the much-thicker-on-the-ground Independents, and elected a Republican candidate who represents their views and interests much more than Marcia, er, Martha Coakley would have. The Republicans pick up a seat, while the Tea Partiers helped to kill, or at least severely wound, Obamacare. A win-win situation for all involved.

So what would have happened had the Tea Partiers irrationally played the "hate Republicans" game and endorsed the Independent candidate, Joseph Kennedy, perhaps delivering him a few percentage points of the vote, taken from Brown? Ol' what's-her-name would now be the Senator-elect from Massachusetts, the Democrats would have had no lessons to learn, and would even now be preparing to finalize the destruction of American health care and American freedom.

The example of the election of Scott Brown needs to be the wave of the future for conservative political activists. Granted, I hope we can find many candidates who are more conservative to run in the many more conservative districts all across this country. But this fusion of the conservative grassroots in the Republican Party with the concerned conservatives who make up a broad portion of the self-described Independents in this nation is what Reagan rode to victory in 1980 and what the Contract with America Republicans rode into office with in 1994. The people of this nation don't want socialism, nor do they want socialism-lite. They want statesmen (rather than politicians) who will stand up and protect their freedoms, their pocketbooks, and their country. Give them that by uniting the conservative movement and seeing the conservative agenda advanced, and follow up on it by not going soft and forgetting why we were elected in the first place, and we will see a renaissance for conservatism and America.

© Tim Dunkin

 

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Tim Dunkin

Tim Dunkin is a pharmaceutical chemist by day, and a freelance author by night, writing about a wide range of topics on religion and politics. He is the author of an online book about Islam entitled Ten Myths About Islam, and is the founder and editor of Conservative Underground, a bi-weekly email newsletter focusing on foundational conservative worldview and philosophy. He is a born-again Christian, and a member of a local, New Testament Baptist church in North Carolina. He can be contacted at tqcincinnatus@yahoo.com. All emails may be monitored by the NSA for quality assurance purposes.

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