Friday, January 28

And a voice finally speaks out from the wilderness

Excerpt from

"The people of this county deserve better from their politics and their politicians than they've been getting in recent years," writes Christine Todd Whitman in It's My Party Too. While hardly high praise for George W. Bush from a former member of his Cabinet (she served as director of the Environmental Protection Agency from January 2001 to May 2003), the real targets of her ire are some of her fellow Republicans who have forced the GOP to make a hard-right turn in recent years. Whitman argues that this shift poses a serious threat to the long-term health and competitiveness of the Republicans, a party in which moderates like Whitman, Colin Powell, Rudolph Giuliani, John McCain, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and George Pataki are paraded in public when necessary, but openly opposed behind the scenes. Whitman refers to those on the far right as "social fundamentalists" whose "mission is to advance their narrow ideological agenda" by using the government to impose their views on everyone else. Though she admits that evangelicals may have helped to win the 2004 election, they have claimed much more credit than they deserve for Bush's success, and she warns that catering to this narrow group will have consequences.

To achieve long-term success, she writes, the Republicans must move their focus back to the core issues that unite the true base of the party: less government, stronger national security, lower taxes combined with spending restraints, and job creation in the private sector--issues that have largely been pushed aside by efforts to ban abortion and embryonic stem cell research and a push to amend the Constitution to prohibit gay marriage. She also offers ideas for attracting more African Americans and women to the GOP, and highlights Republican environmental successes that have been ignored. It's My Party Too is a compelling analysis of the future of the Republican Party. --Shawn Carkonen

Today, Secretary and former Governer Christine Todd Whitman began making the rounds on the bi-polar point of the political talk show circuit, starting with the Al Franken Show on Air America Radio and finishing with Hannity and Colmes on Fox News Network. Her comments were even toned and concilliatory, but this belies the incindiary tone of her book - which points out how the facist wing of Republicans Party have taken control of the party by the throat.

None of this is news to most of America I think, but it's still shocking to see an actual Republican who seems willing to speak this truth. Whitman, according to her comments on H&c was so empowered by her decision to retire from political life. She has no plans to run for office, nothing to campaign for.

Several months ago when I began this blog I wrote in (Give me one reason) how I felt that the Republican Party was no longer something I could relate too, or respect. Prior to the Presidency of George W. Bush there were a great many Republican ideals that I agree with. I'm a fiscal conservative. I agree with cutting taxes, as long as you can either reduce spending or boost the economy to the point that you create exploding deficits which simply mean that you pay later with interest, rather than pay now. I'm a strong supporter of the 2nd Amendment and the right to bare arms - but only within it's original intention regarding the need to maintain a "well regulated militia" as the last bulwalk of freedom. I believe in the preservation of liberty, and that the goverments powers should be limited and well balanced with the powers and ability of individuals and private institutions.

Bush and as Secretary Whitman put's it, the "social fundamentalists", have turned the party - and with control of all three branches the nation - into something I can not support.

So I welcome Christine Todd Whitman back to the land of the sane. She refused to drink the coolaid, and instead stepped down from her seat as Secratary of the EPA rather than support actions and policies she knew to be damaging as they would undercut her own prior efforts as Governor of New Jersey at Environmental Protection.

I always knew that there were Republicans who hated to be told that they're only out to make a few more cheap bucks at the expense of the environment, at the expense of "the little man", and at the expense of civil and human rights.

It's good to see one these people finally jump out of lock-step, and stand up for what they truly believe - and more importantly, what is good for the American people - rather than continually spew the party line of the day, to the point of even perjuring themselves as our new Secretary of State as future Attorney General seem so willing to do.

There may be hope for all the rest of the those Republican's yet... assumming of course the Christine Todd Whitman can survive the excoriation and charges of "traitor" that she is sure to recieve from the oh-so-highly-tolerant leaders of the party such as Rove, Lott, Frist and Delay.

At least the fireworks display should be interesting.


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