Jan 29 2009

The Conservative Implosion

Published by at 2:14 pm under All General Discussions

All you need to know about how badly the purity wars crippled the GOP is to look at this graph:

The chart shows how the far right was able to run off those nasty moderate RINOs and push them into the Democrat camp. That includes some serious conservatives like the Anchoress, and keeps conservative independents like me out of the GOP and at arms length to the extremists.

One reason we have a President Obama running at warp speed to undo years of conservative progress is because the far right wanted purity over progress. They could not tolerate their less extreme political allies – so they tuned on them. Now the party is pure, and impotent in its small base.

To turn the country red requires a mea culpa and promises not to be intolerant of diverse views again. It will not go red simply because President Obama and Pelosi screw things up royally. The next round of GOP leaders will be more moderate like Bush and Palin and Reagan. No more hot heads.

21 responses so far

21 Responses to “The Conservative Implosion”

  1. Terrye says:


    I do think the extremes in both parties tend to polarize the electorate, but I have my doubt about this map. Look at Oklahoma, they have it out of Red when not one single county in that state went for Obama. Look at Texas too, and we all know how they voted.

    In my whole life I can only remember a couple of elections when Republicans were actually close to party ID with Democrats. In fact when Reagan ran and won Republican party ID was less than it is now.

    2002 was the exception not the rule. I think the best chance the Republicans have of gaining back some support is Nancy Pelosi. The woman makes Democrats look bad.

  2. WWS says:

    Even though the Republicans may take the White House again, they’re not coming back in the long run. They had their chance and blew it. Of course, over the next 4 years the Democrats will completely destroy this country’s economy and national pride, so I don’t see that party as having much of a future either. This is their high water mark, and for them it’s all downhill from here.

    Something else is coming. I don’t know what it is yet, but it’s coming.

    The center cannot hold. The words of W.B Yeats seem more appropriate now than at any other time in my life:

    Turning and turning in the widening gyre
    The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
    Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
    Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
    The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
    The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
    The best lack all conviction, while the worst
    Are full of passionate intensity.
    Surely some revelation is at hand;
    Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
    The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
    When a vast image out of Spritus Mundi
    Troubles my sight: somewhere in the sands of the desert.

    A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
    A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
    Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
    Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
    The darkness drops again; but now I know
    That twenty centuries of stony sleep
    were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
    And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
    Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

  3. Frogg says:

    Haven’t you heard….resistance to the Cult of Obama is futile. LOL

    AJ, if you want a big tent party…..why are trying to purge conservatives from it? Moderate/liberal republicans have gotten their way much more than conservative republicans from fiscal responsibility to which candidates run for President.

    Maybe the country is just liberal now. That doesn’t jive with the stand on policy issues, however.

    Maybe we just have a ignorant voter base — who thinks Republicans have been in charge of Congress for the past two years running the country amuck?

    Maybe it correlates with solar flare activity and has nothing to do with human activity at the voting booths.

    I can’t explain it. However, I think the Obama Admin will surely define it for us. Either we are transforming into a liberal socialist society —or, we will come around. It may take the full four years before we know.

  4. AJStrata says:


    Want the far right needs to grasp is they have no power unless they share it with us ‘moderates’ (and as you can tell I am not moderate about a damn thing, but I have limits to what I think is beneficial conservative policies).

    The problem is the far left said follow us or leave, people left. Now they claim only the pure can be part of the movement, so they and their two friends have echo chamber parties while the rest of the town is out going a different direction.

    We don’t have ignorant voters, we have arrogant loud mouths who don’t listen to others who only agree with them to a point. beyond that point there is no common ground.

    Until the far right wakes up and respects others they stay in the wilderness. And the country they love slowly dies as they pout in their stubborn selfishness.

    If they think they are impressing me, you can see they are clearly not. And I see no reason why I should moderate my disgust with this self destructive behavior.

  5. Mike M. says:

    AJ, I think you are badly mistaken – and are just as guilty of being obstinate as the people you decry.

    A political party has to stand for something. Ideas, not merely power. There will be somewhere around ten basic tenets (there’s a lot of flexiblity in that number) that the party stands for.

    You’ll get disagreements on the priority of these tenets. And some people will disagree with one or two of them. Some degree of compromise is inevitable. Nobody agreed with Reagan 100%…but enough people agreed with him 80%.

    I’ll concede that some of the debates have become overly heated…but there is plenty of blame for both sides. And demanding groveling will NOT heal the rifts.

    Unfortunately, there have long been a number of Republican elected officials who will betray the party’s tenets to curry favor with their opponents. Worse, a large proportion of these people will run claiming to be conservative…then betray their supporters to bootlick the Left. It is entirely appropriate for these supporters to be outraged. An honest moderate might be disliked, but did not run under false colors. A “conservative” who “grows in office” campaigned under false pretenses.

    As to the elections of 2006 and 2008, I would attribute them partly to Republican elected officials starting to act like tax, spend, and regulate Democrats; and partly to President Bush’s failure to stoke enthusiasm for the Iraq campaign. Add the financial panic of the last few months, and you have a recipe for electoral losses.

    There is another factor at work, though. The parties are undergoing a partial polarity shift…and the Democrats are further along in the process than the Republicans.

    The Republicans have traditionally been considered the party of wealthy individuals and big businesses. This is no longer the case, as hyper-wealthy people and hyper-large companies have realized that Big Government can keep them rich and large…and keep upstarts poor and small. Kindly note how many Democrat elected officials are multi-millionaires, collecting donations from more millionaires. Not a big surprise to anyone who studied Adam Smith.

    The obvious counter to this is to move to a more populist position. Lower taxes are not a trump card…but less regulation and paperwork are aces in the political deck. As are taking away the special privileges the Dems have given themselves.

    You will note that these themes have been sounded before. Reagan ran on this in 1980, Gingrich in 1994. And the basic theme of protecting the middle class carried Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt to victory.

    But we can’t win until Republican elected officials understand that they MUST govern on the ideas they campaigned on.

  6. Redteam says:

    not sure what all the benchmarks are but Louisiana is shown blue in all three years, but we’ve replaced one senator with a red one(2004), and the governor with a red one(2007). Most reps are red, gov is red and one sen is red, so just how is it judged to be blue.

    just wondering. Chart is very inaccurate

  7. The Macker says:

    “The next round of GOP leaders will be more moderate like Bush and Palin and Reagan. No more hot heads.” –

    I don’t understand this. But I do think we need principled pragmatists like Bush II, Reagan and Palin. There’s a time to take a stand and a time to “work things out.”

  8. I R A Darth Aggie says:

    You got your moderate presidental candidate in 2008, and he lost.

    What makes the above noted shift avoidable is the fact that a number of those now-blue states where won by Blue Dog Democrats.

    Fiscal responsibility still wins. Especially if one is running against a Congress/Congresscritter that makes drunken sailors look thrifty.

    But once Obama gets his porkulus package passed, I’m afraid it will be too late, and we will all go rocketing right over the economic cliff.

    Double digit unemployment? it’s coming.
    Double digit inflation? it’s coming, too.
    US Government securities getting rated as “junk”? that’s coming, too.

    At some point, the Chinese are going to stop lending to us. Worse, they’ll probably start calling in their marks. In which case, Obama is going to look an awful lot like Bernie Maddow.

    Hey, President O! Go take a close look in the mirror. Unless you’re already using Just for Men to keep the grey out, you’re going to be nice grey.

  9. MerlinOS2 says:

    With all the youth American Idol vote and the Black Identity politics vote and Obama couldn’t pick up a Reagan scale landslide says a whole lot.

    If you look there were a lot of states that were still close but not squeaker toss ups because of the two factors above.

    Here in Fl the margin was only 260k out of millions voting. A whole lot of sit home voters also.

    I tend to think you over judge what you are seeing and give too little credit to just the racial history part and peer pressure among the blacks to vote.

    The Camp Obama field bot organization is a force to be dealt with and the under 30 vote was critical.

    Sure he got the unknown comic historic first.

    But how will he play in re runs?

    Split the vote under 30 and over 30 and you had a durn near dead heat.

  10. lurker9876 says:

    Houston went blue for Obama last year. I believe that Texas is turning light blue so I think these diagrams are showing trends and future direction. I think these diagrams are correct from this perspective.

  11. MerlinOS2 says:

    You have to really look at the numbers under the graph.

    What you will see in many states is that both parties lost voters to going independent.

    What the map ends up showing is who lost the least.

  12. Redteam says:

    As I said, Louisiana has 6 of 7 Representatives are Rep, 1 of 2 senators are Rep, the gov is Rep, the electoral votes in ’08 went to McCain the Repub. so just what is the basis for ‘blue’?

    I’m not that familiar with the other states but there may be just as much inaccuracy there. I followed the link and it didn’t say why La is blue.

  13. Terrye says:

    Mike M:

    A political party can stand for something without alienating 70% of the country. The Republicans have lost too many voters, running off moderates will and purging them from the party will not help them win elections. They will only become more marginalized. Not only that, they spend too much time and energy attacking each other. People can complain about McCain, but if conservatives had not been so damn intent on trashing every Republican out there maybe someone else would have gotten the nomination. The complaints about McCain were not the exception, they were the rule. Too many people on the right are like Mikey..they ate everybody.

    I still think this map is not accurate however.

  14. Terrye says:

    My God, that should be they {h} ate everybody. I did not mean to imply that Republicans are cannibals. Not literally anyway.

  15. Redteam says:

    I’ve always considered myself right of center, not ‘hard’ right, whatever that is. I think more like Reagan did. I don’t consider myself to be moderate. My assessment of why the Conservatives lost votes is because they didn’t have anyone conservative to vote for. Tho I voted for McCain, he is further right than Obama but certainly to the left of center on conservative issues. Oh, he may be slightly conservative on some issues, but not overall.
    But people on the ‘far right’ just didn’t have anyone to vote for.
    Long ago, I heard someone say what the difference in Dems and Repubs is: The Dems want to give the country away, right now, the Republicans want to do the same thing, just take a little longer. The Conservatives however, don’t want to give it away at all. The Libs never wanted the country in the first place, they’ve always been trying to give it away.
    So when conservatism returns, the conservatives will be there to support it. The Repubs that voted for Obama were never conservatives. Some may disagree.

  16. bill says:

    I disagree, it’s nothing more than ACORN registrations. Voter registration is meaningless.

    Once the Democrat’s socialism goes up in flames, and it’s amazing how high the fires already are, poof they’s gone.

    Does anyone think the terrorist shave just gone away? The next hit is all Obama’s.

    The GOP base didn’t show up at the last election, look at the data.

  17. Terrye says:


    When conservatism returns, the conservatives will be there to support it??? In the meantime they will sit home and pout and complain?

    I consider myself center right too. I really do. If you look at who I vote for, it almost always the person further to the right.

    But….Newt Gingrich was Speaker of the House in the 90’s. He is a real conservative and he did nothing about illegal immigration back then. He did nothing about the fact that Democrats in the House and the Clinton administration were pursuing an easy credit policy that would have long term devastating economic effects.

    Too often, conservative in recent years has meant “preachy” fingerpointing or back stabbing. That is what has hurt them. It was one thing for Bush to be attacked by the media and the Democrats, but when the right turned on him, I lost a lot of respect for them… somehow or other they thought that attacking a Republican president would be good for conservatism. Well, what we got was Obama. And if McCain had not won that nomination most Americans would never have even heard of Sarah Palin.

    But then we had to listen to prominent conservatives like Peggy Noonan go after her too.

  18. This is voter registration, I believe. A far cry from who holds the seats. There may be a lot of Republicans holding seats now, but when the seats open…

    The right arguably helped make Obama possible. By ticking off folks who didn’t meet every one of their litmus tests, people like Michelle Malkin, Tom Tancredo, and Mark Levin did just as much to elect Obama as the mainstream media did, in my opinion.

  19. ElvenPhoenix says:

    If the chart is based on voter registration ID it is wrong. Does no one remember what happened after Romney conceded? Rush Limbaugh started Operation Chaos, wherein conservatives, Republicans, and independents registered as Democrats to vote in the Democratic primary. Here in Texas the decision for McCain had already been made and I can’t tell you how many people changed their registrations to keep the Dem fight going.

    Also, you can’t leave out ACORN and whatever effect all of their fraudulent registrations have on tilting the balance to the left.

    As for me, I was extremely upset that I did not get a voice as to who the Republicans nominated. By the time it got to us the party was over and McCain was the defacto candidate. If the Democrats had nominated a conservative Blue Dog type for Pres I would have gladly voted for him/her. Sadly, I was stuck with voting for Dem Lite and only did it sober because of Palin. I can’t tell you how many people I know did not vote because of McCain/Feingold, McCain/Lieberman, and McCain/Kennedy.

    Personally, I would describe myself as a conservative libertarian (note the lower case letters). I am very much a fiscal conservative and somewhat of a traditionalist who believes in the law of unintended consequences. I also believe that whatever 2 (or more) consenting adults choose to do in their own home is their own business – not the State’s – as long as they are not harming anyone or violating anyone else’s rights. And drug use/abuse should be treated the same as alcohol use/abuse. When someone actually does something criminal, prosecute them. Otherwise leave them alone.

    And I strongly believe in the Rule of Law, and that there SHOULD NOT be laws on the books that are not or cannot be enforced, as that devalues ALL of the law, not just the ones that are being ignored. (Actually, I really think that all laws should have to be reviewed every ten years to evaluate whether or not they are both effective and necessary, and also as a way of keeping our elected officials busy so that they do less damage.)

    Give me someone to vote for who espouses fiscal conservatism, personal freedom, and responsibility and I will vote for them every time. Problem is, the mob has discovered they can vote themselves bread and circuses, and our educational establishment has been working assiduously to dumb down the electorate to the point that voting is no longer a civic duty, but “what’s in it for me”. And the media encourages it.

  20. dave m says:

    It’s yer blog, but this banging on the Conservatives for failing to stop
    a Bilderberg directed usurper from subverting the presidency of our country
    is getting as ridculous as saying it’s all about “amnesty for illegals”.

    No it is not.

    The people who got Obama elected don’t give a flying hoot about
    Hispanics and they don’t give a flying hoot about this argument
    about Jerry Falwell et al.

    This is about the New World Order, using a crisis to scare everybody
    into accepting New Masters.

    The Republicans yesterday were brilliant when every single member of
    the House of Representatives said NO. In the face of a determined and
    evil enemy, Moderation is no virtue.

    The only thing that matters is winning. Like Rush, I hope Obama
    fails and the sooner the better.