The most frustrating thing for conservatives who want to make the Republican party strong, and move intelligent public policy along is that often its hard to find a candidate who will actually stick to their guns when finally given the keys to the car. In the last two years, Michigan government has seen an unheard of tax give-away in the form of a film Credit, an unrealistic tax increase on small manufacturers, and is seriously considering smoking bans in PRIVATE business.
These are not things only signed on to by Democrats. For these to pass, it took willing capitulation from the right side of the room. The Michigan Senate while not by much, still maintains a republican majority. It seems incredible that ANY legislation which increases the burden on Michigan taxpayers could EVER be passed in these hard times.
Representative Jack Hoogendyk, who is currently running to chair the MIGOP hits the nail on the head when pointing out that elected Republicans may have lost their way after being put into their positions of responsibility:
“In my travels around the state over the last year while running for US Senate, I talked to hundreds of loyal Republicans. Many expressed frustration with “product quality.” One donor I talked to told me he was very frustrated with Republican elected officials who voted to raise taxes and spend more money. As he put it, “I am not mad at the Democrats, they told me they would raise taxes and spend more. I am angry with the Republicans because they said they were for low taxes and less government.” To paraphrase another large donor who stopped giving, “Why should I give to the Republican party? I can get the same thing from the Democrats for nothing!” ”
He is right. The Democrats do offer the socialist service for free. Not only that, they’ll be truthful about it. The voters, not seeing a whit of difference sometimes will opt to hire the professional economy killers, and knowing their fate will do what is necessary to get around the EXPECTED tax increases, and giveaways they are promised will happen. It is easier KNOWING and being able to plan for the government takeover of your life when you have been told it will happen. But it seems that many of our Republican officials like to surprise us by supporting enough legislation that is contradictory enough to their stated principles, that they are made to be liars.
Strength of the party is not just about message, but actually ACTING on that message.
Over the past several years, I have heard countless times where the media will pick up a statement of a prominent national Republican figure who is saying “we can’t afford those tax cuts,” or “its irresponsible to cut taxes now.” They say it, it is repeated and people actually believe it. But these folks are the same ones who in the elections that put them into power campaigned on the promise of reducing the taxes anyhow. And aside from the fact that Reagan, and even Bush, showed the incredible economic growth can be spurred on by lower taxes, the claims don’t stop.
Perhaps by taking the oath of office, the IQ of an elected individual drops by 30 points, equalizing with the left. Perhaps conservatives don’t gather as well as the collective left. Perhaps even though they know they are right, they make the decisions so they aren’t hated by the media. Perhaps power corrupts…
No matter the reason, Republicans need to hold their guys accountable to their words. Lazy acceptance of “feel good” legislation such as smoking bans, burdensome green legislation, and increasing social giveaways seldom reinforces the message of sound, logical, and principled decision making. It merely frustrates the more conservative among us, and proves to merely fracture the support necessary to move forward, win elections and establish SOUND government policy.
And as one of my friends say: “Live Dangerously, Be a Conservative” …please Really.. be one… you’ll be amazed.