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Given the rise of Conservative values in American politics, which once piggybacked on the ascension of Fox News Channel, talk radio, and the tangible economic benefits of Ronald Reagan’s presidency, we certainly have a lot to celebrate as Conservatives. However, I’m concerned we are nearing the end of traditional Conservative populism and here’s why. The Republican Party is going nowhere in the world of politics. To believe the stronghold of this establishment party will suddenly render all power to “the people”, is naive on the part of the constituency. We may have elected them to do a job, and they may have failed us, but the web is too tangled with entitlements, prestige, and pride. We will not see any sort of revolution as once witnessed many moons ago when the Republican Party replaced the Whig party. But as we all fight the ‘good fight’ as conservatives whipping the Republicans back into a representative party, we become the disrupters to the establishment. The Conservatives become the target.

Couple that sentiment with the passion surrounding the 2016 Republican Primary election, and you have a dynamic of which the establishment will be sure to take advantage of. The no-doubt Conservative/Populous candidate, businessman Donald J. Trump, has been the frontrunner through the entirety of this nomination process, and for good reason. His stance on immigration, trade, infrastructure, and sense of strong leadership has generated one of the biggest debates in the Conservative movement. On one hand, there’s a benefit to the scrap between Republican career politicians who call themselves conservatives, and actual conservatism. Exposure is everything at this stage and we are beginning to more clearly see the difference between the elitists in our Party like Mitt Romney or Jeb Bush-likes, and true Conservatives who have American interests, exceptionalism, and prosperity at hand. However, there’s the other side of the coin we cannot ignore. The “Purists” movement. The Republican party has a fraction of purists within, and these Purists will accept nothing but their flavor of conservative elitism. They are never happy. They are always arguing that someone or another isn’t “conservative enough”. However, just as the Republican party isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, so too are the Purists not going anywhere. If they had enough populous support as they claim, they would have formed the official “TEA party” in past elections and stemmed off the evil-Republican party once and for all. But instead, they insist on integrating within the Republican party as some sort of parasite to its host. I suspect the Purists aren’t conservatives by principle, but conservatives by objection.

Here we have a candidate like Donald Trump; strong on illegal immigration (conservative), strong on spending less and rebuilding our infrastructure (conservative), strong on competition in the market place (free market- healthcare, conservative), strong on building our military and not over-extending ourselves in frivolous wars around the world (conservative- or at least I think it still is?), strong on tax reform by offering the largest taxation decrease in American history (conservative), strong on supporting Israel (conservative), and he believes in making smart trade deals that won’t ultimately bankrupt our nation (yes, still conservative). You would imagine these Purists would be foaming at the mouth for such a powerfully Conservative and Populous candidate. But they are not. They are seemingly not Conservatives in principle. Purists are Conservative by objection. Now as Conservatism becomes Populism, as we are witnessing with Trump’s candidacy, we are also watching the Purists choose to be obstructionists. Simply combative for the sake of being combative. To “Make America Great Again,” just simply isn’t good enough. Purists are more focused on making America “good”, than realizing without a “great” America, we cannot continue to be what has made us “good”.

The Purists obstructionist, who by propagating the “never Trump” objection within the Republican nomination process, believe they are doing “good” for their brand of Conservatism. The reality is, they are killing Conservatism as a whole as they have in the past, one election at a time. The 2016 election is crucial because I believe it is where the last breath could be finally choked out of the Conservative populous movement. The Purists have their golden child, Ted Cruz, who in fact is a Constitutional Conservative. No more a conservative than many would argue Donald J. Trump is on the most prominent issues, but the Purists are never happy. I suspect if Ted Cruz would have had the traction in this primary that Donald Trump has had, the Purists would then trend #nevercruz on twitter.

The Republican Party infrastructure is not dismantling. The Conservatives finally have a populous candidate, Donald Trump. But it’s not “good” enough for the Purists in the party. So they created a wedge, threatening they will #neverTrump. Demanding, like children do at the dinner table, not to eat their vegetables which are actually substantial and beneficial to them (Trump), but instead their desert first (Cruz). As a Conservative, I am proud to see Reagan-Democrats, Independents, and people who have never voted before are joining the Conservative Republican Populous movement. Still we hear the cries of Purists from their crib, “I object”.

My concern is how the Purists are attempting to fraction the populous vote. This is dangerous to the Conservative movement as a whole. If Conservatism is successfully attached to a Purists’ candidate who is ultimately going to lose, where does that leave Conservatism? Branding is everything in the world of business, and so too in the world of politics. If Ted Cruz refuses to join the Trump ticket, and insists on demonizing all forms of Conservatism save his on purists form, the target on these pesky Conservatives becomes increasingly larger. When the establishment finally pulls the trigger, and they will eventually, the most purist form of Conservatism dies. Probably buried in the most remote section of Pet Cemetery, to revive as something we never intended it to be. If you think the establishment’s flavor of Conservatism is horrid (Neo-Con), wait until you see a brand of Conservatism WITHOUT the Purists.

Victor Breaux


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Posted by on Mar 26 2016. Filed under Letters to the Editor. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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