This was going to be a lengthy post, but I decided to keep it short. The signs are clear. History has pointed us in the right direction. For the country to head in the right direction, there can no longer be a leaning towards the middle. It simply doesn’t work.
At the state and congressional level, moderates can do well. There needs to be a mix of conservatives, liberals, and moderates to make sure that all people have someone standing up for them in government. At the executive level, this simply isn’t the case.
Let’s look at the GOP nominees over the last 3 decades:
- 1980 – Reagan – Conservative – Victory
- 1984 – Reagan – Conservative – Victory
- 1988 – Bush – Moderate – Victory against a weak opponent and coming on the tail of a successful Reagan era
- 1992 – Bush – Moderate – Defeat
- 1996 – Dole – Moderate – Defeat
- 2000 – Bush – Moderate, but ran on a conservative platform – Vicotry
- 2004 – Bush – Moderate, but still ran on a conservative platform – Victory
- 2008 – McCain – Moderate – Defeat
- 2012 – Romney – Moderate – Defeat
The Bush presidencies were the only ones that were able to win as moderates. What is missed is that G.H.W. Bush won because he was Reagan’s VP. G.W. Bush won because he pretended to be a conservative.
The people want a strong conservative in office. That doesn’t mean that any strong conservative can win, but it takes extreme circumstances such as 9/11 or false pretenses to get moderate into the White House. The Republican party has been partitioned for some time. The Tea Party and other conservative organizations are forced to push so far to the right because the perception of the leaders of the republican establishment always push too close to the middle.
For this country to thrive in the coming years, it’s necessary for moderate republicans to lean to the right. That doesn’t necessarily mean that everyone needs to push into ultra-conservative land. They simply need to emulate Ronald Reagan. It should be a rallying call. Whenever a politician or an individual needs to make a decision, they should ask themselves what Reagan would do. He wasn’t so far right that he put the country into deadlock turmoil, but he was conservative enough to keep the values upon which the country was formed at the forefront of his policies.
This is the future of the party. It’s the future of the country.