Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Values Voters and Compassion Summits

Here are two articles written in advance of this weekend’s Values Voters summit, which you can watch, for a small fee, here.

There are three things worth noting from the news coverage thus far. First, as Gary Bauer notes, it’s unlikely that, all of a sudden, there will be clarity about which direction "Values Voters" are moving. Second, although there continues to be some interest in a third party, if RG is the Republican nominee, James Dobson has for the moment backed away from that talk. Third:

"Our voters would rather stay home than vote for half a loaf of bread," said Bill Stephens, the executive director of the Christian Coalition of Florida. "They either want the whole loaf, or they’ll wait for next time."

I hope he doesn’t mean it, or that his group isn’t big or influential (If the former is true, I’m betting also on the latter.)

On a different note, this piece tells of "Compassion Forums" organized by Faith in Public Life. As I’ve noted before, Faith in Public Life is firmly ensconced on the religious left, something not made clear in the NYT piece.

Discussions - 4 Comments

There is absolutely no benefit to setting it out. That just sends a message of apathy. Much better to vote third party if the GOP nominee is not acceptable. That at least sends a directional signal that you are unhappy and want the move right.



Dobson may have backed off the talk, but there is no way he supports Giuliani. I think it is just a matter of how hard he works against him.



Did you hear that Bob Jones III endorsed Romney? That is causing quite a stir at a Christian forum I frequent.

I doubt it.

Hillary is too scary to be allowed in the Presidents chair.

My guess is that Stephens is a political animal and is playing the game. He needs influence to be significant and hopes for some attention from the candidates. I think the vast majority of Republicans, religious or not, will vote Republican regardless of candidate. If only to oppose against Hillary!

Rudy would be smart to plow right ahead, no matter what fire may be shooting from the mouths of the James Dobsons of the world. He should focus on communicating with "values voters" about their issues and their enemies, which can be done without giving up his own differences with these voters. If Rudy firms up his existing support among them, and reduces their existing animosity against him, the Dobsons may not follow, but their stay-at-home or third-party talk (it's the same thing) will have littlel impact.

2: "Hat," it's certainly true that "the vast majority of Republicans" will vote GOP no matter what. But that happens in every election. The problem is: there must be something close to unanimity among Republicans, as there was in the (dangerously close) 2004 election. That is a much harder task than winning "the vast majority." We must come close to repeating Bush's approximately 90 percent of the Republican vote. It can be done, but many things have to go right. In addition, there must be an outstanding GOP turnout, which we also had in '04.
There are ominous signs that either or both of these things may not occur. While the almost certain Hillary nomination will do much to unify the party, we are entering this cycle in bad shape. How a cycle begins tends to predict how it ends, even if things improve for the apparently-losing party in the meantime.

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