Why is it harder for some to speak their 'conservative' principles outside of the election cycle? Why will some avoid conservative forums?
In the Republican primary, EVERYONE is a conservative.
I have done a great deal of door knocking as a candidate for the Grand Traverse County Commission. I have held my record out as one of conservatism, but when approaching the potential voter, its natural to introduce myself as a “constitutional conservative,” or “conservative Republican.” Usually, the latter is used (by habit), and I can read the face of the person I am talking with so as to determine whether they want to hear anymore.
One woman I spoke to said “Conservative? Everybody is a conservative nowadays!” She then described her potential of possibly not participating in the election process any longer. She explained her disappointment with the Republican candidates who make the claim, yet hardly stand for the values that are expressed in the platform, much less hold up to the promises they make while electioneering.
She was not the only one to express this perspective.
If some of our politicians are paying attention, they might note that the same people who brought about the 2010 return are disgusted with the empty rhetoric and promise of what is generally accepted as being a ‘conservative’ candidate. Making the claim in the literature, yet turning around and voting like a progressive liberal isn’t just politicking, but rather an open palm slap in the face of the electorate who believe them in the first place.
Watching the Paul Mitchell, John Moolenaar, Peter Konetchy race, those of us who are paying attention know who the REAL conservative is. But high dollar television ads from big budgets will convince enough of the ignorant that a man who bankrolled Democrat Debbie Stabenow twice is the ‘conservative’ in the race.
In the 107th District, one who receives Frank Foster’s prevaricating literature might think that HE is in fact, the ‘conservative’ candidate over challenger Lee Chatfield.
Statewide we know of progressives with Republican affiliation are sliming those who actually behave like conservative Republicans. Heck, all over the state, we see the advertising mailers in contested delegate races that utilize ‘conservative’ and constitutional patriot themed background and artwork touting easily identified moderate and liberal Republicans who coincidentally are Brian Calley supporting delegate candidates. “Support these REAL conservatives” is the message given.
Is there any wonder the word is distrusted?
Even 37th State Senate district candidate Wayne Schmidt knows that people want traditional conservatives, and in the primary markets himself as such. with up to four or five mailers, and 10 TV commercials a day telling us so. Yet he avoided facing his opponent in the GT women’s Republican forum. I’ll let you all be the judge of whether THAT might be the reason the woman I spoke to distrusts such marketing efforts.
Of course, part of being conservative ought to be standing up for the values that match the candidate to the definition. Traditional values that encourage strong families, fiscal prudence, and reduced government oversight in our personal lives should see defenders, no matter WHOM the audience might be.
In the league of Women Voters forums, the audiences are typically a mix of the left and right, yet they are moderated by the typical liberals with a typical liberal slant. The first of the following forum videos is not as bad as I have seen in the past, however the forum was clearly different in its reach out; and in particular to those who want to hear clearly articulated conservative positions.
The second forum video is one of the event on the following Saturday where the Republicans vying to be the chosen ‘conservative’ have an opportunity to reflect such positions with an audience and moderator which supports a more conservative message. How strange it was, that seven of ten of the Republican candidates decided THAT forum was not something that was worth their time.
Certainly, an argument could be made that the missing candidates felt they could get more votes by going to the 50-60 doors that the time investment would have allowed them.
Make your own assumptions and enjoy the following videos of the 104th district candidates.