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Building the wall versus stopping overreach: The conservative conundrum

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Building the wall versus stopping overreach The conservative conundrum

The rift between conservatives and moderates in the Republican Party is normally a black-and-white issue. It’s easy to tell which perspective is more conservative and which gives into the left-leaning moderation practiced in the mushy middle.

That gap is being blurred by a single issue right now. President Trump’s national emergency declaration to redirect funds for building the border wall has conservatives siding with moderates on both sides of the debate. Some are choosing to side with the President to stand in solidarity in order to get the wall built. Senators Ted Cruz and Ben Sasse were notable in their decision to vote against the resolution stopping the national emergency.

The other side says overreach is overreach even if the end goal is desirable. That’s where Senators Mike Lee and Rand Paul have teamed up with moderates like Mitt Romney and Lisa Murkowski in voting to block the President’s emergency. While they’re doing it for different reasons, it’s still noteworthy that they went against the President’s wishes.

So, who’s right? My post early essentially said both sides were right, but I believe this topic needs further clarification. We need the wall and we need to rein in presidential powers. That may very well be the case, but the bottom line from a conservative perspective is that this is not the type of “emergency” that presidents should be able to declare indefinitely. Things have not fundamentally changed in the last two years. The border situation is worse, but it’s no more an emergency now than it was when the President was sworn into office.

While it stays within the letter of the law, it’s a flawed law that doesn’t have the necessary checks and balances. The National Emergencies Act is an abomination to the Constitution and it’s unfortunate it hasn’t been challenged until this very important issue.

Most of the President’s supporters are saying the law is law now and if anyone wanted to challenge it, they should have done so sometime in the 43 years before President Trump tried to use it to secure the border. This is correct. It’s the reason why I’m not going to jump up and down blaming President Trump for using a tool in his toolbox that Congress gave him. It’s overreach. That much is certain. But it’s legal overreach.

The fact that it’s legal doesn’t make it right.

The NEA needs to be addressed immediately. Unfortunately, it’s almost certain that it won’t be because now that the President has allegedly opened Pandora’s Box, Democrats are craving the day their president will be able to use it for gun control, abortion, environmental protection, or any other pet projects they might not be able to ram through Capitol Hill. Is it hypocritical of them to try to block this president then defend the next Democratic one? Absolutely. But they don’t care.

Lest we forget, the real bottom line in all of this is that the President and the GOP should have been having the border wall battle with the Democrats long before the midterm elections. Even if he signed off on four or five spending bills to get through the Obamacare battle and tax reform, he should have been putting his foot down long before the Democrats took control of the House of Representatives. Why did he wait on his signature campaign promise? I can only imagine Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell, Jared Kushner, and other squishes gave him very bad advice. Now, he’s forced to fight a battle that likely will not get a significant amount of wall done before the 2020 elections.

He will veto the attempted override of his national emergency by Congress. Then, the legal battles begin. At this point, it behooves conservatives to work towards permanently fixing the NEA.

We need the wall. We need to limit the powers of the NEA. The arguments from the conservative supporters on both sides of this issue are partially right. Now, we’ll see how big the rift between them becomes. It’s not a good day for the GOP.

Will you help revive the American Conservative Movement?

 


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Conservatism

Why Tomi Lahren’s abortion view harms American conservatism

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Why Tomi Lahrens abortion view harms American conservatism

Democrats are unambiguous and united in their view of abortion. It wasn’t always this way. As recently as a decade ago, there were a good number of pro-life Democrats winning elections and expressing their views as pundits.

Today, they don’t exist.

Republicans aren’t so repulsed by the pro-abortion people in their midst. It’s understandable that as a party that’s less focused on individual issues, one can be a Republican without checking off all the various boxes. This is fine. What’s not fine is for breaks in the ranks of conservatives. There are certain things that must remain universal among those who claim to embrace conservatism, especially among those who speak for conservatives.

Fox Nation’s Tomi Lahren is one of them. She claims to be a conservative, but she’s pro-choice. That fact, by itself, is understandable because the issue is a polarizing one in which people can be swayed to one side based on personal experience. It’s not like taxes which warrant universal scorn from conservatives. There are gun-toting, tax-hating, pro-choice conservatives.

But there’s a bigger problem with Lahren’s perspective. She’s not just attacking the Alabama abortion bill and pro-life perspectives in general. She’s doing so with an argument that flies in the face of reality.

Do we think government is the answer? No. In fact, one of the most appealing parts about the Alabama abortion bill is that it represents the first true opportunity for the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade. When it reaches the Supreme Court (and it almost certainly will) it gives us the first glimpse of how the current makeup of the court will react. In fact, the makeup of the court could actually be better if one of the left-leaning Justices retires soon.

Once Roe v. Wade is out of the way, we can finally express the truly conservative aspect of federalism that should have never been taken away – the states’ rights to determine their own healthcare laws.

If Tomi Lahren doesn’t like the abortion ban, that’s fine. Her choice. But to defend her choice by insinuating a challenge to Roe v. Wade is somehow an attack on limited-government tenets is false and harms conservatism.

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Conservative Media, we need to blacklist Trump-Russia story and move on

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Conservative Media we need to blacklist Trump-Russia story and move on

To The Daily Wire, One America News, Washington Times, Blaze Media, and all others to the right of Fox News,

There was no collusion and no obstruction. It took over two years for this narrative to search under every stone and exhaust millions of dollars to, in the end, find nothing. The leftist media will not make many concessions, especially as it relates to obstruction for a crime that was not committed. We cannot as conservatives prove beyond an unreasonable doubt that Trump did not collude or obstruct. As Democrats in Congress keep the narrative on life support, the Conservative media needs to pull the plug.

The average American is fatigued by the Trump-Russia collusion/obstruction narrative. Meanwhile our effort is playing defense against a leftist narrative rather than reporting on issues both our base and the politically uninvolved care far more about. When the economy is strong and the border crisis is pressing, why is so much of our attention directed towards the soap opera clown show that takes place? Instead of countering this narrative, conservative media should starve the narrative of as much attention as possible.

An area which Conservatives have long failed, but have made great improvements towards, is controlling the narrative, the language and Overton Window of society. If we continue to counter the leftist narrative of the Trump-Russia conspiracy theory, we will continue to feed their power in controlling the narrative in the American political and cultural arena. Instead, let us make an effort to not only counter the narrative but set the narrative.

In our friendly rivalry as Conservative outlets, let us come together and collectively move on from the Trump-Russia story, discarding it as if it were a flat-earth conspiracy and move on.

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Conservatives cannot be afraid to press the culture war

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Conservatives cannot be afraid to press the culture war

There are many reasons Conservatives have been reticent to press the culture war. Many of them were acted upon by Mitt Romney only for those conventions to be blown away by Trump winning in 2016. The Republican Party hates running on culture issues instead wanting only to use issues like abortion as shiny objects for show votes. But we must remember, Trump won and Romney and McCain lost. Trump ran on a culture issue: immigration. He won. And in my opinion, Trump made it highly difficult for him to win, not because of the issues he was running on, but because of his personality. So let that be encouragement.

For a Rainbow jihad fatwa will come after you if you aren’t attracted to a man in drag. They will pass legislation to make possessing certain guns illegal. You will be called a racist. They are already passing legislation protecting infanticide. If we do not press these issues, we will lose. If we stay silent, as Erick Erickson so famously said, we will be made to care.

But Wait! The economy is doing great

Republicans will want to focus on the economy and there is nothing wrong with that. To quote The Road to El Dorado, “both is good.” There is no reason we cannot do both. Reasonably speaking, it means we are going to have to sacrifice certain talking points. I nominate the Russian Hoax, as people are already tired of hearing about it, whereas, cultural issues such as Brian Sims dominated Conservative news cycles. People are motivated by cultural issues. Guns, illegal immigration, and abortion are among the top single issue voting groups. In 2012, Republicans ran on jobs, jobs, jobs and lost, lost, lost.

Trump can press the economy in 2020 and use it to get people to reelect him as they would any other incumbent. But reelecting Trump to maintain the economy is not a win so much as it’s not a defeat. Because let’s be honest, if the Republicans pass a balanced budget with a plan to pay off the debt in say twenty years, the economy would contract. We would undoubtedly go into recession and unemployment would rise due to a reduction in public sector jobs. Are we, as Conservatives, willing to bite that bullet? I hope so. If so, the message of austerity contradicts the message of the economy, why should the economy be our main focus? Recessions are temporary and a natural part of the business cycle as our economy evolves. The Great Depression only lasted as long as they did because of the intervention from progressives like Herbert Hoover and FDR. The Republican Party is unwilling to bite this bullet. They aren’t fiscally responsible. Coincidentally, they aren’t willing to defund Planned Parenthood, despite how they donate to candidates who run against them. Let me take that back, it’s not a coincidence. If we look at the Liberty Score of Republicans, you will see that the most socially conservative are also the most fiscally responsible as well. I am hardpressed to find an exception. Socially liberal fiscally conservative doesn’t exist in the real world today. Why? Because being fiscally conservative requires a socially conservative worldview. My evidence for this assertion is Congress.

In order to get these ends, we need to engage in the culture war as a means. Increasing spending does not earn a Republican a primary challenge. But being soft on illegal immigration will. Marco Rubio didn’t win the nomination in 2016. So it’s safe to conclude that illegal immigration is a more energizing issue than national debt. Once again, going back to 2012, Mitt Romney floated self-deportation in the primary but steered clear of illegal immigration in the general. He said he was pro-life, but ran ads to assure people he wouldn’t act on his pro-life stance. But enough using Romney as a punching bag for being a loser. Ron DeSantis in Florida ran on a Trump platform in Florida, without the Trump personality and upset Andrew Gillum in what was supposed to be a blue wave. Kim Reynolds, in swing state Iowa, signed a heartbeat bill into law in May 2018. She went on to pull perhaps the most surprising upset in the 2018 Midterm Elections in what will be a swing state in 2020. Meanwhile obvious RINO Martha McSally couldn’t beat one of the most overtly anti-American candidates in Kyrsten Sinema, in a mild red state.

But let’s look at this from the Left’s perspectives. Indiana and Texas are roughly comparable in terms of the GOP’s advantage. Beto O’Rourke came close while the “moderate” Democrat in Indiana got owned, double digits despite polling ahead, against who in my opinion was a shaky candidate. Back on the right John James ran a solid campaign in Michigan, despite losing, meanwhile the Republican in Wisconsin got trounced. Energy is the name of the game and when Conservatives bring it, we perform better. Conservatives bring that energy by fighting the culture war.

Minority Report

Are minorities more socially conservative then the Democrat Party? Yes. Do these same minorities tend to economic liberals? Yes. So which is the best way to reach minorities, by emphasizing the issues we have in common or by arguing that we need to roll back entitlements. I’ll take the former, because the Democrats are a confederacy, and social conservatism stands a better chance at weakening the confederacy.

Politics Downstream From Culture

The Andrew Breitbart quote is beyond true. Previously I wrote that our society was fiscally irresponsible, therefore why should we be surprised that this same society elects Lindsey Grahams and Mitch McConnells. The ideals of the American Revolution were preached in churches years before 1775. The 2nd Great Awakening preceded the abolition of slavery. Progressive theology preceded progressive policies. Cultural leftism has so far preceded socialist policies. Look at Marianne Williams who was a thought leader for a new age cult long before she was a socialist candidate. So what am I saying? Socially conservative policies will precede fiscally conservative policies.

A Caveat of Trump and State Governments

Now the first objection to this claim is that Trump has implemented some socially conservative policies. Let’s take immigration, for example, where Trump is most willing to make a bad deal with Democrats to resolve the issue. A border wall is not worth amnesty. DACA should not be kept under any circumstances. Furthermore, Trump is far too easily swayed by Ivanka and Jared Kushner who will only lead his governance astray. But if there were a Congress full of Conservatives, we would see far fewer weaknesses in the President. Congress is supposed to be the most powerful branch. If they sent Trump a balanced budget, Trump would undoubtedly sign it.

State governments, by their smaller nature, are often times ran more fiscally responsible and have balanced budget requirements in their constitutions. In fact, many legislatures either meet every other year or session that is a segment within the year. These relics of a more agrarian culture that placed high esteem on limited government are hard to undo. But legislatures like that in Annapolis will do their damage within their session.

Final Thoughts

Conservatives shouldn’t cater to people who don’t exist, rather they should fight the culture war because there are gains in this war that will lead to a culture more willing to accept austere measures. We can only win the culture war if we fight for it. We can only end abortion if we fight for it. We can only end illegal immigration if we fight for it. Play offense. Make the left defend infanticide and ask the average uninformed American: do they want that person in office? Make them uncomfortable by sending illegal immigrants to sanctuary cities, so that they will feel the cost of their own ideology. Make them admit that they believe black Americans are less competent than white Americans. Have them explain the difference between a semiautomatic and fully automatic firearm. Maybe then we can finally eliminate policies such as the outdated and cost burdensome Social Security or end the long failed war on poverty.

If politics flows downstream from culture as American history has long shown, in order for Conservatives to win, we must win the culture war.

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