I Get Letters: Holding The President Accountable

I received an email from Phillip Bass who disagreed for the most part with my “Why Conservatives Should Vote For Bush” column.

I don’t want to take the time to go point by point through his email, so let me just skip to the conclusion…

“Bush’s domestic policy is so bad for the country that I don’t care if John Kerry is elected President, Michael Moore and twelve of his clones become the Cabinet, and Whoopie Goldberg becomes National Security advisor.

WE CANNOT REWARD POLITICIANS WHO SPEAK LIKE CONSERVATIVES AND GOVERN LIKE LIBERALS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


There is a case that can be make for supporting Bush based solely on judicial appointments. I concede that point. It’s not enough.

I still believe in conservatives holding Republicans accountable, period.

Philip Bass”


I agree that conservatives should hold Republicans accountable, period. But, do you know when conservatives should do that?

During the PRIMARIES.

Let me explain my philosophy on this issue and I think it’ll make things a little clearer.

During the Republican primaries, at least from the level of governor on up, I favor the most conservative candidate who has a halfway decent shot of winning (w/ rare exeptions).

So for example, if the choice is between an ultra-conservative who has let’s say a 40%-60% chance of getting elected and a Republican moderate who has a 95% chance of getting elected, I say go with the real conservative.

But, if the Republican moderate wins the primary, you don’t have to talk him up, you don’t have to contribute money to him, but you at least need to show up and pull the lever for him.

You know why? Because as I said in the column, “there is no such thing as a perfect candidate”. And if the choice is between a Republican moderate and even a moderate Democrat, your interests will STILL be better served by the Republican moderate because of things like judges and party line votes.

Does that mean you don’t criticize the Republican moderate when you disagree with him? Not at all. Does that mean you should support his policies if you don’t agree with them? Not at all. Does that mean you should give him a pass if you think he has done something morally wrong? Not at all.

But, what it does mean is that even if you’re not particularly happy with him, you still show on November 2nd and vote for him because despite his flaws, he’s the candidate who best represents your interests.

For example, Bush’s father was no great shakes, but in retrospect, do you think Bush Sr. would have done a worse job than Clinton? I sure don’t. And while it’s hard to imagine John Kerry being more ethically challenged than Bill Clinton, he’s certainly a lot more liberal. So think really long and hard before you start wishing that John Kerry and co. will end up in the White House because I’m telling you, you’re likely to end up with a serious case of buyer’s remorse if it actually happens…

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