Keeping Republicans Republican
Hooray to Raymond McKay, president of the Rhode Island Republican Assembly, and the other members of the State Central Committee who insisted that conservatives should still be able to call the RIGOP their political home:
Most glaring to some was a final paragraph that says the party, in “the long-standing tradition of New England Republicans,” respects “the right of all of our candidates to hold and express their own considered views on social issues.”
“If you take a look at the Moderate Party’s platform and you take a look at our platform, they’re pretty much one and the same,” said McKay, who made the motion to send the statement back for further review. “If we’re going to be a party and we’re going to differentiate ourselves, we should stand apart from the others and not be a Democratic-light, or something like that.”
In opposition, Platform Committee Chairman Robert Manning notes that “a large percentage of the voting population are registered as independents,” but there’s no reason to believe that group to be made up of fiscally conservative social liberals. The fact that the Democrat Party, for example, is increasingly exclusive of pro-lifers could mean that pro-life Democrats have changed their minds about being Democrats, not about being pro-life.
Indeed, a platform that cuts out social issues under the presumption that conservatives are wrong may very well result in fewer registered Republicans. (I can think of at least one.)