Daily Kos
Political analysis and other daily rants on the state of the nation

Wednesday | May 07, 2003

What this country needs: the Christian American Party

I've been fantasizing for ages about the formation of a Christian American Party (or Family Values Party) that would challenge the GOP on the Right. The idea being that a fringe party will always attack the major party on its flank, rather than its polar opposite.

Thus, Nader and the Greens ran their race against Gore and the Democrats, rather than against the Republicans. For the Greens, the key was to pick off as many like-minded Democrats as possible in order to help build their party. The GOP has the Libertarians on its flank, but traditionally, that party hasn't been as effective in syphoning votes from the Republicans.

Thus, I hoped for ages to see the Christian Right become frustrated enough with a "centrist" GOP (it's all a matter of perspective) to splinter into its own party. Such a party would be mana to the Dems -- focusing its ire on those Republicans who had "abandoned" things such as "family values" and "God" and all that loony Right stuff.

In today's fractured political landscape, such a party would need only syphon a couple of points to tilt the election the Dems way, or, at the very least, balance out the Greens.

I even had the perfect figurehead for this party -- the Rev. Louis Sheldon of the Traditional Values Coalition.

Yet such hopes were dashed by the current Bush Administration -- easily the most religiously fundamentalist this century. But with success came hubris, and the Christian Right now wants nothing short of its entire list of demands. Which it seemed to be getting from Bush until...

Rick Santorum
Despite Bush's and the rest of the GOP leadership's tepid show of support, the Christian Right is livid:
Leaders of the Christian right are thinking of bolting the Republican Party in 2004. Such a move would deal a severe blow to President Bush’s re-election effort.

Though Christian voters played a pivotal role in electing Bush in his razor-thin victory over Al Gore, NewsMax has learned that major figures in the evangelical movement are talking about withholding support from the Republican Party. [...]

"If Republican leaders cannot mount a vigorous defense of marriage, then pro-family voters perhaps should begin to reconsider their loyalty to the party," warned Connor.

Be still, my beating heart!
Connors recently wrote a scathing memo attacking the Republican leadership to pro-family leaders.

"Beyond a few tepid statements of personal support for Santorum, no prominent national GOP leader seems willing or able to mount a spirited, principled defense of marriage and family.

“The question naturally arises: have Republicans been so intimidated by the smear tactics of the homosexual lobby and its Democratic attack dogs that they are cowering in silence," he wrote.

I'm having heart palpitations! Yes! Yes!

Granted, there is no better place for the Religious Right than "cowering in silence", but the heck with it. Pragmatism wins -- we need to encourage the formation of this party.

Heck, it doesn't even have to be done from scratch -- they could take the Constitution Party, already a haven for religious wingnuts, and give it a friendlier name. Like the Christian American Party.

Democracy demands such a party! God demands it! Let's get to it!

(Newsmax link via SK Bubba.)

Posted May 07, 2003 03:36 PM | Comments (64)


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