Monday, May 7, 2012

The Radical Right vs the Voice of Reason

I have been talking with a lot of Republicans lately, which is hard NOT to do when you live in Hamilton County, Indiana.  Those have been very interesting conversations with intelligent people who's viewpoints on some issues differ a little from mine.

But unlike a lot of the folks you may see on TV, these Republicans are different.  The candidates on TV, some of them anyway, rant and rave and promise to "never compromise".   Those are folks on what I think of as the Radical Right, some of them Tea Party adherents.  I don't even think the Radical Right folks meet the traditional definition of "conservative", it seems to me that they have gone so far as to be "regressive" and want to go back to 19th century Robber Baron policies, or even further.

But the folks I have been speaking with are not that way at all.  They are disturbed by gridlock in Washington, disturbed at the jobs situation, and want to do something about it.  They WANT their candidates to reach across party lines and compromise for the benefit of all.  They believe that the emphasis on lowering taxes, regardless of consequences, and on social issues is divisive and not helpful, and perhaps not even the primary job of government.

The problem is, these folks are QUIET about it.  The loudest of the Radical Right get all the attention.  Some of these more reasonable folks, many of them traditional conservatives, are actually frightened to speak up.  So their only recourse will be at the ballot box.

I like these kinds of Republicans, I can speak with them and have civil discourse and disagreement without anger, and we sometimes find common ground.  I hope the Republican Party has enough of these sorts of folks to keep their party that of Dwight Eisenhower, and not let it become that of Mike Pence, Richard Mourdock, and David McIntosh, radicals all.  I am not overly hopeful, but more hopeful than I was a few weeks ago, polls notwithstanding.

I guess we will find out more tomorrow.  If the Radical Right beats down the voice of reason, perhaps some rational Republicans can find their way to support some rational Democrats in November, and get our state and federal governments back to the real job of governing.