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Steps Necessary for GOP Rebuilding

Glenn Reynolds is right.  There is lots of interesting stuff today at the Next Right.  A lot of it goes into great detail about a post I had planned for today.

I had intended to list the points I think the next chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC) needs address and offer some thoughts on that race.  The bloggers there go into much great detail, so in my list of where, I believe, the GOP needs works, I’ll, as appropriate, link their posts.  Patrick Ruffini thinks we need do three things:  Rebuild our infrastructure, Find our message, Find new leaders.  I think it involves a little more than that.

  • MESSAGE:  GOP needs one main “message man” with a team of effective (and telegenic) spokespeople to communicate a clear Republican message.  And we need develop a message which resonates with voters.  (Somewhat related:  GOP Needs an Ideas Czar, Which Comes First – Ideas or the Message?)
  • FUND-RAISING:  The party needs to build upon Mike Duncan’s fundraising apparatus, especially for the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) and National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC))–check names.  Needs to develop means to raise more money via the Internet.
  • GRASSROOTS/PARTY INFRASTRUCTURE:  Need to rebuild state and local parties, update databases of Republican-leaning voters, register new voters.  Need to have a better Get Out the Vote (GOTV) effort for 2010.
  • CANDIDATE RECRUITMENT:  Should strive for serious candidates in all Senate races, even those (e.g., California, Hawai’i, New York and Vermont) where victory now seems impossible.   Also need to run candidates in all House races which have the potential of becoming competitive.
  • NEW MEDIA:  Need to better utilize the web and new media.  Development of Rightroots.
  • HISPANIC OUTREACH:  Need to figure out why McCain did so poorly among Hispanic voters and develop Hispanic outreach with goal of exceeding Bush’s 2004 share of Hispanic vote.
  • YOUTH OUTREACH:  Need to reach out to young voters.  While nearly 70% voted for Barack Obama in the election recently concluded, most had little idea what their man stood for (beyond the amorphous concept of change).  Some surveys (and abundant anecdotal evidence) showed that many of these voters have libertarian inclinations.  GOP needs to tap into that (Somewhat related:  Diversify Your Freedom Portfolio (Part One) (Part Two).

Now, the question is which of the candidates for RNC chair is capable of doing all these things.  James Richardson offers a rundown of the leading candidates.  (Chris Cilizza offers his take here and Matt Lewis here.)

While I think Michael Steele is the ideal man to deliver the GOP message, I (as do others blogging about the race) have doubts about his organizational ability.  John “Chip” Saltsman, the former chairman of the Tennessee Republican Party, appears to possess those managerial skills.  If he hadn’t managed Mike Huckabee’s presidential campaign, I might be more favorably inclined to his candidacy.  Still, that campaign was sucsessful in getting its voters to the polls in the caucuses.  And our party didn’t do a good job this all of getting our voters to the polls.

Jim Geraghty offers a more favorable take of Saltsman here.

They Call their Man, “Barack”

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 6:28 pm - November 26, 2008.
Filed under: Friendship,Obama Watch,Random Thoughts

In a post earlier today, Jennifer Rubin held that “it seems disrespectful at this point to refer to the President-elect as ‘Barack.’“  I agreed that this does seem disrespectful.  Yet, her comment make me wonder if there is some sort of cultural phenomenon in this apparent familiarity with the president-elect.

Shortly after the election, at a gathering of fellow Williams alumni, with everyone who offered an opinion on the recently-concluded presidential election (save yours truly) having supported the victor of that election, a handful of his backers continually referred to their man not as “the president-elect” or “Senator Obama,” but instead as just plain “Barack” as if they actually knew the guy.

This wasn’t the first time I’d heard Obama’s supporters so address their man.  I don’t recall Bush supporters referring to the Republican as “George” or Clinton supporters calling their man, “Bill.”  (Well, there were “Friends of Bill” . . . . )

I don’t really know what to make of this.  Maybe the president-elect radiates a certain fraternal aura that makes people feel we know him, kind of like that of such movie stars as Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts.  (For me, it’s Laura Linney.  When I see her on screen, I feel certain I know her.)

Indeed, after watching both presidential candidates in the Saddleback Forum in August, Rich Lowry found that Obama seemed “more like a potential friend.

Maybe it is just the aura he radiates.  Food for thought.

More on Absence of Introspection of “No on 8″ Leaders

In a post today, left-of-center blogger and activist Michael Petrelis alerts his readers to an editorial in the Bay Area Reporter raising the same sorts of questions he, I and other bloggers of various political stripes have been asking about the failure of the leaders of the “No on 8″ campaign to engage in any instrospection since the proposition passed:

The Yes on 8 campaign, in many ways, out-maneuvered No on 8, period. What we need is an examination as to why that happened and move forward, preferably with a consensus not to make the same mistakes again. . .  . If the No on 8 leadership isn’t willing to open up about what went wrong, the community can’t be expected to buy in to another costly ballot fight.

It’s that simple.

The heads of gay organizations seem more interested in protecting their hides and sinecures than in actually taking any responsibility for the ballot measure.

Who will hold them to account?

How do you know when you’re linked on a left-wing blog?

Posted by GayPatriotWest at 4:30 pm - November 26, 2008.
Filed under: Blogging,Mean-spirited leftists

You discover an increased number of hate comments in your spam queue.

Sometimes some voices on the left make it so easy to confirm my theories about their mean-spiritedness, narrow-mindedness, misunderstanding of conservatism and even of the words, “rights” and “freedom.”

Thanks, guys.  :-)

Oh, and one last point, anyone who would use a doctored photo and put it forward as authentic is obviously someone who is easily duped.

Why is it that some of them can only make their points by insulting those they seek to criticize?  Is it their own inability to engage those with whom they disagree, their own failure to understand arguments which differ from their own? Or is it something deeper?  Some inner unhappiness?  Unmet psychological need?

I fear for the future if these are the type of the people the president-elect taps for his Administration.  But, so far at least, that doesn’t seem to be the case.  We must be thankful for small favors.

SOMEWHAT RELATED:  A video retrospective on the left-wing anger in Campaign ’08.

On Joining Forces with Social Conservatives
When Necessary to Preserve Our Liberty

A reader e-mailed me a link a post which quoted a comment from another blog which really got at why I, as a gay man, can feel comfortable in a political coalition with social conservatives who would rather I (and those like me) not act on my natural inclination for intimacy and romantic affection with another man.

Repeating commentshe made on another site about moderates attempting to dismiss religious conservatives within the Republican Party, Bill_Dalasio offers:

my main concern in politics is maintaining my freedom. And, in practical, definable terms, the daily threats to my liberty are not being pushed by religious conservatives. It wasn’t religious conservatives who’ve told me I’m breaking the law if I light up in a bar. It wasn’t religious conservatives who’ve forbidden me from buying food made with trans fats. It wasn’t religious conservatives who pushed speech codes on our college campuses and dictate hate crimes laws. It wasn’t religious conservatives who’ve made it a bureaucratic journey to buy a gun to protect my home and family. It isn’t religious conservatives I see trying to revive the fairness doctrine to specifically silence their political opposition. It wasn’t religious conservatives to gave us “campaign finance reform”. It isn’t the religious conservatives who have told me that I have to separate my trash, even to the point of removing individual trashcans in my office building.

Put bluntly, I can’t help but feel I’m being sold a bill of goods here. Progressives, with the full consent of moderates,…chip away consistently and unabashedly at my freedom. All the while, telling me how scared I should be of the religious conservative bogeyman hiding under the bed. Do I think there’s some religious conservatives who go over the top? Sure. But, marginalizing the religious conservatives en masse is a surefire way to empower just those religious conservatives who do go over the top. Moreover, I’m getting a little more than tired of being told to be scared about the threat to my liberty posed by my allies by people whose own behavior tells me they want nothing more than to restrict my freedom.

Emphasis added.

The issue, my friends, is freedom. This guy gets it.

Let me repeat, I, as a gay man, have no problem working in a political coalition with social conservatives so long as they don’t force me to promote legislation restricting freedom nor demand I enter some kind of ministry to “cure” me of my longings for affection with my own gender. Leave these people alone to practice their faith as they believe Scripture dictates. And leave me alone to interpret the same Scripture (or at least the first two-thirds thereof) in my own way.

And leave those who don’t hold to that Scripture free as well to live their lives as they see fit.

The issue is freedom. And in this age of increasing government control, we need focus on defending it.