Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Illumination on the State of the Republican Party

If you want to get a feel for why McCain's momentum is rolling in the Republican party, a good place to look might be the comment section of this Ann Althouse post. It'll give you a chance to read the mindset of a few Republicans who have chosen to support McCain. It is a small sample so it is hardly a scientific representation, but I think they illuminate why McCain's head of steam is building. To summarize, I'd say part of it is a lack of understanding of why people oppose a number of McCain's past initiatives (more than just immigration). Part of it is not being all that bothered by some of those things. Another part would be perceived electability. Throw in a healthy dose of "lesser of two evils," sprinkle in a touch of backlash against perceived conservative ideologues, and you have McMentum.

If this McCain surge has done one thing for me, it is that I've begun to ponder how big a part of the Republican party conservatism really has been the last twenty years. It seems that the old Republican party has been there all along, but it just hitched its caboose to the heady Reagan conservatism that was pulling the party. Now that that engine has lost a little steam, it is starting to reassert itself. Unfortunately, that old Republican party has already amply proven itself to be a loser, particularly when it came to congressional politics.

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