Conservatives Richard Falknor on 17 Nov 2013 10:36 pm
Conservatives in Virginia need a new kind of independent organization to get off their down-escalator.
We need to advance conservative reforms and talk up conservative principles to those who seldom hear them (but might listen) in the Old Dominion. This is not the same activity as Republican electioneering.
Nor is this post about Mr. Cuccinelli’s late campaign for governor. While we find Rick Shaftan’s Bearing Drift op-ed here the most plausible analysis, pollster Shaftan also points to a central truth likely to be overlooked among often-policy-flexible Republican Party of Virginia operatives, candidates, and incumbents:
“Republicans win philosophical battles. Democrats win personality contests.”
Most Republican operatives, candidates, and incumbents are in the business of gaining or holding office—they are not primarily gaining or keeping power to advance conservative reforms and talk up these principles from their own pulpits.
For example, a trusted source tells us that the U. S. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Virginia House of Delegates Speaker Bill Howell, and at least one “moderate” pro-primary district chair are putting together a pot of $1,000,000 to help elect other “moderate” pro-primary district chairs and state central committee members.
Our Modest Proposal
We are proposing a statewide, coordinated conservative organization – whether under the aegis of Tea Party Patriots or some new 501(c)(4) association.
The grass roots themselves can best decide ways and means.
We are not suggesting a new political party, but an organized, muscular political movement.
Call it Free Virginia(FV) for now — just as a working name.
FV might endorse candidates or incumbents, or even recruit new candidates where the current incumbent has a record of working against conservative programs or principles. But FV would take care not to be or to be seen as an arm of the RPV.
But that would not be all FV would do.
Conservative Virginia Priorities
FV would constantly be running inexpensive local media and doing local “shadow hearings”(on conservative measures the General Assembly blew off) as well as local demonstrations throughout the Old Dominion.
What would be needed to start: a smart, experienced Virginia conservative with sound judgment who would guide the movement during its formative year.
In our view, many Virginia conservatives can come up with $100 apiece to kick off such an effort. Imagine 10 per cent of E.W. Jackson’s 980,000 vote contributing $100 each. In any event, most money should come from a large number of donors in modest packets, donors to whom the organization can return for additional help when the organization shows results.
The biggest challenge might be to get conservatives behind the three core conservative concerns, not just that part of one of them with which they feel most congenial:
- Upholding a broad range of values (not simply opposing abortion — but also strengthening the culture, defending traditional liberty, stopping Common Core, tracking taxpayer-funded school curricula and teacher training);
- Right-sizing local, state, and the Federal government (more than lower taxes: seriously rolling back regulation by state and local government; espousing a pro-market but not a so-called “pro-business” or “crony-capitalist” agenda;
- Strengthening homeland security (ranging from a prudent national defense to maintaining our sovereignty to resisting national and local incursions from Civilization Jihad.
Even the very important longer-range goal of adopting some or all of the Liberty Amendments would likely have short-term organization benefits.
Of course, there are well-organized pro-life and Second Amendment organizations that are already going concerns in Virginia. And they doubtless have their own arrangements with sympathetic state legislators.
Now more than ever, however, so-called “single-issue conservatives” pursue a path to irrelevance if they do not work closely and supportively with the larger conservative movement. Unless they do so, they help ensure that we shall all hang separately. Whether they do so depends on how frightened they are becoming of Leviathan – in its Federal, state, and local costumes.
But what we are proposing goes well beyond “deals” in the General Assembly and primary endorsements.
We propose that conservatives organize to go straight to the Virginia polity and to coming generations to take back our culture and our way of life.
We welcome the thoughts of Virginia conservatives.
* * * * * * * * * *
Readers may wish to revisit the posts below chronicling some missteps of the outgoing GOP administration – –