This past decade has been a trying time for conservatives. We put our heart and soul into the “Republican Revolution” with the hopes of smaller government, lower taxes, less spending, and policies that reflect conservative principles. But as the decade wore on, we saw that the party we supported had lost its way. It was spending, spending, and spending. It was supporting big-government entitlements. It was pushing programs such as amnesty that run counter to conservatism.
We fell hard enough and fast enough so that, despite being a center-right country, Americans elected a left wing Congress and a radical president. Now, we are paying the price, but Americans are also rallying to the conservative ideals that are part of who we are. The Tea Party movement is all about those simple conservative beliefs, and the movement has already changed policy and won elections. The Republican Party was hearing the message and standing against Obama’s agenda. Then, along comes Florida Gov. Charlie Crist, who delivers another RINO punch to the conservative gut.
Crist, the “Republican” who warmly embraced Barack Obama’s massive so-called “stimulus” plan is locked in a primary election battle with former State House Speaker Marco Rubio for the U.S. Senate. As noted in an AP Story on GOPUSA, Crist was the front-runner in the race. He is a moderate Republican (whatever that means) who was supported by the party establishment of fellow moderate Republicans (those whose primary goal is to stay in power regardless of what legislation they support).
A year after it seemed he was the man to beat for the GOP nomination for the U.S. Senate and a virtual shoo-in in the general election, Crist has seen his poll numbers nose-dive and speculation has run rampant about his chances of surviving a primary against tea-party favorite Marco Rubio, the state’s former House speaker. The 53-year-old governor has scheduled a Thursday evening event in his hometown where he will reveal his plans, though three confidants have said he’s already decided to abandon his long-shot GOP primary bid and run as an independent.
Yes, times have changed. People are fed up, and we are not going to take it any longer. We are not asking for miracles, just responsible, conservative government, and it is Republicans like Crist who helped get us into this mess. But Crist doesn’t stand for conservative values. Rather than battle it out in the Republican Primary and let the voters decide, he sees his only way to maintain power is to buck the party that’s trying to get back on track.
Crist appears to be building a track record of breaking promises and pushing his own agenda. In the 2008 presidential campaign, he promised his endorsement to Rudy Giuliani only to change it when the tide started turning:
Just a few weeks ago, the Crist campaign set out to “put these rumors to rest once and for all” about Crist running as an independent. In a statement released by the Crist campaign, his staff said, “Governor Crist is running for the United States Senate as a Republican. He will not run as an Independent or as a No Party Affiliation.”
“The Governor is proud of his conservative credentials and stands firmly behind the principles of limited government and more personal freedom, the bedrock values of the Republican Party. He is proud to be a member of the Party of Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, and Ronald Reagan.
“This should completely and utterly put to rest any of the unfounded rumors coming from the Rubio campaign that Governor Crist would run as anything other than the Republican that he is.”
I guess I’m a little confused on what “completely and utterly” means.
As the Washington Times reports, if Crist does leave the GOP, many donors are prepared to ask for their cash back.
One Republican senator has asked Florida Gov. Charlie Crist to return a $1,000 contribution to his Senate campaign, and other senators are expected to follow suit if Mr. Crist announces Thursday he’s dropping out of the Republican primary in Florida to run as an independent.
Sen. John Cornyn, Texas Republican and chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, whose recruitment helped bring Mr. Crist into the race in the first place, said he hasn’t heard any decision from the governor. If a switch is in the offing, he said, he will ask for a refund of the $10,000 his political action committee has given.
“I suspect you’ll see a number of Republican senators ask for their money back,” Mr. Cornyn said.
This is exactly what the Republican Party did not need right now. The best thing for the GOP would be to have a hard-fought primary. If Rubio emerges, so be it. Then, we all move on.
The fact of the matter is that Rubio came out of nowhere just as the Tea Party movement came out of nowhere. But it is here to stay. America has drifted too far down the road of massive debt, taxes, and spending. We are in the process of righting our compass, and we don’t need the likes of Charlie Crist setting us back when we are ready to move forward.
In recent months, the Republican Party has made efforts to get back on track… not through the establishment, but through the voices of grassroots activists across the country. Many Republican leaders have heard the call. They stood united against Obama’s health insurance takeover, and now we have momentum. Crist’s actions are those of a self-serving politician who has no philosophical compass. There are even rumors of him trying to cut a deal with the Democrats.
We’ll get past this punch to the gut… then we’ll clear out the dead wood. Senators Rubio and Hayworth sound pretty good to me.