Thursday, September 16, 2010

Why Mike Castle Lost?

I put a question mark at the end of that, but Fred Barnes of The Weekly Standard doesn't. Barnes, who wishes he were explaining Christine O'Donnell's loss instead, lists four reasons for Castle's. One in particular stood out.
[H]e didn’t run as a conservative or at least as someone who’d taken a conservative stand on important issues.
This makes absolutely no sense to me, but it does explain, once again, why professional Republicans and Beltway conservative pundits simply don't get it.

First, by all accounts, Mike Castle is a nice guy, and respected as such. Why would he risk tarnishing that reputation by becoming a phony, by pretending to be something he's not, i.e., a conservative?

Second, why should he pretend to be a conservative when those same professional Republicans and Beltway pundits keep telling us that it's precisely because he's not one that he, rather than O'Donnell, stood the better chance to win the general election in November?

Finally, what were the conservative Delaware Republican rank-and-file supposed to do? Hold their noses, pull the lever for Castle, and then cross their fingers in the hope that he might vote appropriately when the time came? Sure, he's on-record supporting the conservative position on a few issues. But he's also on-record supporting the liberal position on many others. He's not cultivated his reputation as a liberal-to-moderate Republican for no reason. He actually believes in big-government solutions, he is pro-choice, he didn't support the Surge in Iraq, etc. Delaware Republicans finally had a chance to elect a principled conservative and they took it. It's a simple as that.

A blog or two ago I commented on the broadening ideological divide between conservatives and liberals in this country. Sadly, there appears to be a parallel divide developing within the Republican Party. On one side are those who get it, and on the other are those who don't. You fill in the blanks.

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