The following is a portion of an article published in the newest edition of The New American magazine:
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Last Updated: Nov 1st, 2006 - 13:35:51
Demopublicans vs. Republicrats
by Gary Benoit
November 13, 2006
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"Despite the notion that an ideological chasm separates the national Republican and Democratic parties, the record shows that there is little difference between the two.
" * * * In the post-9/11 world, and with a neo-conservative in the White House, it is the Republicans and not the Democrats who have been more supportive of measures violating basic liberties for the stated purpose of combating terrorism. In the October 30 Conservative Index, for instance, most Republicans supported and most Democrats opposed the Military Commissions Act, which truncates the rights of defendants deemed "unlawful enemy combatants" (see House vote #39 and Senate vote #39 in that index). Also, most Republicans supported and most Democrats opposed the National Security Agency's warrantless electronic surveillance program, which violates the Fourth Amendment's prohibition against unreasonable searches (see House vote #40).† President Bush lobbied hard for both pieces of legislation. But not all Republicans went along. In fact, the only two congressmen who earned 100 percent in either the House or Senate in the latest index were both Republican: Rep. Ron Paul of Texas and Rep. Walter Jones of North Carolina.
"Republicans have also been more supportive of the war in Iraq than Democrats, though both parties supported Bush's decision to launch an offensive war against Iraq in the first place. The growing quagmire in Iraq has been blamed on Bush's supposed go-it-alone foreign policy, despite the fact that the stated purpose of our intervention was to disarm Iraq of its reputed weapons of mass destruction pursuant to UN resolutions. The president also plunged the nation into the crucible of war without the constitutionally required declaration of war, and he has kept the troops there long after the alleged WMDs were not found, for the purpose of nation building.
This is the policy of liberalism or neo-conservatism. It is not the policy of traditional conservatism, which includes avoiding foreign quarrels, going to war only when necessary to defend America and her citizens, and even then obtaining a declaration of war from Congress. "Though liberal Democrats have now become highly critical of the Iraq War, they do not support a noninterventionist foreign policy any more than the neo-conservatives do. Recall the Vietnam War during the Johnson presidency, and our interventions in the Balkans and Haiti under Bill Clinton.
"Though President Bush has been able to persuade most Republicans to support his Iraq policy to date, that support is not as solid as it once was. Indeed, though the president has been very successful in getting Republicans to support his policies in general, he has not been successful in every instance. In December 2005, for example, most Republican representatives voted for immigration reform legislation that lacked the guest-worker/amnesty legislation that Bush and many Democrats strongly advocate. On the other hand, last spring Bush was able to convince enough Republican senators to come on-board to get a guest-worker/amnesty bill through the Senate. * * *
"Fortunately, many conservative Republicans have grown increasingly irate with the direction President Bush and the Republican leadership are taking their party. "Conservatives are as angry as I have seen them in my nearly five decades in politics," Richard Viguerie, president of ConservativeHQ.com, wrote in the October Washington Monthly. "I would guess that 40 percent of conservatives are ambivalent about the November election or want the Republicans to lose."
"Viguerie explained: "The Big Government Republicans in Washington do not merit the support of conservatives. They have busted the federal budget for generations to come.... They have expanded government regulation into every aspect of our lives and refused to deal seriously with mounting domestic problems such as illegal immigration.... And they have sunk us into the very sort of nation-building war that candidate George W. Bush promised to avoid." Viguerie's opinion piece for Washington Monthly was one of seven from "prominent conservatives" who, in the words of that publication, "dare[d] to speak the unspeakable: They hope the Republicans lose in 2006. * * *"
Oust the big government Republican rubberstamp. Elect Kenneth Stepp, the Democratic candidate to the U.S. House, KY-05.