On NRO's Corner Jonah Goldberg made this interesting observation about Hugh Hewitt:
I probably agree with Hewitt's critics on many points. I think he is too much aFor me, reading that was one of those occasional crystallizing moments that occur in political discourse. There really are two different ways conservatives look at politics: (1) as a religion of sorts, in which there are no issues, only principles, which are true and immutable and cannot be compromised; and (2) as a means to get the best government we can.
Republican and not enough of a conservative . . . .
I tend toward no. 2. An illustration: Like Hugh Hewitt, I vote for the most conservative candidate who can win. So in the California recall election, I voted for Arnold Schwarzenegger, even though Tom McClintock was more in tune with me ideologically. There was no way McClintock could win, Arnold was certainly going to be better than Cruz Bustamante, and I did not want to waste my vote.
Those who take approach no. 1, in contrast, would rather vote their conscience than vote for the best possible result. They are conservatives first, Republicans second, and they would have voted for McClintock. The same folks probably agree with Jonah Goldberg: Hugh's approach to voting is too Republican, and not conservative enough.
Each approach has its defenders. Who's to say which one is right? I prefer no. 2, and always have.
If you are trying to decide which approach to apply to this fall's Congressional elections, print this chart out and study it. It's too small for most of us to read on-line, but it expresses some very important results of a Republican loss of the House in 2006, including these House leadership positions:
- Speaker Pelosi
- Judiciary Chairman Conyers
- Chairman Rangel
- Chairman Waxman
- Chairman Frank
And these inevitable hearings, which will be extensively covered by the MSM:
- NSA wiretapping hearings
- Guantanamo hearings
- CIA secret prison hearings
and more, all fueled by the fever-swamp folks who think the Daily Kos is the source of all truth in the USA.
So if you are a conservative first, and a Republican second, you might want to take an ideologically pure view and stay home because the Republicans have not, in your view, been governing as conservatively as you would prefer. But I suggest that if you do stay home, you will bear your share of the responsibility for the government we will have.
That's the thing about being a voter-- we're all responsible for our votes and their consequences, whether we like it or not.