Matt Archbold: Vote Your Conscience [UPDATED]
Matthew Archbold writes at National Catholic Register:
... I’m just a voter and I’m done trying to be smart. I mean it. I’m done. I’m done playing the angles and reading the polls. I’m voting my conscience. Every time. And it drives me crazy to hear people telling me to vote with my head and not my heart. It drives me crazy to be told to “be smart.” Smart gave Republicans Arlen Specter.(Hat tip: Creative Minority Report)
And we’re even being told to “be smart” in who we vote for in the primary because pro-lifers may vote for a candidate who can win a primary but not a general election. Are they kidding? Republicans have had that kind of majority before. How’d that work out?
We’re being told to ignore our conscience during the primaries and choose candidates who we’re told can in the general election. But why the heck shouldn’t I vote my conscience in a primary? If a majority of Republicans vote for a candidate they don’t really like what you’ll likely get is a candidate that nobody likes.
Their way gave us the disastrous Republican majority we had during the last decade. Their way gave us John McCain. I’m tired of their way.
I’m voting my conscience. Stop telling me to be a strategist. I’m just a voter who’s horrified at the number of unborn children being killed. I’m just a voter who worries about the collapsing American family...
My sentiments exactly.
And we're seeing this a lot lately with people who generally tell us that we shouldn't vote for that pro-abort Democrat under any circumstances suddenly finding no qualms about supporting the pro-abort, pro-ESCR Catholic Republican Mike Castle over his pro-life opponent in the Delaware GOP primary election for U.S. Senate.
They keep telling us what a flawed candidate the pro-lifer is, but they seem to ignore just how deeply flawed Mike Castle is from a pro-life Catholic perspective.
They keep telling us that the pro-lifer can't win in blue Delaware, but that the pro-abort Mike Castle CAN win, as if just electing someone with an "R" next to his name is all this should be about for pro-life Catholic voters.
One blogger for whom I have a great deal of respect but with whom I couldn't possibly disagree more on this issue has actually gone so far as to argue that voting for Mike Castle - one of the most vocal and most active pro-abort and pro-ESCR Catholics in Congress - over his pro-life opponent will "limit the damage to the pro-life movement".
It all sounds so familiar (see, e.g., Toomey, Pat vs. Specter, Arlen, and the political wranglings of Santorum, Rick to get the latter elected).
Look, I can understand why someone identifying as a Republican might want to support Castle for purposes of achieving power. In order to gain power, you need an "R" next to the name. But I absolutely draw the line and call BS on any attempt to justify voting for one of the most egregious anti-life Catholics in Congress as being "more pro-life" than voting for his ... you know ... ACTUAL pro-life opponent. To try to justify such a vote as "limiting the damage to the pro-life movement" is a rendering of the words so as make them absolutely meaningless.
The chances of a Castle win being THE seat that puts the Senate in GOP hands is VERY speculative, at best. But the chances of Castle being a pro-abortion, left-wing thorn in the side of the Senate GOP (not to mention a scandal to the Catholic faithful as a high-profile, vocal pro-abort Catholic in the pro-life party) is 100%. Castle can do SERIOUS damage to the pro-life cause as the "bipartisan" go-to guy that Democrats will seek out for cover on issues like ESCR, abortion legislation, federal judges, etc.
There is absolutely NO pro-life argument in favor of Mike Castle. Because of his horrific record on the unborn, and because his identification as a Catholic makes his record doubly scandalous, I would NEVER vote for him under ANY circumstances, regardless of the shortcomings of his opponent.
In the end, I'm a socially conservative Catholic voter; I'm NOT a Republican. So I have absolutely no problem with seeing the U.S. Senate seat from Delaware stay Dem rather than having an outspokenly pro-abort, pro-ESCR Catholic sitting in the seat and undermining the pro-lifers within his own party and the teachings of the Catholic Church.
Like Matthew Archbold, if I were a voter in the Delaware GOP primary, I'd be voting my conscience.
For those of you who see voting for Castle as part of an overall GOP "strategery" for retaking the Senate, Ed Morrissey puts that strategic gamesmanship into perspective:
... This seat matters strategically in one narrow set of circumstances, and one only: if the GOP picks up a net of exactly nine other seats. If the GOP nets eight or fewer Senate seats besides Delaware, then this election wouldn’t give them control of the Senate anyway. If the GOP picks up ten or more seats without Delaware, then this seat again doesn’t matter much either in terms of controlling the agenda. Netting enough seats to win the Senate is a long shot in any case, probably in the range of a 5-1 against, with or without Delaware...(emphasis added)
Basically the same thing I said above regarding the speculative nature of the Delaware seat being THE seat that puts the Senate back in GOP hands, only Ed says it better than I did.
Previous Pro Ecclesia posts on this subject:
Mike Castle and the "Deadly Dozen"
Most Un-Self-Aware Quote of the Day
Prof. Bainbridge Takes On So-Called "Holier-Than-Thou Right"