Prof. Bainbridge Takes On So-Called "Holier-Than-Thou Right"
The holier than thou crowd on the right continues to excoriate Delaware US Senate candidate Mike Castle as being insufficiently conservative...But what if I live in Delaware [obviously, I don't] and don't want to vote for Mike Castle? What if Mike Castle is so far out of touch with my own values that I find the very thought of wasting one of my most precious rights - the right to vote as I see fit - on voting for Mike Castle repugnant in the extreme?
By letting the perfect be the enemy of the good, Riehl and his ilk are ensuring themselves of a pure minority. I guess it makes for good talk radio and blog posts, but it's a lousy electoral strategy.
This commenter at Prof. Bainbridge's site, put it well:
And yet, this too easily becomes another kind of "holier than thou" argument. I wonder if the equivalent political calculation in 1980 would have given us nominee Reagan. Perhaps the "holier than thou" right should just vote in the Republican primaries for the available candidate whose views most closely align with their own and then do the same in the general election? You know, just like everyone else gets to do?Exactly. It's a primary. Vote your conscience.
Or are social conservatives not allowed to do that? Only neo-cons and fiscal-cons, etc., have that luxury, right?
Let's pose a hypothetical question.
Assume that I'm exactly the same person, except that I live in Delaware. I'm not a Republican, so I feel no compulsion to vote out of fealty to the GOP. The issues I'm most concerned about are the issues social conservatives are most concerned about. In addition, I feel very strongly that Cap & Tax is not only economically harmful but is also anti-family in its effects (and perhaps even in intent). I am also opposed to the sorts of gun control measures for which Castle has voted over the years.
In addition, I just don't like nor trust Mike Castle, not only because his values - as evidenced by his votes over the years - do not match up with my own, but because the 70+ year old Castle, who has spent most of his adult life in politics, seems to me to be the textbook example of what is wrong with the GOP establishment, as well as the entire political system.
On the other hand, the challenger is VERY close to me in terms of her values. She represents my own set of political priorities.
Finally, my entire 5-and-a-half-year blogging career has been devoted to "voting your values".
For whom should I vote in the Delaware GOP Primary?
(Hat tip: Opinionated Catholic)