Tony Perkins and Chuck Donovan – president and executive vice president, respectively, of the Family Research Council – took to the pages of the Politico today to state in no-uncertain terms that the prospect of a Rudy Giuliani victory in the GOP presidential primary is completely unacceptable to the Right:
Now comes Mayor Giuliani, telling us that the moral core [opposition to abortion] of his party is no big deal after all. On this, Rudy is wrong. He is sparking a fight whose moral seriousness appears, so far, to be lost on many of his allies. The Wall Street Journal, for example, has editorialized that advocates for life are raising questions about Rudy because we want to be on television. Excuse me, but if we really wanted headlines and flashbulbs, we would sacrifice our core convictions and hug Rudy at noon in Times Square.
Make no mistake, however; the aim of social conservatives is not to strew the path of the Republican Party with roses. We are not waiting in the winner’s circle with a garland of roses for whoever becomes the GOP nominee. Social conservatives have entered the political fray with abiding beliefs about mediating institutions like church and family that both coincide with and make smaller government conservatism possible. Their first allegiance is to those beliefs, however, and not to a party label.
It is odd that Perkins and Donovan would warn they and their right-wing activists and allies are not beholden to a “party label,” considering that their recent, and upcoming, activities certainly suggest otherwise.
For good measure, they also trot out their favorite bogus claim that all Republican electoral losses can in one way or another be attributed to the fact that the GOP abandoned its right-wing base:
Today, the Republican Party is in trouble with the body politic not because it has been too “pro-life,” too committed to budget restraint or too devoted to ethics in government. The GOP is struggling today because voters have come to believe that it “grew in office.” The GOP “grew” comfortable with close proximity to the spending power, piling up earmarks to suit members’ personal interests. The GOP “grew” addicted to the perks of office, soliciting and dispensing favors to lobbyists bankrolled by gambling interests. The GOP “grew” comfortable with the homosexual subculture, proclaiming devotion to the family but protecting then-Rep. Mark Foley (R-Fla.) from public exposure of his misconduct.
FRC’s ire is directed not only at Giuliani, but also his supporters who have been more or less telling right-wing activists to put a sock in it when it comes to concerns about the candidate’s position on choice. But FRC clearly has no intention of staying silent, going so far as to proclaim that, should he win the GOP primary, Giuliani “will bury his party’s future hopes” by ultimately destroying the heretofore mutually beneficial political relationship between the Republican Party and its right-wing base.