In the last two days, we’ve written a few posts about the Right’s plans for the GOP after the election, noting that they are preparing for the “biggest culture war battles ever” and plotting to dictate the agenda of the Republican National Committee.
Now Politico is reporting that an unnamed group (one that sounds an awful lot like the Council for National Policy) is calling together various right-wing leaders for a top-secret strategy session following next week’s election:
Two days after next week’s election, top conservatives will gather at the Virginia weekend home of one of the movement’s most prominent members to begin a conversation about their role in the GOP and how best to revive a party that may be out of power at both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue next year.
The meeting will include a “who’s who of conservative leaders — economic, national security and social,” said one attendee, who shared initial word of the secret session only on the basis of anonymity and with some details about the host and location redacted.
The decision to waste no time in plotting their moves in the post-Bush era reflects the widely-held view among many on the right, and elsewhere, that the GOP is heading toward major losses next week.
One of the topics of discussion will be how to fashion a “national grassroots political and policy coalition similar to the out Reagan years,” said the attendee, a reference to the development of the so-called New Right apparatus following Jimmy Carter’s 1976 victory and Reagan’s election four years later.
“There’s a sense that the Republican Party is broken, but the conservative movement is not,” said this source, suggesting that it was the betrayal of some conservative principles by Bush and congressional leaders that led to the party’s decline.
The article states that “Sarah Palin will be a central part of discussion” and that pretty much tells you all you need to know about the right-wing movement at this time. That they would even contemplate rallying around a right-wing political neophyte whose placement on the Republican ticket has caused her approval rating to tank and is widely viewed as being at least partly responsible for McCain’s slide in the polls demonstrates just how lost and desperate they are at the moment.
The idea that in just two months time, a complete unknown could become not only a VP nominee but, after proving herself an unmitigated disaster, go on to be hailed as the future of the right-wing movement is laughable.
UPDATE: The New York Times has more:
Despite all the criticism, she has many supporters among Republicans who see her as bright, tough and a star in a party with relatively few on the horizon.
“She’s dynamite,” said Morton C. Blackwell, who was President Ronald Reagan’s liaison to the conservative movement. Mr. Blackwell described vying to get close to Ms. Palin at a fund-raiser in Virginia, lamenting that he could get only within four feet.
“I made a major effort to position myself at this reception,” he said, adding that he is eager to sit down with her after the election to discuss the future. Asked if the weeks of unflattering revelations and damaging interviews had tarnished her among conservatives, he replied, “Not a bit.”
Brent Bozell, president of the Media Research Center, a conservative group, called it a “top order of business” to determine Ms. Palin’s future role. “Conservatives have been looking for leadership, and she has proven that she can electrify the grass roots like few people have in the last 20 years,” Mr. Bozell said. “No matter what she decides to do, there will be a small mother lode of financial support behind her.”