War And Peace: The Tea Party And The GOP

It’s not completely clear why Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition, which he created in the wake of Obama’s election, has decided to hold an annual conference in Washington, D.C.  After all, the conservative Christian voters his group works to identify and mobilize already have the Values Voter Summit, the much larger fall event sponsored by the Family Research Council and a gaggle of other right-wing groups.

One reason may be for the once-disgraced Reed to show off his political access: last week’s Road to Majority conference was thick with Republican officeholders and presidential wannabes, and I lost count of how many times Reed told participants how impressed they should be by the lineup.  For the lobby day that preceded the conference itself, he was able to get face time for his participants with Religious Right and Tea Party heroes from the Senate -- Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, and  Marco Rubio – and House of Representatives – Louis Gohmert, Steve King, and David Jolly – along with “establishment” Republicans like Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Sen John Cornyn.

In fact, the conference may be seen by Reed as a way for him to play peacemaker among the sometimes warring factions within the Republican Party and encourage unity going into the election year. At last year’s conference, RNC head Reince Priebus had a chance to tell attendees, many of them skeptical, that he was indeed one of them, as a Christian and a conservative; this year he made an appearance via video.

Last Saturday, on panel on the 2014 elections, conservative pundit and author John Fund predicted that Thad Cochran would be defeated by Chris McDaniel. Fund said it would mark a second “humiliating defeat” for the Republican establishment (after Eric Cantor’s stunning primary loss) and should lead to a demand from the grassroots for McConnell and Boehner to work out a “peace treaty” with Tea Party activists so they could stop spending an “insane” amount of resources on internal fights. “The real enemy is in November,” he said.

Of course that’s not what happened on Tuesday. With a boost from the National Republican Senatorial Committee, the Chamber of Commerce, and ads by football great Brett Favre – and more notably with a direct appeal to African American voters – Cochran squeaked out an unexpected victory.

The “humiliating defeat” was now pinned on Tea Party groups and there was little talk about peace negotiations.  Chris McDaniel’s already infamous non-concession speech turned into a rant against the Cochran campaign and Republican officials who sided with him:

There is nothing dangerous or extreme about defending the Constitution and the civil liberties therein. And there’s nothing strange at all about standing as people of faith for a country that WE built, that WE believe in. But there is something a bit strange, there is something a bit unusual, about a Republican primary that’s decided by liberal Democrats.”

“This is not the party of Reagan,” he declared. “But we’re not done fighting. And when we’re done it will be. We have fought too long we have fought too hard to have a voice in this party. And today, the conservative movement took a back seat to liberal Democrats in the state of Mississippi. In the most conservative state in the republic, this happened. If it can happen here, it can happen anywhere. And that’s why we will never stop fighting.”

McDaniel was backed heavily by FreedomWorks, Club for Growth, and the Senate Conservatives Fund, which denounced as “disgraceful” the money spent by the NRSC to back Cochran.

National Review’s Eliana Johnson, who moderated the 2014 panel, said the Establishment / Tea Party split has been vastly overblown by the media slapping the Tea Party label on every gadfly challenger.  But on the night of Cochran’s Democratic-voter-assisted victory, Sarah Palin was talking about a third party.

For those of us outside the movement, who see the overlapping Tea Party and Religious Right movements relentlessly pushing the GOP further to the right, it can be hard to understand why there is so much anger directed at the establishment.  After all, it’s not as if Eric Cantor and Thad Cochran are some kind of liberal Rockefeller Republicans.

But even these conservative leaders are not enough for grassroots activists who imbibe a steady ideological diet, from right-wing media and movement leaders, calling for a radically limited federal government and viewing compromise made in the process of governing as complicity with tyranny. Republican leaders who encouraged an angry grassroots uprising against the “tyranny” of health care reform are now reaping the whirlwind.

If there were a unifying message from Ralph Reed’s conference, it was, “America is in decline and the world is going to hell and it’s all Obama’s fault.” The solution offered was a combination of spiritual and political warfare. While right-wing groups have a common enemy in the White House, and will certainly work together this year to try to give Republicans control of the Senate, it is clear that we haven’t yet seen the end of the struggle over  just how far to the far right the Republican Party will be pushed.

Why Aren't Gay People More Grateful To Nice Guy George W. Bush?

We learn in today’s POLITICO Magazine story, “Inside George W. Bush’s Closet,” that President George W. Bush is a really nice guy.

Such a nice guy, in fact, that we should look past his egregious gay-rights record as president because he was just so darn nice to everybody, even gay people! That is what politics is all about, after all, and anyone who sees differently is obviously just blinded by their own hatred and animus, because Bush is an objectively good man.

“We all were making our voices heard despite what was out in the press,” says Chris Edwards, who came out while working in the White House press advance office and introduced his boyfriend to the president and first lady on multiple occasions. “People say, ‘Just don’t work for him.’ Well, that’s just not reality. The reality is you need people in the party and outside the party to make change.”

George W. Bush started out as perhaps the most gay-friendly Republican president ever, an astonishing fact when you consider that, in his first year in office, 71 percent of Republicans thought homosexual behavior was morally wrong, according to Gallup. There’s no question that he recoiled at the gay-bashing of the religious right. “I’m not going to kick gays,” he told a friend before the 2000 campaign. “I think it is bad for Republicans to be kicking gays.” The party’s platform that year might have talked about the sanctity of traditional marriage as a foundation of American democracy, but this was nonetheless a president who, a few months before nailing down his party’s nomination in 2000, met in Austin with a dozen gay Republican leaders, proclaiming afterward, “I am a better person for the meeting.”



“What liberals can’t wrap their heads around is Bush is a good and decent man,” says Jeff Berkowitz, an opposition researcher and policy ace who worked in the White House, State Department and RNC during Bush’s presidency. “It’s possible for someone to hold a policy view as he did and still be a decent, normal person.” Berkowitz says that when he was “outed” by blogger Michael Rogers, whose campaign to publicize what he saw as the hypocrisy of gay Republican operatives was chronicled in the 2009 documentary Outrage, Bush staffers flocked to show their support. “It was great for networking,” he laughs. And besides, he says, he wasn’t in the closet at the time anyway.



If Rove saw political gain, other Bush aides saw a legal preemptive strike—against exactly the court-driven change that is now playing out. “The president’s position was that gay marriage could be imposed on the country by a federal court decision. One judge could do it,” says McConnell, the speechwriter, who is also a lawyer. McConnell says he understood that after a 2003 Massachusetts court ruling raised the issue, then-White House counsel Gonzales advised that “the only way to prevent that is a marriage amendment. It’s not an unreasonable position. It certainly was not anti-gay.”



But McConnell says Bush’s position on gay marriage was a reasonable combination of his personal concept of “morality” and the central GOP concept of frowning on an activist judiciary.

McConnell matter-of-factly told me he likely helped write Bush’s 2004 remarks endorsing the constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage. Even now the gay speechwriter defends that course. “I believed the president was taking a principled position, and the words he spoke on that issue were always reasonable and tolerant. That hasn’t always been the spirit of the debate, but it’s always been the spirit of George W. Bush. There was never a day I wasn’t proud of him and the vice president.”

Land: 'The Ultimate Rebellion Against God's Creation Is Transgenderism'

Earlier this week, Vice President Joe Biden spoke out against anti-gay discrimination around the world, declaring that the fight for gay rights is the "civil rights issue of our day" and saying that no culture has an excuse to practice prejudice and intolerance.

Richard Land, not surprisingly, did not agree with Biden's remarks, telling Newsmax TV today that his comments were "simplistic" and "wrong-headed" because "deeply-held religious convictions" cannot be brushed off merely as social or cultural values.

"The Bible," Land said, "is quite clear that homosexual behavior and lesbian behavior is a rebellion against God's order and perhaps the ultimate rebellion against God's creation is transgenderism. You know, I was born this way but I don't want to be this way so I'm going to change my gender; I don't know how you can have a more ultimate rebellion against God's creation and God's order than that."

For Biden to put the government "on the side of lowering religious convictions to the level of cultural and social values," Land concluded, "is ignorant at best and malicious at worst":

Wayne Allyn Root Sympathizes With Chris McDaniel Because They've Both Been 'Smeared' By Liberals

Wayne Allyn Root, who campaigned with Mississippi Senate candidate Chris McDaniel in the final days of his losing campaign, told Steve Deace yesterday that he sympathizes with McDaniel because he has also been “smeared” by liberals who think that he’s racist.

"They claim that because I called Obama a Manchurian candidate that I must be some kind of racist nutcase and extreme," he said.

Root explained that he is not a “birther” but is just asking the question about whether President Obama went to Columbia University, a fact that has been firmly established.

“I merely state the truth and say, do we have a Manchurian candidate?” Root said.

Here’s Root’s speech to a McDaniel rally last weekend, for which he was apparently unfairly smeared by liberals.

Christian Post Blogger Says Gay Marriage Is Like Calling A Hamburger A Hot Dog

Michael Bresciani is offended that the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv raised the LGBT flag during Pride Month, writing today in the Christian Post that the Obama administration’s support for LGBT rights is akin to “sending armies into the backyard barbecues of other nations to insure the rights of hamburgers to be called hot dogs.”

Disturbed by the idea of the flag of “perversion flying next to the very banner of freedom that cost so many Americans their lives to defend,” Bresciani writes that his “great disgust and deep sadness” are turning into “the first waters of a great flood.”

Facebook recently sported a picture of the gay rainbow flag flying alongside the Stars and Stripes outside the U.S. Embassy in Tel Aviv. It is hard to imagine the flag of a minority whose preference is perversion flying next to the very banner of freedom that cost so many Americans their lives to defend, but this is Obama’s idea of a righteous war.

Obama is no Alexander the Great or Norman Schwarzkopf and his chosen battle is the moral equivalent of sending armies into the backyard barbecues of other nations to insure the rights of hamburgers to be called hot dogs.

Those of us who will never sway from the Bible’s clear teaching that homosexuality is a perversion and an abomination to God, will find ourselves raising our own flag higher and higher as we stand against the moral decline of a nation we love and believe was once truly blessed by God.

Nearly fifty years in prophecy and fully knowing that these days of decline were well prophesied does little to keep the feelings of great disgust and deep sadness from creeping in like the first waters of a great flood. Having been through Hurricane Katrina and losing everything, I know what is left after the flood waters recede. You don’t want to see this!

Anti-Gay Activists Claim Macy's 'Insulted American Families' By Participating In LGBT Pride Events

The same crowd of Religious Right activists who cry “homo-fascism!” any time gay rights supporters criticize a business that supports anti-gay discrimination, is now organizing a campaign against Macy’s over the department store chain’s support for LGBT pride events.

In an interview published in BarbWire today, Phil Burress of Citizens for Community Values spoke with Linda Harvey, the head of Mission America, about why customers should be upset with Macy’s.

A coalition of pro- family and Christian groups is launching a campaign to inform American families about the unfortunate role of Macy’s, Inc. Department Stores and affiliates in supporting “gay pride” parades in cities throughout the nation.

Many people have no idea how radical these parades are,” said Phil Burress, president of Citizens for Community Values of Cincinnati. “The events and activities of a typical ‘pride’ week-end are decadent and highly-sexualized, deliberately so. They are a disgrace to communities, and certainly shouldn’t be financially supported by a retailer like Macy’s that claims to serve families.”



Throughout the summer months and “gay pride” season, Macy’s is making a different choice: to support the degradation of communities through events that are an insult to American families.

“This is nothing to be proud of,” Burress said, “and Macy’s should know better. Their customers certainly do.”

The American Family Association also denounced “the contemptible role of Macy’s department stores in supporting ‘gay pride’ throughout the nation,” arguing that [the] the chain’s actions “are a disgrace to communities.”

The group is encouraging members to write to Macy’s to protest the company’s support for a “very dangerous” and “destructive lifestyle.”

Dear Chairman Lundgren:

I am disappointed to learn that Macy's chooses to celebrate the sin of homosexuality.

Your company has taken a brazen approach toward the sanctity of family and marriage, and this offends the moral conscience of America.

Count my family as one who urges Macy's to reconsider the impact its decisions and promotions have on people. Homosexuality is very dangerous and unhealthy, and only leads to a destructive lifestyle.

National Right To Life Speaker: Contraception And Abortion Are The Real War On Women, And They Come From 'The Pit of Hell'

The National Right To Life Convention kicked off this morning with a panel discussion featuring National Review Online editor Kathryn Jean Lopez, anti-choice activist Dr. Jean Garton, and radio host and crisis pregnancy center director Joy Pinto.

All three, along with National Right to Life president Carol Tobias, who introduced the panel, struck back against the “War on Women” label that has been used for legislative assaults on abortion rights, contraception access, equal pay, and domestic violence protections.

Pinto — who runs a crisis pregnancy center in Birmingham, Alabama, which, like many such centers appears to misleading claim to offer medical consulting for women considering an abortion — argued that the “real war on women” consists of legal abortion and access to contraception, particularly emergency contraception.

She added that this “war on women” came from the “pit of hell” and implied that women who have abortions are like Eve eating the forbidden fruit in the hopes of eternal life: "It's the same lie. It's the same war."

Glenn Beck Compares Chris McDaniel's Loss To 'The Protocols Of The Elders Of Zion'

Glenn Beck is still fuming over Chris McDaniel's loss to Thad Cochran in Mississippi's run-off election and is especially outraged that black voters turned out to vote for Cochran because they were supposedly mobilized by a campaign to paint McDaniel as a racist who would take away their stuff.

After reading from a New York Times article about black Democrats who were voting for Cochran because "people still need stuff," Beck says that Tea Party candidates like McDaniel are being smeared with "bogus race charges" akin to the rabidly anti-Semitic "Protocols of the Elders Of Zion."

If you can get black voters to support a candidate by promising them free stuff, Beck said, then you have to paint their opponent as a racist by saying "well, at least Thad Cochran isn't trying to drink to blood of African Americans and is quite honestly making matzah balls out of the little Christian children over here too."

"It's the Protocols of the Elders of Zion," Beck said. "That's really what we're turning into. What a surprise, 'Protocols of the Elders of Zion,' oh, that's right, that was a Marxist-Communist thing. I forgot all about that.  How interesting it is that history always repeats itself":

William Owens: 'We Must Be Willing To Die' In Fight Against 'Abnormal' LGBT Rights

Before addressing last week’s March for Marriage, where he called for a new anti-gay “civil rights movement,” Rev. William Owens appeared on “The Capitol Hill Show” with Tea Party News Network host Tim Constantine to promote the rally.

Owens told Constantine that allowing gay people to marry takes away his rights, without of course saying which rights he is losing exactly. He is suffering so greatly, in fact, that he called for “another civil rights movement to reclaim our rights” with people who are “willing to die” to oppose LGBT equality.

Constantine: When I talk to people around the country, I always hear support for traditional marriage and yet the gay movement continues to march on, some in the legislature, mostly in the courts. Have we gone to a place where we can’t turn back or can common sense prevail once again?

Owens: We can turn back but it’s going to take another civil rights movement to reclaim our rights. We must be willing to suffer, we must be willing to die, we must be willing to go to jail, that’s what it is going to take to turn around what these idiots have put in motion.

During a vicious rant against the “abnormal” transgender community, Owens railed against President Obama as “the most immoral president” in all of American history.

It’s a terribly slippery slope and marriage is just a small part of it. They plan to turn this whole society as if we have no gender. They are supporting any form of abnormal life with human beings. In the state of California today, boys can go to girls’ restrooms and girls can go to boys’ restrooms. This transgender thing, a teacher will be able to come to school dressed as a man one day and as a woman the next. It’s terrible that this president has started this country on an immoral course. I’ve said it then and I’ll say it again, he is the most immoral president we have ever had.

Owens also complained that Obama is acting like “he’s Almighty God” by supporting LGBT rights, including such wrongdoings as allowing “gays in the White House.”

The disgraceful thing about gay people adopting children: Two men, one pretending to be a woman; two women, one pretending to be a man. It’s absolutely disgraceful. When you do the studies, when you look at families, children need a female mother and a male father. I have two babies, I’ve got one one-year-old and one two-years-old, and those children know the difference in their mother and their dad. It’s just deplorable with this president, and I put it at the feet of the president, because he’s the one giving all of these orders as if he’s Almighty God, kingdom high, to embrace the community of gay parades, gays in the White House, he has endorsed it and has taken our course on a terribly slippery slope on the morals of this country.

Pat Robertson Sidesteps Question About Polygamy In The Bible By Ranting Against Gay Rights

Today on “The 700 Club,” Pat Robertson fielded a question from a viewer who asked: “In the Old Testament men had many wives and it seems like it didn’t go against God. Where does it say in the Bible that man should have only one wife?”

Robertson responded that the viewer should consider moving to Utah or Saudi Arabia, and then insisted that the Bible condemns polygamy. However, he admitted that “somehow” many biblical figures, such as Solomon, were polygamists. Rather than explain the inconsistency, he joked that Solomon must have “taken a lot of vitamins, that poor old man,” and launched into a diatribe against gay rights.

“I said when they make these rulings that they are making about homosexuality, when they are making these rulings about other sexual practices, it won’t be long before they cancel the laws for bigamy,” he said. “It was said by Rick Santorum in the United States Senate, surely enough those laws will come down and surely enough they will. Everything goes.”

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