The coming rift in the Republican Party

Spinning through the radio dial yesterday I came upon a national political talk show and caught a caller from Texas proclaim that Jon Huntsman was no conservative because he “flunked all four tests” which were (1) he supported same sex marriage (when the host interjected that Huntsman only was for civil unions the caller replied they were “the same thing”); (2) he was for abortion; (3) he believed in evolution; and (4) he believed in global warming. Such litmus tests put into context the extremism of modern US conservatism and highlight the very public departures from this dogma by two prominent Republicans in recent weeks.

First, Presidential candidate Jon Huntsman used his Twitter account to say:

To be clear. I believe in evolution and trust scientists on global warming. Call me crazy.

Shortly after that, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie also said that “Climate change is real” and that “Human activity plays a role in these changes, and it is impacting our state.” Christie has also taken on another frequent flier of the right: Christie was heavily criticized for nominating a Muslim-American lawyer to a New Jersey judgeship because of fears of “Shariah Law.” In response (shown in the video below), Christie effusively praised the lawyer and said

This Sharia Law business is crap. It’s crazy. I’m tired of dealing with the crazies.


What’s up with this revolt against the conservative mainstream? National political figures like Huntsman and Christie don’t do anything by accident; every word is calculated. We could be witnessing the opening salvos in a counter-revolution by moderates against the prevailing positions of the Republican Party in America today.

3 Responses to The coming rift in the Republican Party

  1. PaulM says:

    I think the way the national Republican Party figures and supporters toyed with the “birther” issue and let it play out in all its disgusting hostility toward the President was the tipping point for some leaders in the GOP. The tendency of some people to create an alternative universe of information and stick to it without question is bad for making public decisions in a democracy. The CNN question of the day was “Why do Americans seem to be allergic to brains when it comes to choosing a President?”

  2. Steve says:

    If I were a woman, I might have, I think, legitimate concerns about appearing before a Muslim judge. Now if Christie is saying that this man is a sort of modern Muslim who doesn’t adhere to beliefs about women that are obviously prevalent in many other parts of the Muslim world, I’ll take him at his word, and I do admire his courage in sticking up for a friend whom he clearly feels would make an excellent judge.

    By the same token, I don’t like listening to Christian politicians (Perry) who talk, as Woody Allen said, like they “know God personally.” Personally, I’m looking for a fiscal conservative who would probably fail of of the litmus tests Dick mentioned. I don’t know yet if there is such a candidate.

  3. Publius says:

    The 2008 presidential election proved Americans are allergic to brains when it comes to choosing a President. Just look at President Obama’s performance and approval rating, as evidence. Buy in haste, repent in leisure.