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JLeslie's avatar

Republicans: During the Presidential run of 2016 what do you think about defecting your party?

Asked by JLeslie (59042points) August 15th, 2011

From what I understand the Republican party is about 50% Evangelical, and hard right on many issues. Then there is this other part of the party who is rather moderate, especially on social issues. From where I sit, and my glasses are fairly blue I must admit, we will call them indigo, coming close to the purple middle, it seems to me there are way more chances of getting a moderate Democrat than a moderate Republican through the primaries.

So, if you are a Republican who wants fiscal responsibility and is liberal on social issues, do you think your vote could cause a bigger shift among the Dems than the Republicans?

I keep waiting for the Republicans to wake up and tell the extreme right wong of the party to take a flying leap, but it isn’t going to happen I don’t think.

The question can go to Democrats also who might think going to the Republican party and overpowering the far extreme right might work.

I realize the question is very biased, but feel free to flip it on its head or argue the basic premise.

Thanks.

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42 Answers

cletrans2col's avatar

I would not switch to the Democrat Party, as I am a fiscal and social (not bible thumper) conservative.

But I am tired of the ultra-right preventing us from having good national candidates. If McCain didn’t have to play kiss-ass with them, we could have gotten a more competent (and electable) Christie Todd Whitman instead of the empty suit-skirt Palin.

mazingerz88's avatar

@cletrans2col Just wondering. What is a fiscal and social conservative’s take on welfare that goes to the poor, whether deserved or not? Thanks.

YoBob's avatar

Well, technically I am an independent. However, as I lean to the right I tend to vote Republican most of the time unless there is a viable Libertarian candidate. However, I can say one thing for darned sure, I would not vote for that jackass Perry on a bet and hope the GOP has the good sense not to give him the nomination.

JLeslie's avatar

@YoBob What do you dislike specifically about Perry? I don’t know much about the guy yet. The talking heads seem to think he will give the others a run for their money.

mazingerz88's avatar

@YoBob And I thought Perry would be an attractive candidate compared to Romney. Would you share why you think Perry is a jackass?

YoBob's avatar

Well, I live in Austin Texas and have been under “Uncle Ricky’s” rule for awhile. Aside from being a general arrogant pompous ass (which is to be expected from an “alpha dog” personality in a position of political power) he has done several things that have rubbed me the wrong way.

I think the most egregious is the whole toll road travesty that he rammed down the throats of his subjects constituents. I really don’t have the time to go into the whole sorted details as I have to attend to that work thing, but the highlights are this:

1) In spite of reasonable plans to fund new highway construction through tolls, the proceeds of which would go into escrow until such time as the construction cost was re-paid and enough profit was generated to cover long term maintenance, at which time the roads would become regular highways our illustrious Governor put his political weight behind a plan that gave the contract for collecting tolls to a company, as I understand it, located in South America with little or no accountability.—(I can’t help but wonder how that money trail is connected to a numbered bank account somewhere)

2) If that wasn’t bad enough, he was pushing a plan to turn existing roadways in my fair city into toll roads, the tolls, of course, being collected by the same folks mentioned above.

3) Then there was that whole trans-Texas corridor fiasco (that fortunately failed). In addition to being another great Perry toll road project, it was used as an excuse to claim imminent domain over hundreds of small family farms (Oh, sorry, I know your family has lived her for 5 generations, but too bad…). As the steward of a small chunk of ranch in North Texas, this kind of hit a nerve. Especially since much of that land was not for the roadway directly, but to give the state ownership of all land on either side of the roadway so that they would be able to control any concessions along the whole route.

Then there was that whole Governor’s mansion thing…

mazingerz88's avatar

@YoBob Yeah, thanks. That’ll do it I guess. Lol.

gondwanalon's avatar

Perhaps the question here is really asking is: When are conservatives going to wake up and become liberal? I’m conservative because I would like: less government; lower taxes; more freedom; more personal responsibility.

The U.S.A has a 2 party political system made up of the Democratic and Republican Parties. I ask myself, “Which party is most conservative?” The answer to that question is the political party that I support.

I will support the Democratic Party as soon as it becomes more conservative than the Republican Party.

cletrans2col's avatar

@mazingerz88 I cannot speak for all, but I will say that I have no problem with most social programs as long as they are not cradle to grave.

YoBob's avatar

@gondwanalon – Which party is more conservative? IMHO, it’s the Libertarians.

JLeslie's avatar

@gondwanalon The question is more like if you lean towards the middle, which party is more likely to give you someone moderate? I think many people un the country are socially liberal and fiscally moderate-conservative. Neither extremes of the parties fit that, so we see independents, but independents have a hard time winning a Presidential election.

cletrans2col's avatar

@YoBob It will get interesting when the media decides to start attacking his record. Something tells me more folks like you will have no problem telling the country about why they hate him.

Although I like Perry and his “America, Fuck Yeah!!!” attitude, I just think that Romney would be better as the head of the ticket. He has his flaws, but he is conservative enough for me to tolerate. Maybe Rick as VP?

Tuesdays_Child's avatar

I’d like to hit this one right back at the Liberal/Democrats. When will you all denounce the extreme left wing of your party? You know, the ones who threaten people at voting booths and those who aren’t interested in toning down the rhetoric as President Obama asked them too. Bottom line is that there are issues on BOTH sides of the political aisle, sure the GOP held out during the debt talks….so did the Dems. I’m not particularly tickled with either side right now, but the GOP does, and always has, fall more into my requirements of smaller federal government, less taxes and fewer entitlements.
@YoBob, I am a fan of the Libertarian ideology as well.

cletrans2col's avatar

@YoBob Libertarians are unrealistic.

YoBob's avatar

@cletrans2col – How so? It seems they are the only party who are truly advocating a shrinkage in the size and scope of government without the attached baggage of attempting to legislate morality.

FWIW, of the current GOP hopefuls my choice would be Romney with Bachman as VP (However, I sure wish Condi Rice would come out of retirement and throw her hat in!)

cletrans2col's avatar

@YoBob I have found that most libertarians would be happy if the Feds were just the President, a shotgun, and guard dog. I too want the spending and size of government shrunk, but we still need to function.

JLeslie's avatar

@Tuesdays_Child I did adress the reverse in my original question and again 6 answers above this answer when I wrote to @gondwanalon Not sure if you are being defensive about the question leaning towards being critical of Republicans, all of that was pointed out, admitted by me in the very beginning, and I said I was open to hear opinions on Democrats defecting over to the Republicans for a similar type of goal.

Tuesdays_Child's avatar

@JLeslie Sorry, didn’t mean to come across as defensive, I have read your question and was just using your statement that you would welcome the flip side. As I stated, I am really none too happy with either party at the moment.

JLeslie's avatar

@Tuesdays_Child It’s not that you necessarily came across that way, I was just trying to know where you were coming from. Internet communication can be difficult. Hard to perceive tone and intent. Thanks :).

gondwanalon's avatar

@YoBob Libertarians are not currently a viable political party.

CaptainHarley's avatar

Hahahahahahahahahahahahaahahhahahahaha!

JLeslie's avatar

@CaptainHarley Hey, my dad basically did just that a few years ago.

YoBob's avatar

@gondwanalon – Actually, they seem to be fairing quite well at the local level and I believe there are more than a couple in the US congress. There are several more, Ron Paul for example, who are Libertarian but running under the umbrella of one of the two larger parties.

gondwanalon's avatar

@YoBob There are exceptions to every rule. Like it or not, we still have a two party system and there is no way that I’m going to through my vote away on any Losertarian presidential candidate. That would simply help to elect a liberal democrat candidate (like Obama).

@CaptainHarley Well, there you go again.

Qingu's avatar

@Tuesdays_Child, who are these people who are threatening people at voting booths? Is this uniquely a left-wing problem? Have these people (whoever they are) managed to secure a major base of the Democratic party, as the groups in the original question have done with the Republican party?

Sorry, but I’m just very skeptical of “well your side is just as bad” without more concrete examples.

amujinx's avatar

”...there is no way that I’m going to through my vote away on any Losertarian presidential candidate. That would simply help to elect a liberal democrat candidate (like Obama).”

That is exactly why we are stuck with the two party system. People vote ‘to win’, and not for who they think will do the best job and who best voices what they actually believe.

gondwanalon's avatar

@amujinx I learned my lesson in 1992 when I voted for Ross Perot. Perot got about 15% of the vote and Clinton was elected with less than 50%. I essentially voted for Clinton. Never again with that happen in my case. Two parties is what we have. That is our system and so I’ll continue to vote for the lesser of two evils.

amujinx's avatar

@gondwanalon You can still vote for your Republican/Democrat candidate and support a third party though. Most people who run for most positions are nominated for more than one party. When you vote, you can vote for your candidate in a third party, and your vote will count towards who you want and also show that you want whichever third party to get more support. You can’t necessarily do this for the PotUS, but most local and some state elections you can do this in.

I still think voting ‘to win’ and not for your best candidate is a mockery to democracy though.

Qingu's avatar

@amujinx democracy is about compromise.

gondwanalon's avatar

@amujinx I always thought that winning was a good thing. I don’t understand how not voting for someone who is a loser is mocking the system.

amujinx's avatar

@Qingu And if you compromise right out the gates, you end up giving up more than you would if you stood your ground a little.

@gondwanalon But how is voting the lesser of two evils actually winning? You lose either way, you just might lose a little less than you would have with the other choice. I understand where you are coming from though. My argument is poor in one fact: I need to convince all Americans that voting third party is alright, or it won’t work. All I can actually hope is that a few people listen, stop, and think about what they actually want, and are willing to put their ballot on the line to show it. In time, maybe a viable third choice may appear, and people will look at what they want America to be and look at whether they are willing to take a chance to change things in a way they actually want, not how our two parties mandate it to be. Until then, I will continue voting third party when I think it’s appropriate, and hope that one day my vote will truly matter. Until then, all I can say is that I always vote for what I believe in, and will not cave to vote just to win. In my eyes, I’m still winning.

Qingu's avatar

@amujinx how are you winning if less of what you want gets accomplished? It seems like you’re voting based on your own vanity than what you think is best for the country.

amujinx's avatar

@Qingu When neither Republicans or Democrats are doing what I think is best for the US, and those are the only two viable choices, what I think should be accomplished to better the US wouldn’t happen either way. So I vote based on what I believe is best. If voting for what I believe makes me vain, so be it. I would rather fight for what I believe than vote to get one or two extremely minor accomplishments and what I think are major setbacks. I have hope for the future, and if people stop fighting for what they believe in to always just go with the lesser of two evils, then the only hope is to keep the slide ‘down’ as slow as possible. I would rather fight to go ‘up’, even if I never get to see it.

Qingu's avatar

@amujinx, nobody is talking about “best.” We’re talking about “better.”

Are you unable to ascertain whether Republicans or Democrats would be better for the country? Do you honestly believe they are equally bad?

And who is helped if you vote for someone you know will lose because you “believe”? Who benefits, other than you? Certainly not the country as a whole, or people in it.

Qingu's avatar

Also, do you participate in the two parties’ primaries? Do you try to influence the Dems or Republicans to nominate a person who better reflects your own views before the election takes place?

amujinx's avatar

@Qingu Yes, I do believe they are equally bad.

People can be helped by voting third party (mostly locally though, it’s much harder nationally). If enough people vote for a third party, it shows that that is an issue in that area (since most third parties are single issue parties) and will sway how politicians run in that area. It’s small measures to nudge the system to what you believe in. It’s not actually a wasted vote, even when you lose.

I do vote in the primaries too. I’m on the Republican side, since my district is overwhelmingly democrat. While it does make me lose in most elections (again), it makes my vote count more on the issues I care about since my vote holds much more sway over the Republican side in the district.

Yes, you can say I’m doing nothing nationally, but I do my best to make my vote worth something locally. Everything has to start somewhere.

gondwanalon's avatar

@amujinx In a way I envy your idealism in that it reminds my of my youth. Politics is anything but ideal. It is ugly with mud slinging rhetoric, propaganda and lies coming in from all directions. We worker bees struggle to determine just where the truth lies. HA! No but seriously, If you really are on the republican side of the political scale then consider voting like it. After most of the hoopla is coming to an end and the poles are closed in November 2012, the winner will emerge as a Democrat or a Republican not a Losertarian.

Tuesdays_Child's avatar

@Qingu link
They have secured a major base in the Democrat party, mostly in the DOJ right now….Judging by the smug sounding tone of your question, you are perfectly aware of this. If that is the case then next will come some sort of deflection or excuse about why this isn’t so. If, perhaps, I am incorrect in my assessment then I apologize.

Qingu's avatar

@amujinx, you believed Barack Obama was equally bad as John McCain? I’m sorry, but I don’t think this is a rational statement. But since you’re on the Republican side maybe I shouldn’t try to convince you to not vote independent. Ron Paul 2012!

Qingu's avatar

@Tuesdays_Child, ah, yes, the Black Panthers. Totally in control of the Democratic party… based on a single news article reporting voter intimidation at a single poll station… as observed by Republicans.

Also, you’re referring to Obama’s DOJ not pressing charges? Because that’s not true.
http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2010/jul/23/bill-oreilly/bill-oreilly-blames-obama-administration-not-pursu/

“In other words, the decision not to pursue criminal charges was made by the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division prior to the Obama administration.”

amujinx's avatar

@Qingu Yes, I think they are equally bad. You can say that’s not rational all you want, but bad is an arbitrary term. What I think is bad might not be what you think is bad. Trying to claim rationality beyond that is both futile and pointless. According to you then, does the people who believed that McCain would be better than Obama beat me in irrationality? Must be nice to “know” you are more “rational” than the almost 60 million people who disagreed with you.

Qingu's avatar

Any two given people, unless they are identical twins or identically brainwashed members of a cult, would not be “equally bad” as presidents. People differ in their fundamental beliefs, their approaches to negotiations, and their personal character.

You could easily say they would be bad in different ways, but part of democracy involves evaluating what those ways are, and prioritizing them.

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