Some Republicans on track to repeat past mistakes: Our present crisis is not merely economic and political, but moral in nature

Republicans are riding high in the polls right now — things are clearly going their way. However, superficial Republicans are again seeking to dumb down the work ahead by narrowing their focus and ignoring the tenets of their excellent platform.

It’s easy to understand the desire to ignore things such as serious foreign policy issues. The Republican Party is still failing to effectively communicate a coherent foreign policy message post 9/11/01. The new reality brought about by a successful attack on our homeland by adherents of Islamic jihad is not difficult to comprehend (click here to learn more). But God forbid the GOP get its act together — it’s much easier to toss the issue aside.

It’s also easy to understand the junior high like mentality that has Republican governors like Mitch Daniels and Haley Barbour suggesting that the social issue planks in the GOP Platform are now verboten. This is a good time to make a much-needed point: Daniels and Barbour represent a long list of individuals who have presided over the twenty-plus year failure to successfully advance conservative (GOP Platform) principles.

Every time someone wants to praise guys like this for their long tenure at the top of the political influence pyramid, it’s necessary to remind everyone that besides welfare reform and the Bush II tax cuts, the GOP has been such a miserable failure that Barack Obama was able to get elected to the presidency.

This shrinking of the Republican agenda is nothing new. When President Ronald Reagan ran for reelection in 1984 the Republican Party had an opportunity to campaign to win a mandate. Instead, the Reagan-Bush reelect team chose to use the light and fluffy “It’s Morning in America” theme. It produced a landslide win and a second term for Reagan but the voters weren’t offered a chance to endorse restraining the growth of government or to enact genuine entitlement reform.

The rest, as they say, is history. The tepid domestic policy accomplishments of the second Reagan term were predictable.

Today, all signposts tell us that we’re on the way to yet another landslide Republican victory. There are reports that some Congressional Republicans are drafting a document for which they plan to seek voter endorsement this November. That’s the good news.

The bad news is that these Republicans — many of the same people who were influential during the Bush/Hastert domestic policy disaster — are now claiming to be smarter than they were back then. They’re not smarter.

Instead of recognizing that they failed on all GOP Platform issues — foreign policy, economic policy, and values issues, these newly “enlightened” Republicans are claiming that we can soft-peddle foreign policy and ignore the social issue planks.

This approach might get them into office, but it will not arm them with the kind of mandate they’ll need to advance conservative principles.

Indiana Congressman Mike Pence addressed this topic last week at the Values Voter Summit:

“[A] vision for a better America must recognize that our present crisis is not merely economic and political, but moral in nature. At the root of these times should be the realization that people in positions of authority have walked away from the timeless truths of honesty, integrity, an honest day’s work for an honest day’s pay and the simple notion that you ought to treat the other guy the way you want to be treated. We will not restore this nation with public policy alone. It will require public virtue, and that emanates from the traditional institutions of our nation – life, family and religion.

Now I know some say that Republicans should stay away from such issues this year…that the American people are focused on jobs and spending and our movement would do well to stand aside, bank the win and return to fight after this fiscal and economic crisis has passed.

But we do not live in a world where an American leader can just focus on our financial ledger. A political party that would govern this great nation must be able to handle more than one issue at a time. We must focus on our fiscal crisis and support our troops. We must work to create jobs and protect innocent human life, defend traditional marriage and secure religious liberty.

To those who say that marriage is not relevant to our budget crisis, I say, ‘you would not be able to print enough money in a thousand years to pay for the government you would need if the traditional family continues to collapse.'”

Let’s simplify it even more. If this country is going to get back on track, we need more leaders who can walk and chew gum at the same time. Up until now, we haven’t had enough of them. The consequence of this is in the White House.

Up next: The Liberal agenda is not just economic.