Democrats & Liberals Archives

Has the Republican Party Lost its Soul?

A few weeks ago when there was early speculation about Senator John McCain as a possible Kerry running mate, this was his response.

“It’s impossible to imagine the Democratic Party seeking a pro-life, free-trading, non-protectionist, deficit hawk.”

This got me thinking. Is this really true? With the Republican Party disappearing into the abyss of neocon reality distortion, which party better represents the ideals of a moderate Republican?

Lets examine his first issue:


  1. Pro-Life: McCain is against abortion except in the case of rape, incest or the mothers health and would like to see Roe v. Wade overturned except in these cases. This is the moderate Republican position. This is not the position that is being pushed by the Republican leadership. The current Republican party is maneuvering to establish the fetus as having the full rights of a human being. Once this is established, there can be no exceptions for rape, incest or the mothers health. After all, it wouldn't be the fault of the fetus how it was conceived. Its an all or nothing scenario. Move over to the Democratic party - complete resistance to overturning Roe v. Wade - but other than that, plenty of opportunity to work on reducing the number of abortions. Take your pick: Sex education, abstinence programs (just not to the exclusion of other methods), adoption promotion, child support programs, etc. The rigid blinders worn by the Republican leaders limits these possibilities. So yes, Senator McCain pro-life supporters are welcome if they moderate their views and don't work to overturn Roe v. Wade.
  2. Free-Trade: Certainly a political minefield in the Democratic Party. The left is vehemently apposed to globalization, but the center/right of the party is supportive of free trade. Although usually with some limits that usually don't concert the neocons (slave labor, child labor, environmental destruction, yada yada yada). The Republican Party hasn't been to consistently free trade either: steel tariffs, humongous farm bill (quick aside: Can anyone tell me why family farms are so important to protect, but not family hardware stores, or family banks, or family grocers?). McCain might not be in line with the majority of Democrats, but he certainly wouldn't be ostracized.
  3. Non-Protectionist: See Free-Trade
  4. Deficit Hawk: Your kidding me right? What in the world is a deficit hawk doing in todays Republican Party. This administration has done more to convince Democrats that a balanced budget is critical to protecting important programs precisely because the Republicans want to use extreme deficit spending in order to cripple the federal government (starve the beast). Deficit Hawks should leave the 'tax cut and spend' Republicans.

OnTheIssues describes Senetor McCain as a Libertarian-Leaning Conservative. The neocons are taking the Republican Party to the extreme right so fast they are leaving moderates like McCain in the dust.

The neocon leadership has taken the road of party over country. It is time for moderate Republicans either to abandon their party or to stand up and put country over party and fight to redeem the Republican Party.

Posted by Al Maline at April 17, 2004 7:35 PM