Guest Blog: The Day The Republican Party Died

Today’s blog is a guest post from a friend and fellow Iowa State delegate, Bryan Sutton.  He has been active for a long time, and is somewhat of an expert on parliamentary procedure. Please enjoy his post and look for him on Facebook.

I believe future historians will teach that August 24th, 2012 was the day the Republican Party died. This is the day that the Grand Old Party showed it was no longer grand, but merely a party of “Good Old Boys.” The actions of the Credentials and Rules Committees on this date clearly show this to be the case.

I am a 51-year-old, lifelong Republican. More than that, I’m the third generation (in a row) of my family to be active in the party. We have all held positions on our county central committees, been precinct chairs, county chairs, county, district, and state delegates. I will admit that none of us, to my knowledge, have served on the state central committee or in any national capacity. This is not for lack of desire, but those positions, historically, have required a level of financial independence and a time commitment that we have been unable to provide. I do think that having started as a junior delegate many years ago and the discussions my family has had gives me a unique insight into the history of the party and its recent actions.

Without going into history lesson, I will accept that modern politics are considered to have begun with the “primary” election process. While some states still use a caucus process, I think this is the point where “modern” politics is considered to have begun. This process was established to remove the power of the political “insiders” and give it to the electorate (voters). This is the process that I was raised in and believed in.

I was raised to believe that being a Republican meant having three core beliefs that shape all your political thinking: smallest government possible, governing at the lowest level possible, and thereby keeping taxes as low as possible. Historically, the rules of the RNC have fairly well followed these beliefs; they let the state parties determine what type of process to use (primary/caucus) and how to elect/apportion delegates to the national convention to represent them. The rules of the RNC had gone before the delegates to the national convention before those rules could be changed. The GOP also, historically, espoused that Republicans were persons who held high ethical standards, embodied personal integrity, and were personally responsible for their actions.

In 1975, Ronald Reagan defined Libertarianism as the heart and soul of Conservatism (July 1, 1975, Reason Magazine). Conservatism is what the GOP has claimed it has always stood for. Accepting Ronald Reagan’s definition then means that Libertarianism is the heart and soul of the GOP.

For many years I’ve seen the GOP losing its way. Endorsing bigger and bigger government (at both the state and federal levels), raising taxes, and compromising their principles; explaining it all as the only way to govern effectively. This is not the GOP I believe in. The actions of the RNC on Friday are final, proof positive that the GOP no longer exists. It no longer has any ethics or integrity. I would bet that nobody will accept responsibility for initiating those changes.

During the 2012 election cycle, the GOP had within it a strong resurgence of Libertarianism. The RNC had within its rules a fair way for candidates that were not mainstream (the favorite of the political insiders) to get their names placed on the national convention ballot for consideration to be nominated to run for president of the United States on the Republican ticket. The Libertarian movement within the GOP followed those rules and garnered a plurality of delegates in eight states; only five were required. By ignoring, bending, and outright breaking those rules the Credentialing Committee had previously unseated 3 of those states delegates and allowed the mainstream candidate to replace them with delegates favorable to him.

That left a problem, the Liberty candidate still had the requisite 5 states to be nominated and nobody from those states was challenging those delegations. Then, at the last minute, the chairperson of the Maine Credentialing Committee challenged its own decision that all the state delegates were properly credentialed. This allowed the RNC Credentials Committee to unseat all but five of the delegates from Maine. This is where the “Good Old Boys” party fully begins, on Friday the 24th of August 2012, and the GOP dies…..

By the RNC rules, the remaining delegates from a state are to choose the replacement delegates for that state if delegates are not seated and there are no remaining alternates. The RNC still had a problem at this point. The majority, if not all, of the remaining delegates were part of the Liberty movement and would likely choose like minded replacements; thereby still allowing the Liberty candidate to be nominated from the floor of the convention. The RNC decided, instead of following its own rules, to choose the replacement delegates itself. Those delegates, of course, support the mainstream candidate.

There were several other proposed changes to the rules governing the actions of the RNC that day also:

  1. Change the number of states required to be nominated from the floor from 5 to 8.
  2. Change the delegates required from those states from a plurality to a majority.
  3. Instead of allowing states to determine whether delegates to the national convention are bound or unbound; REQUIRE that all delegates be bound to vote a for a certain candidate.

All of these proposed changes are relatively insignificant in comparison to one. That rule is not a change, but a proposed additional rule. In short, it allows the RNC to change or add any rule it wants, at any time it wants, without that change or addition having to be approved by the full delegation of the national convention. This rule effectively ends any power to affect the direction of the Republican Party the voters may have remaining.

As I understand, the convention delegates will have two chances to approve/disapprove the proposed rules. However, since the RNC has stacked the delegation in favor of their chosen candidate, it is highly likely that the rules will be approved as presented. That will be final nail in the coffin of the GOP.

I find it appalling that the RNC would so blatantly lock out a known 20% of its electorate, the heart and soul of its electorate, after so many years of pandering to 8% of it. I say 20% because that is the percentage being quoted as Liberty minded or Constitutional conservatives. That 20% is perceived to be “newcomers” to the party; primarily young people that have recently found a political voice in the Liberty movement and became active in the party in an attempt to be heard. Personally, I think there are many more than 20%. They are people like me who have been active for years, but have not previously found much support in the party, at least not vocal support. From my own personal experience, when I started to speak out against the party supporting platform planks that were clearly unconstitutional; I found many more like me that felt the same way. Based on those whom I’ve spoken with, I would guess that the Liberty or Constitutional conservatives represent at least 50% of the party, if not more.

Is the GOP truly dead? After the actions of August 24th, 2012, in my mind; yes. Will the party disappear? I doubt it.

The Liberty movement has made itself known and is, at least partially, now represented in RNC; where it was not before. It now has the ability to begin shaping the future of the GOP. I fully encourage all Liberty minded people to become active at whatever level they are comfortable participating at. Whether this means talking to others and showing them the light of what a truly constitutionally conservative party can be or becoming active on a precinct, county, state, and/or national level; be active.

We ARE the future of the new Republican party, but it will not be given to us. The current insiders have shown they will not play by the rules, even their own rules, so we must reclaim the party; redefine, reshape, and redirect it so it once again becomes a truly Grand Old Party.

Whether the party is fractured beyond repair or will be reborn remains to be seen. In either case, I think that future historians will mark August 24th, 2012 as the day the Republican Party died.

About angiedavidson75

mama,political activist, cat lover, free thinker
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34 Responses to Guest Blog: The Day The Republican Party Died

  1. sherry carmien says:

    Excellent and unfortunately I couldn’t agree more.

  2. Excellent post from my friend Bryan, and I agree fully as well.

  3. Lee Weishar says:

    So true. I think changes are coming. I believe the republicans will lose the election because it chased away a large portion of it’s potential voters, and many people are starting to realize there is now little difference between the republicans and democrats. Either their loss this election will force them to change, or I believe a new party will be born. It may take some time before the general public can be pulled away from the party they have been instructed to believe in without question, but I see it happening.

    When you finally have a politician of character like Ron Paul, who is then shunned for telling the truth… it will wake people up.

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  5. Like you, Bryan, I am still a working man at age 62 and a life-long second-generation Republican, lifelong taxpayer, and have a personal acquaintance with the Constitution. (I also write with fervor at my own site, I also have had handicapped kids in my home for the past 22 years and continuing, (my own and someone else’s), have often had and still do have a second job, and I am heartsick about what has happened to America. Like, you, I cannot drop my responsibilities and become significantly active in the party, either locally or nationally. But I am ready to join a Liberty party, if it comes to pass. I don’t know what else to do…

  6. I am disgusted by the what the ‘GOP’ is doing. Why not let the people decide? This proves even more that Romney and Obama are the same. The GOP would rather let Obama win then let the people vote for Ron Paul. I’m shocked at how blatant their actions against the voters have become. If Ron Paul doesn’t get on the ballot, I’m voting for Gary Johnson.

  7. Rand Allan says:

    A good analysis, but a faulty conclusion in my eyes. I, too, was a lifelong Republican espousing the principles of smaller govt and more freedom. I, too, watched the GOP abandon one principle after another. I also watched the GOP manipulate the election process in 2008 to remove all candidates with a bent towards liberty and install a candidate that very few people felt good about. Shortly after that, I realized that the GOP no longer represented any of my values, and I left the party to join the Libertarian Party, whose values mirrored those of Ron Paul to a large extent. Fast forward to 2012, when Ron Paul actually had a chance to gain the nomination, and I witness dirty politics that could embarass even the dirty pool players of 2008. Although I appreciate that you want to return the GOP back to its original principles, I disagree that the GOP can still be reformed from within. The fruit is totally rotten, and when the fruit is completely rotten, you can’t just cut the bad part out…you throw the entire fruit away and get yourself a new one. That’s what all the supporters of liberty should do. The GOP does not want you. You would be better served following Gary Johnson and the Libertarian Party. At least that party practices what they preach and represents the only US political party that would actually work to shrink the size of govt and respect all individual liberty.

    • Stacey says:

      Rand, I couldn’t agree more. I followed Ron Paul’s campaign closely – so closely it was nearly a full time job, and each time (and there were many) he got ahead these SOB’s rigged it. Bad weather, votes from entire precincts mysteriously gone missing, purposely giving Ron Paul’s delegates misinformation as to time and place of a caucus, filling parking lots to crowd out spaces so his supporters would be late and therefore disqualified, changed rules,…you name it. They pulled EVERY single trick, put up any and all possible obstacles throughout the entire process, and it more than sickens me. The GOP is rotten to the core, and I’ll have nothing more to do with them. Ever.

    • Bryan Sutton says:

      I can fully appreciate your and Stacy’s position. Please understand that, as much as I wanted to, I avoided stating my opinion in regards of who to support in the current election cycle.

      Because we now do have liberty candidates on the RNC, it is my belief that change can be affected from within. This has happened as recently as the 1980 election cycle. This was first election after reaching the age of majority.

      Jerry Falwell and the “Moral Majority” were threatening to make significant in roads and gain control of the party. As you know, they did. They are that vocal 8% I alluded to which have misguided the party since. So it can be done. We just need to stand our ground and fight for it.

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  9. Scott Clark says:

    The only folks left who remotely resemble the GOP of even twenty years ago are moderate democrats. Now the GOP is represented by the likes of Steve King and Michelle Bachmann? They don’t even resemble earthlings…

  10. Elisheva LEvin says:

    As an outsider watching from the sidelines, I agree that the GOP is committing slow suicide and may have just topped the dose of poison. Now the GOP resembles the democrats in not espousing individual liberty and in supporting more and more government. I believe Romney is going to lose the election for this reason. As a Libertarian, I urge all reasonable Liberty Republicans to consider voting for Gary Johnson in order to help build the only party that supports Liberty and to bring to it a source of rationality and political savvy that it desperately needs in order to continue to get the message across. Ron Paul’s personality cult has failed, as it was destined to do. However, in those areas where Ron Paul truly espoused liberty, his legacy can and will live on. But it will do so outside of the GOP, which has been anti-liberty for a long while.

    • Jan Ward says:

      At this point if one votes for a 3rd party candidate doesn’t that guarantee a vote for Obama? We have to get that man out of the whitehouse–I’m not excited about the R&R ticket but we have to get rid of BO—

      • Bryan Sutton says:

        That is same scare tactic that has been used for years. McCain was not a good candidate, but we should rally around him to prevent the Dems from taking control. It didn’t work, did it? Now we are supposed to believe in the chosen boy using the same logic? Only sheeple will accept a scare tactic as reason. If you do not support the chosen boy but vote for him because he is the lesser of 2 evils, you are still voting for evil.

        The RNC had to know the risk they were taking. They hoped that people will vote for MR for no other reason than what you said. They sacrificed true unity, for the appearance of unity. If they had played by the rules, they could have achieved true unity.

        Don’t be lead like lambs to the slaughter. The RNC made its bed, now it must lay in it.

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  12. Dave Nalle says:

    A better party will rise from the ashes of this election. By their outrages they discredit and expose themselves for the venal opportunists they are. Romney will lose the election and in the aftermath the Liberty Movement will rise to lead the party.

    Dave Nalle
    Republican Liberty Caucus

  13. Elizabeth says:

    And so the mass exodus of Republicans left with a shred of decency begins. When Romney doesn’t win the election (because Ron Paul supporters WILL NOT vote for Romney despite Rand Paul selling his soul to the devil), they will have to look to the pile of fecal matter they crowned as their prince of the Republican National Party for them to see why we fled. Between their treatment of Ron Paul and the Republican State Party tactics in Michigan, Pennsylvania and Iowa trying to keep Gary Johnson off the ballot with bogus rules and litigious threats to wear the Libertarian Party down financially, the Republicans are now officially as corrupt at the Democrats.

  14. I keep hoping for the day when right-leaning Democrats and left-leaning Republicans look at their respective parties, then look at each other and realize they have more in common with the latter than the former. The system is so stacked against a third party, they are trying to rip Johnson off the ballot in at least one state already, that only a collapse of the two parties and the resulting confusion could let a new party break through.

    • They are trying to get Gary Johnson off of the ballot because they just realized that all of the Paul Supporters will be voting Gary Johnson due to the GOP shenanigans. He wasn’t viewed as a threat before. Now suddenly they are realizing that the Liberty movement isn’t going away and that there IS a Patriot on the ballot despite their attempts at preventing it.

      • Bryan Sutton says:

        I have read that they have previously been challenging other 3rd party candidates. In Ma., I believe it was, they have already forced the Constitution Party candidate to withdraw because they could not afford to fight the challenge. The Liberty Party is fighting to remain.

        In Ia. they forced the SOS to throw out GP’s original, fully signed, petition to be on the ballot for no apparent reason. The SOS went so far as to say the LP must collect signatures only at the state fair. The LP did so and collected enough signatures again to be on the ballot. Now the MR campaign is challenging those signatures on the grounds that they were not members of the LP, even though Ia. law does not require that.

        With the deeeep pockets MR has; they are challenging everyone, everywhere, I imagine, to ensure that this will only be a 2 horse race.

  15. And then you read about the DOJ, the IRS, DHS, and even the Social Security office buying MILLIONS of rounds of Ammo in preparations for civil unrest, when all they really need to do is allow RP to be on the ticket. That’s it!!! It’s so simple! But the real truth is that they would rather use force against us then lose any power.

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  18. Evie Kerr says:

    There is no such thing as a perfect party. If Obama is reelected, we won’t ever have to worry about “another” party. I don’t agree with the shenanigans of the GOP, nor do I agree with throwing out the baby with the bathwater.

    • Kcarmody says:

      You are the only voice of sanity I see in this group! Dear God people! You are willing to throw your vote away and let this present communist/ Marxist/Leninist/ socialist spawn of the devil have the highest office in this country for another 4 years?!? Are you out of your minds? There’s no denying Romney is pathetic and there are no true statesmen in either party….only crooked, greedy politicians….but at least if we can get the “Muslim brotherhood” and the ” Chicago thugs” and the “filthy corrupt unions” out of power, we might have a “fighting chance” to stop this runaway train! At the very least, the NRA will be a big supporter of the new administration with The Republicans as the “head of the snake” and we will hopefully be able to keep our guns while we try to “regroup” and start to get the ” bad apples out of the barrel! Please, I beg of you….do not put this evil usurper back into office for the sake of “making a statement”!! Hold your nose and vote for Romney, then we will go to work and get rid of the RINOS!

      • You are not going to find very many among the readership here that will be willing to vote for Romney. He showed his hand quite well at the convention…and it is not a Republican one.

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  21. Kcarmody says:

    Angie, then, i suppose I’m missing the point of this blog. Truth be known, when is the last time we actually had the opportunity to vote for a true conservative? McCain was a joke! The bushes were a joke! But I preferred them to what we have now! I find it interesting that when we have to make a choice between the lesser of two evils, which seems to be the MO of most elections anymore, that the people who are “working, legal citizens” will throw away their vote thus putting someone back in office who admittedly and actively is pursuing the “redistribution” of wealth because they’re “rah rah” all about a “third party”. That’s been the “4th qtr/4th down and 10” trash talk for so long, it’s tiresome! It will take lots of years, if not decades to build a third party in this country, and with the liberal/progressives and the unions in charge of our schools K-PHD there’s little hope of that ever happening. Meanwhile the Muslim population continues to swell with 1/2 doz kids per family and foreign money flowing in to back them for a complete and final takeover of our dying republic. Oh well,…I’ve said my piece,,,and hope I did not offend anyone. I guess I should move on to other conservative blogs where folks are looking for patriots to support..not “flash in the pan” boy wonders looking for his 15 minutes of fame! My very best to you all! And may God be gracious and bless this country …in spite of us!

    • There are a good many Republicans who don’t support Mitt Romney. Tea partiers, social conservative/evangelicals, constitutionalists…many feel that Romney is too liberal to represent our party and our vision for the country. I am afraid that the RNC has handed the next four years to Obama because of their shenanigans…not that the Republicans will switch sides, but that they will not support someone who is a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

  22. Kcarmody says:

    P.S. IMHO Obama has shown his hand for the past 3 1/2 yrs, and it is an anti-American one. ( I’ll go away now). Peace to you all!

  23. Kcarmody says:

    Thank you Angie! That is very gracious and kind of you! I don’t agree with Romney on a lot of things either, but I disagree with everything obama! And, yes, I fear you maybe right that he will get 4 more years! I pray for my country, my children and my grandchildren every night! I will vote for Romney, though I do not trust him or the “complicit” RNC. And I will do all I can to stay informed and inform others. Our Tea Parties in Texas are making “headway” in local elections and the same thing is happening in other states as well. I will not give up….but I will admit I am discouraged. Have a blessed day Angie! 😉

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