CPAC Dictating “The Next Generation of Conservatives”?

CPAC begins today. It’s all over social media and the slogan “America’s Future: The Next Generation of Conservatives” is on every name badge and publication for miles.

The timing is interesting for those of us here in Georgia. In light of recent county convention issues across the state and allegations of unfair exclusions, I’ve pondered where we are really going from here in terms of party membership.

I know several people who are attending. Many of them are under 30 and involved in the Young Republicans and the College Republicans. Many of them are over 50 and have ‘established roots’ in the Republican party. There are also activists who couldn’t attend but paid the way for someone younger to go. Then you consider some of the speakers on this year’s list: Ben Carson, Paul Ryan, Eric Cantor, Newt Gingrich, Rand Paul, Mitt Romney, Donald Trump and of course, our very own Michael Caldwell from HD 20, who will be speaking on the 10 Conservatives Under 40 panel. All of these folks are working to strengthen the conservative movement. They all come from very different ‘wings’ of the Republican party, all at different marks on that political meter, if you will, and all have a slightly different idea of what ‘being conservative’ means.

If all these folks from around the country can get together and rally for conservative values and network for a stronger party, why aren’t we demanding much more for our upcoming district conventions?


  1. Baker says:

    “They all come from very different ‘wings’ of the Republican party, all at different marks on that political meter, if you will, and all have a slightly different idea of what ‘being conservative’ means.”

    Except for no mention of Chris Christie, a hugely popular Republican in NEW JERSEY, who has battled unions and waste…and GOProud, a sponsor several times and now not even invited?

    And Trump is ridiculous, not inviting Christie of GOProud is one thing, inviting Trump is a disgrace. Apparently it doesn’t matter if you leach off the public through government eminent domain rules, as long as you claim the president wasn’t born here you’re a conservative.

    That’s BS. Trump’s crap is what makes it harder for legitimate conservatives with legitimate complaints to be heard or respected by a broader audience.

    Normally I think CPAC is pretty good. This time…disgraceful.

    • drjay says:

      yeah the cat who tried to explain christie’s omission, was all cpac is like the allstar game and the governor didn’t have an allstar year…whatever…kinda hard to accept when trump is on the docket…also when christie has actually governed in a way that puts forward conservative ideals in a state like nj…we should be hearing from christie every chance we can, not acting like petulant children because he wouldn’t bad mouth the prez during an actual crisis in his state…

      • The Last Democrat in Georgia says:

        +1…It is a huge miscalculation for the GOP to distance itself from a politician that is as effective and as popular as Chris Christie.

  2. Ellynn says:

    Until it is understood that not all Republicans are conservitive, the GOP can’t come together. Republicans I know (and love) are not a one size fits all. For every conservitive loving small government Evangelical out there who calls Christe a RINO, there is a fiscially respondsible Mathew 25 loving moderate Ripon Society follower who thinks CPAC Keynote Ted Cruz is a out of touch wingnut. Until all players of the party of Teddy, LaFollette, Ike, Goldwater, Reagon, and Bush stop issuing a civil war on each other, the GOP will not move foward as a whole.

    • As a Democrat, it cracks me up to see the ongoing refrain from CPAC types like Rick Perry where they essentially say their brand of whacko conservativism hasn’t failed because it wasn’t even on the menu in 2008 and 2012.

      In other words, if the Republicans would only put up a real conservative they wouldn’t fail and if they do then they are willing to have that argument – but not until they’re given the chance to fail. Which is rich, especially coming from Perry since they debated putting him on the menu and decided against it.

      In reality, the current Republican brand favored by the CPAC crowd is considered inedible by the voters, which is why the people that run the Republican party are smart enough not to put it on the menu in the first place (even though they can’t win with Romney/McCain types either). Calling a guy like Ted Cruz out of touch, I dunno about that. It implies that he was once in touch. That guy is basically someone that decided he wanted to be Alex P Keaton when he grew up and has focused like a laser on that goal ever since. In other words, the perfect heir to the Ayn Rand/Paul Ryan/Rick Perry/CPAC fantasy brigade, and if he weren’t “Hispanic”, someone that the Republican establishment would be in full nomination denial mode against already.

      • Baker says:

        For the most part, I agree. Except for lumping in Ayn Rand with Rick Perry or CPAC.

        There is plenty of Ayn Rand that is unworkable and she herself was super weird and kind of a hypocrite. However, Ayn Rand’s books didn’t focus on Rick Perry-types, her heroes were Howard Roark, John Galt, Hank Rearden, Dagny Taggart, and Equality 7-2521 “The Unconquered.”

        Someone who runs for and gets elected to state office at age 34, as a Democrat for that matter, never to see the private sector again, such as Rick Perry, I don’t think Ayn Rand would be that into. He may try and claim that mantle but it’s bull excrement (as Charlie might say).

        The fact that as I sit here typing this trying to think of someone who might fit the bill, and coming up empty, is representative of part of the problem. We’ve gone so far away from the “citizen legislator” envisioned by the Founders that it’s nearly impossible to see someone who qualifies.

        Thomas Jefferson on Congressional term limits: “My reason for fixing them in office for a term of years, rather than for life, was that they might have an idea that they were at a certain period to return into the mass of the people and become the governed instead of the governors which might still keep alive that regard to the public good that otherwise they might perhaps be induced by their independence to forget.”

        And therein also lies my problem with Paul Ryan, or the beloved Austin Scott for that matter.

        • I already got in trouble for “threadjacking” and talking about Obamacare on another thread, but I really do wonder if a large expansion of government healthcare might open the door to a minor realignment politically that could help the libertarian-leaning Republicans down the road.

          Follow me for a second: if you have some lower class socially conservative voters switch to voting their pocketbook to protect their entitlement, you may swap them for some upper middle class socially liberal but economically libertarians. In essense, the Democrats pick up some of the “What’s the matter with Kansas” voters, while the Republicans pick up some “What’s the matter with Manhattan” voters (the one in NYC, not Kansas).

          At the end of the day, most swaps like these end up roughly netting out. But in the process, you may improve the Republican primary voting pool so that a guy like Chris Christie or whoever comes along that has general election appeal but an inability to get the Kansas votes could actually win and get to that general election, appeal intact.

          Politics being politics though, it’s never that easy. What’s good for putting a Republican in the White House nationally is not good for keeping Republicans in the statehouse in Georgia, so they aren’t going to be eager to do this trade when those “Kansas” voters are keeping them in power here. At the same time, it should be embarrassing to have Palin give a speech of that nature, but as libertarians and Republicans surely internally know…CPAC is just responding to the market that exists for her.

  3. xdog says:

    Modern gopers would call Fighting Bob LaFollette a commie, or worse.

    Another omission from cpac’s list of worthies is Bill Bolling, Virginia’s LG and also Chief Jobs Creation Officer, a cabinet level post in that state. Probably not coincidentally, Virginia’s unemployment rate is down to 5.5 percent according to his webpage.

  4. Dave Bearse says:

    Republicans that want to govern would do well to listen to Christie, a Republican that can win and govern amongst a Democratic majority. CPAC Conservatives think veering right and thining GOP ranks is the way to achieve a majority.

    • Harry says:

      It’s amazing how you folks feel compelled to give us advice. And, we will reciprocate. Please don’t be offended when we do.

    • “a Republican that can win and govern amongst a Democratic majority”

      Errm, didn’t Romney fit that mold in Massachusetts? That strategy doesn’t always work. (I did, however, like Gary Johnson in the primary, who also fit that description.)

  5. Harry says:

    This is good –


    It has become apparent that the report RNC Chair Reince Priebus commissioned several months ago to find out what went wrong in 2012 was not a “fact finding” mission at all, but rather a “finger pointing” mission.

    Atlanta Tea Party Co-Chairman Debbie Dooley states, “Allowing the persons responsible for the 2012 election “fiasco” to be the ones to actually assign blame was irresponsible and demonstrated Chairman Priebus was not serious about finding out the real cause for the GOP’s defeat in 2012. Can you imagine the public outcry if a surgeon, that lost a patient due to his incompetence, was the one the hospital assigned the task of finding out what went wrong?”

    Atlanta Tea Party Co-Chairman Julianne Thompson states, “The problem has never been with the conservative message. The problems in 2012 were the messengers. The messengers could not effectively articulate conservatism because they were not passionate about it.”

    We are glad the RNC is addressing the need for a more effective ground game and the need for more outreach. Dooley states, “Watching the differences in the RNC ground game and the Obama Campaign ground game was like watching mall cops battle Navy Seals.”

    In 2010, the tea party drove the agenda and conservatives won historic victories. In 2012, the Romney Campaign and RNC shunned the tea party and led the agenda. They lost an election that should have been easily won.

    Atlanta Tea Party, in conjunction with conservative groups and tea parties throughout Georgia, has begun a “Patriot Organizational Project” that is in the process of organizing key precincts throughout Georgia down to the block captain level. We will be making personal contact with as many voters as possible and will be providing voter education. We will also be using much of the technology the Obama Campaign successfully used in 2012. The RNC let conservatives down with their ground game in 2012 and we can’t afford to rely on them any longer. 2014 and 2016 are just around the corner.

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