Friday, July 13, 2007

The Future for Orthodox Catholics in the Republican Party

The other day I was listening to the Neal Boortz show (I don't listen regularly - Boortz exemplifies I've-got-mine-the-rest-of-you-can-go-to-Hell libertarianism, and he's pretty hostile to any form of serious Christian belief). But Boortz was talking about the Republicans chances in '08, which he thought weren't good.

He referenced a column by Robert Novak, in which he wrote:
It is difficult to exaggerate the pessimism about the immediate political future voiced by Republicans in Congress when not on the record. With an unpopular president waging an unpopular war, they see electoral catastrophe in 2008, with Democratic gains in both House and Senate and Hillary Clinton in the White House.

This led me to wonder about whether orthodox Catholics and other traditon-minded conservative Christians would have a place in the Republican Party for much longer.

I don't think so.

The widespread attractiveness of the Giuliani candidacy, the willingness of even so-called "social conservatives" to look the other way regarding Rudy's embrace of the Culture of Death, and the Republicans' enthusiasm for The Leviathan State all bode ill for the future.

Say what you will about the Republicans "lip-service" to social conservatives, their keeping pro-lifers at arm's length and their paltry delivery in about 25 years in power in the White House and Capital Hill. The fact is, conservative Catholics had a voice in the party's agenda.

But the Mammon-first conservatives have always wrinkled their noses in disgust at us, and that disdain is starting to break out into open hostility.

If, as seems to be the common opinion, the Republicans lose again in '08, I think that will be the beginning of the end for any substantive socially conservative Christian voice in the Republican Party. Social conservatives will receive the brunt of the blame. It's happening already.

The trend in our culture is more and more towards "leave me alone, don't try to tell me I can't [insert vice or sin crying out to heaven here]." The Republicans will eventually cave in to the pressure to submit to that trend. The Republican Party is not the Church; it does not have the graces and charisms that allow the the Church to resist the prevailing winds of the Zeitgeist.

So what will we do then?

This is not a brief for the Republican Party, urging you to stick with them because "its our only hope". The Republicans don't deserve our vote. They have all but flipped us the bird over the last couple of years. I'm not sure there's much hope left - there.

So what will we do? And where will that leave our country, pulled on one side by the Jacobins (Hillary) and Panderers (Obama) of the Left, and on the other by Friede durch Kraft cynics (Giuliani) and hollow men (McCain) of the Right?