Updates, Live

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Republicans: from Cato to Pat Buchanan

The Elephant in the Room
(click here for the Romanian version)

On first view, today's Republicans seem to be a marriage between social-conservatives and neocons. Is it a happy marriage? Well, the two spouses are quite different, therefore not very enthusiastic, but both of them are perfectly aware that one cannot live alone. And life goes on.

Actually there are more than two orientations within the Republican Party. Bill Marsh offers in the NY Times issue of October 1 a Guide to the Republican Herd (I talked yesterday about the other guide offered in the same issue, the one for the Democratic Herd).

Mr. Marsh distinguishes four major orientations within the GOP: the Leave Us Alone, the Neocons, the Old Guard, and the Social-Conservatives.

The Leave Us Alone Coalition is against big government. Three blocs compose this coalition. The Anti-Washington bloc is the largest; they dislike federal regulation, government waste, would move power to the states. They are very anti-Democrats: red states against blue states. The Maverick bloc is composed by Anti-Washingtonians who do not consider Democrats as anathema – their exponent is the Senator of Arizona, John McCain, who is not scared to take bipartisan approaches when necessary. The Tax-Cut bloc groups people of libertarian convictions; their ideological tribune is the Cato Institute and their views have much in common with those of the New Democrats (while very different from the social-conservatives).

The Neocons consider that US has to assume the world’s leadership and to spread everywhere the American values. Paul Wolfowitz is one of the exponents. Together with Neocons are the Security bloc guys, focused more on the terrorist threats and strong supporters of the Patriotic Act. The former Mayor of New York, Rudy Giuliani, is a prominent representative of them.

The Old Guard is a small, shrinking bloc which tries to keep to the traditional Republican policies: pro-abortion, pro-environment and against tax cuts. Their exponent is the Senator of Rhode Island, Lincoln Chafee.

The Cultural Coalition groups the so-called social-conservatives, focused on domestic cultural issues, spurred by religion and concerned about morale decline. Three blocs compose this coalition: the Traditional Values bloc (concerned about family values and education), the America First bloc (strong isolationists, against immigration, against foreign aid, against affirmative action), and the Biblical bloc (religion driving politics). Their exponents are William F. Bennett, Pat Buchanan and James C. Dobson, respectively.


Post a Comment

<< Home