Conroe and Austin, June 19 – For decades, establishment members within the Republican Party have criticized grassroots conservatives for their singular focus on issues rather than “unifying” the political party. For those people, “unifying” or “unity” means to get behind an individual regardless of his or her actions as a candidate or while serving in elected office. For some reason, however, that just never worked. The Republican Party continued to fracture, because, lo and behold, it turned out that many of those individuals behind whom grassroots conservatives were to unite, were not perfect, were not conservative, and, oftentimes, were not principled in the least.
The Republican Party since the 1980 and 1984 elections of Ronald Reagan as President has searched for a method of finding that elusive unity. Grassroots conservatives, however, have argued for a long time that the true method of unifying inside of the Republican Party was right before everyone’s eyes. Grassroots conservatives have argued that the establishment created the divisiveness by placing personality cults above unifying principles.
Now that grassroots conservatives seem to have a much stronger hold on the direction of the Republican Party nationally, in Texas, and in Montgomery County, it appears they may have a serious opportunity to show that Republicans can unite behind the strong principles within the Republican Party Platform.
Unquestionably, the greatest surprise the Republican Party ever delivered occurred during the first national election Republicans won in 1860 when Republican candidates ran throughout the Union on a strong abolition of slavery and pro-Union Platform. In 1860, the Platform was a document resulting from careful craftsmanship. It united Republicans behind strong beliefs they shared. In 1860, the Republican Party Platform successfully provided the unifying force that Republicans crave so intensely in 2018.
The election of James Dickey as the Republican State Chairman, with his devotion to the Republican Party of Texas Platform, and the election of Mark Keough as Republican Nominee for Montgomery County Judge, with his devotion to the conservative reform principles in his “Contract with Montgomery County,” show that grassroots conservatives are perfectly capable of winning elections. Citizens have tired greatly of politicians who make promises to reduce government spending and taxes and then come into office and vote along with the establishment in order to get along with them. That’s precisely the reason that conservative and Republican voters in particular simply have had enough with the House Republican Conference which votes for spending programs every time while proclaiming they are “conservatives.”
The Republican Party Platform is the great unifier, because it’s the precise point of unity that brings the enormously diverse group of people into the Republican Party. It’s important to take a look at the 2018 Republican Party of Texas Platform to get a sense of how strong are the Planks upon which Republican candidates are standing for election.
The following are some of the more important Planks, which illustrate how easy it is to unify behind the Republican Party’s Platform:
“Government spending: Government Spending is out of control at the federal, state, and local levels, and action is needed. We urge Congress to become fiscally responsible by immediately enacting the following items:
- Adopt zero-based budgeting.
- Adopt a policy of requiring private sector efficiency commision for each governmental department.
- Oppose the use of ‘earmarks’ as a part of the budget and spending process.
- Prohibit Congress from passing appropriations bills unless each appropriations group is considered and passed separately.
- Line-Item Veto: We support strengthening the line-item veto authority of the Governor.
“Tollroads Plank: We believe that tolls should come off the road when the debt is retired, and if the debt is ever restructured or refinanced, the pay-off date needs to remain the same or receive voter approval in order to extend the toll tax longer.
“Constitutional Carry: We support constitutional carry legislation through any legislative means so law-abiding citizens may carry any legally owned guns openly or concealed while maintaining the option of a permit for reciprocity purposes only.
“Frivolous lawsuits: We support further reform to discourage frivolous lawsuits. We oppose the abusive use of class action lawsuits.
“Education: We believe that all children should have access to quality education. Under the US Constitution, the power to regulate education is reserved exclusively to the States and to the people. Parents have the primary right and responsibility to educate their children. The classroom should be a place where all viewpoints are welcomed, free speech is celebrated, and “person before politics” beliefs are preached. We support the right of parents to freely choose public, charter, private, parochial, or home schooling for their children. We support the right of parents to choose the specific public school that their children attend. No child should be forced to attend a failing school. We reject the imposition of federal education standards and the tying of any government funding to the adoption of federal education standards. We reject the intrusion of government in private, parochial or home schools.
“Tax Burden: To this end we encourage our elected officials at all levels of government to work to reverse the current trend of expanding government and the growing tax and debt burdens this places on “We the People.”
“Abolish Property Tax : We urge replacing the property tax system with an alternative other than the income tax and requiring voter approval to increase the overall tax burden.
“Sexual Harassment : Republican Party of Texas supports a zero-tolerance policy for sexual harassment.
“Israel: We are grateful that the U.S. Embassy in Israel has been moved to Jerusalem. We believe that Jerusalem should remain Israel’s undivided capital, accessible to people of all faiths. The United States should continue to support Israel militarily, financially and technologically. We oppose any pressuring of Israel to make concessions they believe would jeopardize their security.
“Tax-Funded Lobbying : We urge that the Texas Legislature enact legislation that prohibits tax-funded contract lobbying.
“Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (‘Obamacare’) : We demand the immediate repeal of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, which we believe to be unconstitutional.
“Planned Parenthood : We support completely eliminating public funding for Planned Parenthood and any other abortion providers and all their affiliates…
“Campaign Finance Transparency: We support laws requiring full disclosure by political candidates of the amounts and sources of any campaign contributions, whether contributed by individuals, political action committees, or other entities. We oppose reporting requirements that infringe on the free-speech rights of citizens. We urge immediate repeal of all limits on campaign contributions by American citizens to the candidates or causes of their choice.
“Pro-life : Until the abolition of abortion is achieved, we support laws that restrict and regulate abortion…
“Property Annexation: Homeowners and landowners in an area proposed for annexation should have the right to vote to approve or reject the annexation, regardless of the population of the county. No annexation can occur within 45 days of any election.
“Texas House Speaker: Republicans in the Texas House should select their Speaker nominee by secret ballot in a binding caucus without Democrat influence.”
While there are other Planks in the Republican Party Platform, the foregoing are some of the most important ones. Clearly, Republicans can and should use their Platform to unify and coalesce in the November General Election and in maintaining strong vigilance over their elected servants after those people enter public service.