Social Conservatism is Going Out the Door
Michelle Fields, the Daily Caller’s star reporter and a frequent contributor to Fox News, has a great blog post on what is happening to the GOP, and where it is going:
The biggest threat to conservatives right now is President Barack Obama, but the long-term threat to conservatism is an internal threat– young republicans. The RNC is doing everything in its power to prevent them from gaining power, but will it work?
If you were to talk to any reporter covering this year’s election they’ll tell you that most of the attendees at GOP events are over 40 years old. You can’t help but ask yourself “where are the young people?” Well, they’re organizing a libertarian take-over.
Young republicans aren’t on board with social conservatism, instead we’re seeing an unprecedented level of enthusiasm for libertarianism. Many of my conservative colleagues will argue that, “ah, this is just a phase amongst young republicans.” But being socially liberal isn’t a phase. What we’re seeing is a cultural shift that is inevitably going to force the Republican Party to make some major adjustments. For example, take gay marriage— Millennials have grown up a time where it’s no longer taboo to be openly gay. Our favorite films and television shows have gay characters. Some of the most prominent figures in American culture are openly gay. And if you look at the polls, public opinion has moved sharply in favor of gay marriage in recent years with 76% of 18-34 year olds saying that the law should recognize same sex marriage.
The core message, evident by the title, is that social conservatism is going out the door. The younger generation has never liked any of it, and they never will. It is solely the purview of a dying demographic, which bizarrely the Republican Party is trying desperately to latch on to.
I’ve written previously about social conservatism in the GOP, and I stand by it. Social conservatism will be the death of the Republican party if they don’t change ASAP. The country is very rapidly turning away from those positions—aside from the pro-life stance—and in a generation there won’t be anyone who votes the way the Republicans are thinking.
Now considering that the party is reliant on popular support, where do you think it will be?
I don’t care about how much corruption there is and how much power the party has. If it is totally out of sync with the public on half of the major issues of the day, it will not last. Period. The party needs to recognize that today, or it will be utterly irrelevant in twenty years, maybe less. Santorum’s campaign was not the rise of the social conservatives—indeed, it was the last gasp, the last hurrah of a movement that desperately wanted to make itself important. But they are so out of touch, their attempt was comical. I mean, just look at Todd Akin.
Hopefully, if Romney wins in November, he will drop the pretensions of being even a mild social conservative, send a message to the Republican base, and let it discard the insanity that has plagued it as of late. Otherwise, we may end up being a one-party state in just a generation.