Gary Bauer is a real piece of work, but he does occasionally speak the truth. Read on.
Juicy piece in Politico Monday morning about how social conservatives aren't about to roll over and accept gay marriage. Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum chimed in with the usual "we lost because McCain and Romney were moderates" nonsense, but buried in the piece was this nugget from Gary Bauer.
Social conservatives are particularly — and understandably — bothered that the elites rarely want to discuss the elephant in the room: that the party’s economic policies don’t necessarily appeal to the the rank and file, who vote Republican because it is the party of traditional values.
“If we gave our voters an accurate portrayal of our ideas, that we want to cut the rate of growth on Social Security, give tax cuts to billionaires and then the values issues, the values issues would be more popular than the economic agenda of the current Republican Party,” said Bauer, citing particularly those Mass-attending Roman Catholics who have fled the Democrats.
Bauer added, “I would caution the donor wing of the Republican Party that is driving a lot of this: If they think social conservatives are the only thing preventing Republicans from winning, they’ll learn that their economic agenda will go down the tubes along with the Republican Party’s prospects.”
Couple of interesting things here.
One, Bauer is accusing the Republican Party of basically lying about it's economic agenda. They've tried to gut social programs under the ridiculous guise of "saving them." Well, Bauer just said, no: they want to cut those programs to shovel free money at billionaires, and that's exactly what the Ryan budgets do.
The second thing is Bauer is right on the unpopularity of this agenda. Most voters don't want Social Security cut, or Medicare for that matter, but they overwhelmingly favor raising taxes on rich people.
Beltway Republicans have convinced themselves that all they need to do is stop bashing gays, immigrants, and women -- and that will fix all their problems. But this analysis totally ignores the fact, as Bauer pointed out, that Americans just aren't buying trickle-down anymore.