restoring our biblical and constitutional foundations


The Battered Wife Syndrome of the Religious Right

John M. Leone

Recently, many people have been asking me, “What happened to you?  For years you were a big supporter of the Republican Party and George W. Bush. Why are you now criticizing conservative Republicans?  Why have you abandoned them/us?” After briefly pointing out that the party today is anything but “conservative,” my Reaganish response is usually along the lines of, “I didn’t leave the Republican Party; the Republican Party has left me.” 

The Republican Party of the last decade has sacrificed traditional “conservative” values on the blood altar of political expedience. This party has abandoned its core principles in the pursuit of raw political power. In the effort to “grow” the party, Republicans have embraced a “big tent” philosophy, wherein the goal is to gain as many supporters as possible, even if the methods used to attain these ends destroy the perceived conservative foundation of the party.  Some pundits today state that the party has long since abandoned conservatism, and although I tend to agree with this assessment, my desire here is to point out the accelerating speed of the falling away over the past ten years. 

A dangerous platter of reckless compromise and blatant pandering has been the order of the day for the Republicans as the party slouches inevitably toward the warm embrace of pure socialism and unfettered federal power. As the Democratic Party has moved radically to the left after losing power in the executive and legislative branches of the federal government, and thereby giving up any pretense of occupying the “moderate” position, the Republican Party has also moved left, thereby claiming the dubious “middle ground” that political pundits claim is vitally necessary to win major elections. This major shift left has caused the Republican Party to totally abandon what has traditionally been touted as the basic platform of the party, which is a limited and moral federal government. 

Since taking control of the House of Representatives in the “Republican Revolution” of 1994, a Republican Congress has increased federal spending by 60 percent! The Democrats were actually right for once when they said at the time that the Republicans’ “Contract With America” of 1994 was actually a “Contract On America.” More accurately, I believe that it has been a “Contract on the Contents of American Wallets.” 

In the ten-year period since 1994, conservative citizens in America have been waiting breathlessly for the “conservative” legislative branch to pass laws that would restrict the size and scope of the federal government. After 40 long and hard years of Democratic control, the Congress was finally in the hands of “the good guys.” More recently, as President Bush signed into law one unabashedly liberal big government bill after another, the message was sent out from the White House that Bush was just trying to show the American people how well he worked with the Democrats, and that he would be more “conservative” in his second term. Well, I don’t think my wallet, or the wallets of my children can withstand four more years of Bush in the White House and Republicans in Congress. 

What we have instead witnessed, in these last ten years of our national history, is that the Republican ruse of supporting reform for a return to Constitutionally limited and smaller federal government is just a party line, and not an actual political principle that will ever be embraced or acted upon. Republicans mouth empty platitudes and promises to a willing and eager conservative constituency like a sleazy drunk plying his trademark pick-up lines on a woman in a bar. The lines may sound well intentioned and tickle the desperate ear of the listener, but nothing of real substance underlies these fraudulent declarations. Both the sleaze in the bar and the Republicans in Congress seek self-serving ends in their charade of barren wordplay. 

In addition to the monstrous and irresponsibly wasteful behemoth in Washington becoming ever larger and more powerful, the assault on our 1st Amendment-protected recognition of God in the public square successfully continues (our “conservative born-again Christian” President fully supported the removal of Judge Roy Moore from the bench in Alabama), the assault on our 1st Amendment-protected activity of free political speech is one step closer to completion with the passage of the Campaign Finance Reform bill (otherwise known as the Incumbent Protection Act of 2003), the assault on our 2nd Amendment rights continues, the federal boot continues to be kept firmly on the neck of state sovereignty, the wholesale slaughter of our unborn continues (blessed and funded by the Republican-controlled federal government) with approximately 3,900 God-created innocent and unique human beings murdered each and every day, sodomy-based marriage (and its semantic counterpart “civil unions”) is falsely likened to the great civil rights movements that took place in the 1960’s and is increasingly accepted as normal, our Constitution is flagrantly disregarded and violated on a daily basis by our elected and appointed representatives in every single branch of the federal government, socialized medicine has been passed by “conservative” Republicans in Congress that opposed socialized medicine in the 1990s when a “liberal” Democratic president would have received the credit for such an action, unconstitutional federal funding of public schooling is at an all-time high even though as recently as 1996 the Republican Party platform called for the abolishment of the Department of Education, massive and unconstitutional wealth redistribution schemes continue to be funneled through our labyrinthine tax code system, and our “conservative” President has proposed an amnesty program for illegal immigrants that he says is not really an amnesty program, thereby ushering in a 25% increase in illegal traffic over the Mexican border (does this remind anyone else of Bill Clinton’s “What is ‘is’” debacle?). 

All of the attacks listed above have taken place under the careful eye of a Republican-controlled Congress. 

The terms “liberal” and “conservative” have become extremely relative and are utilized by our elected politicians in an attempt to make us believe that there are actual differences between the parties, when in reality there is little, if any, divergent actions taken on key issues. We may hear wide ranges of rhetoric, but when the rubber meets the road, the differences are indistinguishable. 

What is the one consistent theme that the presidential campaigns of both Bush and Kerry keep hammering home in interviews with the media talking heads?  “We want to make voters understand that there are fundamental differences between the candidates…bla-bla-bla…voters need to understand that there is a real choice involved in this election.”  There is?  Oh, really?  If the differences were so completely obvious, then why would I need Bush’s campaign manager shoving this disinformation down my throat?  Wouldn’t the voters be able to detect a clear difference if, in fact, one actually existed? The only difference I am able to discern between the parties today is that the word “Republican” has ten letters in it, and “Democrat” has eight letters. 

The New American, a publication of the John Birch Society, has just published its latest “Conservative Index.” According to The New American, the Conservative Index “rates congressmen based on their adherence to constitutional principles of limited government, to fiscal responsibility, to national sovereignty, and to a traditional foreign policy of avoiding foreign entanglements.” The results of this index should shock neo-conservatives right out of their boots. 

The Conservative Index for the 108th Congress shows that there is no difference, according to their voting patterns, between the two parties. The Index rates on a scale from 1-100, with a 100 score being a “perfect” conservative score. 174 Republicans in the House (76 %) and 23 Republicans in the Senate (45 %) scored less than 47, which was the score given to Bernie Sanders, who is the only admitted socialist in the House of Representatives. Allow me to reiterate this last point: 197 Republicans in Congress scored lower than an admitted socialist!  The lowest scores in the Senate, a 10, were recorded by two Republicans, John Chafee of Rhode Island and George Voinovich of Ohio.

After learning of this study by The New American, columnist Laurence M. Vance, in his article, “The Myth of Republican Conservatism,” states, “As should be obvious, the Republican Party is not the hope of America. Nothing has changed since George Wallace said that there was not a ‘dime’s worth of difference’ between the Democratic and Republican presidential candidates. It is pro-lifers, grass-roots conservatives, the Christian Right, and the disciples of Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity who are wasting their votes by voting Republican – not conservative and libertarian critics of the Republican Party who vote for a third party or not at all.”

The Christian conservative base is now completely taken for granted by the Republican Party and is given mere lip service on the major issues of our time. The Republican Party knows that the vast majority of the Christian conservatives believe that they have nowhere to go and will remain loyal to the party even while it is sprinting away from conservatism at a world record pace. On occasion, the party throws the Christian conservatives some worthless meat disguised as food and expects them to be cheerful and content with this meager fare. 

For example, the President signed into law a bill that outlaws the “partial-birth” abortion procedure. But a careful analysis of this bill reveals the fact that late-term abortions are not affected by the passage of this legislation and actually encourage the abortionists to kill the baby inside the womb instead of outside. New Jersey Constitution Party Chairman Lowell Patterson, founder of the pro-life agency ABBA, states that, “Not one child will be saved by this bill.” 

Instead of courageously leading on the issue of abortion and using his bully pulpit to influence and educate the American public about this national disgrace, President Bush appears content to let the slaughter continue unabated and rule by gauging the pulse of the American electorate (which is eerily similar to Bill Clinton’s style of “leading” by polling in the 1990’s). “I don’t think the culture has changed to the extent that the American people or the Congress would totally ban abortions,” stated Bush when interviewed on the subject. 

President Bush also continues to fund Planned Parenthood, which was responsible for the deaths of 227,375 innocent children in 2003. In the fiscal year ending in June 2003, Planned Parenthood’s annual report showed that they received over $250 million worth of grants and contracts from the federal government.

Pro-life Christian conservatives need to look outside of the Republican Party if they wish to stop the rampant shedding of innocent blood. Our “conservative” Republican President and “conservative” Republican Congress have the blood of millions of children on their hands. Christians should separate themselves from this darkness and evil, in accordance with Scripture.  Casting a vote for people who will do nothing but engage in empty motions over this issue will not save a single child, and only serves to lay a filthy stain on the conscience of a Christian who is “voting for the lesser of two evils.” 

Knowing the Christian conservatives will behave like a battered wife who doesn’t believe she can go anywhere else, the Republican Party has no impetus to make any meaningful change, and the murderous status quo will endure for another generation, with tens of millions more babies savagely butchered at the hands of abortionists. But brethren, let me tell you that we do have a legitimate place of refuge and safe haven in the Constitution Party and their presidential candidate, Michael A. Peroutka.

Christians need to embrace the truth given by the great Thomas J. “Stonewall” Jackson when he said, “Duty is ours; consequences are God’s.” Christians should be casting their vote for the most moral, upright, righteous, and qualified candidate, regardless of that candidate’s “chances” of winning the election. Do your duty by voting for the candidate who best represents your values and beliefs while leaving the consequences to the Lord.  Leave others to “play the odds,” and wager on “chance,” while you stand righteously by your vote for the best candidate. Christians need not hold their nose while casting a ballot, but should feel good about who they voted for.

Another bone that the Bush administration has thrown the Christian conservatives is his “Faith-Based Initiatives” program, which really amounts to little more than unconstitutional government welfare programs for churches. 

Bush has been very careful to court the Christian vote by saying and doing the right things to be perceived as “Christian,” thereby nailing down a large portion of his conservative base. But his underlying actions (or fruit) urge me to take a closer look at this man’s claim of saving faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. 

The fact that Bush believes that he worships the same God that Muslims do, the fact that he clapped (to “awake[n] the demon”) and bowed down before a Shinto altar in Japan, the fact that he has made statements claiming that “miracles” can happen to not only believers of the Christian faith, but members of the Jewish, Muslim, and Hindu faiths as well, the fact of his membership in the ungodly and secretive Skull and Bones Society (which he refuses to discuss), the fact that he embraces the concept of “civil unions” (which is different from homosexual marriage in name only), the fact that he sent a letter of congratulations and support to a church that was founded by homosexual activists and performs over 6,000 same-sex “marriages” each year, the fact that Bush has not taken a single decisive action to end abortion, and the fact that Bush recess-appointed Bill Pryor to the federal judiciary after Pryor successfully prosecuted Alabama Supreme Court Chief Justice Roy Moore for refusing to remove a Ten Commandments monument from the Alabama Judicial Building may lead a prudent Christian to believe that Bush’s faith is weak at best (judging by the “fruit” of his claimed faith), or that he is simply an unregenerate sinner. 

If Christians are voting for Bush merely because he claims to be a Christian, maybe they ought to consider a candidate like Michael A. Peroutka of the Constitution Party, who would actually walk, and not just talk, like a righteous Christian man. I have met and spoken with Mr. Peroutka and his running mate Pastor Chuck Baldwin, and can assure you that these are great Christian men of the highest integrity that Christians can feel good about voting for.

In his acceptance speech for the Constitution Party Presidential nomination, Michael A. Peroutka addressed the patriotic Christian conservatives who have already turned from tradition and embraced the only real solution to our depraved two-party dilemma. He stated, “They don’t want to waste their vote on the lesser of two evils anymore.  They have seen more than enough evidence of evil and corruption from both major parties to realize that it’s just as wrong to vote for Gomorrah as it is to vote for the slightly more evil Sodom. They know that to keep doing the same thing over and over – and to expect a different result – is the very definition of insanity. The American people are done with this national insanity. They are finished with wasting their vote on democrats and republicans who have demonstrated, indeed promised, their lack of fidelity to the United States Constitution.”

Christian conservatives are to the Republican Party what urban blacks are to the Democratic Party. Both support their party candidates at levels approaching 100 percent, both are completely taken for granted by their elected representatives, and both are given vacuous promises that rarely, if ever, amount to anything of import. What it will take to turn this sad tide of political complacency is a courageous and faithful remnant willing to work at unflagging levels and who are dedicated to preserving and restoring America’s Christian and Constitutional heritage. 

By the Grace and Providence of our Blessed Lord, this counter-revolution will come to fruition and we, or our children, will be able to experience true liberty once again. The steadfast remnant of patriots involved in this arduous battle can find solace and comfort in the immortal words of Samuel Adams who said, “It does not require a majority to prevail, but rather an irate, tireless minority keen to set brush fires in people’s minds.”

July 20, 2004

John Leone is a police officer in New Jersey, editor of the Silverback Standard, and a staunch defender of biblical and constitutional government. He may be reached for comment here.

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