Hood: I'd rather be right
About this "split" in the local Republican Party
September 29, 2012The newcomers down at the WDN have made a startling discovery: Not everyone who registers or gets elected as a "Republican" votes the way Republicans are supposed to vote. Wow, that's really news is it not? Let me explain this "divided party."
There are basically two political parties in this nation, state and county. The Democrats stand for more government control of our lives, bigger government from more and more spending which causes higher debt and taxes. Democrats believe that the government is better at making your decisions for you than you are. The worst Democrats believe what they think is more important than what you think for yourself. They strive to make people dependent on the government so they can control everything.
Republicans—real Republicans--believe in less government, reflected in lower spending and thus less debt and taxes, and greater individual liberty to live our lives the way we choose. Democrats focus on the collective. Republicans focus on the individual. So Republicans see solutions in the individual and Democrats believe in government to solve problems. A simpler way to look at this dichotomy is to label the continuum "liberal" on the left to "conservative" on the right. The problem comes with those misdirected souls in the middle who just can't decide where they belong. We have a few of them in Beaufort County.
The noise comes in that anyone eligible to vote can register as a Republican or as a Democrat. Many Democrats actually vote Republican. Many people register "Unaffiliated" but they don't run for office. But most of them vote Republican. Putting an "R" beside your name, or calling your group "Republican," does not make you a Republican any more than putting a "D" beside your name makes you a Democrat. Like calling yourself a Christian does not necessarily mean you believe in Christian principles. Like calling yourself a patriot does not mean necessarily you honor our Constitution and believe in our Founding Priniples.
When you boil it all down Democrats are liberals and Republicans should be conservative. Or they should join the Democrat Party.
The "division" the WDN writes about in the Beaufort Republican Party is actually a group that calls themselves Republican but acts like Democrats. They are not right and it is not right for them to try to fool the voters. But they do. And they actually do fool some of the people, but you know that old saying about "you can't fool all the people all of the time."
What is not right is for a person to run as a "Conservative Republican" and then vote with the liberal Democrats. That is deception, to put a nice spin on it. And while we have some real good deceivers in both Washington's, that they are good at it does not make it right.
In Beaufort County we have three basic political groups. The Democrats, which bless their souls, they pretty much toe the liberal party line, the Unaffiliated who go back and forth and the Republicans. Yes, the Republicans are divided. We are divided between the liberals and the conservatives. But ask yourself this: Why would a liberal want to be called a Republican?
Some would like you to believe it is a matter of degrees of being conservative. And to be sure some are more conservative than others. But that does not cause the divide. The divide comes when candidates run for office, and when some of them get elected, as a conservative and then vote with the Democrats. That's what you see when you see the County Commission split 5-2.
These "Republican In Name Only (RINO's)" adopt the "R" beside their name because it helps them get elected, if they fool enough people. That's because most people in Beaufort County are conservative.
For example, we've got two RINO's on the County Commission. They are Jay McRoy and Al Klemm. When it comes to bigger, more intrusive government Jay and Al vote with the Democrats more than they vote Republican. Why don't they just register as Democrats? It would be more honest. But don't count on it. They want to get re-elected. Say what you have to say if it gets you what you want.
Then you've got the wannabees. They want to win an election and they sense that most of the people in Beaufort County are conservative so they figure the best chance of getting elected is to register as a Republican. Then they want the blessing of the Republican Party so they can appear to be conservative. And that's fine, until it comes time to take a stand on issues.
It's where a person stands on the issues that matters, not which party they register as.
As an elected official you have to take a stand when it comes time to vote. You can talk a good talk, and you can advertise yourself as "conservative" but eventually you have to take a stand when you vote. And if you vote like a Democrat votes you are not a Republican. If you vote like the liberals vote you are a liberal. It's as simple as that.
It's nonsense to say that you believe in conservative principles and then vote the same way the liberals vote.
You can count on this. When the campaign starts, most everyone around here want to claim they are conservative. They parse the words, but it seldom fools anyone who knows what's going on. There may not be much difference between some Republican politicians and Democrat politicians but there is a big difference between Democrat principles and Republican principles.
In this election, at the national, state and local levels there is a choice in most races. There is a clearer choice this time than I can remember in many years.
Vote your principles. If you believe in conservative principles then vote for the most consistently conservative candidate you can find. At the national presidential level that is clearly Mitt Romney/Paul Ryan. In the House and Senate you have to look at each race. At the state level clearly Pat McCrory and Dan Forest are the conservative choices for Governor and Lt. Governor. And in the Council of State races the Republicans are the more conservative, even if some are not as consistently conservative as we would like. There are conservative choices for the judges also. We'll talk about them later.
At the county level, for commissioner, we have the clearest choices we have had in many years. Every one of the Democrats is more liberal than any of the Republicans, with the exception of Jay McRoy. Jay runs as a "Conservative Republican" but he has consistently voted as a Democrat on most issues of principle. There's an ad on the Beaufort Observer website that gives you the details and documents why "Jay is wrong." The ad calls him out on his deceptiveness. Click on the ad and study the details then decide for yourself.
Al Klemm, who is not running this time, is just like Jay. He votes with the Democrats more than he votes with Republicans. Stan Deatherage and Hood Richardson are the two consistently conservative members of the County Commission. That's why you have so many 5-2 votes, particularly on issues that involve principles of what the nature and scope of government should be.
There is another facet of how Jay and Al vote, and that is related to special interests, but that's a story for another day. But if you want to see it, just search the Beaufort Observer archives for "EDC" and also study the appointments to the various boards and commissions the Commissioners make. Again, on these things Jay and Al vote like the Democrats vote, so they are not conservatives.
So voters have a clear choice this year. The two candidates who have been consistently conservative over a long enough period of time to allow us to see their principles in operation are Hood Richardson and Donald Dixon. If you want a liberal, vote for Jay or any of the Democrats. But if you believe in conservative principles, vote for Hood or Donald Dixon.
Now Gary Brinn (the fourth Republican running) is another matter. Gary says he is a conservative but he aligns himself with those who, like Jay, support liberals. Who knows how Gary would vote? Who knows what his principles are? Just because a person claims to believe in conservative principles does not mean they will vote that way. Jay and Al prove that. That is exactly the problem with Arthur Williams running as a Republican. He has a long record of voting with the Democrats. Hopefully he's "seen the light" but only time will tell if that's true. I still doubt he is a real Republican simply because he has refused to endorse Mattie Lawson, the Republican who beat him. Sour grapes? Perhaps. It is more likely that self-interest trumps principle.
The fact that Gary Brinn supported Arthur and has aligned himself with those who supported Arthur raises questions about what Gary's principles are (other than getting elected). Why take a chance on getting another Jay McRoy or Al Klemm? Just vote for the two consistent conservatives, Hood Richardson or Donald Dixon.
I'll close with one other thing. Larry Britt, who is another RINO, complains that Hood and Stan have not been "effective." What he really means by that is that they have not sold out their principles for the sake of cutting a deal with the liberal Democrats. What good does it do the people if you vote on the winning side if that side is not good for the people? That should tell you all you need to know about Larry. Hood and Stan have been exceedingly effective in exposing the liberal corruption on the County Commission. If they had not been, then Larry would not be complaining about them. Larry wants to be a member of The Club. Like the club that cuts deals to give taxpayer money to their cronies. For Larry, winning is more "effective" than standing on conservative principles.
So again, we have a clear choice in Beaufort County. It is not a choice of Democrat or Republican. It is a choice of liberal or conservative. The liberals, whether they are registered as Democrats or Republican, will continue to impose more government, higher taxes and less liberty on us. The conservative choices (Hood and Donald) will consistently vote for less government, lower taxes and more individual freedom.
The choice is yours. Regardless of political party.