I'm going to start off by introducing myself. I'm a 25 year old, white, Conservative/Libertarian leaning resident of Minnesota. I waited until after the elections to write this so that I would have a better time proving my point without the cloud of an election in our minds.
Rush, you talked today about how the Republican party has lost its roots and needs to return to them. There is another part which you need to look at and that's the man whom YOU look at every morning in the mirror. I believe that the conservative movement is still there and when energized it can move mountains, but I and many others who consider themselves free-thinking conservatives have lost faith in you along with many of the main stream talk show hosts on the right.
When you started making the pitch for John McCain it was one of the hardest things to hear. It was bad enough that we were stuck with him, but what was worse was that he represents almost nothing of what the conservative base stood for. You, Sean Hannity, and even Laura Ingraham had told everyone about the load of malarkey the Republican "Maverick" tried to push through - a great example being "McCain-Leiberman" and another being "McCain-Feingold".
I remember listening to you when he wanted to leave the Republican party to join the Democrats after the 2000 election, and I remember when he was a probable running mate for John Kerry in 2004. I listened, Rush, and when I would hear you plugging him for president, I remembered.
I showed up at the polls, but I didn't cast a vote for John McCain or Barack Obama. I wrote in Mickey Mouse.
I stood in the election booth for 20 minutes as my pen waved over John McCain, Barack Obama and even Ralph Nader. I didn't know much about the other candidates and I knew that I couldn't wake up to look myself in the mirror if I swallowed my pride and plugged my nose to cast my vote for McCain. Nor could I give in to peer pressure and vote for Barack.
Rush, the conservative movement is not about a particular party, nor has it ever been. It's been about the ideology that we the people should have the right to choose our own destiny as God permits without the tyrannical intervention of government. That we keep what we reap and we reap what we sow. It's one of the big differences between Conservatives and Liberals.
There is also another difference between Conservatives and Liberals: we will think and remember before we cast a vote for someone that has wronged us in the past and we know when we are being given a line of bull. A liberal will vote just because they "Hate" Republicans.
The talking heads will have their say as to what made this election. What lost my vote was that the Republican party left me and left many conservatives out.
I don't mean this by our religious beliefs, because there are conservatives who don't wear their religion on their sleeve. After the last 8 years of a president that spent us into mounds of debt and helped bring us into the housing crisis (I'm not leaving Congress out, they're just as guilty), I've seen the Republican party deviate so far from its roots that it looks no different than the Democratic Party.
There is more to conservatism than an "R" behind a name. It is the ideas, Rush, that made the conservative movement what it was and still is. John McCain assumed that we would follow just because he had an "R" behind his name in the ballot box. He was wrong.
John assumed that by placing Sarah Palin, a completely unknown woman, by his side it would secure the base. He was wrong.
We don't care who is up there as far as their race, gender or whether they are a decorated war hero that somehow feels entitled to the presidency. We care about what they are going to do for the country; and the best way that politicians can "buy" our votes is by being true to themselves and conservatism FIRST before being true to the Republican party (or in John McCain's case.. being true to the Democratic Party).
If you yourself try to revive the Republican party, I believe that it will be a harder task than what Barack has before him when he steps into the Oval Office. People have lost faith in the Republican party and I believe that we are all disheartened with the party. A good start would be to get rid of every single incumbent that's served more than two terms. Urge people to get involved with politics and help support them from a grass roots level.
The Republican party also needs a definite image make-over. I know that you're paid to do what you do and I'll never damn that, but if you feel that you're the one to revive the party from the ashes then you too need to return to what got you to where you were today - not just being a Republican party member and supporter, but a free thinking Conservative that's out for what is right, no matter who is on the Right or Left.