But competitive districts — where moderates tend to thrive — are becoming a thing of the past thanks in large part to redistricting. And that means an uphill battle of a primary for any moderate candidate who tries to challenge a conservative member.
Asked whether a moderate Republican movement could really materialize, former Rep. Steve LaTourette, who now is the president of the Main Street Partnership, was cautiously optimistic.
“It’s possible; it’s going to be difficult and it’s not going to happen overnight. There is an appetite for it but it remains to be seen if we can get to there from here,” said LaTourette. “Some of the well heeled donors and the money people in the Republican Party are rethinking about directing that money to people who can actually govern. We’re getting a lot of calls and interest at Main Street, we have a big meeting up on Wall Street in November. So we will see, we are up against some well entrenched organizations.”
Ah yes. Steve LaTourette, a model of moderate Republicanism:
- Voted YES on banning partial-birth abortions. (Apr 2000)
- Voted YES on barring transporting minors to get an abortion. (Jun 1999)
- Rated 0% by NARAL, indicating a pro-life voting record. (Dec 2003)
- Voted YES on banning federal health coverage that includes abortion. (May 2011)
- Voted YES on terminating the Home Affordable mortgage Program. (Mar 2011)
- Voted NO on prohibiting job discrimination based on sexual orientation. (Nov 2007)
- Voted YES on Constitutionally defining marriage as one-man-one-woman. (Jul 2006)
- Voted YES on making the PATRIOT Act permanent. (Dec 2005)
- Voted YES on Constitutional Amendment banning same-sex marriage. (Sep 2004)
- Voted YES on protecting the Pledge of Allegiance. (Sep 2004)
- Voted YES on constitutional amendment prohibiting flag desecration. (Jun 2003)
- Voted NO on enforcing against anti-gay hate crimes. (Apr 2009)
- Declare English as the official language of the US. (Feb 2007)
- Declared English the official language of the US. (Jan 1999)
I like the idea that there are these imaginary Republicans out there who are so, so different from the Tea Party. In tactics, perhaps, but in doctrine these people believe the same things. They vote for the same things. They think the same things. There are no moderate Republicans on the issues. There are just moderate Republicans in rhetoric.
The wish for acceptable, moderate Republicans who don’t scare away the business guys is just a wish for bigots who keep their mouths shut in polite company, and then go back to work and vote with the loudmouths anyway.