Franklin Graham's Call To Arms
|Rev. Franklin Graham|
The GOP is already at loggerheads with its more populist economic supporters in the Tea Party, which we have chronicled in this report for the last several years. It has been unable to recreate the kind of message that Ronald Reagan delivered, which brought millions of blue collar workers back to the party's banner.
Its relationship with social conservatives has been strained over bad judicial nominations, the lack of real resistance to the revolutionary change in the definition of marriage and, most recently, the funding of Planned Parenthood.
More and more lifelong Republicans are calling themselves conservatives first and Republicans second -- if at all. I've heard from several friends in the past week who have switched their party registration to independent.
And now Franklin Graham, driven over the edge by the omnibus bill, which significantly increased spending and failed to defund Planned Parenthood, has announced that he too is leaving the GOP. Here is his statement:
"There's no question -- taxpayers should not be paying for abortions! Abortion is murder in God's eyes. Seeing and hearing Planned Parenthood talk nonchalantly about selling baby parts from aborted fetuses with utter disregard for human life is reminiscent of Joseph Mengele and the Nazi concentration camps! That should've been all that was needed to turn off the faucet for their funding.
"Nothing was done to trim this 2,000 page, $1.1 trillion budget. This is an example of why I have resigned from the Republican Party and declared myself Independent. I have no hope in the Republican Party, the Democratic Party, or Tea Party to do what is best for America."
But that is not what Reverend Graham is saying at all. Here is the next and most important part of his message:
Graham wants more Christians to engage in the battle. This is the only hope the country has. And Franklin Graham certainly understands that in the vast majority of cases, the right candidate to vote for when it comes to values and responsible budgeting will be a center-right candidate on the Republican ticket rather than a left-wing socialist on the Democrat ticket.
Not to be melodramatic, but if I were Speaker Ryan, Senate Majority Leader McConnell or RNC Chairman Reince Priebus, I would call an emergency meeting and bring in people like Franklin Graham. The party needs a reality check on the mood of its own base.
While I fully appreciate the limitations of divided government, so many conservatives are fed-up with the GOP's seeming unwillingness to fight back.
The last seven years of allowing Barack Obama to violate the separation of powers, abuse the Constitution, insult our Judeo-Christian heritage and values, gut our military, lose two wars and preemptively surrender to the Iranians, has millions of Americans absolutely fuming and demanding a complete course correction! Yet party elders frequently seem to be moving in the opposite direction.
I believe our side has a great opportunity to prevail in 11 months. We have a chance to save the country, but only if our leaders understand the lateness of the hour and the seriousness of America's condition.
2016 will be, in my view, a climatic year for the future of our country. We need all hands on deck to defend our values and save our country!
Gary Bauer is a conservative family values advocate and serves as president of American Values and chairman of the Campaign for Working Families
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