Despite our efforts and the efforts of millions of other conservatives, who went all-in for the Romney candidacy, Election Day 2012 was a disaster – Barack Obama was re-elected President, Republicans lost seats in the House and failed to gain a majority in the Senate.
However, out of that disaster comes some good news: conservatives are saying “Never again” are we going to nominate a big government establishment Republican for President.
What’s more, we won’t have to – conservatives now have a deep bench of potential presidential candidates.
We have elected a new generation of conservative leaders who are capable of taking over the GOP to become the Party of small government constitutional conservatism.
Last night’s election of small government constitutional conservatives -- Ted Cruz, Jeff Flake and Deb Fischer to the Senate, the election of conservative Mike Pence as Governor of Indiana, the election of Trey Radel and other “boat rockers” to the House -- portend that yesterday’s defeats will spell the end of big government Republicanism.
They join such small government constitutional conservative leaders as Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, Senators Jim DeMint, Rand Paul, Mike Lee, Marco Rubio and Pat Toomey, Virginia’s Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli and the 50-odd Members of the House, such as Justin Amash, who stood for conservative principles and voted against the debt ceiling deal.
Establishment Republicans ever anxious to hold on to power, and the establishment media, are going to blame “the Tea Party” and “radical” conservatives who voted for principled small government constitutional conservative candidates in Republican primaries for the election disaster of 2012.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
Governor Romney won the nomination by spending tens of millions of dollars knee-capping his conservative opponents in the primaries and then handed the election to Obama because he and his campaign team spent most of the campaign mired in the establishment Republican folly of trying to win by standing for nothing.
The “stand for nothing” strategy didn’t work for President Ford’s 1976 campaign, it didn’t work for President George H.W. Bush’s re-election and it certainly didn’t work for Bob Dole and John McCain.
Republicans never, ever, win the presidency unless they nationalize the election by campaigning on a conservative agenda.
While Obama and the Democrats threw down the gauntlet on the social issues -- such as same-sex marriage and abortion -- Republicans ran away from such issues as same-sex marriage, religious freedom and Obama’s war on the Catholic Church. You couldn’t find any mention of the Constitution or the conservative social agenda in a Romney ad or in a Rove-run Super PAC ad or an ad run by the national GOP.
The establishment Republicans who held the reins and the checkbooks chose to run negative ads against Obama and campaign almost solely on Romney’s biography and economic policies, while skipping the social issues and the concerns of Tea Partiers and small government constitutional conservatives.
In choosing to ignore the larger conservative agenda, Romney chose not to follow the path that led Republicans to win seven of the previous eleven presidential elections.
In the Senate, two good and decent men – Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock – were defeated not because they were pro-life, but because they were inept campaigners.
Tommy Thompson, George Allen, Connie Mack and other establishment-backed candidates -- who ran as establishment Republicans -- all went down to defeat in the general election after being boosted past principled small government conservatives in the primaries by Mitch McConnell and the Washington GOP establishment.
The leaders who forced those kinds of candidates on us -- and manipulated the GOP rules to force the Party to change from a grassroots-driven Party to a Party driven from the top-down by Washington insiders -- should resign.
Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus, Senatorial Committee Chairman John Cornyn, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, Speaker of the House John Boehner, NRCC Chairman Pete Sessions and other Republican leaders behind the epic election failure of 2012 should be replaced with leaders more in tune with the grassroots of the conservative base of the Party.
Likewise, in any logical universe, establishment Republican consultants such as Karl Rove, Ed Gillespie, Romney campaign senior advisor Stewart Stevens and pollster Neil Newhouse would never be hired to run or consult on a national campaign again -- and no one would give a dime to their ineffective Super PACs, such as American Crossroads.
Mitt Romney's loss was the death rattle of the establishment GOP. Far from signaling a rejection of the Tea Party or grassroots conservatives, the disaster of 2012 signals the beginning of the battle to takeover the Republican Party and the opportunity to establish the GOP as the Party of small government constitutional conservatism.
To see Wednesday's news conference with conservative leaders discussing the election and the future, click here: http://www.conservativehq.com/electionbreakdown