The more important statement in my vote (especially in a primary) is to make a stand for real fiscal and social conservatism. If a brave candidate steps up in the future, and gets real financing for a winnable mayoral bid, it would greatly encourage him to see that many of us were making our electoral statement of conservatism.
The Campaign consulting class and political handlers both love & hate the issues voters. But where their goal is to get a candidate elected, the issues voter cares more about getting the cause advanced.
General Election Pragmatism
In a winner-take-all general election, there is a certain pragmatism which one has to factor in. Gary Johnson is seeking support in the red state of Oklahoma. the Oklahoma Libertarian Party spent over $100k to get party status in our state law. They need 2.5% of the november presidential vote in order to remain a sanctioned political party, in state law. Gary Johnson is pitching the same message of idealism for the general election. But general elections for president allow for winner-take all even if the vote splits evenly three ways. If conservatives split their support somewhat evenly, a socialist can win all the state's electoral college votes with just 35% voter support.
Now, Oklahoma has 50 years of unbroken support for the more conservative major party. It's not likely to change this year. If the Republican has more than a 5% lead in late October state polls, a 'Liberty Republican' might see a safety in voting more idealistically without a serious concern that a socialist will win the Sooner state.
The OKGOP leadership will hate this notion being spread around. That's their job. They aren't as dedicated to issues as they are to candidates. If you doubt that, just read the coverage of the last 2 weeks of May and the massive taxes which the Republican leadership worked to pass through the legislature. The OKGOP leadership was silent. Even though the party's state convention, just the prior weekend, rejected the watered down 2016 platform, in favor of keeping the 2015 solid "Brogdon Platform" from last year's party convention.
The Republicans in state government leadership were pressing causes which directly opposed the party's platform. The real Republicans, the several thousand who attended precinct, county, district, and state conventions; they are far more committed to the issues than are the elected leaders. Do we really take their lectures about loyalty after what the legislature did, and tried to do?
No, when the OKGOP starts lecturing the legislative leaders, then I'll believe the party has a moral right to tell me how I should vote.
** Note: To my conservative friends (the real conservatives); Tell me who really wasted their vote? I would say that the one who stayed home very much wasted theirs. But also the one who supported the lighter(Bartlett) version of socialism; he wasted his vote and even worse! He sent the message that he wants to grow govt. into a terrible monstrosity, but at a slower rate than the California liberal(Bynam) intends to.
I, on the other hand, voted for a real conservative(Tom McCay). And I did not give the race to the socialist, in any way. I stood tall as a principled conservative. I consider myself part of the remnant 2% who sent an accurate message for conservatism, instead of the 38% who sold out for 1/3 of a loaf and ended up with nothing! Not even self respect! The 55% the balloting. But I will work to grow the courage of the conservatives, to turn that 2% into a real political message, whenever the experiment in socialism fails to deliver.
Opinion of the Editor
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David Van Risseghem is the Director of Sooner Politics.org. The resource is committed to informing & mobilizing conservative Oklahomans for civic reform. This endeavor seeks to utilize the efforts of all cooperative facets of the Conservative movement...