The California Republican Party is going through the process of looking at the Party Platform. This ritual—which occurs every four years—has seen a marked change from previous meetings of the Platform Committee. This year, the “moderates” briefly succeeded in stripping all references to social issues from the platform. Some were subsequently re-inserted in generic ways while some are no longer in the draft constructed by a sub-committee of the Platform Committee. Abortion and marriage went from an entire section for each issue to one sentence in the new draft while opposition to euthanasia has been completely deleted.
Here are the parts of the platform document that reference abortion, guns and marriage. The underline means that text was added after being removed in the original draft. (Abortion and gun ownership are never mentioned in the new proposal. Marriage is no longer defined as being between one man and one woman.)
We believe in the sanctity of human life; therefore, we believe in the protection of all innocent human life.
The Republican Party supports traditional marriage as the foundational unit for our society and key for the future of our children.
We support our Constitutional Second Amendment rights.
Here are portions of a recent news account of the changes.
A proposed rewrite of the California Republican Party platform retreats from opposition to same-sex adoption, domestic partner benefits and child custody, avoids any mention of overturning Roe v. Wade and drops a demand to end virtually all federal and state benefits for illegal immigrants…
…The current platform, adopted in 2008, says state guns laws “disarm law-abiding citizens” and calls for the end to waiting periods to purchase firearms and inclusion of a right to carry concealed weapons in the state constitution. In the proposed version, a single sentence is included on gun ownership, saying the party supports Second Amendment rights.
A detailed section titled “The Right to Life” vanishes, including a call to reverse the landmark Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion. It would be replaced with a single sentence on the protection of innocent human life, and the word “abortion” never appears.
The proposed platform states the party “supports traditional marriage,” a significant rewrite from 2008, when the platform said marriage should be defined as between a man and woman, and schools should not teach homosexuality as an “acceptable … lifestyle.” Californians have twice voted to outlaw same-sex marriage, but a federal judge last year declared the latest ban, known as Proposition 8, unconstitutional. The ruling is being contested in court.
It also drops a sentence opposing assisted suicide, as well as a line saying the party supports stem-cell research “that focuses on cures, not destroying innocent human life.”
The Party has been moving in this direction for many years but it appears that the Party is close to abandoning any mention of social issues. Ironically, party affiliation has become a distinction without meaning under the open primary rules that voters will be under in 2012. By eliminating one of the cornerstones of conservatism in the platform, people are now offered even less reasons to identify themselves as Republicans. Due to stalling and lack of vision, the Party has virtually assured themselves that few if any endorsements will be had during the next cycle. (They have no effective plan to function in the “Open Primary” environment and keep deferring the issue to future conventions.)
These trends plus the proposed reapportionment maps insure that the Republican brand will further erode and become literally a third party in California. Decline-to-State will soon pass the Republicans as the second largest party in California.
Lastly, who do Conservatives have to thank for their declining influence in the Platform Committee? Karen England. The week-end when she, Mike Spence, Ron Givens and the gang were trying their hostile takeover of CRA was the same week-end when elections were held by delegated to the California Republican Party to select members to represent them on the Platform Committee. Once again the circular firing squad turns victory into an opportunity for self-immolation.
I have been reading Exodus to my six year old son and it reinforces the idea that we Republicans will be wandering in the wilderness until this corrupt generation passes away. Perhaps by then the “Promised Land” will just be a mirage in our rear-view mirror. Our momentum now is to return to Egypt. If “moderate” Republicans get their way, they will be walking arm-in-arm with the Democrats as they lead us down the road to serfdom.