Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Making the Tent Bigger

The Rev. Joseph Evans, pastor at the Mt. Carmel Baptist Church in Northwest Washington, in an Op-Ed in today's Washington Times:
Journalists are creating public awareness of an emerging class of people called New Republicans. No longer operating under the proverbial radar screen, they are people who value family, limited government, self-help and responsibility, and an entrepreneurial spirit.

Partly, journalists may be interested in their enlarging presence because they are noticing an obvious sociopolitical paradigm shift occurring in our country. Another reason may be that the New Republicans are African Americans and Hispanics.

From a conservative perspective, African Americans and Hispanics conspicuously are asserting themselves in the public square by engaging in politics, commerce and the judiciary. President Bush may nominate appeals court Judge Emilio Garza to replace the venerable Sandra Day O'Connor, who recently announced her retirement. This appointment would reflect a changing reality within the Republican Party. Although recently not as popular among ultraconservatives, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales has similar credentials.

Politically,Kenneth Blackwell, Secretary of State of Ohio, is leading a conservative charge as the conservative gubernatorial frontrunner in the 2006 election. As Mr. Bush rightly thinks of Karl Rove as his 'architect' in the 2004 presidential victory, Mr. Blackwell should be thought of as his 'engineer.' The Republican establishment in the state of Ohio thought Mr. Blackwell's insistence on placing the marriage amendment on the ballot was not demonstrating political savvy, but Mr. Blackwell had his finger on the pulse of his fellow Buckeyes' values.

Minorities are breathing new life into the Republican Party. They are affirming that absolute moral truth exists, that traditional values matter and that their dreams can be realized by preserving proven historical ways to succeed. How can we sustain this new emerging class? One way is for the president to nominate Clarence Thomas as the successor to the current and fine Chief Justice William Rehnquist. Mr. Rehnquist will retire at some point and Mr. Bush should take advantage of the opportunityto strengthen conservative philosophy among African Americans.

. . . Justice Thomas represents the New Republicans, those who are coming and those who are returning to the party of Lincoln and Frederick Douglass. Larry Sabato, a University of Virginia professor, believes "it only takes 20-25 percent of the black vote for Republicans to win the presidency consistently." This would affirm the judgment of 34 percent of young blacks (18-25) and 29 percent (26-35), who call themselves Independents, according to the Joint Center for Political Studies, to vote as they live: conservatively.

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