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Proven Failure: Republicans Under the Big Tent

I contend that politics is a numbers game, and there are only TWO kinds of “party growth:”

1) The kind of “growth” where Republicans take their unbending, time-tested and proven conservative principles to the arena of ideas, share them with the people who currently embrace the wrong ideas, and, by doing so, convince them to join the Republican team.

2) The kind of “growth” where Republicans take their unbending, time-tested and proven conservative truths, apologize for them and exchange them for bad ideas, so that we can get the people with the WRONG ideas to join our team.

Make no mistake about it! “Moderate Inclusivism Republicanism” and/or “Big-Tent Republicanism” is an appeal for the party to do the latter of those two options. In reality the word “inclusive” is being used to bully people into “surrendering” the values they believe to be true.

At the close of the 2006 elections, the GOP was visibly rattled, absorbing significant losses across the nation. Despite the fact that a MAJORITY of Republicans who lost during that season were considered “moderate” Republicans (in contrast with 94 percent of the nation’s most “extreme” conservative congressmen who WERE re-elected), a hell-bent faction of “moderates” in the GOP wouldn’t allow what should have been a “teachable moment” to stop them from barreling forward toward yet another failure in 2008.

Initially, the GOP gave signs of an apparent determination to “re-invent” itself as a “big tent” party. While this term “big tent” appealed to the sensibilities of many good people (sounding warm, friendly, and welcoming), in the end, true conservatives came to realize it was code for something far from hospitable. Instead, a dark and ugly spirit of compromise took hold.

A non-conservative “Republican” movement seized power and insisted on a course AWAY from the proven principles that had once made Republicans great. This movement produced a second failed attempt to garner independent votes by boosting John McCain to the front of the presidential ticket. We experienced yet another failure with Mitt Romney in 2012.

Point of fact: The only people who were excited about John McCain and Mitt Romney were those who either didn’t understand the value of authentic conservatism, or just weren’t authentic conservatives themselves, or both. For the rest of us, it was depressing.

So, let the historical record show that option number two was chosen during the last three election cycles, that option number two was (and is) a miserable failure, and that option number two, if it is continued, reveals malignant stupidity within the Republican Party’s leadership as well as ensuring a future filled with failure!

The good news for the Republican Party is this: we still have the opportunity to realign ourselves with the principles for which so many have given their lives.

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Jeff Mullen

Jeff Mullen is a pastor and patriot. He began ministry in 1989 and in 1995 founded Mega Church, Point of Grace Church in Waukee, Iowa and is also politically engaged in the community. He is a musician with extensive recording and performing experience and is a dynamic, humorous communicator. Jeff is also an avid shooter and enjoys a good hunt. He’s been married since 1989 and has two amazing daughters. You can connect with Jeff at or