Bob McConnell: I am no longer a Republican | SteamboatToday.com

Bob McConnell: I am no longer a Republican

Bob McConnell

To those of you who listened when I asked you to trust the Republican Party, I apologize. The GOP has failed us at the national, state, and local level. I am no longer a Republican because the GOP no longer represents me or what I believe. When I stepped into the fray a year and a half ago, I thought the enemy I was fighting was the progressive movement. I was only half right. We must defeat President Barack Obama and his agenda. The GOP is not up to the task. It is time to face the reality that conservatives are being shut out of the party. Conservative values, not a "go along to get along, what will keep me in office" mentality will defeat Obama in 2012.

I recently heard that the Republican National Committee is $4 million in debt. And these are the people who will lead us to fiscal responsibility? Small wonder contributions are evaporating after we learned in summer 2010 that more than two-thirds of all contributions go to keeping the national machine in first class when they travel to gala dinners, and the occasional massage parlor visit. GOP "leadership" in the U.S. Senate and House is an oxymoron — a true contradiction in terms. Mitch McConnell and John Boehner are poster boys for the GOP's "paid-their-dues" mentality. They are the same two who with Pelosi and Reid, "led" us through the Bush 43 and Obama era financial debacle. Last month, they caved on critical conservative issues during the lame-duck, and I sense that is just the beginning. Refusing to allow Michelle Bachmann a leadership position was a slap in the face to the Tea Party energy that put a new group of Republicans in office. Soon, Congress will vote on whether to keep the government open by funding it with money we don't have. How will Republicans vote? And before May, Congress must vote whether or not to raise the debt ceiling again, further financially strapping our grandchildren. How will Republicans vote — based on the promises they made while campaigning or based on what they're told by the poster boys?

At the state level, the GOP looked like the Keystone Cops during the last election — funny if not so pathetic in result. The Senate District 8 Vacancy Committee appointed Al White's wife to finish his term — liberal bloggers say the fix on that had been in for weeks. I am sure liberals celebrated with Champagne when they heard the result. When a selection as important as the Senate District 8 seat is made by secret ballot, we, the people, suffer. Contrary to the representations of our county GOP chair, there is no law or statute requiring secret ballots. It's simply the GOP by-laws, the way they choose to do business — secretly — in order to protect the good old boys.

I now am registered as unaffiliated. It was easy to disengage; just go to the website for the Colorado Secretary of State, https://www.sos.state.co.us, change your voter affiliation, and start paying attention to patriots who pledge allegiance to the flag, not a party.

We need a vehicle other than the GOP to defeat Obama, because the GOP is not up to the task. It is a waste of time to try and change it from within; the party leadership has made it clear we are not welcome. I have seen firsthand that they have no moral compass. The only way to get their attention is to leave, not necessarily to form another party, but to stand together outside the Boy's Club as independent voters. We can field candidates who have no party allegiance or affiliation. We can choose people who have integrity and want to serve us, not just more mediocre life-long politicians who have paid their dues. Let's get their attention.

I always have urged you to keep the faith. That never meant faith in the Republican Party, or any political machine. I ask you to have faith in yourselves, in ourselves as conservatives, to overcome the most serious crisis the Republic has faced in a hundred years. We must not repeat 1912 in 2012, and the GOP is well on the way to doing just that.

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Bob McConnell, of Steam­boat Springs, was a former candidate for the 3rd Congressional seat and was a candidate for the Senate District 8 vacancy. He is a former Army Ranger, attorney, and author.

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