Do conservatives keep “falling in love with bad boys” in politics?

posted at 4:01 pm on February 22, 2014 by Jazz Shaw

This is essentially the question that Matt Lewis is asking this weekend in his Daily Caller article, The enemy of my enemy is my friend: Why conservatives are always defending the indefensible. In it, Matt puts forward the question of whether or not somebody is worth defending – even if they have the potential to do more long term harm than good – just because they are also the enemy of someone we oppose. He delves into a few different examples, citing Donald Trump, Ted Nugent and … Matt Bevin?

Political candidates who pick the right enemies are too often supported, regardless of their failings. Most recently, we have seen this in the effort to oust Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. McConnell, of course, is no conservative hero, but conservatives were too quick to latch onto a flawed replacement.

Matt Bevin’s campaign has been plagued with mistakes and odd revelations (did he really go to MIT?), the most recent of which is that he signed a letter in support of TARP. Bevin’s in a different category from Trump and Nugent, but conservatives are supporting him for many of the same reasons, including the fact that he has the right enemy. For a lot of conservatives, it’s better the devil you don’t know than the devil you do.

I’m really not sure I’d lump Bevin in with the rest of the cast of characters in this article. While he has turned out to be a less than productive candidate, many of the “charges” listed against him are largely superficial, and this may be nothing more than yet another case of insufficient vetting rather than some sort of dangerous wolf in sheep’s clothing. In the end, Bevin’s opposition to McConnell is surely still just as valid as the protests expressed by many conservatives who wished to see McConnell removed. He apparently just wasn’t the best candidate to carry the message to the polling stations.

As to the rest of the subjects listed, Lewis has a point to make which is rather hard to argue with in general terms.

It’s time to break the cycle. Having the right enemies is hardly a qualification for robust support. That’s because you and I will (fairly or not) be associated with the people we support. When we endorse the wrong person, their actions reflect on us.

So here’s my modest proposal: When conservatives vet someone (assuming they do), they should consider some additional criteria, including: “Is this personal really a conservative?” — “Is this person just using us?,” and (just as importantly) — “Do they have the character and integrity worthy of our support?”

No matter how much you may love to hear some people set their own hair on fire and spout out some really over the top, world class invective, Matt’s point is a fair one. Winning in politics involves, well… winning, and there are still some lines that are only crossed at significant risk. Some actors on the political stage tend to cross – or completely shatter -those lines, and while the entertainment value is high, they risk becoming clowns in the eyes of many voters who may be more cautious. And when you endorse the clown, you become part of the circus by default. The enemy of your enemy may indeed be your friend, but we probably all have had a few friends that you really wouldn’t want to bring home for Sunday dinner with the family.


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Castle with his lifetime 53% ACU record (but 100% on party votes).

Adjoran on February 22, 2014 at 5:10 PM

Castles ACU voting record at the end of his career between 2005-2010 was just 37%. Like many, they start out OK and morph left.

Second, what was wrong with Miller? He would have won with ease if not for the loser double dipping. The establishment likes to cheat legit Republican primary winners then clame they were bad candidates. That’s all that Miller race says.

KMav on February 22, 2014 at 5:33 PM

Again I will go by what Obama wants to be identified as…A black man.

It makes you uncomfortable? Well that’s your problem.

Deal with it.

Well if we can identify with any race we want then my lily white azz wants to be black.

As if somehow Obama being mixed makes the subhuman comment less racist….

liberalrules on February 22, 2014 at 5:26 PM

And the whole reason he wants to be identified by his blackness, is so trolls like you can claim racism when someone doesn’t like him.

melle1228 on February 22, 2014 at 5:33 PM

libarldrools – Storybook man.
/

CWchangedhisNicagain on February 22, 2014 at 5:33 PM

Umm, you do realize that Obama is mixed, correct? In fact, he was raised almost solely by that white half.

melle1228 on February 22, 2014 at 5:22 PM

Still, Dog Eater has this amazing ability to transform his language to some sort of urban patois when necessary.

Bishop on February 22, 2014 at 5:33 PM

For a lot of conservatives, it’s better the devil you don’t know than the devil you do.

That’s pretty moronic, though I bet Lewis thought it was quite the clever turn of phrase.

There wasn’t much need to read any more of his drivel.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on February 22, 2014 at 5:33 PM

Still, Dog Eater has this amazing ability to transform his language to some sort of urban patois when necessary.

Bishop on February 22, 2014 at 5:33 PM

Yep, just like CLinton used his “struggles” of a poor kid in Arkansas when he grew up with a nanny.

Obama uses his ‘struggles’ as a black man when he grew up in a white, upper middle class family in Hawaii..

melle1228 on February 22, 2014 at 5:35 PM

Umm, you do realize that Obama is mixed, correct? In fact, he was raised almost solely by that white half.

melle1228 on February 22, 2014 at 5:22 PM

Not really. he was raised in Indonesia for the most important years. I doubt his skank mother had much to do with it (seeing as she was never really interested in raising the little rat). He is a son of Indonesia, a muslim third worlder at his core … and a mind-numbingly stupid one.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on February 22, 2014 at 5:36 PM

All trolls are hit ‘n run when they get beaten with facts.

As Del said, it’s not really a just ‘fight’, ever.

Schadenfreude on February 22, 2014 at 5:36 PM

So here’s my modest proposal: When conservatives vet someone (assuming they do), they should consider some additional criteria, including: “Is this personal really a conservative?” — “Is this person just using us?,” and (just as importantly) — “Do they have the character and integrity worthy of our support?”

Actually, Matt, the first question is what most conservatives ask themselves… um… first. And if the answer is negative, the second two questions are irrelevant. We can only be used if we want to pretend they’re conservative; and a person of character and integrity in the service of non-conservative causes makes for a civil debating opponent, but of no use to us for anything else.

But let’s back up to “When conservatives vet someone…” and your parenthetical aside “…(assuming they do)…” Your article, capped by your snarky insinuation, is premised on the idea that conservative do not vet their spokesmen, candidates, et. al. In which case, what is the purpose of this article? Looks like a toadying suck-up to the anti-conservative establishment to me.

de rigueur on February 22, 2014 at 5:37 PM

The thing is too that we have the numbers and the capacity. Just look at the commenters on this site alone. Most are extremely intelligent. Can you imagine if HA commenters were setting policy? It would be a different country. Yet we have no substantive voice in terms of party. It pi$$es me off.

The totalitarians, of course, also control popular culture, the universities, etc…but I know I’m preaching to the choir…

WhatSlushfund on February 22, 2014 at 5:39 PM

I would suggest the cancer of surrender weasel is also entering CPAC.

Happy Nomad on February 22, 2014 at 5:27 PM

Agreed. CPAC and the American Conservative Union have been going downhill for a long time. David Keene, who ran the ACU and CPAC for a number of years, is a fast-buck artist (e.g. the Fed Ex-UPS scandal a few years back). The American Conservative Union is a major supporter of amnesty and any criticism of radical Islam is out (Grover Norquist influence). CPAC has pretty much become an annual event where geeky 20 something moderate Republicans hope to “get lucky” for a change.

bw222 on February 22, 2014 at 5:42 PM

I would love to see this guy’s dissertation of John McCain or Lisa Murkowski. Maybe an in depth rant about Lindsey Graham or Susan Collins. Because, when I ask myself if these people share my principles, the answer is no and I’m a conservative. This group shares principles with a contraceptive sponge.

HillC Liver Spot on February 22, 2014 at 5:42 PM

Just look at the commenters on this site alone. Most are extremely intelligent.

WhatSlushfund on February 22, 2014 at 5:39 PM

And then you have ME.

/JustKidding!

gryphon202 on February 22, 2014 at 5:45 PM

Umm, you do realize that Obama is mixed, correct? In fact, he was raised almost solely by that white half.

melle1228 on February 22, 2014 at 5:22 PM

Again I will go by what Obama wants to be identified as…A black man.

It makes you uncomfortable? Well that’s your problem.

Deal with it.

As if somehow Obama being mixed makes the subhuman comment less racist….

liberalrules on February 22, 2014 at 5:26 PM

Note that the REB gets to choose his race for political convenience.

George Zimmermann, not so much.

slickwillie2001 on February 22, 2014 at 5:45 PM

WhatSlushfund on February 22, 2014 at 5:39 PM

The last couple of years, the Republican leadership have not even been trying to push a non-progressive message. Let alone doing it effectively.

They seem more focused on stopping us then stopping the Democrats. Pushing amnesty, a vat tax, global warming, nationalizing education with common core, etc., etc., etc.

KMav on February 22, 2014 at 5:47 PM

Castles ACU voting record at the end of his career between 2005-2010 was just 37%. Like many, they start out OK and morph left.

KMav on February 22, 2014 at 5:33 PM

And, the ACU is much more lenient in its scoring than other conservative organizations (e.g. Heritage Action and Freedonworks).

bw222 on February 22, 2014 at 5:47 PM

What color is the sky in your world?

sharrukin on February 22, 2014 at 5:11 PM

I am talking about in the 2012 election. After the primaries, there was no problem getting behind Cruz for the 2012 general election, because we were sure there wasn’t something nasty about to pop up from the past.

Sekhmet on February 22, 2014 at 5:48 PM

Jazz is so far out of it that I will bet he is shocked at how Matt Lewis is detested by and has absolutely no credibility with conservatives.

I really don’t know why Salem sends him here every weekend, other than to antagonize the HA base.

bw222 on February 22, 2014 at 5:51 PM

Your party is aligning with someone who calls a black person a subhuman mongrel

A word which has nasty historical implications no one wants to be reminded off.

Why are republicans associating with this bigot?
Shouldn’t he have been disavowed by now?
Sub-human? Really?
liberalrules on February 22, 2014 at 5:18 PM

Enjoy the racist comments from your own party, hypocrite.
http://mediatrackers.org/national/2013/06/20/6-horribly-racist-comments-from-obama-admin-officials

AppraisHer on February 22, 2014 at 5:53 PM

Sekhmet on February 22, 2014 at 5:48 PM

They have been attacking Cruz none stop for days now because he won’t cooperate with their progressive agenda.

If he is one of those ‘clean and articulate’ conservatives, then it really doesn’t seem to make any difference at all to the establishment. The politics of personal destruction don’t need anything real to operate. They can just make it up as they go along.

You seem to believe that if the perfect conservative can be found that they will be immune from these sorts of attacks and that just isn’t true.

sharrukin on February 22, 2014 at 5:54 PM

Ted Nugent called Obama a sub-human.

liberalrules on February 22, 2014 at 4:53 PM

Did he later apologize for doing so?

Del Dolemonte on February 22, 2014 at 5:57 PM

Liberalrules- I bet you have called out Spike Lee…right?

Bahahaawahwhahaa whatever.

“In the days of slavery, there were those slaves who lived on the plantation and [there] were those slaves that lived in the house. You got the privilege of living in the house if you served the master … exactly the way the master intended to have you serve him. Colin Powell’s committed to come into the house of the master. When Colin Powell dares to suggest something other than what the master wants to hear, he will be turned back out to pasture.” — Harry Belafonte

“Republicans bring out Colin Powell and J.C. Watts because they have no program, no policy. They have no love and no joy. They’d rather take pictures with black children than feed them.” — Donna Brazile, Al Gore’s Campaign Manager for the 2000 election

(On Clarence Thomas) “A handkerchief-head, chicken-and-biscuit-eating Uncle Tom.” — Spike Lee

CWchangedhisNicagain on February 22, 2014 at 6:02 PM

…But let’s back up to “When conservatives vet someone…” and your parenthetical aside “…(assuming they do)…” Your article, capped by your snarky insinuation, is premised on the idea that conservative do not vet their spokesmen, candidates, et. al. In which case, what is the purpose of this article? Looks like a toadying suck-up to the anti-conservative establishment to me.

de rigueur on February 22, 2014 at 5:37 PM

O’Donnell just forgot about being on camera, interviewed by Bill Maher, right? Bevin’s TARP-loving, that was known about all along by his supporters, RIGHT?

Like I keep saying, too many conservatives hear some red meat and fall in love. The candidates don’t get vetted, the Democrat brings up the stuff the vetting should have caught, and all of a sudden, it’s the establishment’s problem, that conservative groups who pushed an un-vetted candidate through the primary, failed to catch the problem in the vetting process. NOW, everybody needs to drop the money from winnable races and invest in Sam’s Club-sized cans of t*rd polish, or conservatives stay home.

Sekhmet on February 22, 2014 at 6:03 PM

Donald Trump, Ted Nugent

It’s embarrassing that these circus freak-show acts were ever given a platform, let alone hailed as conservative stars.

itsnotaboutme on February 22, 2014 at 6:05 PM

They have been attacking Cruz none stop for days now because he won’t cooperate with their progressive agenda.

If he is one of those ‘clean and articulate’ conservatives, then it really doesn’t seem to make any difference at all to the establishment. The politics of personal destruction don’t need anything real to operate. They can just make it up as they go along.

You seem to believe that if the perfect conservative can be found that they will be immune from these sorts of attacks and that just isn’t true.

sharrukin on February 22, 2014 at 5:54 PM

Cruz’s actions post-election are quite another matter to the one I am talking about. I am talking about getting conservatives elected. Something you may not believe, but I actually also want to see happen. What it takes is understanding the Tea Party has been attracting opportunists, and taking steps to make sure the opportunists fail the vetting process before conservative groups decide to get behind someone in a primary election.

Sekhmet on February 22, 2014 at 6:08 PM

Umm, you do realize that Obama is mixed, correct? In fact, he was raised almost solely by that white half.

melle1228 on February 22, 2014 at 5:22 PM

Again I will go by what Obama wants to be identified as…A black man.

It makes you uncomfortable? Well that’s your problem.

Deal with it.

As if somehow Obama being mixed makes the subhuman comment less racist….

liberalrules on February 22, 2014 at 5:26 PM

Why is your Cult Leader pretending that 50% of his genetic makeup doesn’t exist? It could credibly be argued that he is doing so for racist reasons.

He’s ignoring the fact that his mother was White, and also ignoring the fact that he was almost totally raised by her and her equally white mother, O’bama’s grandma.

I know you’re not terribly bright, but here’s a mental exercise for you.

If the situation were reversed, and O’bama’s father was White and it was his mother who was Black, would he still call himself Black? And would you and your fellow Cultists also still call him Black?

Before you amuse us with your answer, some historical perspective might be useful.

When he was growing up in Jamaica, legendary musician Bob Marley was considered to be White, not Jamaican. That’s solely because his father was White (a British military officer).

Today, his White genetic background is totally ignored. Isn’t that also Racist?

(Starts Snowdial)

PS: Did washed-up 1970s rock star Ted Nugent apologize for calling O’bama a dog?

Del Dolemonte on February 22, 2014 at 6:08 PM

Oh and Hillary- you bad girl- liberalrules is kicking you out of the party.

“You f*cking Jew b@stard.” — Hillary Clinton to political operative Paul Fray. This was revealed in “State of a Union: Inside the Complex Marriage of Bill and Hillary Clinton” and has been verified by Paul Fray and three witnesses.

Oh and this gal:

“There’s no great, white bigot; there’s just about 200 million little white bigots out there.” — USA Today columnist Julienne Malveaux

Oh and most certainly one of your heroes:

“I’ll have those n*ggers voting Democratic for the next 200 years.”

– Lyndon B. Johnson to two governors on Air Force One according Ronald Kessler’s Book, “Inside The White House”

Yeh I know he’s dead but we both know you never ever have said the Dems should disown him you hypocritical piece of fecal matter.

CWchangedhisNicagain on February 22, 2014 at 6:09 PM

bw222 on February 22, 2014 at 5:51 PM

I’m trying to recall the last time I thought Matt Lewis was worth reading.

Drawing a blank.

INC on February 22, 2014 at 6:12 PM

http://mediatrackers.org/national/2013/06/20/6-horribly-racist-comments-from-obama-admin-officials

AppraisHer on February 22, 2014 at 5:53 PM

Yup, those are some outrageous, hateful quotes…that have been swept under the rug by the media.

We can’t excuse our bad boys by saying that the Dems have more bad boys, for two reasons:

1) Wrong is still wrong, no matter who it is who’s wrong.

2) Our bad boys’ misdeeds will get front page coverage; theirs will be on page D-12.

itsnotaboutme on February 22, 2014 at 6:12 PM

you know what we need here?
a weekly column coauthored by matt lewis and rick moran, that would be just super…

dmacleo on February 22, 2014 at 6:13 PM

catch the problem in the vetting process

Sekhmet on February 22, 2014 at 6:03 PM

You mean well vetted candidates like Dede Scozzafava, Meg Whitman, Arlen Specter, and Charlie Crist?

sharrukin on February 22, 2014 at 6:14 PM

You mean well vetted candidates like Dede Scozzafava, Meg Whitman, Arlen Specter, and Charlie Crist?

sharrukin on February 22, 2014 at 6:14 PM

I’m trying to speak English here, if you’ll pardon my redneckbonics. But I’m not talking about the ideology of the candidates. I am talking about whether their past has been looked into enough, to be sure the Donks don’t have an “easy button” for the general election—like financial irregularities, sex tapes, blabbing about witchcraft and monkey-spanking on Bill Maher’s camera, etc.

The above you name may not have been the best conservatives, but their downfall did not involve naughty chinchilla tapes. In the Castle-O’Donnell controversy, I wish conservatives in Delaware had looked into Door Number 3—found someone as good as O’Donnell ideologically, without her baggage.

Sekhmet on February 22, 2014 at 6:24 PM

I would love to see this guy’s dissertation of John McCain or Lisa Murkowski. Maybe an in depth rant about Lindsey Graham or Susan Collins. Because, when I ask myself if these people share my principles, the answer is no and I’m a conservative. This group shares principles with a contraceptive sponge.
HillC Liver Spot on February 22, 2014 at 5:42 PM

I imagine his assessment of these Geriatric Old Progressives is that they are reasonable conservatives. Even though these people confirmed 99% of Obama’s wacko nominees, voted for tax increases, voted for the debt ceiling increase, and funded Obamacare.

Brock Robamney on February 22, 2014 at 6:27 PM

I am talking about whether their past has been looked into enough, to be sure the Donks don’t have an “easy button” for the general election—

Sekhmet on February 22, 2014 at 6:24 PM

They don’t need one!

You are like the battered woman who is desperately trying not to burn the eggs to avoid the backhand…and I am telling you that the eggs have nothing to do with it.

They did it to Romney, to McCain, Palin, Bush, or anyone else who gets in their way. And it works!

sharrukin on February 22, 2014 at 6:31 PM

And when you endorse the clown

Not that we needed any more confirmation about where this squishy stands….

Winning in politics involves, well… winning

Except the country is losing with the mealy, mouthed professional politicians you squishys would like in office forever. The republicans are not winning, you rinos are not winning. You are hanging on and aiding in the destruction of the Republic.

peacenprosperity on February 22, 2014 at 6:31 PM

Don’t forget Orrin Hatch!

HillC Liver Spot on February 22, 2014 at 6:34 PM

They don’t need one!

You are like the battered woman who is desperately trying not to burn the eggs to avoid the backhand…and I am telling you that the eggs have nothing to do with it.

They did it to Romney, to McCain, Palin, Bush, or anyone else who gets in their way. And it works!

sharrukin on February 22, 2014 at 6:31 PM

I don’t care if your candidate is clone-grown Ronald Reagan. If he has a sex tape, and is not counting on a Democrat political machine, he’s not getting elected. A simple investment in a private eye can tell you if Clone-Grown Reagan has a sex tape in his past, before you get invested in his campaign. I am criticizing your unwillingness to make the simple investment in vetting candidates expected from everybody else. There are plenty of good, articulate conservatives who don’t boink on camera. Find one of them.

Sekhmet on February 22, 2014 at 6:39 PM

Ted Nugent called Obama a sub-human.

liberalrules on February 22, 2014 at 4:53 PM

Barky would have to gain 5 IQ points to even reach the sub-human level.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on February 22, 2014 at 7:03 PM

Ted Nugent called Obama a sub-human.

liberalrules on February 22, 2014 at 4:53 PM

Barky would have to gain 5 IQ points to even reach the sub-human level.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on February 22, 2014 at 7:03 PM

Actually sub-moron would have been more politically acceptable and accurate.

slickwillie2001 on February 22, 2014 at 7:07 PM

Actually sub-moron would have been more politically acceptable and accurate.

slickwillie2001 on February 22, 2014 at 7:07 PM

You are correct, slickwillie. The truth is that he’d have to pick up another two chromosomes to hit the sub-human level.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on February 22, 2014 at 7:25 PM

Blacks are unfit for the Presidency. They have proven themselves too stupid, lazy, and feckless to hold such a position of responsiblity.

Happy Nomad on February 22, 2014 at 5:30 PM

Ben Carson hardest hit.

cam2 on February 22, 2014 at 7:33 PM

And when you endorse the clown, you become part of the circus by default.

Hate to break it to you, but you seem to have missed that the circus came to town in 2008 and hasn’t left yet! Our nation is currently being run by clowns. That’s why there’s a nationwide shortage outside of DC, lol.

xNavigator on February 22, 2014 at 7:36 PM

Donald Trump, Ted Nugent

Would Lewis have put Breitbart in the “bad boy” category?

His “mischievous spirit and Barnum-esque knack for creating a stir” is a part of the reason he was so beloved.

Those who act boldly and fearlessly are bound to make mistakes.
But I’ll still take as many scrappers as I can get.

lynncgb on February 22, 2014 at 8:08 PM

No matter how much you may love to hear some people set their own hair on fire and spout out some really over the top, world class invective, Matt’s point is a fair one. Winning in politics involves, well… winning, and there are still some lines that are only crossed at significant risk. Some actors on the political stage tend to cross – or completely shatter -those lines, and while the entertainment value is high, they risk becoming clowns in the eyes of many voters who may be more cautious. And when you endorse the clown, you become part of the circus by default. The enemy of your enemy may indeed be your friend, but we probably all have had a few friends that you really wouldn’t want to bring home for Sunday dinner with the family.

-Jazz Shaw

What a bunch of condescending baloney from HotAir’s weekend RINO blogger.

Rather than holding up a mirror to the left and calling out their vile hypocrisy, Jazz chooses to lecture conservatives and join progressives in the pile-on and legitimize the faux outrage.

bluegill on February 22, 2014 at 8:09 PM

The above you name may not have been the best conservatives, but their downfall did not involve naughty chinchilla tapes. In the Castle-O’Donnell controversy, I wish conservatives in Delaware had looked into Door Number 3—found someone as good as O’Donnell ideologically, without her baggage.
Sekhmet on February 22, 2014 at 6:24 PM

What is your obsession with “sex tapes”? There was no O’Donnell sex tape. You keep mentioning “sex tapes” in your comments.

bluegill on February 22, 2014 at 8:24 PM

Ted Nugent called Obama a sub-human.

I’m not shocked to be honest.
A few years ago blacks were declared less than human in this very country.

liberalrules on February 22, 2014 at 4:53 PM

So you’re not surprised that Ted said something based on something that has nothing to do with Ted? Wow. Can’t beat that logic.

Sure, Ted’s a piece with these guys. They would have all like his song Wang Dang Sweet Poontang, right?! And they would have tapped their toe right along to Wango Tango.

And I’m sure they would have all nodded along with Ted’s characterization in Great White Buffalo, too: “There came the white dogs, with their thick and empty heads”. Look it TF up!

So he called the president a “mongrel”–a dog–and long ago (back when he was in the Amboy Dukes) he called white people “dogs”. Ted’s more likely to be an Amerind Supremacist than a White Supremacist.

And by the way, racist means being for an institutionalized order of one race over another. And those people that declared black people subhuman were racists. But if you think that Ted fits into the same package, you just don’t know what you’re talking about.

By the way, in case you’re too thick, this is not siding with Ted, but simply giving you an estimate on how far off target you are, and yet how satisfied that it somehow concerns some narrative you carry with you.

Axeman on February 22, 2014 at 9:06 PM

Conservatives have to STOP playing the Dem media’s game of What Did You Think of What He/She Said?.

That’s to you, Shaw!

I’m a conservative Christian, and I have over the years many reasons to be shocked and to distance myself from Ted Nugent. So what? Ted’s not me. Ted’s bombastic. Ted’s Ted.

We have plenty of distance, I don’t know whether in recent years Ted’s gone full Christian, or whether he’s still semi-animalist paganish, quasi-pantheist–or whatever he was, when a non-Caucasian Fred Bear was his spiritual mentor.

Anybody who can call Ted Nugent a “racist” over some offensive words with some admittedly bad connotations, that I agree he shouldn’t have said–just isn’t thinking. In comparison, take the case where Hoffa Jr. spoke some words with some really bad connotations, connected to the history of American unions and their association with organized crime, when he talked about “taking them out” in regard to the Tea Party. When pressed for a reaction, our president simply said he’s nobody’s thought cop.

That works for libs. But–especially as long as weak-kneed conservatives play into this game–it never works for conservatives.

Axeman on February 22, 2014 at 9:20 PM

The only question I can vote on is: Is the challenger better than the person currently holding the office.

Dollayo on February 22, 2014 at 9:24 PM

The only question I can vote on is: Is the challenger better than the person currently holding the office.

Dollayo on February 22, 2014 at 9:24 PM

Too bad that’s a question most of the voters answer wrongly. At this point, what difference does it make anyway?

gryphon202 on February 22, 2014 at 9:53 PM

If you’re holding Ted Nugent up as an example of anything other than pathetically funny shock rock excess, you’re doing it wrong.

ElectricPhase on February 22, 2014 at 10:33 PM

that it somehow concerns confirms some narrative you carry with you.

Axeman on February 22, 2014 at 9:06 PM

Ahhg. It was supposed to connote “Confirmation Bias”.

Axeman on February 22, 2014 at 10:50 PM

What is your obsession with “sex tapes”? There was no O’Donnell sex tape. You keep mentioning “sex tapes” in your comments.

bluegill on February 22, 2014 at 8:24 PM

It’s a proxy for electability. “Electable” has often been a code word for “not conservative.” But I don’t mean that at all when I talk about electability. I am misunderstood enough without adding that confusion. So I talk about sex tapes, financial irregularities, and the like, that make a candidate *objectively* unelectable.

Sekhmet on February 22, 2014 at 11:06 PM

Very good blog post Jazz Shaw..:)

Dire Straits on February 22, 2014 at 11:44 PM

“Is this personal really a conservative?” — “Is this person just using us?,” and (just as importantly) — “Do they have the character and integrity worthy of our support?”

Okay, I answered all of these questions in the negative for McConnell. Now what?

besser tot als rot on February 23, 2014 at 12:05 AM

Winning in politics involves, well… winning, and there are still some lines that are only crossed at significant risk.

Winning an election doesn’t mean much if that’s the last thing the pol wins. Winning an election is supposed to be a means, not an end. If it doesn’t provide the means to any end that you’re interested in, does that count as “winning in politics?”

besser tot als rot on February 23, 2014 at 12:08 AM

Axeman on February 22, 2014 at 9:06 PM

This. It cracked me up when I saw Schmuckabee jamming with the motorcity madman on his talkshow. The song was “Cat Scratch Fever”. If I didn’t know the schmuck to be fake before, that sketch would have clued me in. Say? Didn’t the Goracle get a divinity degree before jumping into politics?

Ted is Ted and he just happens to be libertarian conservative but it doesn’t make him a hero to me tho I’d vote for him over Cornyn any day. As I see it ted doesn’t have to apologize for anything unless he wants to over PC crap. Insulting someone as a dog is about as old as the history of civilization. If oboobie is insulted by it then he ought to man up and challenge the insulter to a duel.

Meanwhile everyday that the pos is in office insults the concept of sovereign individuals with God given inalienable rights.

AH_C on February 23, 2014 at 12:29 AM

Can anyone who pretends to be moderate please list the major conservative accomplishments of Bush 2000-2008? (and no, you can’t just say the tax cuts).

nobar on February 23, 2014 at 1:18 AM

So what he’s truly saying is that we shouldn’t bother voting for Republicans anymore if we hate the Dem more than we hate the RINO. Gotcha.

No more holding my nose and voting for McCain and Romney for president to stop an Obama. Works for me.

njrob on February 23, 2014 at 1:23 AM

Can anyone who pretends to be moderate please list the major conservative accomplishments of Bush 2000-2008? (and no, you can’t just say the tax cuts).
nobar on February 23, 2014 at 1:18 AM

Are you expecting an answer???

Brock Robamney on February 23, 2014 at 1:26 AM

Are you expecting an answer???

Brock Robamney on February 23, 2014 at 1:26 AM

Not really, but the common talking point is that we “need the majority”. So I’m just asking exactly what that “majority” has done for our cause.

nobar on February 23, 2014 at 1:39 AM

Happy nomad: I also consider Bachman to be a political rhymes with door-but that’s ONLY because of her idiot attack on Perry in ’12.

annoyinglittletwerp on February 23, 2014 at 1:50 AM

I suspect a lot of this “thoughtful” question is based on the assumption that everyone the RINOs and liberals don’t like is actually a bad candidate. In many cases, it’s the media assumptions that are askew.

That said, Donald Trump was never a serious candidate.

There Goes the Neighborhood on February 23, 2014 at 3:47 AM

suspect a lot of this “thoughtful” question is based on the assumption that everyone the RINOs and liberals don’t like is actually a bad candidate. In many cases, it’s the media assumptions that are askew.

That said, Donald Trump was never a serious candidate.

There Goes the Neighborhood on February 23, 2014 at 3:47 AM

And why is Ted Nugent being discussed in terms of politics at all? Does anyone expect him to run for anything?

There Goes the Neighborhood on February 23, 2014 at 4:08 AM

suspect a lot of this “thoughtful” question is based on the assumption that everyone the RINOs and liberals don’t like is actually a bad candidate. In many cases, it’s the media assumptions that are askew.
That said, Donald Trump was never a serious candidate.
There Goes the Neighborhood on February 23, 2014 at 3:47 AM

So true.

bluegill on February 23, 2014 at 4:24 AM

I’m trying to speak English here, if you’ll pardon my redneckbonics. . . .
Sekhmet on February 22, 2014 at 6:24 PM

Mah brotha!

BigAlSouth on February 23, 2014 at 7:26 AM

Are you expecting an answer???
Brock Robamney on February 23, 2014 at 1:26 AM

Not really, but the common talking point is that we “need the majority”. So I’m just asking exactly what that “majority” has done for our cause.
nobar on February 23, 2014 at 1:39 AM

But isn’t funny though, that the DNC Neostatists expect us to cave and abandon our principles in policy fights, and the RNC Neostatists expect us to cave and abandon our principles. I remember a certain candidate named Cucinelli running for Governor. He won the primary, was positioned to win, and not one dime of support from the RNC. We are always expected from the RNC Neostatists to support their weak candidates, but when we have a strong candidate who can actually win, they abandon us. So if it means losing a couple of elections, I’m all in to purge the party of these Neostatists. Because let’s face it, what’s the difference? Romneycare and Obamacare are the same animal

Brock Robamney on February 23, 2014 at 7:59 AM

Romneycare and Obamacare are the same animal

Brock Robamney on February 23, 2014 at 7:59 AM

This.

gryphon202 on February 23, 2014 at 8:03 AM

Conservatives should be wary of so called conservative pundits
who find every excuse to raise the rino up while tearing the conservative down.

Amjean on February 23, 2014 at 9:19 AM

Can anyone who pretends to be moderate please list the major conservative accomplishments of Bush 2000-2008? (and no, you can’t just say the tax cuts).

nobar on February 23, 2014 at 1:18 AM

patriot act…………….

yay

dmacleo on February 23, 2014 at 9:45 AM

So here’s my modest proposal: When conservatives vet someone (assuming they do), they should consider some additional criteria, including: “Is this personal really a conservative?” — “Is this person just using us?,” and (just as importantly) — “Do they have the character and integrity worthy of our support?”

No matter how much you may love to hear some people set their own hair on fire and spout out some really over the top, world class invective, Matt’s point is a fair one.

It’s a great point.

And it’s the one I and many like have been making to STOP VOTING FOR SQUISHY RINO ESTABLISHMENT REPUBLICANS.

They are *not* conservative, they *are* using us, and they do *not* have character, nor integrity, worthy of our support.

Is this guy – and you – suggesting that McConnell is a better choice than Blevin, in this example, based on his own stated criteria?

Really?

Midas on February 23, 2014 at 9:49 AM

The entire Dem party supported bad-boy BJ Clinton. And then there was Chappaquiddick Teddy. And so on and so forth.

The Dems, the MSM, and assorted socialists — redundant, I know — have always applied these double standards to their political enemies.

Now, apparently, the double standard is being promoted from within “conservative” ranks.

No wonder the GOP is called the stupid party.

The Dems are no smarter, but to them, as to all good socialists, The Cause and political power is all that matters.

farsighted on February 23, 2014 at 1:04 PM

The Dems are no smarter, but to them, as to all good socialists, The Cause and political power is all that matters.

farsighted on February 23, 2014 at 1:04 PM

That’s right, because momentum isn’t our Soma. It’s not the drug that keeps us in flow.

Axeman on February 23, 2014 at 2:49 PM

Something to bear in mind is that electing Bevin is a way of keeping McConnell from becoming Majority Leader, a position in which he might do more harm than ordinary-Senator Bevin, for all his faults, would.

PersonFromPorlock on February 23, 2014 at 3:06 PM

The problem is not that conservatives associate with a serial child rapist like Nugent, but that they agree with him and respect him.

In other words, that this hateful cowardly bigoted child rapist is one of them, and they are proud of it.

everdiso on February 23, 2014 at 3:49 PM

The problem is not that liberal Democrats associate with serial child rapists like Roman Polanski and Woody Allen, but that they agree with them and respect them.

In other words, these hateful cowardly bigoted child rapists are two of them, and they are proud of it.

everdiso on February 23, 2014 at 3:49 PM

Fixed.

See how easy it is for me to play your simple little game?

F-

Del Dolemonte on February 23, 2014 at 4:18 PM

I read through a majority of the posts. The question at hand “Do conservatives keep “falling in love with bad boys” in politics?”

First, I would classify both Trump and Nugent as “the pitbulls” and I’ll take em. They go after the targets with vigor. The DEMS use this technique all the time. That would leave the actual candidate to sit back not say anything.

Second, Bevin, from what it sounds like, is on the campaign with some zest and fire. Leave him out of this ‘clown’ talk. He is doing what he thinks he should do, since in essence is taking on the “darling of the establishment.” The quote “He apparently just wasn’t the best candidate to carry the message to the polling stations” –Jazz, is crap. You echoing of the establishment is pissing me off. You are allowed to mess up.

Lastly, and the most important point, all these candidates we had in the past were chosen by the GOP’ers running the show at the national level, Karl Rove et al. Then the national media is told by these “people” who to promote. The rest of the local media just falls in line. I believe it’s that simple.

We are not given choices, we are given our nominee. This is especially true for the presidential races, but I would concede that the lower races might be a little more tricky, since you involve the state GOP leadership. That all depends on the money they may or may not have in their coffers and the “support needed”.

-west

mr_west on February 23, 2014 at 5:17 PM

I’m amused – though worried – how posters reflexively dismiss criticism. Maybe that’s the way of the internet.

limecat on February 23, 2014 at 8:59 PM

Castles ACU voting record at the end of his career between 2005-2010 was just 37%. Like many, they start out OK and morph left.
KMav on February 22, 2014 at 5:33 PM

And, the ACU is much more lenient in its scoring than other conservative organizations (e.g. Heritage Action and Freedonworks).
bw222 on February 22, 2014 at 5:47 PM

And that is considered conservative per today’s Geriatric Old Progressives standards. Don’t be surprised when he or Krispy is selected as the 2016 presidential nominee. The Goobers need to lurch left and push all constitutionalists and conservatives out of the party, as they make up over 50% of the base

Brock Robamney on February 24, 2014 at 6:00 AM

Mc Connell doesn’t lead, he follows K-street and big corporations lead. He needs to go. The frustration with Mc Connell in his home state is significant. The anti-Mc Connell vote in Kentucky is big. The Democrat is tied, if not slightly ahead of him. Bevin is the choice we go with to give voters an anti-Mc Connell choice and keep the seat Republican. If Bevin proves to be ineffectual he can be voted out in the next cycle. Mc Connell and many others have spent way too long in politics. They have lost touch with the real world.The ruling political class needs to go.

searcher on February 24, 2014 at 12:05 PM

Considering that “subhuman mongrel” was only part of a fairly lengthy set of adjectives, interesting that is the only part people are bent out of shape about.

I expect it was just colorful language, but here again, the Republicans wetting their pants because somebody might call them “racist”. I wish their were a viable third party, they could call themselves “The not-spineless, craven or cowardly or stupid party”. FFS. There’s only slavery, KKK, Jim Crow, Segregation, Bull Connor, Robert Byrd, Woodrow Wilson, LBJ, William “that boy would have been getting us coffee” Clinton, over 50% of black babies being murdered in NYC, etc, ad naseum, to throw back at them.

John_G on February 24, 2014 at 12:45 PM

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