Jim DeMint Urges Conservatives to Focus on Principles First, Candidates Second
posted at 6:12 am on March 27, 2011 by Michael van der Galien
Senator Jim DeMint urged conservatives in Iowa yesterday to “get it right this time” with a Republican presidential nominee. Before choosing a favorite, however, voters should first “identify the right principles,” or so he said.
“I hope Iowa will not only be the first state to pick the right candidate… but also the first state to redirect our country to the principles that we want our candidate to carry,” he said. “Those principles that will restore the greatness, the freedom, the opportunity. … We must choose the right principles before we can choose the right candidate.”
DeMint is right, of course. Voters – of whatever stripe – first need to know what they stand for. What is it what they want? What do they believe in? How do they picture the future of the country? Next, it makes sense to select a candidate who actually embodies those principles.
However, that’s not all there is to it. One should also ask the question what candidate has a chance of winning the general election. You can vote for a ‘ideologue,’ sure, but if he then loses the election, you’re further away from home than if you would have selected a person who doesn’t embody all of your principles, but at least the majority (or the most important ones) of them.
Politics is, has always been and will always be the art of compromise. Those who don’t get that are the ones left standing. They are the ones who become increasingly frustrated because they feel whatever they do, whomever they vote for, it doesn’t make the smallest of differences. And I don’t quite see how that serves anybody.