This morning on “Meet the Press,” Colin Powell endorsed Barack Obama for President of the United States. Many viewers were no doubt surprised by this given that Powell is an old military man and a Republican (like John McCain). Nevertheless, folks have often overlooked some of Powell’s political views that make him less than your run-of-the-mill Republican.
Powell is pro-choice. Not only is he pro-choice, but he also appears to rank the issue high on his priority list for candidates. In the “Meet the Press” interview, of all the things that Powell might have said against McCain, he chose to warn against the fact that McCain would appoint conservative Justices to the Supreme Court. I knew Powell was pro-choice, but until this interview I didn’t know how committed he in fact is to the left side of the culture war.
Both Colin Powell and Condi Rice were once considered the most likely people from the Bush administration to make a successful run for the White House. Both are pro-choice, however, and not very likely nominees for the Republican Party as long as social conservatives remain in the coalition of Republican voters. I question whether that coalition will survive this election cycle.
This latter point is what interests me most about Powell’s endorsement. Since the election of Ronald Reagan, a coalition of three groups has been responsible for Republican electoral successes. Those three groups are social conservatives, fiscal conservatives, and national security conservatives. It may be that we are witnessing in this election cycle the dissolution of that coalition. I don’t know what kind of Republican Party will emerge on the other side. It may very well be that a pro-choice Republican Party will emerge. (This was my concern with Rudy Giuliani’s candidacy last year.)
At the end of the day, I really don’t care about the Republican Party per se. Political parties are merely mechanisms that citizens may use for good or for ill. Nevertheless, if the Republican Party loses its pro-life base (and plank in its platform), then there will be no viable mechanism for ending the regime of Roe v. Wade. Moreover, we will likely see the abortion license expanding with tax-payer funded abortions.
Please don’t misunderstand what I am saying here. Powell’s endorsement is not causing any of this. I’m just suggesting that it may be reflecting a shift that is already underway in the grassroots. Only time will tell if this is really the case.
My main concern in all of this is the unborn, and it doesn’t look like our government will recognize their inalienable right to life anytime soon. I hope and pray that I’m wrong.