Craig Shirley, Reagan biographer, businessman, author, ponders the state of the GOP.
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CS: Nothing but embrace Federalism and let the states decide their own policies. In the case of immigration, the national government can set guidelines and let local immigration boards — like FDR’s Draft Boards — handle the cases of illegal aliens. I am confident that Immigration Boards made up of local civic and religious leaders can make better decisions than Washington.
In the case of marriage, this is clearly an institution derived from the Bible, which is why we call it “Holy Matrimony.” For governments to be issuing marriage licenses is a violation of the separation of church and state. The act of marriage should be left to the churches and governments can issue all the contracts and civil unions they want.
The “full faith and credit” clause of the Constitution protects contracts from state to state.
JL: What is your view of talk radio and Fox News, or what McCain adviser Steve Schmidt referred to the other week as “the conservative entertainment complex”?
CS: Three cheers for talk radio and Fox News, but also for MSNBC, CNN, newspapers, the Internet, and all forms of communications and the delivery of information. As long as we have a free flow of good and bad ideas in America, then we will always have freedom in America. We are much better off now than in the old days in which three arrogant networks could rule the nation.
The decentralization of media is a good thing and social media and Facebook and the Internet promote privacy and individuality, which is at the core of American conservatism.
JL: Looking to 2014 and the next round of congressional elections, how should Republicans be dealing with President Obama?
CS: Respectfully. He is after all, the president of all the American people. Second, I don’t hate the governing philosophy of Justice, I just happen to think it is wrong. Collectivism cannot long endure as it saps the finite resources of the private citizen. Conservatives need to simply prove that private entrepreneurship is more beneficial to all citizens as it creates new resources and new wealth that can raise all up, infinitely.
JL: Should the GOP continue to push for the repeal of Obamacare?
CS: Yes, but by offering a better, market-based alternative. Romney’s own brand of coercive government helped undermine a case for the market. Romney reminds me of what Mr. Collins in Pride and Prejudice said of his mentor: “Such amiability, such condescension.”
JL: In your view, how would you assess the chairmanship of Reince Priebus?
CS: A Gentleman’s C.
JL: Last but not least. Have you firmly decided to run? Would you actively support someone else if you decided not to run?
CS: If nominated, I will not accept. If elected, I will not serve. In 2012, I spoke at the Reagan Library, the Reagan Ranch, The FDR Library, at Georgetown, at the Reagan Boyhood home, at the Washington Navy Yard, at Palm Beach, I taught a class at Eureka College on Reagan’s campaigns, talked a lot with friends such as Chuck Todd and Joe Scarborough and Shannon Bream and gave innumerable interviews and speeches as an historian and Reagan biographer. I am now finishing a political biography of Newt Gingrich while beginning two more books on Reagan. To my mind, “writing deliberately” as Thoreau said — while thinking about things and learning things via the Socratic Method is the best way to live.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?