The year 2011 was one of turmoil for the conservative movement, as we celebrated the success of 2010 but faced a divisive counter-revolution by the Democrats and the media.
The Republican establishment, together with social conservatives, libertarians and the Tea Party, waged war against the Obama administration, the public sector unions, the mainstream media, the Occupy Wall Street Movement and the Progressive movement, writ large. And simultaneously, in these terrible economic times and our new, challenging political reality, we were unfortunately, too often, fighting each other.
I have been a steadfast combatant in the trenches against the organized left, with the scalps and scars to prove it.
Yet the last year has had me often fighting our own. In the heat of the great battle over ideas, I argued with CPAC and the American Conservative Union on behalf of GOProud, and I argued against GOProud on behalf of privacy and civility.
I realize now, as the great debate of 2012 unfolds, that being MIA from the battlefield in the most important election of our lifetime is exactly the wrong decision.
Davids Brooks, David Gergen, and David Frum may “disagree.” But this David fights!
But we need to work with each other. Not against each other. [Frum, let’s do lunch!] We need to communicate better. [Gergen, perhaps I could have said it better!] We cannot let internecine battles and pressures of high-stakes politics separate us at a time when unity is needed most. [Brooks, Obama does have a nice creased pant leg!]
I have decided to accept CPAC’s gracious offer to speak on the theme of unity and the GOP Big Tent. We need to unite in 2012. White, black, gay and straight. Tea Party, Social Conservatives, establishment types, Libertarians and Neo-Cons, alike. We all must find common ground. Not just for the sake of winning this monumental election. But to reclaim the Big Tent, Big Party mantle of the man who united us best, Ronald Reagan.
Yet I promise my speech won’t be all Kumbaya talk. No, sirree. I will step up to the podium and in no uncertain terms declare 2012 a call to arms. Patriots need to unite behind our candidate, behind the GOP, behind the conservative movement. Or else.