Now that we have had a nice chat about Reagan can we talk about the OP?
I am a lifelong republican who registered independent in protest against the party's move toward corporatism.
The party no longer represents the values I had as a conservative for a long time. It is a completely business owned and operated entity. Since the "Southern Strategy" it has cobbled together a coalition of racists, homophobes, pro-life and pro gun people who are all essentially single issue voters and decidedly NOT embracing conservative values.
What are those values?
Start with a pay-as-you-go tax program. Fiscal conservatism is at the heart of republican values.
Personal responsibility which they have abandoned in their candidates. If they can't insist that their pols tell the truth they cannot hold this high ground.
Look at the 1964 party platform quotes. They could not be further from modern republican actions:
3. Within our Republic the Federal Government should act only in areas where it has Constitutional authority to act, and then only in respect to proven needs where individuals and local or state governments will not or cannot adequately perform. Great power, whether governmental or private, political or economic, must be so checked, balanced and restrained and, where necessary, so dispersed as to prevent it from becoming a threat to freedom any place in the land.
DOMA? Cigarette bans?
4. It is a high mission of government to help assure equal opportunity for all, affording every citizen an equal chance at the starting line but never determining who is to win or lose. But government must also reflect the nation's compassionate concern for those who are unable, through no fault of their own, to provide adequately for themselves.
Today's republican party is the opposite of this.
5. Government must be restrained in its demands upon and its use of the resources of the people, remembering that it is not the creator but the steward of the wealth it uses; that its goals must ever discipline its means; and that service to all the people, never to selfish or partisan ends, must be the abiding purpose of men entrusted with public power.
—full implementation and faithful execution of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and all other civil rights statutes, to assure equal rights and opportunities guaranteed by the Constitution to every citizen;
—improvements of civil rights statutes adequate to changing needs of our times;
—such additional administrative or legislative actions as may be required to end the denial, for whatever unlawful reason, of the right to vote;
They are doing exactly the opposite of this.
—immigration legislation seeking to re-unite families and continuation of the "Fair Share" Refugee Program;
I could go on. Suffice it to say that even under Bush some of these were at least winked at. But the republican party is simply not republican.
: a government in which supreme power resides in a body of citizens entitled to vote and is exercised by elected officers and representatives responsible to them and governing according to law
It simply does not believe this anymore. It openly practices voter suppression. It deliberately defies law. It governs at the pleasure of the highest bidder.
Does this mean I won't vote for republicans? No. I might vote for the odd republican. But odd he/she must be because he/she must be willing to work to reclaim the party.
When McCain voted to uphold Obamacare he was doing something that republicanism was built on. That is the notion that we govern in the best interest of the people and by consensus, not on a pure party line:
McCain: We must now return to the correct way of legislating and send the bill back to committee, hold hearings, receive input from both sides of aisle, heed the recommendations of nation's governors, and produce a bill that finally delivers affordable health care for the American people. We must do the hard work our citizens expect of us and deserve."
He gave them a roadmap to pass fixes to Obamacare or replace it. What he did not do is give the health care industry, which is who is pulling the republican strings, the opportunity to have no health care. And it was the right thing to do. Tell me the last time republicans did anything in this administration that benefited the little guy over corporate interest.