According to a new report from Buzzfeed, former Florida governor Jeb Bush – considered by many to be the favorite going into the 2016 Republican primary season – has “evolved” his views on gay marriage. Those close to the Bush campaign have said that his personal feelings on same-sex marriage go further even than his public statements have hinted at thus far.
“His thinking appears to have evolved,” said David Aufhauser, a gay-rights advocate who hosted a fundraiser for the Republican last month. He told Buzzfeed that while he did not speak for the former governor, he thought a golden opportunity awaited Bush, where he could draw a clear distinction between himself and the other prospective nominees.
That’s all well and good, except that no such distinction needs to be made. Bush, in his positions on illegal immigration, Obamacare, and Common Core, has already made it clear where he stands. Adding gay marriage to the list is just a confirmation that he is the ultimate RINO. While there’s an argument to be made that Bush can win by presenting Americans with a softer version of Hillary Clinton, is that really what we want in a Republican president?
If Bush takes the primary election, conservatives will have to question whether or not the Republican Party is still their home. This goes beyond electability. This goes to core conservative principles. If we dress Barack Obama up in Republican colors, is that enough to make him our guy? What is the point of winning elections if Republicans are just going to keep pushing a left-of-center agenda?
Do I believe that Jeb Bush would make a better president than Hillary Clinton? Sure. He’s a fiscal conservative who would steer us away from the dogged road-to-socialism that Obama has pursued since his first day in the Oval Office. The problem is that – even if his victory was a forgone conclusion (which it certainly is not) – we’re once again letting liberals define our path. You can’t be all things to all people. Conservatives don’t favor the Republican Party because they like elephants. They favor it because it used to stand for something. It used to be the party of limited government, socially-conservative ideas, free market capitalism, and reason. There are still plenty of Republicans who wave that banner, but Bush is not one of them.
If we want to remain loyal to the Republican Party, we have to take it back from these wolves in sheep’s clothing. There are quite a few principled men who are expected to run for president. Bobby Jindal, Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, and Scott Walker are but a few. To launch an effective campaign against Bush will mean deciding which of these men can best represent true conservatism on the national stage. Which one has the background, the charisma, and the leadership qualities to bring the spirit of Ronald Reagan back to the White House? We must coalesce around that man and prevent a Democrat Vs. Democrat showdown in 2016. It may be our last chance.