Time for a party of compassionate conservatism

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Matt Ray, guest columnist

My party is dying a swift yet painful death.

I’ve identified as a Republican since I began to think about politics. I think my days as a Republican are done. Donald Trump is going to be the nominee of the Grand Old Party and I find myself saying “I’m done.” I cannot in good conscience vote for the man due to political and moral convictions. I also cannot vote for the Democratic option due to a drastic difference in convictions, especially when it comes to the sanctity of life.

The death of the Republican Party seem eminent, but it wasn’t the Trumpster Fire alone that killed it. It has been the Tea Party movement, the lack of common sense, greed and much more that has lead my party, my former party, to the brink of ruin.

I need a new party.

When President George W. Bush ran in 2000 he campaigned on a message of compassionate conservatism and that struck a chord with me. W’s presidency was marked by the tragedy of 9/11 and we’ll never know if compassionate conservatism was what we would have gotten from a W. Bush presidency (though we got a few pieces of it like his response to the A.I.D.s crisis in Africa).

I propose that we who are leaving the now not so Grand Old Party form a new party, a party more befitting the legacy of Abraham Lincoln, I propose the formation of the Compassionate Conservative Party.

Below are a few bullet points of what the Compassionate Conservative Party would be built upon.

Compassionate Conservatism is ...

A party that isn’t afraid of investing, but of careless spending.

A party not afraid of writing checks, but of writing blank checks.

A party that affirms and honors life from conception to the grave.

A party that defends the Constitution as a document to be interpreted not reinterpreted.

A party that believes in carrying a big stick in order to speak softly and humbly.

A party that recognizes the nation’s role in the world as a superpower, but doesn’t believe that we are the world’s savior in each and every crisis.

A party that lessens the tax load fairly and responsibly.

A party that balances the budget.

A party that designs a more efficient government not simply a smaller government.

A party for slimmer, more transparent bills not packed with pork and political booby traps.

A party that affirms the humanity of its opposition while still differentiating.

A party that spreads the dignity of work as a way of spreading and creating wealth.

A party for legal immigration recognizing that human minds and bodies are our most important national resource.

A party that works to quickly connect new, legal immigrants with employers.

A party that disavows xenophobia.

A party that defers to the states more often than not.

A party whose members can and often will have positions shaped deeply by their faith, but who are not interested in a government that is specifically of one faith.

A party that allows and encourages religious and service groups to freely do acts of service as a way of caring for those in need.

A party that protects and extends all the liberties given in the Constitution.

I believe that conservatives do care, I believe that liberals do care, but I believe a compassionate conservative approach would do the most good for the most people while protecting the most vulnerable in this country. I just hope to see this brand of politics catch on.

• Matt Ray is a morning radio show host and play-by-play announcer for KWAY radio in Waverly, where he lives with his wife Christine. Comments: www.matt-ray.blogspot.com

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