Memo to Conservatives: You Don’t Have to Agree on Everything — Only on Fighting the Left
Tuesday, March 21, 2023
Given the damage the Left and the Left’s political party, the Democrats, are doing to America, you would think conservatives would understand that defeating the Left is by far their most important task.
The Left’s damage includes, to name but a few examples, doing incalculable damage to America’s children by supporting and advocating mutilating surgeries, prescribing hormone blockers, promoting innocence-robbing “nonbinary” cross-dressing shows and discussions, and having ordered inexcusable school lockdowns; printing trillions of dollars, which in turn has led to devastating inflation, unprecedentedly high national debt and a weakened dollar; and ruining every institution in the country including, but not limited to, the universities, the military, medicine, the arts, sports, journalism, religion, marriage and free speech.
Yet, apparently, millions of conservatives, including some leading ones, do not understand that defeating the Left is their most important task. For many conservatives, it appears that whether to aid Ukraine or whether to support former President Donald Trump overshadows defeating the Left.
Let’s begin with Ukraine.
A prominent conservative recently tweeted that every Republican who supports aiding Ukraine is a RINO (Republican In Name Only). That would mean that conservatives such as Mark Levin, Ben Shapiro and I, not to mention more than 40% of all Republicans, are RINOs.
The dismissal of fellow conservatives, interestingly, seems to be primarily in one direction. Conservatives who support aiding Ukraine do not dismiss conservatives who oppose such aid. But many conservative opponents of aid to Ukraine dismiss conservatives who support aid to Ukraine. For example, I continue to regard conservatives such as Tucker Carlson, perhaps the leading conservative critic of aid to Ukraine, as an invaluable asset to the conservative cause and its task of fighting the Left. Though we differ on Ukraine, I continue to regard him as my respected ally.
People should adopt two rules with regard to political allies.
One is that you will have no allies if your only allies are individuals with whom you agree on every issue; it suffices to agree on most issues. The other rule is that if we agree about who our chief enemy is, we can differ on a lot of other issues. With almost no exceptions, if you understand the existential threat the Left poses to America and to Western civilization, you are my ally.
It seems that some conservative opponents of aiding Ukraine do not believe in these two rules. They are prepared to jettison erstwhile allies who support aiding Ukraine and they do not regard fighting the American Left as important enough to ignore differences over Ukraine.
That is a recipe for a fatal fracture of the conservative movement and of the Republican Party. If conservative opponents of aiding Ukraine make agreement on Ukraine a make-or-break issue of whom to ally with and whom to support politically, that means the end of the anti-Left coalition.
The other divisive issue that poses a fatal threat to conservatism and the Republican Party — and therefore to America — is whether to support any Republican presidential candidate other than Trump. I hope I am wrong, but it seems that millions of conservatives will not enthusiastically support any Republican presidential nominee other than Trump.
These people might be called “Only Trumpers.” And because of their numbers, they pose an even greater threat to Republican unity than did the “Never Trumpers.” Yet, the two groups are mirror images of one another. They both agree that Donald Trump is more important than defeating the Left (and therefore saving America). For the Never Trumpers, defeating Trump was more important than defeating the Left; and for the Only Trumpers, nominating Trump is more important than defeating the Left.
If these two cracks — internal disagreements about aiding Ukraine and nominating Donald Trump — grow into fissures, the chances of a conservative/Republican victory in 2024 will be almost nil. And if that should happen — i.e., if the Left is allowed to win again – it is difficult to imagine America and its values surviving.
This column was originally posted on Townhall.com.