15 Sep 2010

Limbaugh Rule Replacing the Buckley Rule

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The winner in Delaware

Big Apple quotes the Buckley Rule:

Conservative author and commentator William F. Buckley (1925-2008) was asked, in 1967, whom he would support in 1968 for U.S. president. Buckley responded with what would late be called the ‘Buckley Rule” for primary voting: “The wisest choice would be the one who would win. No sense running Mona Lisa in a beauty contest. I’d be for the most right, viable candidate who could win. If you could convince me that Barry Goldwater could win, I’d vote for him.”

Yesterday, in reference to the Delaware GOP Senate primary in which Tea Party candidate Christine O’Donnell supported by Sarah Palin defeated moderate Republican Mike Castle supported by Karl Rove, Rush Limbaugh proposed replacing the Buckley Rule with a new rule of his own.

So we have professional Washingtonians now telling us that Mike Castle’s the only option we’ve got. Well, it’s time, ladies and gentlemen, for the Limbaugh Rule to supplant and replace the Buckley Rule, because the Buckley Rule requires clairvoyance. The Buckley Rule requires people who can’t possibly know the outcome of anything in the middle of September to support or not support somebody based on what they think’s going to happen in early November. Christine O’Donnell can’t win, she’s 25 points down. Can’t win? If a constitutional conservative can’t win in this climate coming down from 25 points, we need to find that out, find out where we are. Why not go for it? The stakes dictate it, do they not? Here’s the Limbaugh Rule: In an election year when voters are fed up with liberalism and socialism, when voters are clearly frightened of where the hell the country is headed, vote for the most conservative Republican in the primary, period.

Rush was perfectly right.

In general, it is better to back the conservative candidate and go down to defeat in the general election in an unfavorable year than to try calculation and support a RINO Republican, like John McCain, Arlen Specter, Lincoln Chaffee, Olympia Snowe, Susan Collins, and the like, in hope of support on the organization of the Senate and the occasional vote.

In every serious contest during the Bush Administration, confirmation of judges, making tax cuts permanent, Social Security reform, reforming Fannie Mae, RINO Republicans sided with the democrats and foiled GOP policy. If we had not had so many RINOs, George W. Bush might have successfully privatized Social Security and prevented the Housing Bubble from collapsing. There might have been no Panic of 2008 and no democrat control of Congress, no Barack Obama.

We have to win the battle of idea and achieve victory in the national debate. There is no shortcut to conservative success achievable by compromising and taking a certain number of liberal RINO Republicans along for the ride. They will always undermine and betray any possibility of actually accomplishing something with a Republican majority. We need to elect a majority of real Republicans, and if we can’t put a principled and conservative Republican into a legislative seat, we should just need to go back and try again, and do a better job of opposing the incumbent democrat in the next election.

4 Feedbacks on "Limbaugh Rule Replacing the Buckley Rule"


If Harry Reid is the majority leader next year because Democrats have 50 seats, will you still feel that way? I won’t.

The RNC had better wake up, though. They are exhibiting the same sort of attitude that is pulverizing Democrat elites — Where do the voters get the nerve to tell us how to run the country?


I’ve been betrayed too many times by Rinos. I will always vote for the conservative in the primary – because there is no real difference between Susan Collins and John Kerry.

W. Kimbell

Right. On. Good to see the DC political/media class all shook up. Republican control of the senate is not my goal. I’m a conservative.

amos anon

Rino is just another name for an enemy that pretends to be a friend.

They do more than oppose you – they leak tactical information to the other side, and stab you in the back at the moment you least expect it.

It’s not you opponent who defeats you, it’s the friends you can’t count on. Look at the shenanigans that went on in the political class during the push for concealed carry legislation across the country.


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