For me, politics has always been about principles first and party second.
Though I’ve been a Republican committeeman and a delegate to numerous county, state and even national party conventions, I identify myself chiefly as a conservative.
Longtime readers will know my history in party politics includes at times being a thorn in the side of the proverbial establishment. I started in the conservative movement and made the transition to big-tent, party politics, as it’s the best mechanism to effectuate conservatism.
However, I cannot ignore attempts by certain elements with beliefs foreign to conservatism to co-opt the Republican Party. Though many of these beliefs may have something in common with conservatism, there are fundamental differences.
Case in hand is Kerry Bentivolio, the Republican nominee for the House of Representatives in the congressional constituency covering parts of Oakland and Wayne counties. Held by Thad McCotter, it became open after he failed to qualify for the ballot due to fraudulent nominating petition signatures.
As a result, Bentivolio won the party nomination in the primary earlier this month because he was the only name on the ballot. His victory, however, wasn’t without opposition from good conservatives.
Nancy Cassis, a conservative stalwart and former member of the Michigan Legislature, embarked on a write-in campaign — the political equivalent of a forlorn hope.
But her admirable effort ended the way most write-in campaigns end because it’s nearly impossible to get a plurality of voters to take the time to cast a write-in ballot.
Now Cassis, her supporters and conservatives across the constituency are confronted with a major decision: Do they support Bentivolio in the general election on November 6?
The full column will be posted once the newspaper publishes.
— Dennis Lennox