Monday, April 1, 2013
No room for Agema in the GOP
The following column is from today's edition of The Morning Sun.
When your own supporters abandon you in droves, you know you have a major problem.
That’s the predicament Dave Agema, the Republican National Committee member for Michigan, finds himself in after he used Facebook late last week to post a 1,300-plus word treatise on homosexuality that, among other things, claimed gays and lesbians were responsible for 50 percent of murders.
Before the few allies Agema has left, which at this point are those on the payroll of his puppet master John Yob, attack me, let me declare my conflict as a young conservative who doesn’t want conservatism to become irreverent. I’ve said the things I have and write this column today not because I’m getting paid by political bosses, but rather because Agema represents the biggest threat facing conservatism and by extension the Republican Party.
When I became aware of his deplorable actions, I put together a coalition of leaders representing the party’s next generation to immediately condemn him and call for his resignation.
Instead of following the lessons of Damage Control 101 and apologizing, Yob tried to gin up support for Agema by portraying the ex-state legislator as the victim of a plot by “liberal Republicans” — as if there’s such a thing — to rid the party of its commitment to traditional values.
To be clear: This isn’t about marriage. This isn’t about deeply held religious beliefs. Rather, it’s about the very future of the Republican Party, which has a serious challenge with respect to tone and messaging in this the second decade of the 21st century.
Not only is Agema an ignorant bigot, but he is a horrible face for a party that has lost the popular vote in five of the last six presidential elections.
Unfortunately, last week’s incident is nothing new for Agema, who has pushed Birtherism and other crackpot notions — President Barack Obama siring a bastard among them — that deny reality and jeopardize the creditability of all conservatives and Republicans.
Agema, a neo-Know Nothing adherent, is exactly what lefty Democrats seek out on a daily basis in their attempts to portray conservatism as extreme and politically irrelevant.
Thankfully, leading voices have joined the chorus of young Republicans in denouncing the discredited Agema and calling for his resignation.
Take Paul Welday, chairman of Michigan’s 14th Congressional District Republican Committee, who called what happened “highly inflammatory.”
Then there was Stephen Linder, the influential GOP powerbroker who consults on pro-traditional marriage campaigns across the country: “Resign Dave Agema and let someone who will extol the positive virtues of the GOP take the spot. You know those virtues Dave: we are the party of opportunity.”
Winning a national majority will require all Republicans to stand up to the nasty, hateful rhetoric that spews out of Agema’s mouth.
The GOP must revolve back to being the forward-looking party that is for something and not against everyone and everything. There can be no room for demagogues such as Agema inside the GOP tent.
Simply put, no person deserves the Agema treatment.
— Dennis Lennox