The GOP Watches Its Own

The other day a Republican friend forwarded with his characteristic bemusement a fundraising letter he received from the Republican National Committee. If you’ve watched Vice President Dick Cheney for the last seven years, you can be forgiven for thinking that the Republican Party soul lacks humor.

Dear Friend (the letter begins),

Are you a Republican?

Our records show that you registered as a member of our Party … But a recent audit of your Party affiliation turned up some irregularities.

Audit? my friend asks. The RNC is auditing me?

The letter is signed by GOP director of its Office of Strategic Information Bill Steiner. Steiner goes on:

I am writing to find out where you stand, For example, we have no record of your support for President George W. Bush.

In fact, we have no record of your support for a Republican President candidate going back to President Ronald W. Reagan!

And despite several requests, you have never made a dues payment to the Republican National Committee (not even a partial payment).

I know this can’t be true but you can see why I think there are irregularities in your record, especially when our local … Republican canvassers indicate that you view yourself as a Republican! (Emphasis in original)

My friend says, Huh? Have I got Republican canvassers hiding in the bushes in front of my house?

In addition to these somewhat creepy implications, my friend also took one substantial policy matter to heart. Steiner’s letter says:

On the signature issues of our Republican Party, you also tell people you are one of us. You’re with us on our Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms, appointing conservative judges and on opposing abortion.

Two out of three isn’t bad, but my friend is a pro-choice Republican, on the conservative grounds that the government has no business intruding on a citizen’s body. He had been unaware that one’s position on abortion was a litmus test for Republicanism that would draw the attention of those ever-vigilant auditory canvassers.

You see, I’d like to set your record straight as soon as possible. If we don’t, we risk Hillary Clinton as President with Bill Clinton as the power behind the throne.

And I don’t have to tell you … that is a troubling image to say the least.

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