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Sen. Jeff Flake: “We’ve got to go back to traditional conservatism”

Sen. Jeff Flake: “We’ve got to go back to traditional conservatism”

“We’ve given in to nativism and protectionism. And I think that if we’re going to be a governing party in the future and a majority party we’ve got to go back to traditional conservatism”

As Senate Republicans pick up the pieces of an embarrassing Obamacare repeal defeat, one that was self-imposed, those up for re-election in 2018 are grappling for an explanation.

Like other’s before him, Arizona’s Junior Senator Jeff Flake says returning to traditional conservatism is the GOP’s only hope of success.

Joining Face the Nation Sunday, Flake said the Republican Party has “lost its way.” Flake is also peddling his new book, “Conscience of a Conservative: A Rejection of Destructive Politics and a Return to Principle”.

CBS Reports:

Sen. Jeff Flake says the Republican Party has “lost its way,” and is urging members to turn back to what he calls “traditional conservatism” — after a particularly contentious week in Washington.

“We’ve given in to nativism and protectionism. And I think that if we’re going to be a governing party in the future and a majority party we’ve got to go back to traditional conservatism,” Flake said Sunday on “Face the Nation.”

In his new book, “Conscience of a Conservative: A Rejection of Destructive Politics and a Return to Principle,” the Arizona Republican — who will likely face challenges in his race for reelection next year — outlines some of his differences with President Trump.

Flake writes in his new book, “When we excuse on our side what we attack on the other, then we are hypocrites. If we do that as a practice, then we are corrupt. If we continually accept this conduct as elected officials, then perhaps we shouldn’t be elected officials.”

Asked whether he believes Republican leaders are complicit in this notion if they don’t call out the president, Flake responded, “I do think so.”

“The last thing you want to do is wake up every morning and see a tweet… You know, it’s tough not to just say, ‘I’m not going to respond,'” Flake said. “And we can’t respond to everything. But there are times when you have to stand up and say, ‘I’m sorry. This is wrong.'”

“There are truths that are self-evident,” Flake added. “And you’ve got to stand up and call — whether it’s the White House or other elected officials — to task when they’re– they’re not doing what they should. And I do think that we bear the responsibility, if we’re elected officials, to do that.”

Flake said the 24-hour news cycle and impact of social media is, in large part, helping drive the Republican Party apart.

“I think certainly the modern media culture values those who yell the loudest,” Flake said. “And so the tougher path is frankly to have the kind of demeanor that some people might call boring.”

There’ve been plenty of GOP post-mortems following Trump’s ascendancy to Republican Party leader, and many prescriptions for riding the populist wave back to dry ground (some much better than others).

But Flake’s calls for a return to conservatism ring as hollow as all those before. In 2016, voters made abundantly clear that they’ve little interest in conservatism or boilerplate platitudes masquerading as Buckly Jr.’s brainchildren.

Reagan conservatism was fantastic in the 80s and perfect for that decade, but thirty years later, we’re surrounded by a populace largely disinterested in anything politically or socially conservative.

Blaming social media will not fix the Republican party. That beast is here to stay. Releasing a book and rebranding as a card-carrying Buckley conservative just in time for re-election is not only tired and trite but in no way does it advance the cause of conservatism nor the Republican agenda.

As long as Republicans continue to look backward rather than forward to the road ahead, they’ll never be the governing party. And as long as Republican politicians choose to blame others while ignoring the changing landscape before them, earnestly engaging in societal and political evolutions, they’ll continue to be dull and ineffectual.

Follow Kemberlee on Twitter @kemberleekaye


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The problem is, talk is cheap (as we’ve just seen in the Obamacare repeal debacle) and Flake isn’t really the most credible guy to be delivering this message.

He sees that he’s underwater in the polls, so now he’s appearing publicly to lie about his record and what he stands for.

Good bye, Flake. We won’t miss you come 2018.
Vote Kelli Ward.

    geogeo31 in reply to Matt_SE. | July 31, 2017 at 4:12 pm

    Kelli Ward…aye

    MattMusson in reply to Matt_SE. | July 31, 2017 at 4:13 pm

    Traditional Conservatism – Do nothing but stand on principle? Or, give in because there was no other choice?

    Observer in reply to Matt_SE. | July 31, 2017 at 5:54 pm

    Yes, his lament about “nativism” is yet another indication that he will continue to screw over Arizonans on border security.

    Here’s a “self-evident truth” for you Flake: a country without borders is not a country, and a senator who won’t vote to defend his country’s borders or uphold the rule of law is a senator who does not deserve to be re-elected.

What a sanctimonious POS.

Common Sense | July 31, 2017 at 1:57 pm

Flake is nothing but a staunch never trumper!
Time to sell his book no CBS.

thalesofmiletus | July 31, 2017 at 2:08 pm

“Traditional Conservativism” = William F Buckly-ism that was acceptable to the Left once upon a time. Yep, nothing archaic or arbitrary about those “values”.

Meanwhile, the GOPe just torpedoed relations with Russia with the sanctions. Traditional Conservatism! This is why they’re called the Stupid Party.

    Ragspierre in reply to thalesofmiletus. | July 31, 2017 at 2:49 pm

    Is today’s Collectivism like Kennedy’s governing principles? Would you expect Kennedy to put up with Putin?

    So, WHEN did human nature change such that conservative ideals…which are those of the Enlightenment and Revolution…become “out of style” for you?

      Arminius in reply to Ragspierre. | July 31, 2017 at 7:56 pm

      That’s funny. OF COURSE Kennedy would have put up with Putin. Kennedy not only put up with Khrushchev he caved in to Khrushchev’s blackmail to resolve the Cuban missile crisis.

      “…Hopes that a satisfactory resolution to the crisis could be reached between Washington and Moscow had dimmed, moreover, when a letter from Soviet leader Nikita S. Khrushchev arrived Saturday morning demanding that the United States agree to remove its Jupiter missiles from Turkey in exchange for a Soviet removal of missiles from Cuba. The letter struck U.S. officials as an ominous hardening of the Soviet position from the previous day’s letter from Khrushchev, which had omitted any mention of American missiles in Turkey but had instead implied that Washington’s pledge not to invade Cuba would be sufficient to obviate the need for Soviet nuclear protection of Castro’s revolution.

      On Saturday evening, after a day of tense discussions within the “ExComm” or Executive Committee of senior advisers, President Kennedy decided on a dual strategy—a formal letter to Khrushchev accepting the implicit terms of his October 26 letter (a U.S. non-invasion pledge in exchange for the verifiable departure of Soviet nuclear missiles), coupled with private assurances to Khrushchev that the United States would speedily take out its missiles from Turkey, but only on the basis of a secret understanding, not as an open agreement that would appear to the public, and to NATO allies, as a concession to blackmail…

      …That meeting has long been recognized as a turning point in the crisis, but several aspects of it have been shrouded in mystery and confusion. One concerned the issue of the Jupiter missiles in Turkey: U.S. officials maintained that neither John nor Robert Kennedy promised to withdraw the Jupiters as a quid pro quo, or concession, in exchange for the removal of the Soviet missiles from Cuba, or as part of an explicit agreement, deal, or pledge, but had merely informed Dobrynin that Kennedy had planned to take out the American missiles in any event.”

      Kennedy was an ass covering weakling, as Khrushchev learned at their June 1961 Vienna meeting. After that meeting Kennedy honestly admitted that Khrushchev had torn him a new asshole; it was like a cat playing with a mouse, and Kennedy was the mouse.

      “The second volume of Khrushchev’s memoirs (Khrushchev Remembers: The Last Testament), published posthumously in 1974, touched only briefly on the Robert Kennedy-Dobrynin meeting, but included the flat statement (on p. 512) that “President Kennedy said that in exchange for the withdrawl of our missiles, he would remove American missiles from Turkey and Italy,” although he described this “pledge” as “symbolic” since the rockets “were already obsolete.”

      The Jupiter missiles were most definitely not obsolete. They had only been deployed to Turkey in 1961. They were still in production in 1961. The USAF wanted to kill the program because an IRBM gave the Army a strategic nuclear strike mission and they were rattled by the JCS’s own Weapons Systems Evaluation Group saying it was actually more promising than the USAF’s Thor missile. The USAF’s missile development lagged behind the Army’s because they were more focused on their bombers in SAC. This was even more true when Curtis Lemay became the USAF COS in 1961. He didn’t think his own missiles were good for anything more than blasting holes in Soviet air defenses for his bombers. But with the Army ahead of them the Air Force started an inter-service political campaign against the Army missile inside the Beltway and claimed the Jupiter was obsolete. Not true but the USAF claims gave Kennedy an ass-covering way to remove the missiles without admitting Khrushchev blackmailed him into doing so (naturally they were all withdrawn from service as SecDef transferred them to the USAF and they didn’t want the Army missiles).

      “…The first authoritative admission on the U.S. side that the Jupiters had actually been part of a “deal” came at a conference in Moscow in January 1989, after glasnost had led Soviet (and then Cuban) former officials to participate in international scholarly efforts to reconstruct and assess the history of the crisis. At that meeting, former Kennedy speechwriter Theodore Sorensen (and the uncredited editor of Thirteen Days) admitted, after prodding from Dobrynin, that he had taken it upon himself to edit out a “very explicit” reference to the inclusion of the Jupiters in the final deal to settle the crisis…”

      And the relevant portion of Dobrynin’s 27 October 1962 cable to Moscow following his meeting with Robert Kennedy.

      “…”And what about Turkey?” I asked R. Kennedy.

      “If that is the only obstacle to achieving the regulation I mentioned earlier, then the president doesn’t see any unsurmountable difficulties in resolving this issue,” replied R. Kennedy. “The greatest difficulty for the president is the public discussion of the issue of Turkey. Formally the deployment of missile bases in Turkey was done by a special decision of the NATO Council. To announce now a unilateral decision by the president of the USA to withdraw missile bases from Turkey—this would damage the entire structure of NATO and the US position as the leader of NATO, where, as the Soviet government knows very well, there are many arguments. In short. if such a decision were announced now it would seriously tear apart NATO.”

      “However, President Kennedy is ready to come to agree on that question with N.S. Khrushchev, too. I think that in order to withdraw these bases from Turkey,” R. Kennedy said, ‘we need 4-5 months. This is the minimal amount of time necessary for the US government to do this, taking into account the procedures that exist within the NATO framework. On the whole Turkey issue,” R. Kennedy added, “if Premier N.S. Khrushchev agrees with what I’ve said, we can continue to exchange opinions between him and the president, using him, R. Kennedy and the Soviet ambassador. ”However, the president can’t say anything public in this regard about Turkey,” R. Kennedy said again. R. Kennedy then warned that his comments about Turkey are extremely confidential; besides him and his brother, only 2-3 people know about it in Washington…”

      So, hell yeah, Kennedy would have put up with Putin. And he would have backed down from Putin just like he backed down from Khrushchev. There is every reason to believe that Khrushchev was installing those missiles in Cuba in retaliation for Kennedy putting IRBMs in Turkey the year earlier. And that Khrushchev got everything he wanted Far from the popular myth that Kennedy stared him down, Khrushchev actually made Kennedy cave. As Khrushchev knew he would following the Vienna summit. Moreover, Kennedy knew it too.

      ” It would be one of the most candid sessions ever between a reporter and a commander-in-chief.

      “How was it?” asked Reston.

      “Worst thing in my life,” said Kennedy. “He savaged me.”

      Reston jotted in his notebook: “Not the usual bullshit. There is a look a man has when he has to tell the truth.”

      “I’ve got two problems,” Kennedy told Reston. “First, to figure out why he did it, and in such a hostile way. And second, to figure out what we can do about it.”

      Because of the Bay of Pigs, Kennedy said, Khrushchev “thought that anyone who was so young and inexperienced as to get into that mess could be taken. And anyone who got into it and didn’t see it through had no guts. So he just beat the hell out of me…I’ve got a real problem.”

      Reston rightly concluded in his New York Times report, which carefully protected his source, that Kennedy “was astonished by the rigidity and the toughness of the Soviet leader.” He said Kennedy “definitely got the impression that the German question was going to be a very near thing.”

      Even Kennedy, however, underestimated just how quickly Khrushchev would act.”

      As an aside, I can’t say I was disappointed in Barack Obama because he did everything he promised he was going to do. He would say things that people could take two ways, but I knew what he meant. During the 2008 campaign that no country ever maintained its military power without maintaining its economic power. So I knew he was going to do his best to permanently cripple the economy. This was bolstered by his frequent talking point that he would not only end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan he would end the habits that got us into such wars. Again that meant doing as much to weaken our military, and therefore our economy as he could but also selling out our allies and strengthening our enemies/adversaries. Hello, nuclear Iran! Raoul Castro, let me bail you out with tourist dollars as your economy circles the drain now that your last benefactor Venezuela is in financial ruin. Etc.

      And one of the things he would cite to bolster his 2008 debate claim that President’s should meet with enemy leaders (he said it was a “disgrace” that Bush wouldn’t) was Kennedy’s Vienna meeting with Khrushchev. Which meant that what Kennedy did unintentionally through inexperience Obama would do intentionally through malice.

      So while Kennedy would have put up with Putin, Obama actively aided and abetted him.

      “Tell Vladimir I’ll have more flexibility after the election.”

Flake is most certainly part of the problem and not part of the solution in Mordor on the Potomac. Why can’t the good people of Arizona elect some real senators?

    Matt_SE in reply to bobtuba. | July 31, 2017 at 7:56 pm

    For the same reason as everywhere else:
    The GOPe is a union for politicians. They smooth out every obstacle for their candidates and rig the system against any challengers, often using dirty tricks if they have to.

    See: Mississippi Massacre, and what’s going on in the most recent Georgia special election race.

    Their main, and most powerful tactic is to reduce consumer/voter choice, just like a monopoly. When a Republican voter has a “choice” between a bad GOP candidate and a worse Democrat, that’s no choice at all.

The Flakes and Ragspierres (go see his forum post this morning) of the “conservative” sphere is why I don’t call myself a conservative anymore. That label has been every bit as misapplied as the label “liberal”. It no longer has any meaning and I won’t be jacked around anymore by these phony virtual signalling poseurs. Take your conservative label and…. you know.

I am still the same guy who believes in the same principles I have always believed in but… please, let’s primary all of these scumballs next year.

    Ragspierre in reply to Pasadena Phil. | July 31, 2017 at 2:31 pm

    As I’ve noted about you for years, you never were, are not now, and will likely never be a conservative.

    You’re just a Collectivist…who believes in Collectivist principles. But, hey, GREAT that you’ve come out…!!!

    Immolate in reply to Pasadena Phil. | July 31, 2017 at 3:57 pm

    Do you understand that throwing out the baby with the bathwater is as ardently not-conservative an act as one can commit? Conservatives are, by their very nature, very careful when they take out the trash to avoid doing harm.

    Don’t hitch your wagon to a change agent such that you must rationalize their every move as good. Trump has done good things, and will do more good things. But he’s also done some incredibly stupid things, and shot himself in the foot repeatedly. Those who are not committed to him for better or for worse are looking at him right now, wondering if he’s going to reach down and find his inner wise old man, or if he’s going to crash and burn.

    Most Americans want Trump to succeed in making America great again, as campy as that sounds. We all want to see prosperity in the mold of Ronald Reagan. I believe Trump has the instincts to help that outcome happen, but only if he gets a handle on his most self-limiting characteristics.

      I have no idea what that means. If sewing a greasy, plague-infested label that says “conservative” distinguishes what you believe in and who you are going to associate with, go for it. My years of being a “conservative” has proven to be a very contentious experience of always being attacked by virtue-signalling purists committed to culling the herd of anyone who is not as “conservative” as they claim to be. That they themselves are “conservatives” is taken as a given. In the end, these same people are the ones stridently questioning our “conservative” creds if we don’t AGAIN hold our noses to vote for the latest RINO.

      How is being a “conservative” supposed to work anyway? Whether it’s Levin, or Rush or Ratspierre or his idol Erik Erickson, it’s always the same “I’m okay, YOU SUCK!” attitude! Is that how you “conservative” win friends and influence people? How do you expand your angry base into a working coalition that can actually win? Trump showed us how!

      Prior 2016, I just voted 3rd party rather than vote for a Republican was AT BEST as bad as Hillary or Obama. Last year, we were heading to having to choose between Hillary and Jeb. NO DIFFERENCE AGAIN! So Trump found the way through the barriers and established a beach head INSIDE enemy territory. And what are “conservatives” doing? Just as these NeverTrumpers couldn’t hold their noses for a Republican who could actually win, they join forces with the “I’m with her!” coalition to render impossible for THEIR PRESIDENT to even have a chance to govern even before he was sworn in!

      I’ve had it with you guys! I won’t argue to defend myself against not being worthy of the “conservative” label anymore. Don’t you dare call me a conservative or a libertarian or a liberal or anything else. I’m an American who understands the miracle of the very existence of America. I have never waivered on my principles or ideals. I just refuse to be a part of such an obnoxious group of people as those angry “conservatives” whose only plan is to wrap themselves in the flag while reducing everything to a debate about whether someone is a “true conservative”.

      You “conservatives” can blow me.

        Ragspierre in reply to Pasadena Phil. | July 31, 2017 at 4:59 pm

        Well, honey, when you come out and OPENLY say that the TEA Party and the OccupyWhatever people have a LOT in common…

        AND you use terms like “bankster”, and say monumentally stupid stuff about insider trading being OK…

        you’ve self-identified as being NOT a conservative.

        If you want anyone to “blow you”, you’re going to need to pay for it, and provide your own tweezers and pipette.

        I LOVE THIS…!!!

          artichoke in reply to Ragspierre. | August 1, 2017 at 7:27 am

          No, you just don’t understand it. So called extremists on the left and right tend to be principled, and some of those principles are shared. Whereas the neocon / neolib “bipartisan” consensus is epitomized by people like you, and John McCain.

          How’d you like that?

          Ragspierre in reply to Ragspierre. | August 1, 2017 at 7:46 am

          I think you’re a comedic genius…!!!

OleDirtyBarrister | July 31, 2017 at 2:17 pm

Slogan for the opponent” Flake Is A Fake.

What a FLAKE.
Sorry – too easy to pass up. He will be unemployed shortly.

“Reagan conservatism was fantastic in the 80s and perfect for that decade, but thirty years later, we’re surrounded by a populace largely disinterested in anything politically or socially conservative.”

So, Kemberlee, what are you going to teach your kids?

What new, hipster, cool things that leave what are eternal concepts in the dirt are going to take precedence?

Are you going to read Levin’s new book and trash it?

    I’m sure it would warm Levin’s heart to know that the most strident “I’m with her!” NeverTrumper out there is touting his book. We will never get to the ideas part solving problems if everyone keeps fencing with meaningless words and aiming for moving goal posts. Strident name-calling and lying persuades no one. Rampant dishonesty across the board is what is feeding the widespread cognitive dissonance that is driving voter cynicism.

    Our republic, you know, the one Levin keeps writing about, cannot exist with a cynical citizenry. Start fixing YOU before you sic yourself at the world. Your idiocy just isn’t selling and that has been true since you started on your sick, obnoxious personal campaign.

      Ragspierre in reply to Pasadena Phil. | July 31, 2017 at 2:54 pm

      When you start with a damned lie, nothing you have to say counts for much.

      I you know I don’t lie. You know I was never “I’m with her”. You call names MUCH more than I do. As here.

      You simply cannot deal honestly with anything I hit you with, right between your glazed-over eyes.

      You hate me because I push back on your patent bullshit. And you’ve got nothing to fight with but YOUR lies.

      Ragspierre in reply to Pasadena Phil. | July 31, 2017 at 3:00 pm

      I know exactly what “conservative” means, though it isn’t at the margins homogeneous.

      That you DON’T know what it means is totally consistent. There are so many words like that for you. Like “truthful”, “honest”, “candid”, “thinking”. And etc.

No, what the Republican majority in Congress needs to do is GROW A SPINE! I once called myself ‘Republican’, but I have a spine, guts and the ability to think on my own. Until the majority party (no Capital Letters as the party is all no guts, no excuse and no longer representing the People) is willing and able to take on the Socialist-Communist inspired Democrat Party, they do not deserve to lead.

Party of Lincoln? Hardly. Party of Howdy Doody? You betcha!

Flake is no expert on conservatism. It’s just a word he uses when running for election.

Flake has absorbed too much of the poison from his ‘mentor’ McCain, just like McCain did from his ‘mentor’, The Lyin’ of the Senate.

None of the Swamp Creatures deserve re-election but some will survive. Not sure Ward is a viable alternative – she’s flakier than Flake himself, invariably taking dead aim at her own foot when she pulls the trigger.

From what I can see a “traditional conservative” is someone who prefers losing on principle to winning. Of course, someone else is supposed to take one for the team.

True conservatives are a minority of voters. I am not counting the people who talk like a conservative but walk like a liberal.

I am not a conservative. I’m not a liberal either. In my youth I was a Conservative Republican. Then I spent over 20 years as a liberal Democrat. Now I have no ideology and no party. I am much happier now.

After 57 years on this planet I have concluded that all ideologies (like philosophies) are mostly bullshit. They are like cotton candy – they seem substantive but when you bite into them they just melt away.

    Immolate in reply to myiq2xu. | July 31, 2017 at 4:24 pm

    Don’t tie yourself to a doctrine, as you don’t control the doctrine, and doctrine has been known to change for the convenience of those who do control it. Conservatism is not a doctrine, or a platform, although either can be conservative. Conservatism is a philosophical underpinning or even impulse that says “preserve that which is good.” To be a conservative is to give the first chair to that principle. Not the only chair, but the first one.

    If it occurs to you that “burn it down” is the diametrically opposite impulse, then good for you. The yang to conservatism’s yin is not liberalism: it is anarchy. Anarchists are the wolves. Conservatives are both the sheepdogs and the sheep.

      Ragspierre in reply to Immolate. | July 31, 2017 at 5:10 pm

      Agreed, with this addendum…

      conservationism is a way of thinking AND living. Conservatives LOVE people. We LOVE letting people express their fullest selves, AND we work to build all kinds of structures to assist in that fruition. Those structures are often fortresses against any institution (see ‘government’ here) that impedes individual liberty.

      No real conservative would DREAM of trying to control an economy, because we would never dream of depriving people of their choices. As we never dream of depriving them of the consequences of choices they make. We certainly DO act to mitigate the full sting of some choices, and some things that just happen. We are people of charity, and people of realism.

      That last is the touchstone of conservatism. We insist on reality, and we are not afraid of it. Indeed, we have learned how to deal with it rationally, to the benefit of all mankind.

        VaGentleman in reply to Ragspierre. | August 1, 2017 at 9:37 am

        There was an election for POTUS on Nov 8, 2016. Who should reality based conservatives like yourself have voted for?

Bucky Barkingham | July 31, 2017 at 3:41 pm

IIRC during the GOP primaries we had both a True Conservative and at least one Libertarian. The GOPe’s anointed “gracious concession speech giver of 2106”, JEB!, was saying a lot like what Flake is saying. But the primary voters went with the vulgarian Trump. And instead of having Empress Hillary as President for Life the voters in 30 states chose the vulgarian Trump.

    Immolate in reply to Bucky Barkingham. | July 31, 2017 at 4:05 pm

    Using Jeb as your “true conservative” straw man immediately invalidates your argument. Jeb was never a conservative, and to stand him in as your appointed crash test dummy is profane. Might as well use McCain or Graham.

Reagan conservatism was fantastic in the 80s and perfect for that decade, but thirty years later, we’re surrounded by a populace largely disinterested in anything politically or socially conservative.

So what? Did you champion those values in the ’80s because they were popular, or because they were right? What about in the ’60s, when they were no more popular than they are now? Were we wrong to champion them then? What were Goldwater and Buckley and Reagan doing then, pushing policies that the populace not only weren’t interested in but actively opposed?

For that matter, on what planet were these policies popular in the ’80s? Reagan was popular; Reaganism, not so much. The public then was much like now, wanting handouts; they voted for Reagan the man, not for the principles I thought you believed in, but apparently you don’t. So, do you actually have any principles, or don’t you believe in them?

    artichoke in reply to Milhouse. | August 1, 2017 at 7:35 am

    Reagan was not a man of principle. “Morning again in America”, “shining city on a hill”, what does that cr*p mean? When he chose to bust a union did he go after SEIU? Nope, he went after the air traffic controllers. he did an amnesty of illegals. The S&L’s died under his watch. He allowed unfettered LBO’s. He got into office by conspiring with the Ayatollah.

    Every since then, “conservatism” has been an abused word. Not unintentionally.

We’ve given in to nativism and protectionism.

Those aren’t the problem. To belabor the bloody obvious, the problem is that the Republicans have turned into Democrats, and together make up one big comfortable oligarchy. They stand for something, all right, but it’s not something we want.

like flake has any idea what that is.
he’s as clueless about it as trump is.

Reagan conservatism was fantastic in the 80s and perfect for that decade
perfect? you need to look at a dictionary.
he was ok, I was in army at time and he was good for us.
he was also super great to illegal aliens.
stupid enough to believe the other party would honor their agreements.
he was decent person, decent president, but anyone who thinks he was perfect for the time is an idiot.

    artichoke in reply to dmacleo. | August 1, 2017 at 7:38 am

    I wouldn’t call him a decent president. Maybe he was responsible for the end of the Soviet Union, although if he was, the mechanism was never made clear.

    Other than that he destroyed conservatism and left it open to usurpers, one of the latest being Jeff Flake.

Great response to Flake, Kemberlee. He’s talking right past us all. Busy telling us what a word “means” when we’re all looking for action from Rs, not dictionary entries.

Oh Please…this guy is about as conservative as John McCain…which means he is NOT conservative.

I dunno Flake from a cypress stump, so I have no brief for or agin’ him personally.

What I’m taking exception to is the attacks on conservationism here by an erstwhile conservative on a conservative blog.

You Filly-type morons can go find your own blog, or start one.

Seems to me… I’m home here.

Flake is toadying to CBS.

That says it all.

DINORightMarie | July 31, 2017 at 6:54 pm

Jeff Flake claimed to be a Conservative to get elected – and then he turned into a leftist RINO.

His words are useless.

Back to conservatism – like supporting the removal of sanctions against Cuba, so the Cubans can use US Federal loan guarantees.

First vote EVER in a primary for my wife and me goes to Kelli Ward. And then we will help her become our next senator.

Traditional conservatism: roll over on you back and beg the Democrats and the media to rub your belly.

McCain is happy as a clam. The Democrats and media are rubbing his belly, patting him on the head (avoiding the spot where he got his recent owwie) and telling him what a good boy he is is for doing what they want on Obamacare instead of doing what his nasty, stupid constituents want.

Sam in Texas | July 31, 2017 at 10:25 pm

Sen. Jeff Flake: “We’ve got to go back to traditional conservatism”

What would you know about that?

    Ragspierre in reply to Sam in Texas. | July 31, 2017 at 10:57 pm

    Well, whether or not he lives it, he knows it.

    And he knows it WAY better than the New York Progressive Donald T-rump.

    Way, way better.

Conservatism died with the Reagan administration. Reagan was never a conservative. He was a social moderate who was moderately conservative on foreign policy. The same is true of both the Bushes, who were actually more liberal on domestic and social policy than Reagan. McCain is a liberal who feels more at home with members of the Democrat party and Romney certainly did not get kicked out of the Peoples Republic of Massachusetts for being too conservative. And, Trump is, by no stretch of the imagination, a conservative. The Republican party threw its conservative wing under the bus for 30 years in favor of the financial Establishment. The financiers and the politicians got richer and the working man got poorer. For all intents and purposes, there is NO conservative movement which has any political impact on America. The Establishment, Right and Left, has become the enemy of the American worker and he has realized that. the conservative rank and file does not vote for self-styled conservatives. They vote for anti-establishment candidates for office. And, there is no way that the Republican leadership will ever let their party nominate an anti-establishment candidate in the future. If the Republicans run conservative who are not anti-establishment, they will simply lose seats.

    artichoke in reply to Mac45. | August 1, 2017 at 7:44 am

    Reagan was a disaster, put in office by an alliance with the Ayatollah. Compared to him Jimmy Carter was the patriot!

    “Traditional” conservatism, to me, is like Goldwater. And he got nowhere when he ran against the disastrous LBJ.

What’s wrong with nativism? America for Americans! “Nativism” is a progressive insult, and the fact that Flake is using it just like progressives do tells us something.

The words of a McCain protege seeking re-election. “I’m with Her” Flake is as big an embarrassment to Arizona as McCain and knows NOTHING of conservatism. Go ahead Charlie Brown (aka Arizona), kick that football again.

Please, please let’s go back to that time before you watch our every move and hold us accountable for not representing you. Life was so much more cooperative when you were obsequious and we were treated with respect and not like hired employees.

How does a guy get a last name that fits him so perfectly ??

Only a ‘progressive ‘ nation will progress, while your conservative societies stay stagnant.
Conservative usually implies that there must be a god, while we all know that is not a provable concept and thus wrong at the very start in a modern age.