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On a day when traditional marriage won Maine, I go to the Atlantic and read people arguing that social issues are sinking the GOP in the Northeast. One commenter said:

“I don’t see how the GOP gets out of its current position of being a pointless rump, a discredited regional party associated with the lunatic fringe Christianists.”

While the Tax Payer Bill of Rights lost in Maine, traditional marriage won, but it is the social conservatives who are holding back the party in the Northeast?

In a post on the Atlantic, Megan McArdle describes her relatives in Wayne County, New York and uses this anecdotal evidence to back her case that social issues are losers there. Let me return serve and say that my wife and her family are from Wayne County . . . my in-laws still live there and about all they like about the GOP are the social issues.

The small churches that dot Wayne County have no use for new-fangled marriage and McArdle really should give my friend the pastor with a doctorate in physics a call if she wants to talk about it. Of course, anecdotes are not data, but since the pro-life message is a net winner at the Presidential level and traditional marriage a big winner at the ballot box anecdotes are all the dogmatists have.

Anyone doubt that traditional marriage is more popular in Maine than the kind of small government libertarians favor? I am actually a very small government guy, but isn’t it obvious (30 odd wins in a row) that marriage is more popular than spending cuts?

Put massive spending cuts in social programs on the California Prop ballot and see if it can pull the percentage of votes gained by Prop 8. My guess is that such cuts would do well to hit 40 percent of the vote and it would be a mostly white, rural vote at that . . . a group that also voted for Prop 8 just missing the allies in other communities that saved real marriage.

I am not happy about that, but that is the way it is.

Isn’t the real point that pundits want a GOP that does not shame them in front of their fellow pundits?

Joe or anyone: What is the evidence that abandoning social issues would drive up GOP numbers? I am an eighth generation or so Republican (back to Lincoln in West Virginia!), but I would walk on a pro-choice party. A graduate of Regent University was just elected governor of Virginia in historic fashion and the results prove that social conservatives must go!

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