The Values Test
by James C. Dobson, Ph.D., founder and chairman
Dr. Dobson says winning an election is important, but not at the expense of our core beliefs.
Reports have surfaced in the press about a meeting that occurred last Saturday in
After two hours of deliberation, we voted on a resolution that can be summarized as follows: If neither of the two major political parties nominates an individual who pledges himself or herself to the sanctity of human life, we will join others in voting for a minor-party candidate. Those agreeing with the proposition were invited to stand. The result was almost unanimous.
The other issue discussed at length concerned the advisability of creating a third party if Democrats and Republicans do indeed abandon the sanctity of human life and other traditional family values. Though there was some support for the proposal, no consensus emerged.
Speaking personally, and not for the organization I represent or the other leaders gathered in Salt Lake City, I firmly believe that the selection of a president should begin with a recommitment to traditional moral values and beliefs. Those include the sanctity of human life, the institution of marriage, and other inviolable pro-family principles. Only after that determination is made can the acceptability of a nominee be assessed.
The other approach, which I find problematic, is to choose a candidate according to the likelihood of electoral success or failure. Polls don’t measure right and wrong; voting according to the possibility of winning or losing can lead directly to the compromise of one’s principles. In the present political climate, it could result in the abandonment of cherished beliefs that conservative Christians have promoted and defended for decades. Winning the presidential election is vitally important, but not at the expense of what we hold most dear.
One other clarification is germane, even though unrelated to the meeting in
That divergence is entirely reasonable, now just over a year before the national election. It is hardly indicative of a “splintering” of old alliances. If the major political parties decide to abandon conservative principles, the cohesion of pro-family advocates will be all too apparent in 2008.
(This piece originally appeared as an op-ed in today's New York Times.)
Pro-life Votes Could Peel
While I and others have reiterated this week that social conservatives have no desire nor plans to launch a third political party, a Rasmussen poll released today suggests that almost a third of the Republican Party would desire such an option if the election came down-to-a head to head race between Rudy Giuliani and Hillary Clinton. Twenty-seven percent said they would vote for a third party, pro-life candidate if it were Giuliani vs.
27% of Republicans Would Vote for Pro-Life Third Party Instead of Giuliani