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Where we can go with this
This website, which is widely available, draws a certain traffic. It presents a certain package of issues with the idea that they belong to a political philosophy called “progressive Republicanism”. Now, of course, there is no good reason that these particular issues should belong together except that they are put together here because they fit Republican positions in the past. (That may not be true of the drug recommendation considering that progressive Republicans supported Prohibition.) Nevertheless, the website and its package of issues will stand and be known by the name ProgressiveRepublicans.org.
This website will be an empty shell, however, unless people agreeing with all or part of its program come together as a political community. It is not just one community but several communities united under the label of “Progressive Republicans”. That gives it the mass to win elections. The Republican Party - the “Grand Old Party” (GOP) - is currently in flux. Those who were previously excluded or marginalized in the bipartisan mix now have a chance to assemble a majority of voters and win elections. In other words, their point of view can be included in the mix of issues likely to become public policy if the Republican Party prevails.
Individually, we may each be motivated to do political work to advance a certain cause. It’s more effective to be working with others who share our views. To do that, we must make ourselves known to those other people. That is where this website can help. If you will identify yourself giving not only contact information but an expressed interest in a particular issue, we at this website can then prepare appropriate lists that can be used to create new communities of interest.
This means that groups which previously had no association with each other can now make common cause. Together they would work to build a faction within the Republican Party which is progressive - “liberal” if you prefer - rather than conservative. That label will now mean something because it is associated with issues that enjoy popular support. It will have the capacity to attract an electoral majority. Republican candidates and officials will then need to cater more to that wing of the party instead of giving conservatives a free pass. Since intense public scrutiny will fall upon the Republican nominee for President in 2012, our efforts will be quite relevant in the period ahead.
Specifically, we invite persons and groups which advocate policies included in this website's package of issues to communicate with us with an eye toward building a new political community. For starters, we can exchange web links. We at ProgressiveRepublicans.org are willing to post a link to any organization's web site without investigating the merit of the organization so long as the organization affirms that it does not practice violence, its purposes appear to be in line with one or more of our sixteen issues, and a reciprocal link or associative connection to this site is provided.
It is understood that listing of an organization's web site on our links page does not mean or imply our endorsement of the organization or its purposes. It certainly does not mean that other organizations whose links are included on this list endorse the organization. It does not mean that an organization wishing to be listed here endorses other organizations on our list. We are facilitators of political community building, not judges of merit.
Second, organizations wishing a deeper relationship with ProgressiveRepublicans.org can communicate with us to suggest ways how we can communicate and cooperate to build political support for their issues. The label, "progressive Republican", is not trademarked by us or anyone else. It is simply a way that we choose to identify ourselves politically. Persons or groups wishing to embrace the same label are free to do so or not, regardless of what this website proposes.
The purpose of ProgressiveRepublicans.org is not to recruit people to join the Republican Party. Each organization is likely to include persons who already consider themselves to be Republicans. Initially, we would invite those persons to affiliate with a caucus within the Republican Party which is called "progressive". That label will give them the visibility and cohesion to become more effective in advancing their issues. The cause can be promoted through bumper stickers, badges, and other periphrenalia that can, with increased participation, be made available at a modest cost.
We would envision that members of a "progressive Republican caucus", representing disparate issues, might work together to support particular candidates or party officials who share their point of view in precinct caucuses, primaries, or conventions of the Republican Party. If this effort proves effective, it will encourage members of the affiliated organizations who are not Republicans to switch to that party. The Republican Party will also benefit from retaining the allegiance of persons who see their interests being effectively represented within the party's structure.
It is understood that few people will be in this simply to help the Republican Party. The party is a tool for achieving something else. Even where a particular issue is thought to be more closely associated with the Democrats than Republicans, the fact that the Republican Party now contains a faction supporting this issue will build a fire under Democrats who previously gave it mere lip service. Increased partisan competition will go a long way toward making politicians of both parties do what people want.
In summary, if you think you can work within the framework of issues presented here, regard this web site as yours. The more cooperative we all can be, the greater will be our common success. Please give your feedback and then join others to revive the progressive Republican movement.
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