What's Really at Stake on Election Day?

It is no exaggeration to say that the election next week will be one of the most important ones in recent memory. There is a lot at stake on the ballot; this election will affect the future in immediate, very dramatic ways.

The nation faces two powerful ideological threats. First, the Islamic fascists want to destroy us through terrorist attacks. The left argues deceitfully that the war in Iraq has nothing to do with the War on Terror; if they win control of Congress, the left will move to cut off military funding, just as they did in Vietnam, and unleash another blood bath that will dwarf the already dreadful violence we are trying desperately to halt.

Second, the so-called “progressives” want to renew their efforts to wreck the Judeo-Christian foundations of our culture and society. If leftist politicians prevail in the midterm elections, they together with judicial activists on the court will ratchet up their program to systematically ravage what remains of our Judeo-Christian heritage—those principles that have been the foundation for our freedom and democracy. The avowed aim of the likes of Planned Parenthood (a misnomer if there ever was one) and the ACLU is a totally secular society with religion nowhere to be seen in the public square.

The hurdles that must be cleared to reach a good outcome for this election are very high because conservatives, particularly social conservatives, are demoralized and disaffected. And with good reason. Too often our leaders have fallen short of our expectations. Numerous missed opportunities have left too many good people frustrated, disillusioned and disappointed. How naïve, however, to think that our leaders—who are human just like us—would not make mistakes or that the millennium could be ushered in with one or two electoral victories. What nonsense. Since when was evil ever vanquished with an easy stroke? What we can say confidently, paraphrasing Edmund Burke, is that evil will definitely triumph if good people don’t vote.

First, let’s take a cold, hard look at reality. Conservatives have consistently fought, in the words of Barry Goldwater, “to preserve and enlarge freedom at home while safeguarding and defending freedom abroad.” While conservatives have had power they’ve cut taxes every single year. They’ve brought the federal deficit down 40%. They’ve installed two outstanding new justices on the Supreme Court. They’ve advanced the pro-life agenda—by stopping taxpayer funded abortions and banning partial-birth abortion. They’ve opposed embryonic stem cell research and cloning and they’ve fought for parental consent. Not a bad record of accomplishment. Further, we have held steady in the War on Terror—is spite of a constant barrage of opposition from the mainstream media that has affected public opinion. There are those privy to classified information who state that the U.S. has thwarted terrorist attacks, in part because of new approaches to national security.

Here, then, is what is at stake in the midterm elections of 2006.

Contempt for the War

The hard left—who now try to disguise themselves by using the label “progressives” much as the pro-abortion crowd took on the label “pro-choice”—makes no bones about its contempt for the war in Iraq. It’s a safe bet that a vote for the left means a vote against the War on Terror. A cursory review of the long history of terrorist attacks reveals that the U.S. either largely ignored them or provided only token response. Remember the 4,000 missiles launched against Israel? Remember the 200 people killed in India? The attacks on the USS Cole? The murdered Olympic athletes? The attacks on Marines in Beirut? The terrorists have been attacking for a long time, but our national leaders didn’t call it war or take it seriously until after Sept. 11, 2001. It took conservative leadership to see the strategic imperative of fighting the Islamofacists, of destroying their training grounds and support bases.

Such a war is fraught with problems, however. The movement is spread across nation states. It’s not like a war against a specific country in a specific geographical location. This new type of enemy is more dangerous for their lack of a specific front and discernible identity. The 2006 ballots will ask Americans whether they have the resolve to continue the fight against such dangerous, hidden enemies. A vote for the left is a vote to ignore the danger and leave the problem to metastasize into something far larger, far more threatening, far more lethal.

We can—once again—push this problem down the road for a few years until the Islamofacists have acquired the means to kill not just thousands of our citizens, as they did on 9/11, but hundreds of thousands, perhaps even millions and reduce some of our cities to smoking ruins. Clearly they have the will to do so. Will we sit idly by and allow them to acquire the means. Will we play the fool as Europe did while Hitler was amassing the tanks and bombers with which to launch World War II? God have mercy on us if we do.

The left has objected to the new methods of protecting national security. It dislikes the Patriot Act, which allows the United States to coordinate efforts against terrorism; it has opposed enemy surveillance and interrogation. It even opposes the development of missile defense shields needed to defend ourselves from a rogue state like North Korea. The left is uncomfortable with Ambassador John Bolton’s straightforward approach to United Nation’s reform and his unashamedly pro-America rhetoric as he defends our nation against the anti-American propaganda at the UN. All of these conservative approaches to national security are at stake on the ballot; the 2006 election will determine whether the U.S. will continue to safeguard our freedom through these tools of technology and personnel. We ignore the enemy to our peril. Osama bin Laden declared that the war in Iraq was World War III. Clearly, our enemy understands the seriousness of that effort even if we close our eyes and refuse to recognize the threat.

While the threats of attack from external enemies are very real, the threats from fellow citizens whose values undermine our cherished faith and moral values should be even more sobering and frightening. The outcome of the “values” vote will prove more significant than the “terror” vote. Why is that? While our faith and values remain intact, we could, if necessary, rebuild after a devastating attack—just as we did after Pearl Harbor—but without faith.

There are domestic issues that are pivotal to our future. The nation’s corporations face the challenge of dealing with the pension and health care promises made before demographic changes rendered such promises impossible. The nation faces unprecedented tax, regulation and litigation challenges. Technological changes mean changes in personnel issues and our interpretation of work-day productivity. There are issues related to health savings accounts, school choice, and personal retirement accounts. But there is nothing more problematic for America’s future than the threat of judicial activism. It is no secret how the left would handle that challenge; they promoted 22 filibusters of qualified conservative judicial nominees.

These are not hypothetical issues; instead, they are fundamental questions that will be decided at the 2006 ballot boxes.

The Role of Values Voters

The decisive issues, however, are character, marriage and morality. Regarding the question of character, the left has hammered home their mantra about the right’s “culture of corruption.” With the collusion of the media, they have benefited from the high-profile “October surprise” scandals. While the “pot” is successfully calling the “kettle” black, some values voters are turning away in disgust at all politicians and might just sit this election out.

Strengthening marriage is one of the top priorities for strengthening America. When the radical feminists, the gay lobby, and the Hollywood culture assault the family, they are destroying the foundation of a free society. Democracy cannot long survive if its citizens have not internalized the Judeo-Christian values that make freedom and liberty possible. It is the traditional family that provides the good soil in which these moral values take root.

The key moral issues of the 2006 election are lightning rod, pro-life issues, like abortion and destructive embryonic stem cell research. It takes strong character to stand for life in the face of the brutal, sophisticated campaigns of the left. In addition to the two top issues at stake, abstinence education will be undercut, the abortion drug RU-486 will be widely available, and egg harvesting will be promoted. One small indication of the power of the “pro-choice” groups is that Planned Parenthood raised more than $600,000 to fight the abortion ban in South Dakota.

The values voters are up against seemingly impossible odds. The Center for Media and Public Affairs found that the three big television networks gave 77% positive coverage to politicians from the left, but only 12% positive coverage to politicians from the right. The left is gloating because the right is disheartened and might stay home on Election Day. They are pushing toward that end relentlessly. Values voters must be the mailmen of November 7 and let nothing keep them from their appointed task! The ideal surprise package would be overwhelming victories for all the conservative issues that spell a promising future for America.

Values voters cannot afford to let the radical left’s campaigns succeed; they must remain focused on the issues and vote their concerns. “Whoever has ears to hear, let them hear.”


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