Tom Tancredo Quits GOP; Should You?

Is former Congressman Tom Tancredo setting an example for us?

By now you have all probably seen his editorial at Breitbart.com. Tom Tancredo begins:

In a panel discussion at the University of Colorado after the recent Republican debate, I was asked by a student why she should be a Republican. The question forced me to ask myself the same thing.

I gave the young woman the standard talking points–that Republicans believe in smaller government, individual rights, fiscal responsibility, and free enterprise. But as I drove home, her question–and my inability to respond with any level of real conviction–got me thinking: Does the Republican Party leadership fight for these values and principles today?

After much thought, I reluctantly concluded that the answer is “no.” The proudly socialist Democrats are full of passionate intensity, while the Republican leadership is full of pathetic excuses. After this week’s House GOP “budget deal,” which betrays nearly every promise made to grassroots conservatives since 2010, I have decided it is time to end my affiliation with the Republican Party.

This decision has been incubating over the past 17 years, years of watching the downward spiral of the Party of Lincoln and Reagan into the Party of Democrat Lite.

His reasoning for leaving the Republican Party will be familiar to most conservatives. What is most refreshing about it is he doesn’t begin with recent Republican work to advance the Obama agenda. Instead, he starts with the spending and immigration policies of George W. Bush and Karl Rove.

For most of those years after 2000, we had a Republican President and a Republican-controlled Congress, but the conservative agenda was largely ridiculed and abandoned.

I respect Tom Tancredo a lot and I respect what he has to say. But the question he doesn’t address to my satisfaction is: Is it easier to start a third party than capture or use the current Republican Party? Unless he can assure us that it will be easier to do so, I don’t think he has given us any reason to quit the GOP. The fact that the Party is run by a bunch of corruptocrats is morally outrageous, but it does not mean we should leave the Republicans.