Scottie Hughes: What the GOP Can Learn from Phil Robertson

phil_robertson_duck_dynastyThe support for Phil Robertson over the past week since his indefinite suspension from Duck Dynasty has been record breaking.

With the numerous social media pages like “Boycott A&E Until Phil Robertson Is Put Back on Duck Dynasty” boasting more then 1.7 million likes and petitions like “PleaseSupportPhil.com“boasting more than 35,000 signatures, this single issue alone has been able to create a call to action that only a few social movements in history could ever boast accomplishing.

A call to action, which erupted almost immediately upon the announcement of Phil’s suspension, only continues to build in momentum. The kind of reaction that almost every person who’s ever run for office could only dream of.  Yet, the number one demographic who has responded to this issue is the one group who is consistently ignored by the political party the majority of the protestors belong to. 

Should we put the blame on the GOP who, by trying to target different demographic groups over the past few election cycles, has made their base so disenfranchised that they are not motivated to rise up and show the same passion and numbers for a candidate?

There are more than 46 million Christian faith driven citizens today and yet in the 2012 Presidential Election, very little emphasis was put on the faith vote.  This might be one of the top reasons why in traditional red states like Indiana, who saw a 6% decrease in the Evangelical vote from 2008 and Kansas who saw a 7% drop in the Evangelical vote since 2004,, the faith voter is choosing to not show up on election day.   In the end it looks like the Christian vote made up ¼ of the 2012 election and yet when the dust had settled, the GOP immediately started talking about how they were going to target traditionally left leaning demographics like minorities while almost completely ignoring the easiest group to recruit.   Not only did key GOP leadership ignore the faith voters’ potential, in many cases they blamed them for the loss because of their decision to stay home.

Yet, with only 1out of 5 Christians registered to vote, is it fair to put all of the blame on the GOP for not recognizing the power of this demographic or should we look to the faithful themselves?

If anything, the past week has shown the ability of this demographic to demand attention, encourage action, and, with the recent reversal of Cracker Barrel on its decision to remove any products related to Phil Robertson, accomplish action.  Yet, while we can be motivated to write emails to corporate offices, proudly post pictures of ourselves on social media in camouflage or stand hours in line for a chicken sandwich, rarely do we ever find ourselves publically displaying this amount of passion towards putting folks in office who will help change the laws which are creating the type of hypocritical politically correct environment we are living in. 

So who’s to blame; The GOP or the Faith Voter?  Easy –BOTH.

While the Republican Party should still be trying to recruit a wide variety of demographics in the 2014 & 2016 election cycle, I believe more importantly they should be spending their efforts motivating those within the Christian faith to register to vote, get involved in the election process and most importantly show up on election day for our candidates.  Not only does this have the most potential, but it is the easiest of all demographics for the Republican Party to motivate.  Just like the GOP is trying to recruit candidates who appeal to the different minority classes, they need to recruit candidates who appeal to the faith voter as well and are honest and not afraid to stand up for their Judeo-Christian beliefs.  These candidates will not be afraid to stand up and fight for legislation that reflects the laws as given to us by the Bible and will not back down in the name of being tolerant.

On the flip side, because of the Chick Fil A demonstration in 2012 and now the reaction to Duck Dynasty, those of faith have NO EXCUSE to sit at home and let this country continue down the path towards the eradication of God.

For too long, we have sat in our pews and been nice as our elected officials have been allowed to chip away at our country’s Christian foundation.  We have allowed our children’s education to be usurped by the Canninites of Common Core, our tax system to be corrupted as if it were being governed by the Romans, and our homes to be controlled as if we resided in ancient Egypt.

In each of those cases, the people of God were called to action and, in each case, they were victorious.

The GOP will not listen to us unless we make them.  They will continue to ignore our voice and more importantly our vote unless we demonstrate that they cannot win without our involvement.  In that same token, the Christians need to get out of the comfort zone of their safe sanctuary and start speaking out when it comes to controversial issues and holding the elected accountable for each vote they make.  

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