[guest post by Dana]
As the GOP is currently considering holding its 2016 convention in Las Vegas, the religious right faction of the party is concerned about the party’s image being tarnished. After all, they don’t call it Sin City for nothin’.
What if the Christian delegates display an inability to exercise self-control when exposed to prostitution, strip clubs, and various other temptations? It could result in the MSM taking advantage of the opportunity to smear the party – including video manipulations, innuendo, and out-of-context reporting. However, shouldn’t we be far more concerned about our elected officials’ inability to exercise self control while in office, rather than John and Jane Delegate living it up for a few days? After all, Family Values!
Here are a few excerpts from social-conservative leaders’ letter to Republican Party Chairman Reince Preibus citing concerns about Las Vegas potentially hosting the 2016 GOP convention:
“In spite of ‘family-friendly’ outreach in the past decade, Las Vegas remains a metaphor for all things decadent. And looking at the yellow pages, one can see that it still delivers. With 64 pages of escort services and countless gambling casinos, it remains a trap waiting to ensnare.”
“At a time when the base needs to be motivated, this is no time to mute or offend them in any way. It may seem strange, silly even to some that conservatives would object to something that COULD be so innocuous. Surely there are shows and great restaurants and beautiful hotels. … What could possible go wrong? The answer is obvious, and wisdom dictates the chance not be taken.”
“There are several wonderful venues being considered. We are not advocating for any of them. But we urge you to reject Las Vegas and celebrate the vibrancy and strength of the Republican Party in a place not at odds with its values.”
The other concern is the possible appearance of the GOP cosying up to billionaire casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, who donated nearly $100 million to GOP candidates and causes in 2012. After all, a suggested obeisance to one of the party’s biggest donors would be a dream come true for Harry Reid. Oh. Wait. Harry Reid and his side don’t care if it’s real, perceived, or flat out made up – they will smear no matter what.
From Red State,
It is embarrassing. A party that is trying to show it represents Main Street, not Wall Street, and the middle class, not the American aristocracy, should not put itself in a position where all the news stories suggest they want a convention in Vegas to placate a donor.
What a conundrum. How awful it would be if there was a perception that the GOP showed favor toward a big donor, or if some adult participants took Sin City literally. Because neither of these things has ever happened before, right?
If the GOP is so at odds over where to hold their convention, one doesn’t have much hope that they will be any less at odds over the more pressing issues that divide the party and have a direct impact on voters: budget, economy, jobs, massive debt, Obamacare, foreign policy, and government reform. And, if the GOP is so concerned with the optics of Las Vegas and the possible bad behavior of adults, they might be smart to first consider the optics of patronizing and infantilizing party members – especially in light of the more serious conflicts the party currently wrestles with.
“Ooh, Las Vegas, every time I hit your crystal city, I know you’re gonna make a wreck out of me.”
UPDATE BY PATTERICO: Excellent post. I would like to chime in with this apropos musical reference: