The religious right may or may not be moribund, but so far as I can see, there’s little sign that the Republican Party is interested in doing any other than returning to the glory days of the old alliance of small government conservatism with a dollop of family values disengaged from any responsibility as the party in power–make that 1993-94. In Washington, the defection of most House Republicans from the housing bill harks back to those days. And here’s a piece of the press release from the Arkansas Republican Party on the occasion of its convention.
Among reaffirming the Republican Party of Arkansas’ support of pro-life legislation, protection of the 2nd Amendment, lowering taxes, and protection of private property rights, convention delegates considered and affirmed the following changes to the to the 2008 RPA Party Platform: support of a super majority requirement to raise taxes, eliminating the remainder of the sales tax on groceries, greater restrictions on the use of general improvement funds, an increase in the exemption on retirement income from state income tax, reformation of the Grand Jury system that allows voters to petition the Circuit Courts for convening a grand jury, and permitting the Arkansas State Police to be trained in immigration enforcement practices allowed under current Federal law.
Mike Huckabee, the most famous Republican ex-governor of the state was a featured speaker. But no sign of the unorthodox features of his term in that office that once seemed to make him a harbinger of a new Republicanism.