Whither Social Conservatism?

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We’ll have to see if there is any significance to Focus on Family laying off 18 percent of its workforce beyond the state of the economy. CW holds that social movement organizations like Focus have an easier time raising money when their guys are out of power. The most one can say is that Dobson isn’t betting on it. Meanwhile, the chair apparent of the Ohio Republican Party, Kevin DeWine, has created something of a firestorm by suggesting that his party needs to dial back on the social issues if it wants to recover its state and national footing.
Two days after the election, DeWine said, “We have to exchange a fiscal message and an economic message in for the social message that has dominated the messaging of this party for the past decade.” This drew howls of protest from social conservative leaders who not long ago were the ascendant power in the state GOP. DeWine tried to calm the waters a bit, in which effort he was not exactly joined by the party’s outgoing chair, who today blasted DeWine’s chief critic for her “divisive and destructive behavior.” Stay tuned.
How likely is this debate to be engaged in other state Republican parties? I’m not in a position to say exactly. But it’s at that level, and not among the national yakkers, that the contest for the future of the GOP will be joined in earnest. The internal pushback against social conservatism will come, I expect, in those states where the fire and brimstone ended up burning the perpetrators. That happened in Ohio. Where else?