Bob Inglis is the type of conservative you wished the Republican party had a few more of within their ranks. He’s the type of rare conservative who makes the term ‘reasonable Republican’ appear to be a little less of an oxymoron and more of a possibility.
Bob Inglis served six term in the U.S. House of Representatives as a member from South Carolina before finding himself a casualty of the Tea Party train wreck in the 2010 midterms. In the run-off for that year’s Republican primary, Inglis got decimated by the Tea Party favorite in a 71-29 percent landslide. Despite posting a solid conservative record in his 12 years in Congress, it was determined that Inglis had crossed party lines once too many times – a definite no-no for a political party where simply having one of their members agree with a liberal on the time of day is enough to demand that the person be drawn and quartered.
Inglis’ had committed the unforgivable sins of voting for the TARP bailouts in 2008 as well as siding with Dems in opposing the Iraqi troop surge in 2007. He was also one of only 7 Republicans to side with Democrats in voting to disapprove fellow SC Rep. Joe Wilson for yelling out “liar” during President Obama’s 2009 address to Congress. Obviously, Bob Inglis had made the decision to maintain his right to think for himself over any attempt to pursue pure partisan politics.
And despite Inglis’ willingness to compromise and side with Dems on a few, specific issues, he still maintained a “93.5% lifetime rating from the American Conservative Union and his endorsements from the National Rifle Association and National Right to Life.” But alas, it was not enough to save Inglis from the Tea Party Inquisition, especially in light of the fact that Inglis was determined to hold on to the one belief which makes all teabaggers, wingnuts and Fox News personalities cringe in horror and uncontrollable rage. The very conservative Bob Inglis, a 12 year member of Congress, had the audacity to…(gulp!)…to…to…believe in science!!!
Bob Inglis, when given a choice between staying true to his innate intelligence or siding with the mentally deficient crazies who now controlled his party, opted for the former. In the end, he was mocked for it and it was a factor in his loss of position within the Republican party.
One year later, Inglis has not given up in trying to educate his fellow Republicans and conservatives. Here’s an excerpt from a piece Inglis wrote in Bloomberg on Monday.
The National Academy of Sciences says, “Climate change is occurring, is caused largely by human activities, and poses significant risks.” Several recent studies have found that 95 percent of climate scientists are convinced that the planet is rapidly warming as a result of human activity. But a George Mason University-Yale University poll in May found that only 13 percent of the public realizes that scientists have come to that conclusion.
You would expect conservatives to stand with 95 percent of the scientific community and to grow the 13 percent into a working majority. Normally, we deal in facts, we accept science and we counter sentiment…
OK, there’s some BS in the above. No, conservatives do not, for the most part, deal in facts. It’s simply not something these people do well. It might be a genetic defect, I don’t know, but if you need better convincing, tune in to the next Republican primary debate for a true example of what a lie-fest is all about. It’s a sight to behold.
But that aside, Inglis’ message to conservatives is clear and intelligent. He’s asking them to wake up and return from their decades long journey into the nether regions of insanity – a journey which has gotten a little more unreal with each passing day…
Alright, alright, maybe he’s not saying all of that, but Inglis has issued a warning to conservatives. Here were his parting words to his party after his 2010 loss at the hands of a Tea Party candidate.
“It’s a dangerous strategy, to build conservatism on information and policies that are not credible.”
It certainly is but unfortunately for Inglis, his Republican party and, I imagine, an entire nation, his fellow conservatives are just not listening.