The "lessons" from Tuesday's votes | Eastern North Carolina Now | Leftists want you to believe that the results show America loves Barry Obama. The media wants you to believe The Tea Party was soundly rejected. What was the real takeaway from Tuesday?

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    Publisher's note: Brant Clifton relates the reality of grassroots conservatism in his "bare knuckles" Conservative online publication known as The Daily Haymaker.

    Leftists want you to believe that the results show America loves Barry Obama. The media wants you to believe The Tea Party was soundly rejected. What was the real takeaway from Tuesday?

    Voters need to understand there is a real choice. The mainstream media is telling us that "pragmatism is in, ideology and rigidity are out." Really? Is that what happened in 2010 and 2012? We just wanted to give John Boehner and Thom Tillis a turn at being speaker? Principles didn't matter?

    In New Jersey, Chris Christie ran away from the GOP platform as fast as his pudgy legs could carry him. He turned the whole thing into a personal popularity contest reminiscent of a high school student council race. *Vote for me. Don't worry about the (R) next to my name. It's just a formality.*

    Is New Jersey prime for conservative reforms? Nope. It's stll outrageously expensive to live there. The flood of people coming here from New Jersey hasn't slowed in the last four years of the Christie era, and probably won't over the next four.

    In Virginia, you had a case where the establishment picked up their marbles and went home. There was a knock-down-drag-out primary fight between Ken Cucinelli and an establishment candidate. We conservatives are always lectured about how we need to suck it up and vote for guys like McCain and Romney. But the establishment folks - when their guy doesn't make the cut - totally dismiss that advice. It's come out now that operatives close to US House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va) were aiding McCauliffe, the Democrat. It's also come out that the RNC dropped Cuccinelli like a hot potato on October 1.

    It has also come to light that a top Obama bundler FROM TEXAS was the chief financier of the Libertarian candidate in the Virginia governor's race. Cucinelli and the libertarian combined for 53 percent of the total vote against the 47 percent for the victor McCauliffe.

    From Virginia, the real lesson to take away is THIS: We conservatives can fight tooth-and-nail to elevate the GOP power, but - once on top - the establishment will return the favor by shoving a knife in our backs and twisting it.

    In North Carolina, we are seeing another example of what you get with ideologically-flexible candidates. When there are no principles being touted, elections turn into high school popularity contests or American Idol votes. Look at Pat McCrory. He had to be dragged kicking and screaming to fighting ObamaCare. Pat likes Common Core. He watered down tax reform.

    In the 2012 elections, It was ALL ABOUT PAT. He had no coattails, and made no apparent effort to aid council of state candidates - most of whom were significantly more conservative than himself. Dan Forest managed to survive by the hair of his chinny-chin-chin.

    Ol' Pat and the NCGOP crowd told us how important it was to get former city council member Ed Peacock elected mayor of Charlotte. Peacock was one of the more liberal members of the city council in the Queen City. He proudly sought the endorsements of the gay lobby, and regularly voted with Democrats to grow government. In his ill-fated run for Congress in 2012, his web site bragged about his pride in not being a conservative. No real case was made for elevating Peacock to the mayor's office - way too much ME TOO -ism - and he got beat.

    People are touting the victory of Republican Nat Robertson in the Fayetteville mayoral race. He will be the first GOP mayor since 1975. Robertson barely beat his Democrat opponent - a race baiting black female city council member. During the campaign, Robertson spent a lot of time talking about how he planned to basically hamstring the police department as they go about trying to get a handle on Fayetteville's exploding crime rate. Meanwhile, military families and middle-class civilian familes continue to slip out of town and resettle in neighboring Moore and Harnett counties.

    If the establishment is going to return the argument to one simply of replacing the (D)s with (R)s, we're going to go back to the wilderness years for the GOP. If you're saddled with one band of corrupt, big government fans, why bother switching them out for a new basically-identical set?

    Pat McCrory, Thom Tillis and the rest of the crew in Raleigh won because of the conservative reputation established for the party by the likes of Barry Goldwater, Ronald Reagan and Jesse Helms. Portraying yourself to voters as following in the footsteps of those great men, while gleefully partaking in the orgy of budget-busting, graft, and money-wasting that IS government these days, is dishonest - to say the least.
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