Of RINOS And Real Conservatives

President Barack Obama yesterday praised Maine Sen. Olympia Snowe for voting for the Healthcare billl in committee.  According to Obama, his healthcare bill now has bi-partisan support.

But wait!  Sen. Snowe is a RINO, a Republican in Name ONLY.  This is the same senator who was elected in 1994  when the Republicans swept both houses of Congress.  Little thanks did she have for the Republican agenda.  She preceded to vote against the resolution that would have sent Impeached and failed President Bill Clinton packing.  After that “victory” Clinton invited Snowe to the White House for an “After the Impeachment” Victory Party.

Snowe is not the first Maine senator out of step with the times.  In the 1950’s Maine had a notable GOP Senator in Margaret Chase Smith.   Chase Smith has the distinction of being the first woman whose name was put up for nomination for president of the United State.  That was the year that the Republicans embraced Arizona Senator Barry Goldwater for president.

Chase Smith is also the author of the little known Declaration of Conscience in June 1, 1950.  Her declaration was a reaction to the Red Scare.   One of the leaders in Congress was her fellow senator Joseph McCarthy.

Chase Smith unveiled her Declaration of Conscience on the floor of the Senate.  It declared:

  • The right to criticize;
  • The right to hold an unpopular belief;
  • The right to protest;
  • The right to independent thought.

Her Declaration was debated for a while, but her timing was terrible.  Only 24 days later, the North Korean Army launched an invasion across the 38th parallel and started the Korean War.  No one cared about the Chase Smith’s epistle after that.

Chase Smith’s seat eventually went over to Maine’s other senator Susan Collins.   She, incidentally,  is the other RINO in the senate.

The Real conservative of that era and of all eras remains Goldwater.   What would he say today?