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The Conservative Chameleon

10/26/2012 10:49 am ET | Updated Dec 26, 2012

The debates are over. The campaign now enters the home stretch and in two weeks we will know whether President Obama is successful in securing a chance to finish the job he started four years ago. It has become painfully clear that such a prospect will send many folks into a severe state of apoplexy, and will drive even the most devout evangelical Christian to question the wisdom if not the existence of the Almighty.

The latest incarnation of Mitt Romney, a peace-loving, accommodating, caring and compassionate capitalist who once crowed that he was more liberal than Ted Kennedy on gay rights, and pushed through the Massachusetts legislature the most far-reaching attempt at universal access to health care in the nation, a template for Obamacare, by all rights should shake the Tea Party patriots to their very core.

Has the moderate Mitt risen from the grave and been resurrected during the waning days and hours of the campaign? Has he had an epiphany? Has he awakened from his long slumber? Has he finally broken free from the shackles of a neoconservative straightjacket? Or is this merely a cynical political ploy to thoroughly confuse so-called low information voters into believing that he is actually capable of taking the reins of the most powerful nation on Earth?

Let me make it abundantly clear, I do not believe that he is either temperamentally or intellectually prepared for the job. But should the unthinkable happen, I think that the last laugh may actually be on the far-right wingnuts who have sold their collective soul to the devil, a Faustian bargain that posits that anyone but Obama is worth prostituting one's principles for.

Of course, what really matters to these self-indulgent, self-absorbed, and self-selected saviors of the American dream is the preservation not of principles but of principal. Mitt has taken so many positions on so many issues that it is difficult if not impossible to discern where he will actually settle on some of the issues that top the conservative agenda. Conservatives ought to be careful what they wish for, they may get it. And with Mitt what they may get might be far more than they bargained for, and remember who they bargained with.

Conservatives might do well to remember a history lesson from 1994, when Newt Gingrich and his 'Contract with America' swept into control of Congress. Newt was a fiery backbencher and a bomb thrower of the first order. However, in the governing arena he flamed out quickly, leading the way for Bill Clinton to assume the mantle of fiscal stewardship that enhances his stature as each day passes.

Think long and hard about this, my conservative druggies, which Mitt do you think you will get? The moderate Mitt from Massachusetts or the converted champion of conservatism who will sell you whatever it is you think you are buying? These are heady questions indeed, with no clear indication of what on Earth the answers might be. It is a hell of a gamble on your part, one fraught with intrigue, uncertainty, and mystery.

This is an appeal to Tea Party patriots on principle: your short-term gamble may actually result in your ultimate demise. If you are a cynic, it does not matter. If you truly believe in your professed passion for the greater cause, does it not create at least an inkling of doubt that you may have created Obama in Republican form? Did you pay attention to the debate this week, or does it just not matter? Does it bother you that there was hardly any disagreement between the two candidates on substantive matters? If you are exercising your right to choose party over principle, partisanship over priorities, then it truly does not matter. But for those who have reluctantly gone along for the ride because they were left with no other choice, you might want to rethink your long-term strategic goals here.

And what if you vote for him anyway and he still loses? Does that not invalidate your willingness to surrender even further?

Too often both liberals and conservatives have been confounded by the limited selection between twiddle-dee and twiddle-dum candidates that offer not a stark contrast but rather a duality of conformity that arouses little passion or hope for real change. Mitt appeared to offer conservatives a break from that eventuality at one point in his six-year quest for the presidency, but now he has come full circle to what he actually believes in; namely, a moderation and pragmatism with respect to social issues that reflects what the overwhelming majority of people actually accept.

To the current conservative movement, with Tea Party standard bearers leading the way, this must be a palpable heartbreak that will neither further your movement or change the course of the country, and by aiding and abetting such a circumstance you have substantially aggravated the problems that you so ardently believe need to be rectified.

So my advice to all conservatives who care is to rebuke moderate Mitt, withdraw your support, make a statement on November 6 by refusing to support this treacherous decline into depravity. Take a stand, show your true colors, show your patriotism, and teach your kids a lesson on the meaning of principle, integrity, and valor by sitting this one out. Otherwise, the joke will be on you. Don't let moderate Mitt tread on you, show the world that you are truly a power to be reckoned with. Make your family proud. Don't vote.