There are times when making a tough call is a natural choice, which is what ALGOP Chair Terry Lathan and the Alabama Republican Party Executive Committee did by not certifying Jim Bonner as a candidate for PSC Place 1.
Last night, the committee voted to reject a flawed candidate whose race-baiting, anti-semitic, misogynistic social media posts were destined to make Alabama the butt of late-night comedy and a pariah among decent conservatives across the nation.
More importantly, Lathan and the committee demonstrated the kind of courage once valued by all Republicans who drew their inspiration from the consistent moral character lived by President Ronald Reagan.
A leading historian of American conservatism, Lee Edwards, once wrote of Reagan, “The best political leaders embody the classical virtues of courage, prudence, justice, and wisdom. President Ronald Reagan had all these qualities and in abundance.”
In their vote Thursday night, Alabama’s Republican Party leadership showed they too not only had courage, they would also exercise prudence, justice and wisdom.
It wasn’t just that Bonner lacked a sense of decency, he also repeatedly failed to honor even the most basic function required from every law-abiding citizen. He refused to pay his income taxes, scoffed at court-ordered alimony and bankruptcy payments while lending himself money to run for public office. It appears he may have also violated Alabama campaign finance laws, which even now are reportedly under investigation.
Lathan and the members of the Republican Party Executive Committee are to be applauded for banding together to make clear for all to see that true conservatives still wear the mantle of truth, integrity and an unwavering commitment to do what is right instead of what is convenient.
In her public statement after the vote, Lathan said, “When our state party chooses to take these steps, it is a serious and rare occurrence. We strongly believe that this is one of those solemn moments. This vote was carefully considered and was not taken lightly.”
They made a tough choice because it was right, not because it was easy. As President Reagan said, “The future doesn’t belong to the fainthearted; it belongs to the brave.”