Bench Memos

Re: Re: The WSJ Gets It Wrong

Hadley Arkes writes that there may be circumstances in which Republicans should support candidates who do not agree with the party’s views on many important issues. He has in mind especially abortion. He continues, “But those are decisions we make in prudence.  They should not spill over into affecting our understanding of what constitutes the commitments in principle that mark the character of the party.” The distinction makes sense. But the resolution being debated bars party funds from going to any candidate who agrees with fewer than eight out of ten listed principles. The resolution excludes the possibility of making prudential judgments in favor of supporting some such candidates, and that exclusion is imprudent.

Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.