Andrew Sullivan in his blog, The Daily Dish:
You can hold certain principles inviolate and yet also be prepared to back politicians or administrations that violate them because it's better than the actual alternatives at hand. I also understand the emotional need to have a default party position, other things being equal. But there has to come a point at which a movement or party so abandons core principles or degenerates into such a rhetorical septic system that you have to take a stand. It seems to me that now is a critical time for more people whose principles lie broadly on the center-right to do so – against the conservative degeneracy in front of us.
He later goes on to say:
I cannot support a movement that claims to believe in limited government but backed an unlimited domestic and foreign policy presidency that assumed illegal, extra-constitutional dictatorial powers until forced by the system to return to the rule of law.
I cannot support a movement that exploded spending and borrowing and blames its successor for the debt.
I cannot support a movement that so abandoned government's minimal and vital role to police markets and address natural disasters that it gave us Katrina and the financial meltdown of 2008.
I cannot support a movement that holds torture as a core value.
I cannot support a movement that holds that purely religious doctrine should govern civil political decisions and that uses the sacredness of religious faith for the pursuit of worldly power.
I cannot support a movement that is deeply homophobic, cynically deploys fear of homosexuals to win votes, and gives off such a racist vibe that its share of the minority vote remains pitiful.
I cannot support a movement which has no real respect for the institutions of government and is prepared to use any tactic and any means to fight political warfare rather than conduct a political conversation.
I cannot support a movement that sees permanent war as compatible with liberal democratic norms and limited government.
I cannot support a movement that criminalizes private behavior in the war on drugs.
I cannot support a movement that would back a vice-presidential candidate manifestly unqualified and duplicitous because of identity politics and electoral cynicism.
I cannot support a movement that regards gay people as threats to their own families.
I cannot support a movement that does not accept evolution as a fact.
I cannot support a movement that sees climate change as a hoax and offers domestic oil exploration as the core plank of an energy policy.
I cannot support a movement that refuses ever to raise taxes, while proposing no meaningful reductions in government spending.
I cannot support a movement that refuses to distance itself from a demagogue like Rush Limbaugh or a nutjob like Glenn Beck.
I cannot support a movement that believes that the United States should be the sole global power, should sustain a permanent war machine to police the entire planet, and sees violence as the core tool for international relations.
Does this make me a “radical leftist” as Michelle Malkin would say? Emphatically not. But it sure disqualifies me from the current American right.
To paraphrase Reagan, I didn't leave the conservative movement. It left me.
And increasingly, I'm not alone.