Mitch Daniels: Social Issues Aren’t Crucial
Back in June, Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels made waves in the conservative movement with his call for a truce on social issues, a call that was immediately denounced by many of his fellow social conservatives. With a new legislative session set to begin in January in Indianapolis, Daniels has spoken again on the topic and his words are likely to anger social conservatives again:
As long as it doesn’t get in the way of the really crucial (objectives) — keeping Indiana in the black, improving our economy and bringing big reform to things like education. As long as it doesn’t get in the way of that, there’s plenty of time and capacity [for crafting socially-conservative legislation],” Daniels said.
Daniels also said the moratorium plea was never really aimed at the state Legislature, but Congress.
“I was answering questions about the nation’s situation, which I think is very grave in terms of our economic and financial future.
I said the priorities ought to be there,” Daniels said.
While the local reporter that Daniels spoke to characterized this as Daniels backing away from his moratorium, I agree with Christian Heinze that Daniels is actually doubling down with these words:
So did he back down on the truce? Not really.
Even though it betrays personal preference, it doesn’t alter professional priority, which remains centered on education reform and his fiscal agenda.
Especially on the national level. Daniels not only supports a truce, but he’s now told his fellow social conservatives that their issues aren’t crucial to him. I think there just might a national constituency for that message.