© 2023 St. Louis Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Schlafly says conservatives should adopt Obama's methods

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, June 4, 2009 - For all the conservatives' concerns about the direction of the country under former President George W. Bush, the Republican's approach was preferred to that of the new Democrat in the White House, Barack Obama.

So says, Eagle Forum founder Phyllis Schlafly, Ladue, who told fellow conservatives Thursday morning that they need to make do with the best political system available. And for the moment, that is the Republican Party. "We have to have to recognize that there is no way to achieve our goals except through the vehicle of the Republican Party."

But that means, she said, that fellow social conservatives "must retake control" of the GOP. Schlafly contended, during a panel discussion before about 130 people, that the lack of conservative influence was the key reason Republicans candidates lost elections in 2006 and last fall. The result has put Democrats in control of the U.S. House and Senate and the presidency.

State Rep. Jim Lembke, R-Lemay, was among those in the audience who agreed. He said that the Constitution Party, the favorite of some social conservatives, is not a realistic option, he said. "We are a two-party state and nation. If we try to create a new party, we're talking about something that would take decdaes."

Schlafly was among five conservative activists from around the country who participated in a panel discussion on political issues. Eagle Forum has offices in Alton and Clayton.

All the panelists, including Schlafly, lamented the direction the country is going under Obama. However, Schlafly was particularly passionate on the importance of Republican and other critics to adopt methods he used to win election. "Hold a house meeting for some of your friends and neighbors," she said, and become comfortable with using the internet in developing blogs and using social network sites such as Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.

"Now these same methods are being used to spread Obama's message ... 'spread the wealth around'," Schlafly said. She and other speakers accused the president of spreading socialism.

"The only hope for conservatives is to adopt their successful methods to spread our messages," she said.

Jo Mannies has been covering Missouri politics and government for almost four decades, much of that time as a reporter and columnist at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. She was the first woman to cover St. Louis City Hall, was the newspaper’s second woman sportswriter in its history, and spent four years in the Post-Dispatch Washington Bureau. She joined the St. Louis Beacon in 2009. She has won several local, regional and national awards, and has covered every president since Jimmy Carter. She scared fellow first-graders in the late 1950s when she showed them how close Alaska was to Russia and met Richard M. Nixon when she was in high school. She graduated from Valparaiso University in northwest Indiana, and was the daughter of a high school basketball coach. She is married and has two grown children, both lawyers. She’s a history and movie buff, cultivates a massive flower garden, and bakes banana bread regularly for her colleagues.