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Rhoads: Who Killed The 11th Commandment?



Three 1967 College Republicans, including originator of the now-defunct 11th Commandment

By Mark Rhoads - 

The "Eleventh Commandment" was a phrase used by President Ronald Reagan during his 1966 primary campaign for Governor of California. The commandment was "Thou Shalt Not Speak Ill of a Fellow Republican," and it was invented by California Republican Party Chairman Dr. Gaylord Parkinson on Sept. 25, 1965.

As governor, Reagan continued the 11th Commandment as official policy for the state party and he often preached the virtues of the commandment during his years as president.

The picture above right shows Dr. Parkinson at left with Paul Caprio of Family-PAC (center) and me (right) when we were College Republicans in 1967.

Dr. Parkinson was widely admired among national GOP leaders for many reasons, including the 11th Commandment.

I don't know exactly who killed the 11th Commandment or when, but I do think that Parkinson and Reagan would be horrified at the personal insults in the crossfire among GOP presidential candidates this year.

The childish name-calling is unworthy of adults, let alone aspirants for the highest office in the Free World. 


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  1. Face it, Mark, some damned poor examples who call themselves “Republicans” but don’t follow GOP ideals have gotten themselves elected in recent years.
    If WE don’t set the record straight on these turncoats, WHO WILL?
    Certainly not the Democrats!

  2. Oddly enough your comment did not break the 11th Commandment because you did not name any specific name. But Parkinson’s 11th Commandment in 1964 was also a reaction to the liberal pile up on Sen. Barry Goldwater in the 1964 primaries when Gov. Nelson Rockefeller of New York and Gov. William Scranton of Pennsylvania made extremely critical comments about Goldwater that were then used in commercials by LBJ against Goldwater in the fall.

  3. Rockefeller and Scranton were two examples of the problems within the GOP we still face today.
    Now we would call them “East Coast Establishment Republicans,” but the term didn’t exist at that time, although that type has survived to this day.
    Didn’t Rockefeller die in bed with his mistress?
    What a FINE example for today’s Establishment Republicans to emulate!