"that's a shame because the Republican party have been champions of civil rights and liberty, as well as less government intervention, historically."
You've got to go pretty far back in history for that, the Republicans stopped being the champions of civil rights and liberty decades upon decades ago.
"They could have 11 million new voters registered soon, if they just let them know they stood for jobs, low taxes, less government and traditional family values"
Traditional family values is a term that's always made me smile. It sounds good but doesn't really mean anything beyond boy marries girl and then they breed (none of that boy marrying boy and girl marrying girl stuff). I know some republicans like to recall the good old days of the 50s. Of course, the family values of the 50s included (for the working class) the belief that women should stay at home and take care of the kids while dad brought home the bacon - which tied far too many women to abusive husbands because they had no real way out. And the local authorities far too often turned a blind eye to the abuse, and clergy far too often counseled women to stay with their abusive spouses. Those women who did venture into the workplace met with significant harassment and less pay for equal work. Nah, not a fan of traditional family values!
As far as the rest, neither party stands for jobs, not in any meaningful way. Both parties sold out long ago - both support laws and regulations designed to continue the transfer of wealth to an ever smaller group of people. It's been going on for quite some time, regardless of which party held the reigns.
In my opinion, almost all of our politicians are clowns these days, on both sides of the aisle. Of course, the republicans have some of the more publicly ignorant clowns - the Gohmerts, the Bachmanns the Palins and the Cruzes exhibit the worst aspects of human nature - and they relish doing it for the cameras!
Oh well, you're a Constitutional Conservative, I'm just a cynic. :-) I have no doubt that when I make it back out to Oregon one of these days we'll enjoy a hike together.
Hope your son is well and is home soon.