The Republican Party deserved to lose! That right “¦ I said it. It deserved what it got on election night. They were swept into office a dozen years ago on a reformist/smaller government agenda “¦ and delivered within the first hundred days of office on most of the Contact with America and a few years later passed common sense Welfare Reform but that was over 10 years ago. 10 years! And a lot has changed since then.
Consider these results from an OnMessage Inc. Poll in 12 swing GOP held congressional seats. Remember “¦. These are GOP help seats that either Cook or Rothenberg listed as a toss up”¦ President Bush won these 12 CD’s by an average of 53% to 47% in 2004 “¦ and no “¦ I repeat NO “¦ these results are no typographic errors.
When asked which party they believed would cut taxes for the middle-class 42% said the Democrats while only 29% chose the Republicans.
When asked which Parry will work towards reducing the deficit 47% chose the Democrats while only 22% chose the Republicans.
Again, when asked who will keep government spending under control the Democrats held a 17 point edge (38% Democrats, 21% Republicans).
While it might be hard for us conservatives to conceive of Democrats as the party of frugality, but honestly, Republicans with their free spending ways have given voters no other choice. In recent years, the Republican majority voted to expand the federal government’s role in education by nearly 100% and created the largest new entitlement in 40 years. While also pursing domestic spending polities that created record defitics, national debt brough on by a rapidly expanding government and earmarking sending that has embarassed conservative voters and caused many swing voters to question the commitment of the Grand Old Party to fiscal responsiblity.
This is not to say that every Republican who lost deserved it. I am especially sad “¦ to see so many great local candidates lose in the national tital wave. No matter how hard they worked … how many calls and doors they knocked on … they just could overcome the problems then inheritated. To those candidates … look yourself in the mirror and tell yourself .. “it’s not my fault. I couldn’t have done anymore. I ran a terrific campaign, and I’m working to make a difference because I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and, doggonit, people like me. ”
But as a party, the Republicans needed to take this opportunity (and an opportunity is EXACTLY what this is) and wake up and return to it roots. And I am pleased to say that fiscal conservative leaders are stepping up to the plate again. On the day after the election, Congressman Mike Pence (R-IN) formally announced his campaign for Republican Leader in the US House of Representatives. In a letter to his colleagues, Pence explained his platform and the reasons for new leadership “¦
“I am running for Republican leader because we didn’t just lose our majority, I believe we lost out way “¦”
“Our opponents will say that the American people rejected our Republican vision. I say the American people didn’t quit on the Contact with America, we did. And in so doing, we severed the bonds of trust between our party and millions of our most ardent supporters “¦ “
Little tear begins to form … preach on!
“Only by making a dramatic turn in the direction of the agenda of the Republican Revolution can we hope to attain majority status again “¦ We must embrace the notion the Republicans seen power not simply to govern but to change government . We are the agents of change and we must return to that reformist vision “¦”
Can I get a witness?
“I believe we must confront this moment with new leadership and new voices. We must take a page for the playbook of President Ronald Regan who taught us that it is not enough to believe in great things, we must effectively communicate great things to the American people “¦”
Now is the time to rebuild and remold … and more importantly … to return to the fundamental reformist bonds that the voters gave the Republicans in 1994. A bond that they willingly squandered.
I’ll simple end with a quote from the Human Events endorsement of Congressman Pence …
Speaker Hastert did the right thing today by stepping aside. But if Republicans in the House simply elevate the other members currently in the leadership””go back to business as usual””the party may find itself mired in the minority for years to come. Conservative activists need to speak out now to make certain this doesn’t happen. They need to say: No to the old leaders. No to business as usual. Yes to Mike Pence.
And rather than restate the obvious … here was my post in the spring supporting Representative John Shadegg for Majority Leader (a post that free spending John Boehner eventually won). Congressman Shadegg is now running for minority whip and should have the support of fiscal conservatives thoughout the country.
To quote my post …
“I can’t tell you when it began precisely “¦ but the Republican Party has been ideologically adrift for too long and will shipwreck in the up coming midterm election if the course isn’t corrected immediately!”
“As we have already discussed, this current nominally conservative, fat and happy, party leadership is responsible for a huge expansion of government and letting spending get out of control. If we do not make a clear, public break with the recent past, there is a good chance we will lose our majority.”
Sadly, Oregon has one lone Republican in its House delegation. Call (202) 225-6730) or write Congressman Walden today and tell him … that Oregonian’s support Reagan Republicans like Mike Pence for Leader and John Shadegg for Whip!