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by
Bryan Preston

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December 10, 2012 - 12:09 pm

Isn’t it remarkable how the party that defends the right of individual self-defense consistently fails to defend itself? As things stand, Republicans in Washington are being maneuvered into supporting tax hikes that will kill their brand while also threatening the economy and our national defense. They don’t appear to recognize the danger or have any idea how to deal with it.

Isn’t it remarkable how the Democrats, who tend to cede US interests to the whims of “international tests” and the UN, advance their own interests at home with ruthlessness? At the same time, the Republicans tend to favor advancing US interests abroad, but fail to mount anything like a successful offense at home.

Also, while the Republicans had political consultants build a get-out-the-vote machine called ORCA that made its consultants rich but failed to actually get out the vote on November 6, the Democrats exploited government spoils and a tech-savvy private enterprise ally to bring a commercial product to the center of their winning strategy.

To organize millions of emails and messages through its website, the reelection campaign of President Barack Obama utilized cloud based software commonly used by businesses to manage their sales contacts. With turnout for the presidential election expected to be far lower than the historic highs of 2008, Obama for America needed to make sure its core supporters stayed engaged with the campaign.

That technology, from Salesforce.com, tracked the 5.7 million messages– as many as 80,000 per day—received by email, phone and through the campaign’s website. To sort through the messages and get questions routed to the right staffer in the campaign’s sprawling organization, the system automatically created tags from words in the inquiries—like “polling” or “contribution,” said Vivek Kundra, executive vice president for emerging markets at Saleforce.com. Kundra previously served as the first CIO of the federal government, from 2009 to 2011.

Read the rest of that piece. It turns out that Salesforce.com became the DNC’s outsourced sales force.

Republican “leaders,” to use the term very loosely, met with President Barack Obama over the weekend to discuss the fiscal cliff. There has been little reporting of the actual content of the meeting, but it may as well have resembled a typical mafia movie scene in which one side makes offers that the other cannot refuse. The Republicans, thanks largely to the debt ceiling deal they struck with Obama that opened the possibility of automatic cuts to defense and to the president’s wide interpretation of his narrow victory over moderate Mitt Romney in November, are now in the position where they are cast as defenders of tax cuts for the “rich” at the expense of tax cuts for everyone else. The Democrats under Obama decried those same broad-based tax cuts as irresponsible for years, but have done a silent switch to posture themselves for the coming economic crash and rise in unemployment in 2013, and to capture the House in the mid-term elections in 2014.

The Republicans are operating from very defensible positions on the facts. America faces a debt crisis brought on by irresponsible spending. While both parties have been guilty of over spending, the Obama Democrats have taken irresponsibility to an entirely new level. Democrats have not passed a budget at all in more than three years. The budgets that President Obama has submitted have been so ridiculous that they have attracted zero votes even in the Democrat-controlled Senate. Zero.

Republicans are on the same side that the majority of Americans claim to be on, favoring across the board spending cuts (59%, plus another 17% who somewhat favor those spending cuts) while a small minority (29%) favor the sort of tax hikes on the “rich” that President Obama supports. Right now, the Democrats’ leader in the Senate, Harry Reid, is taking a position on federal control of online gaming that just 34% of Americans support. He is promoting online gaming for the sake of Nevada special interests, at the expense of jobs and liberty outside his state. Surely there’s something for Republicans to work with in these numbers? Surely there’s something in there they can use as a basis to go on offense and force Reid and the Democrats to defend themselves?

It’s striking, really. Republicans in Washington were just returned to power in the US House and have made such inroads at the state level that three blue states — Michigan, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania — have all flipped red at the governor and legislature level. Real, conservative reforms are happening in those states, the most recent being Michigan’s passage of a right-to-work law in the state that has been a Big Labor stronghold. We have successful states like Texas to point to as the red state model, and can point to failure in the blue state model in California, Illinois and New York. But the Republicans in Washington are already caving on tax hikes on the “rich” and are on the defensive more broadly.The House Democrats are already softening Republicans up for defeat in key races in 2014, in concert with the apparently permanent creature known as the Obama campaign. Where is the Republicans’ answer? It doesn’t exist.

Obama was not re-elected in a blowout. He barely won, when traditionally incumbents increase their margins over their first victory. The evidence of his 100% showing in certain precincts strongly suggests that his win is tainted. One of the many reasons he did win was that his opponent failed to take the fight to him, define him, and force him to defend the details of his record. This left him free to create distractions and manipulate voters into believing all kinds of stupid things, from Mitt Romney being a felon and murderer to Republicans being a threat to access to birth control pills.

Rather than learn from this failure to mount a convincing defense and go on offense, Washington Republicans appear determined to repeat it.

Frankly, I’m disgusted with our “leaders.” Never mind getting them to play hardball, at this point they just need to get in the game. How about taking a swing at a tee ball, huh? Is it too much to ask that the party of self-defense and free enterprise defend itself and engage in a little free enterprise as it goes on offense?

Republicans “leaders,” for the sake of the republic and our future: It’s time to on offense, or go home.

Bryan Preston has been a leading conservative blogger and opinionator since founding his first blog in 2001. Bryan is a military veteran, worked for NASA, was a founding blogger and producer at Hot Air, was producer of the Laura Ingraham Show and, most recently before joining PJM, was Communications Director of the Republican Party of Texas.
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