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by
Rick Moran

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June 11, 2014 - 3:09 pm
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Let’s face it. It’s tough being in the minority. Any ideas they have for improving the lives of Americans, or improving the performance of government, or improving the economy are ignored by the majority. “I won,” President Obama told Republicans a few days after he took office as they sought to have some input into the developing stimulus package.

And that’s the way it’s been since then. During the debate over Obamacare, the president and Democrats continuously told the lie that his plan had to be passed because the Republicans had no ideas of their own. Not only were there a dozen substitute health insurance reform bills offered by various Republicans, there was the only real attempt at bipartisan reform in the Wyden-Bennett Act. From there, GOP complaints about elements in the Dodd-Frank financial reform bill were brushed aside as were Republican ideas on taxes, the budget, and the deficit.

In short, any attempt at implementing Republican ideas has been thoroughly and completely scuttled by the Democrats. They might have argued that these are bad ideas, or that we disagree with these ideas, but that wasn’t the way it went. Instead, Democrats substituted childish name-calling and bomb-throwing, accusing Republicans of being “terrorists, or “extremists,” or just plain evil. Rarely, if ever, was there a debate on the merits of GOP proposals. In fact, Democrats refused to debate anything at all.

Given these circumstances, is it a surprise that Republicans find themselves opposing just about everything President Obama and the Democrats put forward? You can hardly expect Republicans to abandon their principles and vote for noxious legislation like Obamacare, financial regulatory reform, and immigration reform. The guts of all those bills are antithetical to conservatives, and the GOP could no more support those bills than liberals could have supported a totally free market approach to health insurance reform.

But lost in the genuine and principled — for the most part — opposition to President Obama’s policies is the notion that by proving to the voter what they are against, what they are for gets lost in the shuffle.

Tied up in the policy of the matter are the political calculations that go into winning an election. Karen Tumulty at the Washington Post summarizes the GOP’s dilemma:

A quiet argument is boiling within the party over whether it should offer voters an agenda that shows what Republicans would accomplish if they are returned to power or whether it should simply ride an anti-Democratic tide into the November election.

Some, including Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), worry that proposing a set of detailed policy alternatives is taking an unnecessary risk when so much else is going the right way for Republicans. Putting forward an agenda can inflame differences within the party and give opponents targets to shoot.

That in part was what sank Cantor, who was faulted by the tea party as too accommodating.

The Virginia Republican drew especially intense fire for advocating a GOP version of the Dream Act, which would enable some illegal immigrants who entered the country as children to qualify for in-state college tuition rates.

Standing in opposition may be a good electoral strategy at a moment when the president and his party are politically weak, and when most of the key battles on the political map are being fought in conservative territory.

There also is the reality that President Obama will remain in the White House for the next two years, using his veto power to make sure that Republicans cannot keep whatever promises they make.

But a no-on-everything stance provides little to begin laying a premise for the presidential election of 2016.

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
Republicans should be for restoring the Republic by reducing the power
of the federal government; It is going to happen anyway, the only choice
is between a phased reduction and a crash, and sudden changes break things.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
I wouldn't even feel so bad if we had a Ronald Reagan copy. Even if they plagiarized all of his speeches so long as they meant every word.

Republicans I can vote for are pro-gun ownership, the reinstatement of mental facilities, smaller government (no, not no government), capitalism, a large, well-funded and incontestable military, an active space program that actually does things and goes places, letting states run their own affairs, border security, the list goes on.

It's not that hard and no, it doesn't send us into any false "dark place" that the lie-berals fear---it's a fair place for everyone not just the special interest groups.

Yeah, I'd like to go back to a time when we had made great progress before the Clin-toons showed up and started undoing it all and making us try to believe that utopia is just another tax increase away.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (36)
All Comments   (36)
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Nice headline! Lousy analysis of what the Republican problem continues to be. There is NO way to fight against Santa!!! Until fairness is really implemented in the republic founded on the rule of law, there will never be a resolution,

Why do I get 1099-MISC when a recipient of income(redistributed) doesn't get a 1099-GOV? Where's the fair there?

Why are Republicans voting to fund the NSA's taking of all my personal information but government bank statements are online today?

I have to apply to collect some of my social security because of illness but immigrants get it free. Again, where's the fair there?
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
Two damn words: Liberty and property. That's a platform I could support.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
For personal qualities I would add 'virtue.' I'm tired of choosing between thug-wannabes.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
It took time and courage so that "country bumpkin" Ronald Reagan -- our 40th and last real President -- could make the US look forward again. The more I learn about his presidency the more I realize he was practically alone and yet he managed to inspire a few. They achieve great things but then we forgot the message. We like the results of Conservatism: strength, prosperity, opportunity, stability, etc. but we like also the vices of Progressive Liberalism and we are up to our necks in it. The GOP ceased to be the party or republican virtues. They caught the liberal fever too and they are running around like a chicken trying to peck a crumb that the Democrats left behind. People like John Boehner who was there inthe days of the Contract With America, forgot very quickly all that was achieved. They have looked back and they were turned in to political pillars of salt. We must look to the future with Conservative eyes, it is going to take lots of fighting to bury Leviathan Washington and let George Washington rise again. The great country is still there, confused, in disarray, sick with the poison we have been dealt by the Democrats since the days of Wilson. Each one of us has to become a leader for we have no leaders worth anything. That is what the Tea Party is all about an that is what this man of the hour, Mr Brat is doing. Godspeed to him!
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
Good job. Yes, when I want to know what's wrong with the Republican Party, I always ask a Washington Post writer. The only better source is The Nation magazine, and they're usually too busy consulting with John McCain.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
Excuse me but I think you are too deeply into the weeds on this story. Dave Brat is a refreshing, youthful and compelling candidate who actually has a consistent "conservative" message. Guess what? He actually knows what free markets are. He actually says that the government cannot solve all our problems and should not try. He is not a pandering fool trying to go "democrat" lite all the time. He is a conservative. He ran as a conservative. He got up and said that he is a Christian and believes in telling the truth and that the fate of this great country belongs to the people not to the fat assed politicians and other jerks hanging around the beltway. Sorry no great mystery here. The problem is that NONE of our existing so called leaders ever mentions limited government and have not the slightest trace of "pair" when it comes to calling out Obama on what he is doing NOW to undermine and debase our country. So dare I say that Dave Brat won because of Dave Brat and no thanks to Fox or Reince or any of the other know it all usual suspects. End of story.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
We've got a mafia government now, they are always looking for the percentage that pays out to them.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
The mass media largely set the rules for debate. As long as those rules are "Democrats win no matter what we have to do!" it's going to be all but impossible for Republicans to lay out a positive vision.

For example the best answer to health care is for government to get completely out of trying to run it. We actually have EXACTLY that system for our pets and virtually everything that can be done for a sick human can be done for a dog -- for $10k or less, often MUCH less. Mainly because of competition and results-based medicine WITHOUT bureaucracy and 'somebody else pays.' Yes, the standards for people are higher -- but not enough to account for the factor of 2-100 difference in costs.

Could veterinary care be used as a discussion model for human care? Not a chance: "Republicans want to treat your family like dogs."

Without rules allowing an honest debate, Republicans are pretty well stuck with opposing the worst of Democratic policy. Of course even that's better than supporting the worst, as they keep trying to do with immigration.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
The solution to this dilemma is to do what Reagan did & also what Dave Brat did: Bypass the media outlets & go straight to the American people. Reagan had TV appearances; Brat utilized conservative talk radio & door-to-door canvass as the means to get his message out. It's a lot of hard work but worth it.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
Republicans should unite behind the drastically popular notion, that essentially all late term abortions should be banned--because they murder a child. This should be done by an amendment stating human life begins for federal purposes by the entry to the third trimester, and defers to state law as to whether it begins earlier for laws applicable to earlier points in a pregnancy. This amendment should exclude the possibility of a pregnancy being treated as a child in the first trimester, because almost no one takes that notion seriously.

We should adopt the course of putting the work of the Progressives into decline, privatizing, voucherizing, personalizing accounts.

We should make the "protections" consumer enjoy under our regulatory state voluntary--no one can say they meet federal standards if they don't, if someone wants to buy something without the federally approved trademark, that's their business.

Wickard should be overturned in law.

The taxing power should be barred from treating a wealthy person's dollar as being worth more than a poor man's. The tax return should fit on a post card. The mortgage interest deduction should be sunsetted, gradually enough so as not to shock.

Liberty. Liberty. Liberty.

The securing of it is the only point to having a government at all.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
Wickard v. Filburn (1942) is the root of most expansion of federal power which makes it the root of a whole lot of evil. However since it's a constitutional interpretation it would have to be overturned by constitutional amendment, would it not?

Worth doing -- even critical -- but monumentally harder, since Democrats rightly see it as the foundation of their power. And a Supreme Court overturning of this well-established precedent seems even less likely.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
It's been around for less than 1/3rd the country's history, it was dishonestly produced in the first place (threat of court packing) and abundant prior precedent refutes it--the plain wording of the constitution refutes it. The 2nd is more or less upheld, if in a disjointed, crippled fashion--it in fact protects private ownership of all items of military utility.

A law endorsing the original intent and giving cause for suit--standing--to anyone seeing a tort under a contrary interpretation would quickly force a a reversal by the highest court.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
Republicans should be for restoring the Republic by reducing the power
of the federal government; It is going to happen anyway, the only choice
is between a phased reduction and a crash, and sudden changes break things.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
This is one of those comments that makes me want to punch 'like' five times.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
I agree, but may I reword.
Surely, the agenda of conservatives is to allow the citizens the freedom to improve their lives with minimal government intervention. It takes constant vigilance to defend this freedom from those who think they know better than us how to run our lives, aka socialists, communists, fascists, and the rest of the collectivist lot.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
How can anyone expect the GOP leadership, a.k.a. Casper Milquetoast, to be anything other than what they are? They are gutless politicians that must be removed at all costs. They can't tell you what they're for because they aren't for anything except getting re-elected. Cantor has always been a snake, Boehnerr is gutless, and the rest of the "elite" GOP are parasites. Hopefully, more people like Brat will take down these gutless pukes and restore the will of the people.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
With all the things happening around the world and on our southern borders even the LIV's are likely going to vote for anyone but a 'D'.

Obama's foreign policy is really no policy at all unless you consider ignoring the plight of countries in strife a policy. The Iraqis are begging us to bomb the Islamist militants that are systematically taking over Iraq as I type. This should scare anyone with half a brain - it bothers Obama not one whit apparently. The pleas for help from Iraq fall on the deaf ears of Obama - he doesn't care - or maybe he DOES care - after all what would he do differently if he were a muslim? Does this serve to answer his question of what do do with Israel? What does Obama do? Nothing!

China is saber rattling in and around the China Seas - grabbing islands and pushing their neighbors around and what does Obama do? Nothing!

Russia grabs a chunk of Ukraine and what does Obama do? Nothing!

Syria slogs on in it's 'civil war' and is likely using chemical weapons and Obama doesn't care - the 'line in the sand' so eloquently drawn by Obama himself - something conveniently forgotten by the MSM. What does Obama do? Nothing!

Obama ignores Egypt's overtures - is it because the new president isn't a muslim? Would he prefer the muslim brotherhood? One would surely think that - and could hardly be faulted for thinking along those lines. What would Obama do differently if he were a muslim? What does Obama do? Nothing!

If Obama were a muslim what would he have done differently with Bowe Bergdahl? The taliban get their generals back and we got what? Possibly/likely we got one traitor. Not much of a deal. What does Obama say in response? Its Hagel's fault!

What of the near future? Does Obama/Kerry get their 'Neville Chamberlain' agreement from Iran? Kerry isn't the smartest clown in the circus and is likely going to be outsmarted at every turn - don't expect that deal to be anything good for us. All it'll do is shine Obama's/Kerry's turd of a resume. What does Obama do? Nothing!

And my ramblings here doesn't even take into consideration of just how bad its gotten at home - other than what I noted above - the wave of illegals coming over the borders. It can all be blamed on Obama and his policies - expect the spinmasters to blame it all on the GOP.

What is Obama doing? He's screwing We The People!

Shitohdear! Other than that everything is hunky-dory! Right?

Have a nice day!

37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
"Possibly/likely we got one traitor."

The country's traitor, Dear Leader's fellow traveler.
37 weeks ago
37 weeks ago Link To Comment
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