Michelle Malkin writes in her syndicated column that it “Seems like only yesterday the Washington establishment had proclaimed the Death of the GOP. Pundits churned out public autopsy reports faster than the L.A. County Medical Examiner. Liberals gloated over the supposedly irreparable fissures between right-wing populists and Beltway Republican elites. Conservatism, we were told, was suffering brain death and heart failure. My, how quickly things – ahem — change”:
It all feels very 1990s – the period between 1992 and 1994, specifically – when liberals smugly declared the premature death of the GOP only to be walloped by the midterm conservative backlash. The ruling majority got greedy, overreached, and lost touch with average Americans. With the support of the public, Republicans united to slay Bill Clinton’s stimulus monstrosity and Hillary Clinton’s health care monstrosity. And the core differences between the parties could not have been clearer.
Then, as now, GOP strategists flirted with hapless “re-branding” programs in the wake of failed presidential campaigns. They bought into the public autopsy reports of their friends in New York City media green rooms and Georgetown parlors.
Then, as now, it took a grass-roots conservative groundswell to remind the Beltway bubble boys and girls that adhering to core fiscal conservative principles — lower taxes, less government more freedom – held the key to party unification and opened the door back to power.
And then, as now, conservative talk radio helped galvanize the revolt against a Democrat-spearheaded attempt at a government health care takeover. Local Seattle talk show host Kirby Wilbur’s huge protest against Hillary Clinton’s visit in July 1994 was the turning point. National media outlets could not ignore the public booing of the First Lady in the liberal Emerald City and the legislative doom it portended.
One major difference now is the vast proliferation of alternative media – through Facebook, Twitter, blogs, and Fox News – that has facilitated the spread of information about Democrats’ big government designs and given rise to Tea Party activism. The Right’s ability to change the narrative is greater than ever. The Democrat crack-up reminds us that there are no fait accomplis in politics. Political coroners, take heed.
Elsewhere, Glenn Reynolds spots a GOP pollster further echoing the MSM’s refrain about 1994: “2010 could be the year of the “angry white male.” As the Professor reponds, “I dunno, the Tea Party movement is more popular than Democrats or Republicans, and there seem to be a lot of angry females at those Tea Party protests. And not all of them are white. . . .”