Skip to comments.FUTURE OF THE GOP - All factions agree it's time to start over on an agenda
Posted on 11/09/2006 7:48:23 AM PST by SmithL
Washington -- Republicans woke Wednesday to a coast-to-coast wreckage in the midterm congressional elections that many acknowledged was of their own making.
Tuesday's political earthquake -- destroying Republican majorities that took decades to build -- slammed the door on the Bush era and opened the door to recrimination, regrouping and a rethinking of the party's governing philosophy.
"I can tell you none of us wants to spend a minute longer in the minority than we have to, but I think we recognize that this is not a loss where you can just repackage the same agenda and move ahead," said Rep. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., who coasted to re-election by campaigning against "earmarked" spending for lawmakers' pet projects and for comprehensive immigration reform. "We need a major course correction, and some of us have been making that argument for quite a while."
Just what that course correction will be -- a return to the party's small-government roots, a new centrism or something else -- will take shape as surviving Republicans choose new leaders, decide how to work with the new Democratic majorities in the House and the Senate and take sides in what will be a wide-open contest for the 2008 GOP presidential nomination to succeed President Bush.
The loss of the House was expected, but the loss of the Senate came as a hard shock to the party. The consequences are devastating to the survivors, who with their majorities also lose the chairmanship of every policymaking committee -- the power centers on Capitol Hill.
The post-rout housecleaning started first thing Wednesday.
House Speaker Dennis Hastert announced that he would step down, while back-bench fiscal conservatives led by Rep. Mike Pence, R-Ind., began plotting a takeover.
(Excerpt) Read more at sfgate.com ...
Immigration is the best example. Just like Dimocrats, many got carried away on the tide of news coming from the MSM and instantly got angry. Illegal immigration has been a concern of mine since the 80s but most people gave it no thought until the MSM riled them up and got the exact reaction they wanted.
Bush got the blame for all of it and that wasn't the case. It was first the Reagan amnesty and then the elder Bush, who actually tried but couldn't get anything done and then the Clinton administration who actively made it worse and then Bush who didn't seem to be doing much. He was, but 9/11, of course, took much of his attention and many, many of the already stretched thin BP were transferred to the Canadian border which was very sparsely covered. It has taken time to train new agents and get them down on the border. The National Guard has made an immense difference.
With a majority controlled by the Dims we will be more likely to get another amnesty bill and though some of those anti-illegal immigration people voted GOP this election, they had sown so much enmity in the wake of their anger that there were many that they influenced who didn't. Those wishy-washy voters just hear and think about those things which are trumpeted the loudest.
I'm not advocating rolling over and acquiesing to every RINOs bill. I'm not saying the conservatives should support the GOP even when they go against our principles, I am saying we need to be reasonable and not just complain online but call and write all those who are against our positions and do it in numbers that they can't ignore. Be an activist, not a whiner, bitcher or complainer. MAKE the RINOs listen to us.
But in the end, if a RINO is actively against our core values and can't be changed we have to get rid of them while not poisoning all the water.
Good point, Social Security is the Dooms Day Machine. It will someday be the end of the world if left alone. If tampered with, it will destroy the world even sooner. FDR should be recognized for doing this to us.
I don't buy the spin that the base stayed home. They may have held their noses, but they were there. We lost the center this time. And we truly lost the center because the center actually for the most part agrees with conservative principles, but unlike the hardcore base, they will consider voting for Democrats, which is precisely what they did.
I gotta learn to slow down...
And Hayworth's opponent tried to get to the right of him on immigration! But the problem is, Bush and the Dems will push amnesty almost immediately and pass it, the only thing stopping them from doing it last time was the House. There is now no way to stop this, Hayworth and Graf (and Hostettler, although his loss had nothing to do with immigration) are being used to say Americans support an amnesty. The Dems will let any of their folks who are in border districts vote against this, as they will easily pick up from Cannon/Flake/Pence all the votes they need. And once the amnesty is done, it can't be undone.
That makes the Republicans a permanent minority, and America goes the way of European socialist democracy. This was the second most important election of my life, right after 1980, and it went the wrong way. I'm not even going to think about the repercussions on Islamic terrorism.
--We need to return to conservatism and ignore the media's advice to go moderate. That is a sure path for the GOP to go the way of the Whigs.--
That sounds good, but the problems with conservatism are manifold:
1. The definition of conservative is too subjective? Who is a conservative? George Will? Bill Kristol, Pat Buchanan?
2. Reason for problem 1 is that conservatism is not a well-defined ideology. Conservatism has no manifesto; it has no blueprint for an ideal future to be attained. Conservatism does not do a good job of explaining why certain things are conservative and certain things are not, and it does an even worse job of explaining why conservative ideas are so much better.
3. Ordinary people like a clear goal. They look at political ideology like a homework assignment or a therapy of sorts ("If we do X, then we will attain Y, "Y" being a society as close to perfect as humanly possible). Maybe 3 is a problem for us because so many people who call themselves conservative are so interested in getting into a Heaven of the hereafter that they have lost sight of attaining at least a quasi-perfection here on earth.
4. What is the point of political victory when it is transient. The dems had power, then the republicans took it, then the dems took it back; in 2, 4 20 years the republicans (in some form) will take it back again ... ad nauseum, ad infinitum. I wish there was some way we could stop that damnable pendulum from swinging, so we could leave a LASTING political legacy for our descendants when we are gone.
Many of us send mixed messages. As an example, there was huge outrage over the Harriet Miers nomination and that outrage sent a clear message pretty fast. But I didn't see that same swelling of outrage and anger to get SS reform, health care reform, making tax cuts permanent and so on. What kind of message does that send to reps/sens? That we didn't care all that much about those issues? So if we are assessing blame, I think some of it needs to fall on our shoulders, if we aren't willing to hold their feet to the fire on EVERY issue, then we get what we get.
The cupboard is pretty bare. Let's see... We have McCain who engineereed a 1st Amendment abridgement, and Rudy, a pro-abortion, pro-gay liberal. Talk about a Hobson's choice!
And I think most Americans would agree with that, including Hispanics.
But they know that to be the majority Party they have to have a 'conserative' wing, as we have to have a 'liberal' wing in ours.
The key is not letting that wing effect policy, as we were letting the RHINO's do in the GOP.
--The key is not letting that wing effect policy, as we were letting the RHINO's do in the GOP.--
Problem is that congresscritters are supposed to dance with the ones who brung 'em. If the House and Senate leadership doesn't let these "blue dogs" do that, then those who "brung 'em" will find dance partners from the other party. When congressional leaders force backbenchers into lockstep, it damages the transmission belt between people and their reps.
Just from the looks of the kind of posts found on FR, my guess is there is little or no chance of that happening. Unfortunately, it will be a further move to the left IMO.
It'll never happen, don't even waste your time.
It's a shame that they don't have a Hippocratic oath that makes them pledge "First, do no harm." before they can be a member of the party.
Too late, because the conservative movement has long since been marched over the cliff to the fervent cheers of the neo-conservatives that have banished and slandered the Old Right as troglodyte racists.
Bush will agree to a hike in the minimum wage in exchange for the crown jewel of his domestic agenda: amnesty and guest workers, who will proceed to birth lots of new US citizen spawn. And with Hispanics voting 75% Democrat, both parties will run to the left to court them.
What happened Tuesday will be the starting point for a much needed cleanup, rebuilding, and a much needed retooling so that the next time, the Pubs will bring their "A game".
The next time the Republicans will be more liberal, in order to try and capture the votes of the 75% of Hispanics who vote Democrat. The Republicans under George Bush and his buddies at the AEI have embraced open borders and this will bring in millions of social democratic voters with no tradition or history of limited government. Old Right conservatism is dead and buried.
If Congress makes it legal for 2 million Third Worlders to enter every year, and to give birth to brand new US citizens in the delivery rooms of public hospitals, are you still for LEGAL immigration?
Stating the obvious.