Skip to comments.Their Own Worst Enemies - A bad midterm outlook for the GOP
Posted on 05/29/2002 8:44:38 AM PDT by Zack Nguyen
Why should Republicans bother to vote GOP next November 5? Inexplicably, President Bush and congressional Republicans are giving their party base myriad reasons to go fishing on Election Day.
Republicans and Democrats have proven to be pigs in a bipartisan pen on pork-barrel spending. While some Republicans still treat taxpayers' dollars with reverence, too many more stand gleefully at the trough, snout-by-snout, with their Democratic colleagues.
This Congress is set to hike federal spending by 15 percent over just two years, more than quadruple the inflation rate. Most of this does nothing to fight terrorism.
On May 13, Bush signed a $191 billion farm bill that boosts agriculture subsidies by 80 percent. Congress even included $100 million to provide rural consumers "high-speed, high-quality broadband service." The Heritage Foundation estimates that this 10-year bill will cost the average U.S. household $180 in new taxes annually.
Bush's education department budget grows from $35.75 billion in 2001 (when he arrived) to a projected $57 billion in 2005. That is a four-year, 59.5 percent increase in federal school outlays. Bush's Leave No Child Behind initiative promotes testing and higher standards, but does little to advance school choice.
Bush signed the McCain-Feingold campaign-finance-reform law. It treats the disease of legal bribery with a prescribed overdose. As if there were no First Amendment, it will restrict political activists from purchasing ads critical of political incumbents within 60 days of elections.
Bush dropped an anvil on free-marketeers this spring when he imposed 30 percent tariffs on imported steel and a 27 percent tax on Canadian softwood lumber. This has created throbbing headaches among world leaders who have grown weary of Bush's self-mocking free-trade rhetoric.
Bush has applauded a Senate bill by liberal Republican Pete Domenici of New Mexico and arch-liberal Democrat Paul Wellstone of Minnesota that would force company health plans to insure mental illness and physical ailments equally. Costs will soar as employers underwrite medical care for anxiety atop angina.
A popular conservative president should steer Congress starboard. A May 14 - 15 Fox News poll of 900 adults found Bush's job approval at 77 percent (+/- 3 percent). Alas, like his father (who achieved 90 percent favorability after the Persian Gulf War), G. W. Bush guards his political capital like an heirloom rather than invest it for even greater gains.
When Democrats smeared appellate-court nominee Charles Pickering as a racist, Bush, for instance, should have held a press conference with Pickering and his prominent black supporters from Mississippi. As Charles Evers, the brother of slain civil-rights activist Medgar Evers, said: Pickering "was standing up for blacks in Mississippi when no other white man would." Bush avoided such bold action. A thousand cuts later, Pickering's nomination fatally hemorrhaged in the Senate Judiciary Committee last March.
Bush could have enhanced the prospects for petroleum exploration in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. He could have invited local Eskimos to the Rose Garden and let them explain how oil development would lift them from poverty. Better yet, Bush could have taken the White House press corps to ANWR to unmask its potential oil acreage as a barren mosquito farm. Bush avoided the ANWR fray, thus clinching that proposal's Senate demise.
Beyond speaking softly in his bully pulpit, Bush never has touched his veto pen. Had he threatened to reject some of this absurd legislation, fence-sitting GOP congressmen would have yielded and defeated (or at least improved) these bills. Absent Bush's leadership, they climbed atop the gilded bandwagon rather than fall on their laissez-faire swords. Republicans should worry that their demoralized stalwarts will do what they did in the last midterm election: Stay home.
The proportion of self-described conservatives at the polls fell from 37 percent in 1994 to 31 percent in 1998, Voter News Service reports. Frustrated with a "Republican Revolution" turned free-spending self-parody, the party faithful sat on their hands just enough to cost Republicans five House seats.
If they don't reverse this parade of white flags, Washington Republicans similarly may shrink or lose their House majority and dash their plans to capture the Senate not because they advanced their free-market principles but because they betrayed them and thus surrendered their claim to power.
You are right that there are differences, but unfortunately the score card no longer tells you what to expect from a candidate. Ever since the GOP bought into the "big tent" theory, the philosophy has been diluted to the point of being almost meaningless as a platform to be adhered to and defended. TPTB in the GOP are happy with big government, so long as they are in charge of it. And that frustrates me immensely.
Sometimes I let my frustration carry me away and I overstate my position. (But don't tell anyone. I use that in negotiating. LOL)
What's wrong with being a realist?
Since Dubya has the power to veto (the ultimate trump of an advocate of smaller government), he does not have the same excuse for the big government trend of his administration.
Another comparision is quite revealing: Clinton may have been hampered by Congress but he never proposed programs to reduce the size of government. Dubya, by contrast, has proposed many programs to increase the size of big government.
Why should I? I want a much smaller government, not a much larger one.
Actually, there lies of the problem with the GOP. In too many cased the GOP start the negotiations in a compromised position while the Dems start out with a left-wing extremist position, and the debate goes from there.
Those tall shiny buildings that were in Manhattan, did their destruction have anything to do with this? Are we at war now?
Are you upset at Jim Jeffords? Why, or why not?
My statement was regarding democrats in the sixties that held positions that pubbies are afraid to defend now. Whether Goldwater won on lost and on what issues is irrelevant to my point.
But during that era, those positions were simply American values, not liberal or conservative. They still are or should be, but the GOP (not all)has been intimidated and lacks the backbone to take a definitive stand in their defense.
Before September 11, he was in a much weaker position in this regard (with or without Jeffords). In any case, I doubt that an argument can be made that Dubya's budget busting farm bill, steel tariffs, mental health parity, refusal to support drilling in the Gulf, has anything to do with do with the war against terrorism.
Are you my ex? She was 'always right' too. But you are exactly right. To win any negotiation, you must start from an 'extreme' position and then give up some ground - which is really no or little groud at all. The rule for success in negotiation is not how much you give, but in HOW MANY TIMES you give. If you make several minor concessions, you will come out much further ahead than if you only give once or twice, but start from a weakened position or give too much each time.
But it is always easy for unprincipled politicians to negotiate away our money, rights, and freedom for their own power and glorification, isn't it? The b@stards.
WRONG! WRONG! WRONG!!!
Is he the President (one of three branches of our government), or is he a dictator?
The only way what you state gets accomplished is if he were a dictator, and had no resistence to his mandate(s). Ergo, I will ask the question again: Are you upset at Jim Jeffords?
Do people not think that Zell Miller will do anything to see the RATS elected and thus get a committee chairmanship as a reward? Why do they think he was such a big a hit at the NRA? The RATS have all been told to be more pro-gun, etc. to get elected and when they do the pro-gun lobby can sit back and ask what happened when they don't vote like they want!
People need to think and ask why they are listening to new posters and posters that have been anti-Bush from the beginning! Libertarians are no friends of Republicans -- they have already cost us the Senate by running candidates in NV and WA -- people need to really look at what they stand for or any other 3rd party! And they need to start looking at what President Bush has done that is conservative instead of listening to the Anti-Bush crowd and be so easily led!
Just think, with their line reasoning, we will never get Conservative judges and what will happen to the War on Terror or DoD scares the living daylights out me.
Something is wrong on here! New posters sounding like old timers -- give me a break. I have kept my screen name forever and don't need to come back on as someone else to scam people! Not to mention some new names have old sign-up dates -- what gives with that?
I am going out to mow grass myself and take frustration out on the grass!
I voted for him in 2000, and unless he puts a pro-choicer on as VP, I will almost certainly vote for him in 2004.
H.R. 7 -- should indeed be blocked
H.R. 3210 -- should be blocked
H.R. 3529 -- link doesn't work, but I bet it should be blocked
H.R. 1900 -- couldn't care less
H.R. 2505 -- should be blocked
H.R. 3762 -- should be blocked
H.Con. Res 353 -- link doesn't work. But by the title alone I wouldn't mind it being blocked. ;)
H.R. 586 -- hey, sounds alright
H.R. 496 -- couldn't care less
H.R. 624 -- should be blocked
H.R. 1992 -- couldn't care less
H.R. 724 -- who cares?
H.R. 2983 -- ditto
H.R. 476 -- should be blocked
H.R. 2146 -- o.k. I guess
H.R. 1542 -- o.k. I guess
H.R. 2985 -- if it ain't broke, don't fix it
H.R. 974 -- should be blocked
H.R. 1408 -- probably should be blocked
Ugh, I can't go on. Only one thing I like so far.
Remind me again why I should vote Republican? I say,"Thank God for gridlock!!"
The criminal never blames his crime for his imprisonment. Like the GOP, he just thinks those mean conservatives are picking on him, are out to spoil his fun.
"Not over my dead body will they raise your taxes,"
George W. Bush - SOURCE
No To 'Compassionate Conservatism'
"Marvin Olasky, the former Marxist journalism professor who coined the term. But he and George W. Bush are barking up the wrong tree if they think "compassionate conservatism" is going to rally popular support necessary to effect the real change needed to turn this country around."
The surest way to bust this economy is to increase the role and the size of the federal government."
George W. Bush - Source: Presidential debate, Boston MA Oct 3, 2000.
Gore offers an old and tired approach. He offers a new federal spending program to nearly every voting bloc. He expands entitlements, without reforms to sustain them. 285 new or expanded programs, and $2 trillion more in new spending. Spending without discipline, spending without priorities, and spending without an end. Al Gores massive spending would mean slower growth and higher taxes. And it could mean an end to this nations prosperity."
George W. Bush Source: Speech in Minneapolis, Minnesota Nov 1, 2000.
"People need more money in their pocket, as far as Im concerned."
George W. Bush - The Tampa (FL) Tribune Oct 26, 2000.
I was deeply concerned about the drift toward a more powerful federal government. I was particularly outraged by two pieces of legislation, the Natural Gas Policy Act and the Fuel Use Act. It seemed to me that elite central planners were determining the course of our nation. Allowing the government to dictate the price of natural gas was a move toward European-style socialism. If the federal government was going to take over the natural gas business, what would it set its sights on next?"
George W. Bush - Source: A Charge to Keep, p.172-173 Dec 9, 1999
Bush Says He Wants to Let Clinton 'Move On'
"Listen, here's my view: I think it's time to get all of this business behind us. I think it's time ... to allow the president to finish his term, and let him move on and enjoy life and become an active participant in the American system. And I think we've had enough focus on the past. It's time to move forward." - George W. Bush.
Bush Won't Dwell On Clinton Affair, "We're Moving Forward"
"B/S, Mr Bush. Clinton is a criminal and a traitor. We demand a thorough investigation and prosecution. Our Republic is dead and our liberty is at stake if the next administration does not clean up this mess for now and forever more. Corrupt politicians must pay the price for subverting our Constitution and using their offices for personal gain."
4 Posted on 01/20/2000 14:17:56 PST by Jim Robinson
"Thats why Im for instant background checks at gun shows. Im for trigger locks."
George W. Bush - Source: St. Louis debate Oct 17, 2000.
I just want to know what it will take to stop the damn excuses. If the GOP gets control of the Senate, what will their excuse be then? I hope to God they get the Senate back just so they can put up or shut up.
Having a war on is not a legit excuse for boosting pork-barrel spending at home. Is it ok to give hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars to Ted Turner (who pretends to be a farmer) because there's a war on?
Man you do believe what the media tells you. Don't you?
Bush lost the 1992 election because he failed to offer a plan to fix the economy. Raising taxes did not hurt Bush. Clinton ran on a plan to fix the economy by raising taxes some more. He got elected and then did raise taxes. It took Al Gores vote to get the Clinton tax increase passed. Clinton got re-elected. Clinton raised taxes and lied. Whee!! No big deal. All Bush needed was to show he had a plan to fix the economy and he would have won re-elecion. Bush Sr. could have, as Clinton did, propose to raise taxes to fix the economy. Bush could have proposed cutting taxes to fix the economy He could have proposed offering virgin sacrefices to fix the economy. That election was about what Bill Clinton said is was. It was the economy, STUPID. If the economy is bad and the president does nothing to try to fix it, he gets defeated. Bush felt the economy would fix itself as it did. But truth had nothing to do with winning elections.
If getting caught lying to voters cost politicians elections, then Bill Clinton would never have been elected.
Lying is not a political sin. Fornicating interns is not a political sin. Selling secrets to the Chinese is not a political sin. Failing to do something about a bad economy is a political sin. As FDR proved, a president does not have to fix the economy, he just has to look like he is fixing the economy. Failure to try to fix a bad ecnomy has and will agains cost elections.
You need to proceed to the clue box and pick one up.
IN the US it takes 3 things. A president has to have a majority in the house. Bills in the house can pass with control and a simple majority of the votes. A President has to have 60 votes in the Senate. 51 out of 100 is not enough. It takes 60 votes to break a fillibuster. 41 votes can block a president in the Senate. Nothing passes that 41 Senators do not want passed. Said another way anything that 60 senators want will pass the senate. 60 senators can bring anything to the floor for a vote. Party control is not nearly as important as 60 votes. A party can have 55 members in the senate and get absoluely nothing passed if the other 45 are against them in all matters.
In the 20th century only FDR and LBJ had that kind of control. And as you look back they are the ones that changed things. It was teh new deal and Great Society that took this nation left. Everyone else on the right or left were just holding actions. Clinton could not move to the left and Reagan could not move to the right. It was with less than 60 votes a checkmate for both sides.
Dubya is the only Republcan president that has a chance to change things for the right. But nothing will change unless he gets 60 votes in the senate.To get 60 votes takes suport of about 60 percent of the voting population. When the votes are tied as they were in 2000 you get a tied senate.
But to get that 60 percent Bush must make the election about him and he must maintain better than 60 percent job approval rating. Hisorically what happens is the Democrats and Republicans fight. The squishy center does not like fights. The media blames the Republicans for the fight and the squishy center votes for the Democrats.
You win the center by playing the Democrats as the Aggressors out to do harm, and the Republicans as people trying to solve problems by working together. Democrats are well aware of what is at stake. So if they can start a fight and get it going, they win. If Republicans can stay above fighting and continue to appear as those just trying to work together to solve problems they just might win big enough to change things.
Most right wing people want to brawl. Democrats know that, so they try to start brawls. Once the brawl is started the media alays blames the brawl on the Republicans and the squishy middle votes left again. Democrats win when there are brawls even if they lose the brawl they win the election. And people wonder why Daschle is aggressive and nasty...
There is never a problem getting folks who agree with you to vote for you. But sadly there are never enough of those people to elect anyone. Elections are won by getting folks that disagree with you to vote for you.
It is a trick that the right has never mastered. It is why they almost never win.
Duby is trying to make a difference. Will the Right be able to stop Dubya before he achieves victory? You can count on them giving it their best shot.
Doh...... I am not voting third party, but if you make fun of people that are thinking of it then you are driving them away. You should be pleading with people to stay and giving them reasons why to stay with the repubican party instead of making fun of them.
These are legitimate concerns and if you ignore them then you lose big time and so doe's the Republican party.
I voted for Bush and every Libertarian I know did as well. We thought he was cool, but we were wrong, sigh.....he likes to be friends with the Democrats more than he likes whats best for the country.
Ok we were voting against Gore but my point still holds, why vote for a Republican if he acts like a Democrat?
Amen..... congress should be in session at most one month a year, might slow down the erosion of the constitution a bit.
It is to Conservatives, if you think the people that vote for Republicans and the people that vote for Democrats are the same then perhaps it is you who need a clue.
I hope you are right. I am voting Republican this fall and I hope this stratagy works believe me. I will only cheer though when the Republicans do something with the majority.
I still think that standing for something works with the electorate. If I am am wrong and the Senate goes 60 for the Republicans I will be cheering the loudest.
That's telling. Indeed.
You seem passionate. Yet you don't have a bit of passion about the coup d'etat that occurred when Jeffords jumped and made Daschle the truly illegitimate (read: not by the will of the voters) Senate Leader. Jeffords paved the way for Daschle's obstructionism (read: Judge confirmations in committee). Any rebuilding of our military now must go through Daschle because of Jeffords.
In many, many nations, what Jeffords did would have caused a civil war!
You can slam Bush for ANYTHING, yet what occurred with Jeffords illicits no concern from you whatsoever?
If these clowns wish to throw the election to the RATS, more power to them. They just need to shut up afterwards.
Ever since my eyes were opened and I escaped the RAT plantation, this has been my modus operandi in a nutshell.
DEFEAT THE LEFT.
You keep mentioning this. Clinton didn't do anything to the terrorists under his regime, except bomb the infamous pharmaceutical factory and hit a couple empty terrorist camps. What if he had done something during his administation to stop terrorism? How much would he have spent? How many more government programs would have been established? But he didn't, so in theory, the spending related to the war on terror can be directly attributed to the previous administration. In addition, clinton rode the shirt tails of the Reagan years, of course claiming it was him. The economy turned during his last year in office. When you compared the clinton spending numbers to Bush spending numbers did you take into account the depreciation value of money?
On the other hand, what if Gore were president and had to do something regarding the terrorists? How much would he be spending? Would this country be under marshall law? What other socialist programs would have been implemented for the 'good of the nation'?
I would also like to see your figures if you don't mind.
You can not compare what was done to what is being done, the situations are extremely different.
Indeed. Indications so far are that Bush will never exercise his veto pen.
Feelin' like this?
The truth will out.
UB! back again. One day you must tell me the reason for your intermittency at this site, which has been going on since you first logged in.
Uncle Bill bump.
First out of the bag was Clintons demand that Gays be allowed to openly serve in the military. It was the Republicans, in the minority, that stopped that fiasco dead in its tracks.
Next came Hillary Care. The largest expansion of Government since the New Deal. Once again the Minority Republicans aborted this monstrosity. Do they get credit from the 3rd parties? I think the answer is obvious.
Once the American people saw the consequences of having total control of the Government by the liberals they gave both Houses to the Republicans. To hear 3rd parties tell it the Republicans took this golden opportunity and just sat on their thumbs , or worse yet acted more like Democrats than Democrats. But once again you need to look at the reality
First there was that little thing called the Contract with America. Do any 3rd parties ever mention that? It consisted of 10 items 8 of which were pushed through congress over the steady howls of the Media and Democrats. The most important of those 8 items were the End of Welfare Entitlement, and the balanced Budget requirement.P> The ending of welfare was the greatest reduction of domestic spending in history. Does that not count for advocating smaller government and doing something about it? I guess not to a 3rd parties.
The Balanced Budget requirement led directly to the surpluses we have now and hopefully in the future given the economic expansion since the mild recession in 1992 and the now extinct 2001 recession..
Then the democrats made somewhat of a comeback in 1996 and Clinton decided to flex his muscles a little by another little gem the patients bill of rights. It was not the democrats that stopped it was once again those Republicrats as the 3rd parties like to call them..
But the Columbine Massacre gave the democrats and Clinton another opening on gun control. An entire flurry of draconian gun control bills were put forward in the congress and once again it was Republicans that stood up and took the bullet from the soccer moms and the media and made sure those bills never passed out of committee. But I guess 3rd parties cant believe a Republicrat could ever stand with the Constitution.
As to the Republican cowardice in pursuing Bill Clinton the CROOK. I guess the 3rd parties forget a little thing called IMPEACHMENT! Yes a few Republican Senators did not do their duty, but 90% of them did, I am sure you can find 10% of 3rd parties that would have voted not to remove also.
3rd parties take an almost perverted pleasure in pointing out to Republicans that they have been duped. I would have to say that 3rd parties are the ones being duped by their perpetual candidate. He knows he will never be elected but if every Brigadier gives him just one dollar a year to write his angry rants and pretend to campaign once every 4 years, that five hundred grand a year makes a pretty comfortable lifestyle. Pat Buchanan caught on to this very quickly.
Now we are 14 months into the first term of a Republican president in an election the likes of which we have never seen before and according to all the experts installed the first 1st term lame duck with NO political power at all. In his first week in office, Bush nullified 6 Clinton Executive orders and put all of them on indefinite hold.
In the first two months he told the EU to go to blazes on the Kyoto accords that would have raised the cost of doing business a minimum of 20% for every company in the United States which in turn would have been passed directly to each and every one of us in the form of price increases on every item we purchase. He then itold the senate that he would NOT sign the ridiculous ergonomics regulations that would have added another 10% cost of doing business and resultant pass through to us
He then pulled funding from the UN in programs that pushed abortion. He told the UN to go to blazes on their little conference on racism that was nothing more than a bash Israel orgy.
He then started pushing for his tax cut, and once again, the experts including many on this sites, started snickering. He would never get it done, but step by step he, GASP, won over enough democrats to get the EXACT tax cut he promised
Once John Ashcroft survived his Senate confirmation hearings his first action was to completely reverse the Reno DOJ stance on the 2nd ammendment from encompassing only the militia (National Guard) to the individual right to bear arms of all law abiding citizens.
He then started pushing for military budget increases. He was not asking for massive new weapons systems, just the funding to at least change the spark-plugs in the Humvees and to try to give our military men and women a raise that would allow them to someday fight a war without being on food stamps. Once again, the experts scoffed. We are at PEACE they sneered lets enjoy the PEACE DIVIDEND.
Then came Sept. 11 2001, 9 months into this mans first year of his first term. The United States of America was delivered the most stunning wake-up call in our history and all eyes turned to this lame duck president. The yokel from Texas. For just a brief moment the experts were left speechless but not Bush. What would he do? He told us quickly that he would not send a 3 million dollar missile to hit a camel in the butt. That one little Texas bit of humor cloaked a final message to the world. There is going to be hell to pay, and we are seeing the results in real time.
Now the experts , feeling secure again, have found their voices and it is business as usual. The left, scared to death, that 80% of this country is approving of this boob even when they have so very patiently tried to tell them they should not are in full throat.. Those on the right that hold themselves out to be the arbiter of all things conservative are once again ready to bring down this CINO and are completely willing to pull just enough support away to get a democrat elected in 2004. While you 3rd parties are beating up on the GOP for being Repulicrats, stop and think just exactly what would have happened in just the last 10 years had they not been there to stop the real enemy. Then stop and ask yourselves where have you been? What have you done in the last 14 months? Where are the tax cuts that you are responsible for? Where are Federal Government regulations that you have repealed? Where are the actions you have taken since 911 to make a constructive contribution to the war effort? Where have you been?