RACE TO LEAD GOP’S FUTURE SHAPING UP

As the McCain led defeat of Republicans sets in, high hopes rise. As the race for President ended, the battle for the GOP’s future has begun.

Several days ago, I disclosed the likely contenders for Republican National Committee Chairman and some of those mentioned are beginning to fire their first shots.

antanuzislogon1One of those touted to want the job, Michigan Republican State Committee Chairman Saul Anuzis, has fired up a web site for the job .

A name that I did not list among the seven most mentioned contenders was former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich. I for one, don’t think that Newt has a desire to reenter the political fray. I know and appreciate that he is completely involved in the ideological fight and the battle of ideas that he relishes in the more realistic world of the free, private sector. But I do not anticipate his willingness to actually get back into the political arena.

Would his return be welcomed? That’s not a question for Democrats. They picked the leader of their party when Barack Obama became President-Elect Barack Obama. It is a question for Republicans to answer.

As a Republican myself, I would welcome Newt‘s involvement. He is an asset. He knows politics and he knows the issues. He also puts the party, as well as the nation, before himself. He demonstrated that when after Republicans lost some seats in the House of Representatives back in the late 90’s, he offered his resignation as speaker. He did so because the media made him more important than the issues he was dealing with. He felt that he was such a lightening rod, that his continued role would take away from the issues we had to deal with.

Years later, now that he is not involved in the legislative post he once held, the party leadership role might be just right for him, as well as the GOP.

Of course, the left will begin every campaign that they run in 2010 and beyond, with the name “Newt Gingrich”. They will continue the demonization process of Gingrich and the GOP as they try to put an angelic face on themselves. But, will that have a bearing on the effective direction that Newt could put the party on?

The public image that Democrats will try to create for Republicans with Newt Gingrich’s face as the RNC chairman, would have an impact on initial public perception. But would the negative impact of anti-Newt, liberal propaganda outweigh the positive effect of Gingrich’s leadership for the party?

In the long term, probably not, but this, I can’t I can’t be sure of.

I do know Newt Gingrich understands what the GOP stands for and he knows how to shape the arguments and messages that we need. He is also capable of employing the right people to help the RNC articulate that message. Additionally, he helps reaffirm the base when it comes to where the party is going. Newt represents the conservative political thinking that many feel the party has strayed from……a straying away that coincided with the decline of Republican political preeminence since his departure from the congressional stage. He could also create great cause for many disaffected libertarians to join the Republican ranks.

Right now the party needs direction. Not just organizational direction in setting a strategic plan for future elections but also direction of purpose. We need to make that which differentiates us from Democrats clear. Over the past 5 or 6 years the lines of difference have been blurred. For one thing we had an incumbent Republican President who was about as fiscally conservative as Imelda Marcos in a shoe store. For another thing, we had Republican elected officials who allowed Democrats to get the upper hand when it comes to rhetoric denouncing the wars we are in. Many Republicans backed away from their public defense of our war efforts, fearful that too many voters were questioning it’s worthiness.  The sad fact being that too many elected officials allow themselves to be fearful of perceptions and unconcerned with their convictions.  Too many lack the cojones to use their convictions and stand up to wrongly held public perceptions.  That however, is not a fault possessed by Newt Gingrich

So we need someone who can help distinguish the differences between us and Democrats.
Newt could do for us if he chose to. He could actually energize the forces and he has proven to be capable of organizing national campaigns that promote the application of conservative legislative principles.

It’s difficult to make a decision when you do not yet know all your options, so although I am inclined to embrace Newt Gingrich’s wisdom, innovation capabilities and sense of ideological conviction, I reserve my own final conclusion until I know who else is wanting the job of Chairman. I refer to the word “wanting” because there are groups seeking to recruit some names. I do not want someone who has to be convinced that they should be the chairman of the RNC. I want someone who wants it and wants it for all the right reasons. Someone who wants to do the hard work and wants to fight for our cause.

I admire some of the names out there. People like former Maryland Lt. Governor Mike Steele of GOPAC.

I agree with him on most all issues and I appreciate the messages that he uses in trying to bring the point home. Of course being African-American, if Steele is selected to be chairman, the loony, left, libs will say that his being black was the only reason we picked him, but you know what?……I really don’t care what inconsequential, liberal, loudmouths think. They will be fighting the titular leader of their party, President-Elect Obama, as they try to force him to lead from the left instead of the middle. So they have their own battle to wage. This one is between us republicans……”No Liberals Allowed”….thank you.

In any event I have no objection to Mike Steele for the spot. He is a good, loud voice but based on abilities between him and Newt, I lean towards Newt.
In either case, both of these guys, as pointed out in the Washington Times, have not gone public with their desires. They seem to be wrangling behind the scenes and hoping to create a public yearning for their expertise that makes them humbly answer some sort of call to duty. If Gingrich continues to be coy and Mike Steele makes it clear that he wants the job, he’s got my support.

Two of my favorite choices would be Mitt Romneywho has almost as much of the ideological qualities and articulation abilities that Newt Gingrich has, but without the image problem and baggage. Former Maryland Governor Bob Erhlich is also a talented favorite of mine who has the ability to help us reclaim our ideological strengths. However, neither of these two have indicated the desire to be the new chairman and as for Romney, I would rather see him gear up for a run for President in 2012 then get bogged down in partisan politics. Right now, him and Sarah Palin need to convince me which will best qualified for our presidential nomination, so both should remain focused on that.

In regards to one of those who have made their RNC leadership intentions clear, Michigan Republican State Committee Chairman Saul Anuzis has potential but so does South Carolina Republican Chair Katon Dawson Chairman and Florida’s GOP Chairman Jim Greer. But I do commend Anuzis for naot playing any games and making his intentions clear. Unlike him, Dawson has been using the slogan “Renew, Reform, Restore,” in a survey that he has mailed out to a few hundred national committee members, the members who will elect the new chairman. Greer has been on the phones and testing the water.

All of these people have produced positive Republican results in their states. Of course though, Florida and South Carolina have fairly positive atmospheres for conservative oriented causes and campaigns. Saul Anuzis is relatively successful in a state that is not quite as open and friendly to Republicans as his counterparts in the South. To me, that shows that Saul Anuzis has plenty of grit and the type of underdog tenacity that the GOP needs nationally.

All of this speculation and conjecture is nice but there exists a very crucial question that we, as a party, must answer before we select someone to lead our party. What direction do we want the party to go in? Knowing the direction we want to go in could help us decide which leader is best suited to lead us in that direction.

Part of the answer to that question lies not in the race for RNC Chairman. It lies in the Republican leadership of the house and senate.

If our elected Republicans in congress, the guys on the front line of the ideological battle in government, elect the status quo to house and senate minority leadership, than we can write off any hopes for increasing political power in the near term.

People like Eric Cantor of Virginia need to win election as the Republican whip and I for one would like to Indiana’s Mike Pence assume overall leadership of the house.

On the Senate side, South Dakota’s John Thune is a favorite of mine. He has solid credentials and great vision. Unfortunately, the senate is an institution that offers less opportunities to young guns. Seniority rules there.

The logistics of the fact that US senators are elected from an entire state causes individual senators to be less cutting edge and more moderate than their counterparts in the house, who get elected from a segment of the electorate in their home state, that may have more extreme views than do the entirety of a state. But the legislative leadership that republicans have in congress will have a lot to do with the effectiveness of whoever is chairman of the Republican National Committee.

Our leaders in the house and senate must be leading legislative efforts that are in sync with the direction and message that the party is taking. If we, as a party, are preaching spend less, drill more, reduce government intrusiveness and fight harder, it won’t be believed if congressional Republicans are approving Democrat budgets that are full of increased social welfare and government programs, limiting our abilities to exploit natural resources and accepting retreat on any front in the war on terror.

We need legislative leaders who are of the mind of those who were a part of the ‘94 Republican revolution (which was orchestrated, sponsored and led by Newt Gingrich) that took congressional control away from the liberal party. If our congressional Republicans were of that same thinking now, half the battle would be over.  Mike Pence, Eric Cantor and John Thune are just exceptional examples of that thinking and are the type of legislative leadership we need.

Ultimately, as for the chairmanship of the Republican National Committee. I would like to see a power sharing effort that involves Gingrich, Steele, Dawson, Anuzis and Romney.

Together I would like to see them hammer out the road map. Then let Gingrich shape the debate, Mike Steele deliver the message, Katon Dawson and Saul Anuzis organize the ground game and Romney raise the money. Is this likely?………Nope. But it could be ideal.

For now I would be inclined to give Dawson, Anuzis and Steele the inside track and hope that if any one of those three get the job, they will reach out and work with the team that I would like to see work together.

punchline-politics21

Don’t say this to a cop

The top 20 things not to say to a cop when he pulls you over.

20. I can’t reach my license unless you hold my beer.

19. Sorry officer, I didn’t realize my radar detector wasn’t plugged in.

18. Aren’t you the guy from the villiage people?

17. Hey, you must have been doing 125 to keep up with me, good job.

16. I thought you had to be in relatively good physical shape to be a police officer.

15. I was going to be a cop, but I decided to finish high school instead.

14. Bad cop. No donut.

13. You’re not going to check the trunk, are you?

12. Gee, that gut sure doesn’t inspire confidence.

11. Didn’t I see you get your butt kicked on cops?

10. Is it true that people become cops because they are too dumb to work at McDonalds?

9. I pay your salary

8. So uh, you on the take or what?

7. Gee officer, that’s terrific. The last officer only gave me a warning.

6. Do you know why you pulled me over? Okay, just so one of us does.

5. I was trying to keep up with traffic. Yes, I know there is no other cars around, that’s how far they are ahead of me.

4. What do you mean have I been drinking? You are the trained specialist.

3. Well, when I reached down to pick up my bag of crack, my gun fell off of my lap and got lodged between the brake and the gas pedal, forcing me to speed out of control.

2. Hey, is that a 9mm? That’s nothing compared to this 44 magnum.

1. Hey, can you give me another one of those full cavity searches?

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