After a slew of victories at the end of ‘09, including the gain of County Executives, council seats, and Republican Governors in New Jersey and Virginia, combined with the pick up of a U.S. Senate seat in Massachusetts at the beginning of 2010, the G.O.P. is alive and well. But the successes seen recently have largely come not because voters perceive the Republican Party to be superior. Much of our success was due more to the perception that the Democrat Party is inferior.
Since President Obama took office one year ago, Americans have seen him increase the national debt by $1.693 trillion, try to tax the air that we breathe with a Cap-and-Trade measure, attempt to have government takeover healthcare, initiate hundred of billions of dollars in spending to stimulate the economy and create jobs, break promises for missile defense systems, dither on his commitment to the war in Afghanistan, try to close down Guantanamo Bay, force foreign terrorists to be tried in civilian courts rather than military tribunal and bow down to foreign leaders.
Along the way Americans also got to see President Obama call police officers stupid, expand the size of government, appoint an endless array of unelected and unaccountable czars, participate in 28 fundraisers for Democrats that raised almost $28 million for political coffers, campaign for Democrats in Virginia, New Jersey and Massachusetts, screw up security measures in the Transportation Security Authority, take more trips to foreign nations in his first year in office than any other U.S. President and we have listened to him apologize for America on foreign soil.
As for the rest of his Party, Americans watched Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid pass legislation under the cover of darkness and Democrat Senators and Congressman vote on legislation they never read. We also watched a process that was suppose to be bi-partisan and transparent, turn into one of the most partisan and clandestine operating governments in American history, seen pork barrel spending increase and lawmakers take hundreds of millions of dollars in bribes to vote for healthcare reforms that most Americans do not want.
Nothing embodied all that infuriated us more than the Democrat led attempt to have government takeover healthcare. That process contained examples of all of the above. It also hangs above Democrats like a sword of Damocles and represents the precise wrong direction Americans see our nation going in.
The result of all this liberal leadership has been an increase in unemployment as well as spending and our debt, lawmakers who are seemingly irresponsive to the wishes of the people and believe they are above the law, and a nation that has more doubt about our nation’s future than confidence in its future.
So it should come as no surprise that voters are angry.
That anger has been to the detriment of Democrats, while Republicans were the beneficiaries of it. republicans are not the ones in control of government. They are the ones that Democrats have, up to now, chose to shut out. So it is only natural for voters to give credit where credit is due…….right in the laps of liberals.
But as we move ahead, the G.O.P. must not rebuild its majority simply because they aren’t Democrats. Such a rise to power would ultimately be short lived.
In the existing political atmosphere, the opportunities that exists for the Republican Party are golden. People are not pleased with the direction liberals are taking them in. Nationwide, Tea Party organizations have demonstrated loudly and are organizing rapidly. Their goal is to get government off their back. They do not want the government making their healthcare decisions and determining when and where they can receive it. They do not want government in the business of business. They do not want G.M. to stand for Government Motors. They don’t want their children’s futures sold out from under them with endless spending or with pieces of overreaching legislation that are over 2,000 pages long and have not been read but are passed because a majority of lawmakers took bribes for their reelection bids.
These Tea Party patriots are not pro-Republican. They hold the G.O.P. accountable for going along with Democrats and for not reducing debt under George Bush. They are not fans of the G.O.P. . For them, simply being not as bad as liberals does not make Republicans deserving of praise and support.
And they’re right.
That is why we must reinvent our commitment to the principles of our Party and the founding principles of our nation.
As a Party we must bring forth a concrete foundation to run on. A foundation that addresses all that has voters up in arms. We must also not fear that commitment sounding “too strong”. No matter how Republicans address our nation’s problems, liberals will call the G.O.P. “extreme”. But we must remember that our purpose is not to sound like Democrats or to please liberals. Our purpose is to solve problems and be true to the most sacred American document in existence………………the American Constitution.
Americans of every stripe and party affiliation have become acutely aware of the unconstitutional legislative conduct that our process has been advancing. Many Americans are aware of the federal governments overreaching and excesses. They see how states rights are trampled. They are also aware of how our government seems to reward mediocrity and punish success. So now is the time for the Republican Party to come before the nation with a pledge. It is a pledge to recommit ourselves to the Constitution. This pledge must outline several areas of focus in which all candidates will commit to and collectively fight for, as a Party and as individual legislators.
The Pledge of Commitment
We, the people, commit ourselves to the non-negotiable demands of human dignity,…… — Equal Justice — Freedom of Speech — Limited Government Power — Private Property Rights — Religious Tolerance and — Respect for women, life and the Rule of Law.
We are committed to a legislative process that does not propose or pass any legislative agenda or initiative that is of questionable constitutional integrity or inequitable, overreaching or excessive.
For these reasons, we dedicate ourselves and our Party to reigning in the excesses of federal spending and unjust control. As such we are committed to the following 10 initiatives and goals.
- All proposed bills, amendments and spending measures must contain the section of the Constitution that provides the constitutional basis for its consideration and passage.
- The 2.8% Congressional pay raise that the Democrat led Congress passed in 2009 will be repealed and Congress will then subsequently reduce their salaries by an additional 15%.
- Link the salaries of federal legislators to the economy they manipulate.
- Institute a four year federal hiring freeze on all non-essential emergency managemnet security, defense and medical related operations .
- Reduce the federal payroll by eliminating non-essential, emergency management, security, defense and medical positions through attrition.
- Obliterate the existing arcane, oppressive loophole ridden, unfair tax code and adopt a one-rate, Flat Tax Reform Act that does not ask any one American to pay a greater percentage than any other American. One rate for one America.
- Dismantle the Departments of Commerce, Energy, Education and Housing and Urban Development.
- Make healthcare and health insurance more accessible and more affordable by reducing the healthcare bureaucracy and improving the existing free market based healthcare system, expanding portability and adopting tort reforms.
- Make no apologies for our defense of freedom and prosecute enemy combatants in military tribunals, not civilian courts.
- Secure our borders and repair our broken immigration and immigration enforcement laws.
With these legislative goals, we hereby commit ourselves to restoring constitutional integrity to the federal government and seek to be more responsible stewards of the offices the people elect us to.
This Pledge of Commitment is a reform minded agenda that curbs the excesses of government, respects states rights and personal freedoms and demonstrates our desire to have a government that lives within its means and allows the people the means to achieve personal prosperity.
It is time that we accept the fact that the founding principles of yesterday were responsible for our nations strength in the past and are key to our nation’s and Party’s success in the future.
As the next year unfolds, with primaries and political debates, the next leaders of our Party will emerge. Currently, we are in transition. With many highly competitive Republican primaries taking place, slowly the new guard is replacing the old guard and the next generation of conservative leaders will slowly but surely emerge.
Until that time, with no leading figure, with no one face to represent us, it is important that all Republicans take this Pledge of Commitment. Without one great messenger to represent us, it is imperative that we act on the 10 goals outlined, together as one. Unity in our pledge is imperative to our ability to distinguish ourselves from Democrats as we move forward.
We are now just months away from the 2010 midterm elections. Currently, we have the chance for big gains. But these gains will only be realized if we stand for something and be more than naysayers. Our Pledge of Commitment represents very specific measures that indicate a new and clear direction for our nation. With this new direction, if we are united, the ripples that were set in motion by the perfect storm that swept a Republican into the United States Senate from Massachusetts, can be turned into waves that can sweep Republicans into office from New York to California.
As it stands now, of the 37 senate contests being held this November, 19 are occupied by Republicans and 18 by Democrats. If the G.O.P. can get on message and demonstrate how and why we are different from Democrats and why voters should have faith in us, our Party is on track to keeping all 19 Republican seats in our column. At the same time, we are on track to take 7 seats away from Democrats……Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Illinois, Nevada, North Dakota, and Pennsylvania.
If strong opponents emerge in Washington State and New York, Democrat Patty Murray’s seat could be in jeopardy as well as Kirsten Gillibrand’s seat in New York. That would be 9 seats, for a total of 50. That’s not enough to break a tie with Vice President Joe Biden as the President of the Senate, but add to that former Democrat but now current Independent Senator Joe Lieberman of Connecticut who has recently stated his possible willingness to become a Republican, and that would bring us to 51 Republican seats and control.
Another race that could come into play is California.
51 or 52 seats are unlikely though.
New York is becoming increasingly in play as Harold Ford, Jr. starts beating Giilibrand up, but is not there yet. republican susan molinari needs to enter the race. Washington is probably out of reach, the California race is currently static, and Joe Lieberman won‘t switch until he absolutely sure that whatever move he makes assures him of being in hichever Party maintains majority status.
But a lock on picking up seven seats from Democrats is becoming very real. That would reduce liberal’s influence significantly and bring the balance of power much closer with 52 Democrats and 48 Republicans.
In the House, things are even more unstable for Democrats.
With 256 seats held by Democrats and 178 by Republicans (Democrat Rep. Robert Wexler’s Florida seat is vacant but sure to stay in Democrat hands) the G.O.P is looking like it will pick up a minimum of 27 seats which would bring a more balanced 205 Republicans to 230 Democrats. If all the stars were aligned in our favor and we successfully nationalized our campaigns, I see another 13 seats that could be in play. Remarkably, that would change the make up of the House and produce 218 Republican seats to 217 Democrat seats.
Taking control of either branch of Congress is not likely but it is possible. Whether that is achieved or not will depend on how strongly we unite as a Party and convince voters that we are devoted to our Pledge of Commitment. If we can convince voters of our sincere desires to take a more equitable, honest, transparent, and constitutional approach to governance, than even if we don’t take majority control of Congress, we will have made significant gains and put a stop to the partisan dictatorship that is currently reigning supreme in Washington, D.C. .
In addition to a strong, united campaign based on our Pledge of Commitment, strategic and logistical influences will be essential.
As we move ahead our Party must
- Unite and get better organized, especially in the area of networking
- Hammer home our anti-establishment, anti government sentiment and undying commitment to freedom and prosperity.
- Add an emotional component to every issue.
- Create new funding channels, including large numbers of small financial donations.
- Use technology to organize activists, increase transparency, register voters, and change minds
- Invite ideas from the public and develop a way to identify, develop and publicize the best ones.
- Turn talk radio listeners into donors and activists and provide them with constructive and productive ways to help local candidates and national causes.
- Tap into anti-government constituencies ( i.e.: Libertarians and Tea Partiers)
- Poke fun at the Administrations promised “change” and their calls for transparency in government. Mock the “hope” the President was to bring.
- Day and night, night and day, reinforce Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid as the faces and leaders of the Liberal Party.
- Exploit all Democrat weaknesses.
- Develop clear messages and have policy makers become message makers.
- Create media markets and operating systems to inspire, generate and direct activism.
- Work closely with all grassroots organizations.
- Relentlessly exploit the weaknesses of key Democrat leaders.
- Put new blood forward and present new ideas. Let voters know that old guard Republicans are on their way out.
It took us years to find ourselves in minority status and it will take some time to get back to majority status. But Democrats are helping to measure the amount of time our journey takes in months rather than years.
The one thing in Democrats favor is the timing in which voter anger has been realized.
In 1994, when Republicans took control of both branches of Congress for the first time in four decades, the anti-incumbent sentiments were not fully understood until after the mid-term, when Democrat heads rolled. President Obama however, has the fortune of learning about voter dissatisfaction, almost a year before his mid-term elections.
The fact that the President has gone a full week without having a single major speech about healthcare indicates that he finally understands that people are not happy with his agenda and the way things are going. Further evidence of this new found understanding is his sudden attempts to sound fiscally responsible by trying to enforce a very limited spending freeze. On that, liberals are annoyed by the number of pet projects that would be killed by that move and conservatives are screaming about how too little and too late the President’s concerns with spending are. It’s like a fat man claiming to be on a diet because he drank a can of Slim Fast after a six course, 20,000 calorie meal.
But President Obama will surely begin to shift his focus. Since the voters spoke in Massachusetts he has begun to relentlessly attack any and all unpopular institutions, such as banks. It will be our job to remind voters why he has suddenly changed his agenda and what he changes it from while he still holds on to the hope of passing a massive government takeover of healthcare and some of the greatest transfers of power and wealth in the history of mankind. We must remind voters that President Obama and loyal liberal Democrats promised to “fundamentally change America” and then we must demonstrate that those fundamental changes were to the application of the U.S. Constitution which made us the greatest nation in the world………at least until he tried to make his fundamental changes.
Clearly the state of the Republican Party is promising. Many Republican leaders have learned from their past mistakes. Many who did not, are being flushed out through the primary process while others are retiring. Democrats are imploding and voters are open to viable alternatives. So the future is promising. What is questionable though is our ability to convincingly become that viable alternative and our willingness to roll up our sleeves and do what needs to be done to take advantage of the promising future that lies ahead.