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John Wayne's Holster: As You Sow, So Shall You Reap
John Wayne's Holster
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Thursday, November 09, 2006

As You Sow, So Shall You Reap



Now its official! With Tuesdays mid-term elections, the Democrats have taken control of both houses of Congress. They hold a 229-196 advantage in the House of Representatives and a 51-49 advantage in the Senate.

Many Republicans are in disbelief. It was thought by most of the pundits that the Dems would gain control of the house, but most thought the GOP would maintain the majority in the Senate. The fact that both houses were lost should serve as a big wake-up call to the Republican Party!

Looking a little closer at the elections, several things become apparent. For starters, the Dems have a big mess to clean up. As they will soon find out, it is not much fun walking in behind an elephant. Perhaps the biggest thing to keep in mind it this - Conservatism did not lose! Republicans lost!

I say that for several reasons. First, many of the Democrats elected on Tuesday were not strong liberal Democrats of the Kennedy or Pelosi mold. Rather, they were conservative Democrats of the Joe Lieberman mold. Incidently, the Independent Joe Lieberman defeated the Dems chosen candidate Ned Lamont in Connecticut. Second, eight states had some sort of referendum regarding the protection of “traditional marriage” up for a vote. In 7 of 8 states, those referendums were passed. Similarly, 11 states had proposed restrictions on the governments ability to seize private property for public use. In nine of those states, property rights were protected.

I also believe that the recent vote reflects more about the peoples dissatisfaction with the current Presidential administration than peoples affection for liberalism. It is not the Dems offer a better plan - in fact they have none. This vote was about change for the sake of change.

In other words, the recent loss at the polls by the GOP is due largely to the arrogance of its leaders and the fact that many Republicans have betrayed the conservative principles that got them elected in the first place. It seems that the Republicans were trying to be all things to all people. They were trying to move to the middle to make themselves more “presentable” to a wider range of voters.

Well I got news for them. I didn’t work!

Take a look at the GOP’s behavior during the Bush years. They have rejected the cornerstones of the party’s philosophy. The GOP has long prided itself in reducing taxes, shrinking the government, controlling spending, and maintaining a strong national defense. Those are the principles Ronald Reagan and Newt Gingrich represented. But sadly, they are not the principles of George W. Bush or the current Republican leadership.

Bush has increased the size of the government, and the GOP went along without much of a fight. While Bush did reduce taxes, he has increased spending in a major way. And this was all done during a time when we are at war and expeditures are higher than usual. Military spending aside, Bush has spent money like a drunken sailor – with the major difference being that the money Bush spent was ours. At least the sailor is spending his own money.

Bush’s spending habits are the antithesis of everything the GOP has prided itself on. In fact, Bush has outspent Lyndon Johnson and the Great Society. Even when you adjust LBJ’s numbers for inflation, Bush still wins hands down. To be fair, the Senate Appropriations committee has to share some responsibility for the increase in spending with all their earmarkings, pork-barrel projects, and bridges to nowhere. However, that committee is chaired by Thad Cochran (R-MS) and is controlled by the GOP. Moreover, Bush has signed off on everything they slid across his desk.

National security is another issue. While many, including myself, will argue that the war in Iraq was necessary, most will agree that the Bush administration has failed miserably in managing the war. On top of that, they have left us virtually unprotected at home. Our borders remain open, allowing the passage of millions of illegal aliens who are placing an unbearable financial burder on our country. In addition, other unseemly characters are also passing through like shit through a goose. These people mean to do this country harm. Many citizens in our country have been trying to get the Bush administration to do something to check the flow of illegal immigrants. Instead, Bush is pushing a workers amnesty program while the border still remains open. Bush was finally dragged kicking and screaming, and agreed to build a fence. But in case you missed it, the money to build the fence is not to be found.

I could go on, but I think the point has been made. The GOP lost because they betrayed their principles and arrogantly patronized their base. Now is gut-check time. They still have a chance to regain some of their lost power in the 2008 elections, but that will require them to get back to their roots. If they don’t, you can count on the Dems increasing their power and running the show for a long time to come.

1 Comments:

At 7:18 AM, Anonymous Dave Bertocchi said...

Joe:

This is your best post yet. I like the line "Conservatism did not lose, Republicans lost". I totaly agree that the Republican Party has lost its way and needs to get back to its base (controled spending,smaller government, familey values, etc). I voted for Bush for president but think he will go down in history as one of the worst presidents in history. We can only hope for a lame duck secession for the next two years so he doesn't do any more damage. Maybe then we can get a true conservative in there.

 

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