Steps for a Much-Needed Republican Resurgence

It will not suffice for Republicans to allow ignorant but charismatic persons -- obsessing over the prurient details of strangers' lives, but ignoring issues that greatly impact the masses -- to speak for the party.
This post was published on the now-closed HuffPost Contributor platform. Contributors control their own work and posted freely to our site. If you need to flag this entry as abusive, send us an email.

It's no longer time for change in America -- it's long past time! The abhorrent content of and process around the health bill is only the most recent example of this administration's substantive weakness and condescending disregard for law and public preference. The spectacle we are seeing in Washington -- lurching from one weird parliamentary strategy to another, inexplicable shifts on what to do about accused 9/11 plotters, economic un-sophistication leading to endless new taxes, Christmas Eve and midnight votes and votes bought for nebulous executive orders and Cornhusker kickbacks -- is one that would embarrass the Chicago city council and does embarrass most Americans, regardless of their ideological persuasion.

Its time for a change to an administration comprised of people who have achieved something in the real, private sector world and appreciate the need for government to support and not oppose the efforts of the private sector, and understand that diplomacy and legal proceedings will not deter those bent on our destruction. It's time for change to an administration that realizes it's role is to serve the people -- not to talk down to them, and to circumvent their preferences.

With its leftist economic policies culminating in the tortured takeover of the health care system, which will only reduce the quality of care while inhibiting economic recovery with its plethora of new taxes and mandates, and naïve, pacifist approach to national security emphasizing "dialogue" with rogue states over respect of all, this administration has demonstrated that it can not govern effectively.

The time is ripe for Republicans to seize the initiative, and get the country back on track to prosperity and peace, through genuine Republican policies.

However, this will also require change on the Republican side as well. Republicans need to embrace traditional economically-oriented values and bona fide service to the country, and disavow the profligate spending, licentious personal behavior and obsession with so-called "social" issues that have brought to power the perpetrators of the spectacles we have recently witnessed. To be clear: our country desperately needs more good jobs, good education for a modern, global economy, buoyant financial markets and security from Islamic terrorism, but not one job has ever been created, not one person educated and not one terrorist ever thwarted by preventing someone else from having an abortion or a gay couple from marrying.

The Republican Party was handed a mandate in Congress as far back as 1994 to lead through small government, low taxes, accountability in education and strong defense, but squandered that mandate, paving the way for the escapades of the Obama-Pelosi-Holder crew, through reckless spending causing huge -- at least by pre-Obama standards -- budget deficits, inappropriate personal behavior of Duke Cunningham, Mark Foley, Tom DeLay, etc. and a preoccupation with involvement in peoples' private lives. The elections of 2006 and 2008 were very clear messages that government must "butt out" of peoples' lives where they are doing no harm to anyone else, and focus on issues that actually matter on Main Street, and that Republicans must not be Democrats 'lite' in throwing money at problems.

It will not suffice for Republicans to allow ignorant but charismatic persons, obsessing over the prurient details of strangers' lives, but ignoring issues that greatly impact the masses, to speak for the party.

We now need a new generation of leadership to step forward, repudiate the missteps of the recent past and make clear that the Republican brand stands for real fiscal conservatism for both individuals and governments, individual liberty, including the right to succeed or fail on one's own merits, strong -- not necessarily expensive -- defense, and responsible personal behavior by candidates and office-holders.

Among other things, this means proper vetting of potential candidates to weed out those who are unwilling or unable to be legitimate Republicans, and meaningful party discipline to ensure that those who are elected not forget why they were elected. At a time when our economic and military leadership are in question and unemployment and educational achievement levels are unsatisfactory, we can not have any more connections to the Jack Abramoffs of the world, tanker plane leasing scandals, proposed Constitutional amendments banning gay marriage or Congressional resolutions intruding into the private affairs of families, such as that of Terri Schiavo, if we hope to restore Republicans to leadership roles.

This means the party leadership should take steps to keep legislators and candidates "on message" with issues that impact the largest numbers of people -- not just a tiny and perhaps mythical "base". This is likely to mean keeping a distance from the Tea Party zealots.

Both the challenges and opportunities are at historically high levels as we head into the next two election cycles. As a result of the moral and intellectual bankruptcy the Democratic Party has recently demonstrated in its zeal to recapture the New Deal, for our country to have a bright future, the Republican Party must meet the challenges and demonstrate that it is willing and able to return to its roots.

Before You Go

Popular in the Community