POLITICO Analysis: "How Republicans lose by winning"
The 2014 mid-term Congressional election is likely to increase Republican margins in Congress generally, with a pretty good chance of the G.O.P. retaking the Senate. President Obama would be the lamest of lame ducks.
And the 2016 Presidential election - with many more people voting - is likely to keep the Oval Office in Democratic hands.
Is the United States nearly destined to have that kind of divided government, given the demographics of the electorate in mid-term vs. Presidential elections?
Consider this analysis from Todd Purdum in POLITICO...
I'd agree with the idea that the Republican Party seems to be a Congressional Party and the DEMS a national party. However, I see hope in the G.O.P. as in a number of state primaries: Kentucky, North Carolina, Georgia, Idaho, and Oregon as Republican voters are choosing mainstream Republicans over the TEA party types.
Maybe they've learned something from 2012 where TEA folks like Christine O'Donnell, etc., gave away solid G.O.P. seats in Congress to DEMS, because they were too radical, not willing to compromise at all with anyone who doesn't march in lockstep with them 100%.
Maybe the Republicans realize that in order to win in 2016, they've got to be a big-tent party that welcomes all rather than a party that welcomes only Dittoheads who listen to Limbaugh/Hannity/Beck, etc. By the way Rush still has the largest radio audience in the U.S., but that equals only about 5% of the total radio audience, just to put it into perspective.
So the G.O.P. may finally be waking up that you can't force your policies on folks, as when the TEA party's Ted Cruz shut down the government, costing the taxpayers 2-Billion dollars, proving to the public that the TEA folks will waste taxpayers' money IF it fits their agenda, making them no better than mainstream Republicans or Democrats.
So I believe that yes, there is hope for the Republicans that sanity will again be restored to the party of Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt.
Thu, May 22, 2014 10:13am
I wish I could believe you were right, Mike. But time and time again, all I've heard from the far right and Tea folks is, "If we win by sacrificing our principles, we lose." There is no room for compromise in the Tea playbook.
To be fair, that's because they believe they hold the moral high ground... that we are a Christian nation, and they cannot compromise because then they go against the will of God. So it's not necessarily that they hate compromise on its own. It's that, if you believe your platform is directed by God, how could you compromise on that? How do you compromise on God's word? It's not that they won'tcompromise - it's that they can't. And that's why their platform plays so well to their base... and so poorly to everyone else.
Mike from Delaware
Thu, May 22, 2014 10:55am
Shawn: I can see your point for abortion and gay marriage as those are moral issues, but the social safety-net stuff, Obamacare, the economy, etc., are not moral/religious issues, so they should be able to come to the table and make some compromises.
My point though was that the Republicans realize that many of their voters either stayed home or voted for the DEM candidate rather than vote for a Christine O'Donnell-type candidate, so by not putting the nutty fringe on the ballot and keeping the "normal" Republican, they'll have far broader appeal. For many mainstream Republicans, abortion and gay marriage aren't top issues, or even important to them, so those candidates won't tick off as many moderate or liberal voters as the TEA folks do.
So actually I could understand the DEMS not being happy with this latest happening in the Republican primaries. Normal Republicans are far more electable than radical TEA party folks, thus making the DEMS' job of winning more difficult. The TEA party actually helps DEMS win elections.
Thu, May 22, 2014 1:11pm
I actually agree with the "How Republicans lose by winning" premise presented in the POLITICO piece. The 2014 elections are more about hot-button topics (Benghazi, Personhood Rights, IRS scandal, 0bamaCare, the VA scandal, etc.) and 2016 is more about the nation-at-large (though Benghazi will remain a main topic IF Hillary decides to run). 2016 should be more about overall direction of where our country should go from where it currently exists...further Left, Moderate or swing back to the Right? The Left (from my vantage point) hasn't accomplished too many of the promises made by this president and our economy, world-power status, energy independence and manufacturing (to put it bluntly) suck.
I (as a Tea Party supporter) actually don't think that a Tea Party favorite (like Ted Cruz or Rand Paul) should be the headliner on the Republican ticket...my hope remains that the Republicans pick a steady/strong governor with a long list of accomplishments for their state...not another "firebrand" senator.
As a sidenote...I wonder how some of the Republican primaries this week would have turned out had Independents been allowed to vote in those primaries...
Mike from Delaware
Thu, May 22, 2014 3:30pm
EarlGrey: I agree with your point about not running Cruz or Paul or any other firebrand Senator or House member, but yes, a Governor whose state is doing well under his/her leadership. Three come to mind off the top of my head: Rick Perry [Texas], Jan Brewer [Arizona], and Scott Walker [Wisconsin].
Thu, May 22, 2014 6:59pm
I think we should get "Dr. Utopia's" take on the subject.
Fri, May 23, 2014 8:36am
Fri, May 23, 2014 8:52am
Shawn: You are correct...there should have been outrage then, just as there should be outrage now over Benghazi.
Both sides are quiet if it's "their guy (or gal)"...so let's stop the partisanship and hold ALL of them accountable.
Fri, May 23, 2014 9:07am
HA! Now that's a good one! YOU preaching about stopping partisanship? You who constantly say Democrats this and Liberals that? You can't constantly rail against everything on the left and then tell people you disagree with to stop the partisanship!
But fine... were you anti-Bush during his 2004 re-election because of some of the above statistics? The way you're anti-Hillary because of Benghazi?
Fri, May 23, 2014 9:37am
Shawn: No I wasn't anti-Bush in '04...and I admit I was WRONG! Can you do the same?
BTW, if you pay closer attention to my posts...my "railing" is against the PROGRESSIVE Democrats AND PROGRESSIVE Republicans.
Mike from Delaware
Fri, May 23, 2014 10:51am
Did the media give all those attacks under Bush Jr. much coverage? I'm sure Fox "News" ignored it as much as possible, but what about MSNBC, CNN, and the major networks/press? I'm embarrassed to admit I don't remember them.
But I believe you both are correct; both sides need to stop covering up for their guy or gal when this kind of thing happens during their watch.
EarlGrey: The sad truth is, Benghazi won't kill Hillary's chances of winning in 2016; half the population is chafing at the bit to finally get a woman President, not to mention a woman President that would support women's issues [unlike a Michelle Bachmann presidency for example]. So EarlGrey, you're fighting the "sisterhood" and that's a lose/lose battle. Better for the Republicans to find other issues that tell the public what they WILL DO if given the power, rather than trying to get folks to not vote for Hillary.
Only the TEA folks will vote for your candidate, because they want anyone but Hillary/any DEM. That's a losing campaign strategy. Give folks a reason to vote FOR your candidate, how this person would make the average Joe/Jane's life better. THAT was what Reagan did. He gave folks hope and a vision for the city on the hill, etc., etc. After the misery of the Carter years, America was ready for that. I believe after the misery of the last couple of years of Bush Jr + the 8 years of Obama, America is again ready for a similar positive vision. People are tired of the fighting, the lies, the negativity, making promises they don't intend on keeping, etc., etc. Some straight-shooting, plain truth, no BS, positive vision for how to make America again. That ole Charlie Daniels song "In America" comes to mind. We need someone who can unite us again as a people. Yep, those are big shoes to fill, but that's what's needed.
So a 21st-century version of Newt Gingrichs' Contract for America is a good place to start. Find someone who's humble enough, yet charismatic enough, a strong leader, who can tell it straight, and get 'er done.
It's one reason I still like Rick Perry. He comes across to me that way. There may be others in the G.O.P. who also fit this description, but you get the idea.
Fri, May 23, 2014 11:18am
Mike: I'm not interested in Benghazi to "fight" the "sisterhood"...I want those responsible for letting it happen, not sending in re-enforcements and then covering up the scandal/catastrophe held accountable. IF Hillary isn't one of those responsible, then let the facts reveal she wasn't...
Hillary's health & age are her biggest weaknesses in 2016.
And, I agree with you that someone like Perry looks like a pretty solid Republican choice...if only he can (1)not implode during the debates and (2) do a much better job highlighting his home state what he has accomplished in Texas and around the world.
Mike from Delaware
Fri, May 23, 2014 1:33pm
EarlGrey: I agree that we do need to find out who was responsible; it would just play better if the TEA/G.O.P. folks on air including Radio Talk would frame it that way rather than a "witch hunt" to get Hillary.
It's that sort of stuff that really hurts the TEA/G.O.P.
I also agree whatever the health thing is with Hillary and her age are definite issues, just like Beau Biden's health and lack of public appearances are issues for him running for anything.
I also agre on Rick Perry; hopefully he's getting some training on doing debates and yes, he needs to do a far better job of highlighting how well his home state has done under his leadership.
I guess his natural humility side is strong, but needs to be pulled back and allow himself to boast a bit more; after all, this is politics, and he's got to sell or convince the national public who don't live in Texas that he's the person to run our nation, if he hopes to win in 2016, assuming he runs.
Fri, May 23, 2014 8:32pm
Well, I got an even better one for y'all. I WAS pro-Bush in '04 and I'm STILL pro-Bush and proud of it! Now whatta ya gotta say about that?
Fri, May 23, 2014 8:43pm
By the way Shawn, there may have been some attacks on foreign soil during Bush's term, but after 9-11 there were NO further attacks on American soil. Under Obama, I can think of at least one. Anybody ever hear of the BOSTON MARATHON?
Fri, May 23, 2014 8:45pm
Oh yeah, and how about TWO shootings at Fort Hood? And what about all those people being massacred in VA hospitals? Huh?
Fri, May 23, 2014 9:09pm
And while we're at it, why don't we throw in Newtown, Connecticut?
Mike from Delaware
Sat, May 24, 2014 6:42am
Mrpizza: so Bush was your "greatest President in our lifetimes"? Well no offense, but you have low standards. You're proud that he took a surplus & made a deficit by starting a bogus war in Iraq? Killing many Americans for nothing? Well, as they say, different strokes for different folks.
Sat, May 24, 2014 8:21am
Well he sure has been topped by the bozohead that's in there now! And no, he wasn't the "greatest president in our lifetimes". Ronald Reagan was our greatest president EVER!
Sat, May 24, 2014 8:24am
By the way Mike, you need to be careful. You're starting to sound like Bill Smith.
Sat, May 24, 2014 2:04pm
I guess I need to clarify that I believe the "bogus" war in Iraq is the reason why there were no further terrorist attacks on American soil after 9-11.
Consider me the dissenting vote on the jury of public opinion.
Mike from Delaware
Sat, May 24, 2014 8:47pm
Mrpizza: I've never agreed with the US going into Iraq, since Bush first uttered the words. So I'm not sure what you mean I'm sounding like Bill Smith. I think he'd be offended by that as he's far better educated than I.
Sat, May 24, 2014 10:25pm
Well you said I have low standards, something Bill would probably say. But that's okay. Dissent is healthy.
Mike from Delaware
Sat, May 24, 2014 11:34pm
Mrpizza: if you consider George W the dumber brother to be a great President then yes You do have a low standard, sorry that's my opinion.
Sun, May 25, 2014 5:16am
The only argument I would make about that is that those who voted for Obama have a much lower standard than that. I don't think W was a "great" president, certainly nowhere near the greatness of Reagan, but I do see him as one who did what was necessary to keep the country safe in the face of whatever opposition he encountered. The terrorists surely feared him, but they sure don't fear Obama because all he does is talk in platitudes about "how we need to get to the bottom of this", etc. but never takes any meaningful action. In every single scandal, he talks about what should be done, but it's never done, and that's by design.
I'm very surprised with all that's happened since Obama's re-election that nobody seems to long for the "good ole days" of Bush. In fact, I long for the "good ole days" of Bill Clinton, which weren't really that good because many of the issues we have with terrorism today are the result of inaction by his administration.
Bottom line is, for all G.W. Bush's human frailties, he's the only president I've seen who has taken any meaningful action to keep America safe. Whether or not all the action was the correct action will obviously be forever open to debate.
Sun, May 25, 2014 1:05pm
Another observation I've made which I should also point out is that much of this to-do about Bush is a tactic to deflect blame from Obama. Anytime conservatives point out anything a liberal gets caught in the defenders will find something a conservative did so as to make the liberal look "not so bad".
Truth is, they know they can't defend Obama so they use Bush as a scapegoat and then go as far as to say that it's because of Bush that Obama can't fix things that are going wrong. Trouble with that is, Bush has now been out of office for five years. Ronald Reagan fixed the mess left by Jimmy Carter a lot faster than that.
Time for Obama to accept personal responsibility for his actions, or lack thereof.
Mike from Delaware
Sun, May 25, 2014 3:52pm
Mrpizza: OK, Little Bush as President.
Strike 1: Little Bush started the Iraq War. There was no reason for us to go into Iraq. There were NO WMD's. He didn't even wait for Hans Blitz of the UN to finish their inspection, because he KNEW they wouldn't find any WMD's and thus lose his excuse to go into Iraq to get Saddam Hussein.
Strike 2: Instead of a covert military action to get Bin Laden, he had a full blown war into Afghanistan. To add insult to injury a number of times they almost had Bin Laden, but screwed up and missed the opportunity. What finally worked was a covert military action of Navy Seals. Think of how much money, lives, etc, would have been saved had Little Bush tried that approach. Sadly, Obama hasn't pulled us out of Afghanistan yet, even though Bin Laden is dead. So the waste continues.
Strike 3: In both cases of Iraq and Afghanistan, neither war was funded by tax revenue as WWII, Korea, or Vietnam, so we now have a gigantic deficit. Clinton had his faults, no doubt about that, but Clinton worked with Newt Gingrich and between the two of them the Clinton years had a surplus that we lost due to Little Bush, because heave forbid the wealthiest 2% pay a dime more in taxes.
Strike 4 [he had two turns at bat - two terms]: he took all the good will most nations had for the US [especially after 9/11] and turned them against us because of his arrogant attitude of if you don't agree with us then you're the enemy nonsense he'd spew.
Strike 5: He and his cronies sat back and watched as the banks, etc, screwed the rest of us causing the crash of 2007, because heaven forbid he'd stop his fellow rich pals from doing what they want, even if it almost pushed the entire planet into a major Depression, the worse since Herbert Hoover's [a fellow Republican] 1929 Stock Market Crash. Granted the dismantling of the policies that effectively canceled out the safeguards and regulations from the New Deal of Democrat FDR started in the 1980's under Reagan and continued on into the 90's under Clinton and Papa Bush.
Strike 6: [So, he had two turns at bat- two terms- and struck out both times]: He was dumb enough to propose that we put Social Security into the Stock Market. The only good thing about the wars in Iraq/Afghanistan is it kept Little Bush busy enough he didn't get around to trying to do that stupid idea. He never understood that Social Security is an insurance plan, not an investment plan or a 401K plan. Simply it's like a life insurance policy where you pay your premiums each month you work and when you get to the magic age, you start collecting the benefits [unlike a life insurance policy that requires you to die]. It's not a failed government program, it's worked as designed for 75 years, what changed is America where we have fewer kids and people live longer, AND the knuckleheads from both party's in Congress used that money for other stuff.
Sorry, I don't miss Little Bush or his master Dick Cheney running the nation. Sadly the dumber brother George W. rather than the smarter brother Jeb became President. Jeb probably won't get the chance any time soon if at all to run for President, because of his brothers' poor job as President.
Like Obama or not, he'll go down in history as yes the first black President [that is of historic significance], but also as the President who did succeed in getting some sort of national healthcare plan implemented [remember this has been a dream of Democrats and even some Republicans since Harry Truman was President [in other words, my entire lifetime]. Got to give Obama credit for that, even if Obamacare isn't the best way to do it, it was a way to get it passed given today's GOP/TEA attitudes towards such things that help the little guy. In other words, he out smarted you TEA guys, and that really ticks you off. It is what it is.
Rather than get into some long back and forth argument with you, I've just given you my main reasons for not liking Little Bush as President. Feel free to offer your reply, I'll give you the last word, because I realize we'll just have to agree to disagree.
Have a great Memorial Day tomorrow, take a few moments to remember our Military men/women who made the supreme sacrifice so that we can have such discussions freely, and go and get sunburned as we BBQ hot dogs, hamburgers, chicken, ribs, etc. Hopefully in the future we'll not ask them to make such a sacrifice unless it is to truly defend our nation's security, not just for some political crap that makes no difference in the end. Be at Peace.
Sun, May 25, 2014 4:41pm
And possibly the president who succeeded in turning America into a communist hellhole.
Sun, May 25, 2014 8:37pm
By the way, I don't necessarily dispute EVERYTHING you say about Bush. My main point is that he's been out of office for five years and Obama using him as a crutch is akin to somebody 50 years old blaming their dysfunctional behavior on their childhood. At some point you gotta grow up.
Mike from Delaware
Mon, May 26, 2014 9:25am
I'm continuing this on the Weekend Free for All page.
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