The Republican Party appears to be entering a deep, brutal political winter, and few things in politics are more deserved. The Politico has reported
that Republicans expect to lose up to 20 more seats this year, and seem to be at wit's end as to what to do about it. Former Rep. Mickey Edwards, an Oklahoma Republican, said: “I don’t know that I have seen a year like this, ever. The general attitude toward Republicans is so bad nationally.”
Plus, they have no money. I know I've been deleting email after email from NRCC chairman Tom Cole begging for support, and apparently that's the norm - they have no money. The NRCC is basically telling their House members that their on their own.
The Iraq war is the most obvious problem, but the disease runs deeper. What did the Republicans accomplish? Yesterday's California Supreme Court decision mandating gay marriage is a case in point. Back in the Clinton years, the Republicans passed the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) which allowed states to set their own rules but ensured that gay marriages would not be imposed on states that did not want them. Fair enough. But then the Massachusetts Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage, and the issue arose anew, as it became clear that activist judges could impose this social revolution by fiat. The Republicans had an opportunity to push a constitutional amendment that would have taken the issue out of the hands of the courts and ensured it could only be decided by popular vote. But they preferred instead to use it as a political weapon - a wedge issue - with which to bludgeon Democrats. So they proposed an amendment that would ban gay marriage outright everywhere for all time, and of course it went nowhere. A more moderate amendment could have passed easily, but then they would have lost the issue. Instead, we now find that the largest state in the Union has now mandated a potentially society-redefining revolution based on the opinion of 4 people!
We needn't go into the rest of the failures - massive budget deficits, massive trade deficits, continued mass immigration on an unprecedented scale, further balkanization of our society, a foreign policy predicated on the insane notion that small, rag-tag gangs of terrorists and belligerent though militarily impotent and inept states constitute a threat of equal danger to the U.S. as Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia.
Here's announced-libertarian candidate Bob Barr on the Federal Marriage Amendment
. The former congressman is surely performing a valuable public service by providing us a meaningful way not to vote for McCain without having to actually vote for Obama. But do we want Obama as president rather than McCain?
Of course. Obama will do little differently as president than McCain, except for one critical item: he will get us out of Iraq earlier than 2013. Now I'm not naive enough to think Obama will actually just pull us out of there, damn the consequences. I think he should - better to allow the Iraqis to fight it out and come up with a solution quickly than for us to sit their for five (or fifty) more years, bleeding red and green to accomplish nothing better than could be accomplished via an all out two-year civil war. But I'm pretty sure he will get us out of there within a few years. Otherwise, does anyone really think that McCain's insatiable desire to be loved by today's Illuminati (NYT, WaPo, NPR, Jon Stewart(yes, Jon Stewart!)) will not have him working with the Democratic congress to continue the massive growth of government?
But let's look on the bright side. Under Obama, the healing of our military can begin. Perhaps we will actually reduce our military spending to a level more in line with the actual dangers we face (and our ability to pay). Yes, social spending and intrusive federal management of our lives will grow. But one thing pessimistic observers often overlook is that the basic function of the free market is alive and well. The concept of competitive pricing and private ownership of capital rules the world, in Russia, in China, across Europe, South America - pretty much everywhere. No one is proposing a return of welfare - ever hear Obama or Hillary suggest we bring back welfare? While some (mostly sensible) prison-sentencing, police-interrogation and drug-legislation reforms are brought up, no one is suggesting that we have too much law enforcement or that violent criminals are being treated too harshly. And neither Obama nor Hillary could possibly bring about the rebirth of the Soviet Union and its drive for world domination. In short, some of the most fundamental conservative victories of the last 30 years are safely with us and will endure whatever might transpire over the next 4 years. And I'm pretty sure the Democrats have learned their lesson from last time they controlled the government - the 1994 Gingrich Revolution. So cheer up - the really bad stuff - the demographic disaster - won't happen for another couple decades.