Even before the election, conservatives were asking the question, should we still be a part of the Republican Party?
It is a very important question to ask, but could it be we are asking the wrong question?
What is the question we should be asking?
The question is not whether conservatives should be a part of the Republican Party. The question should be is the Republican Party still a viable party to be a part of?
Let’s look at some cold hard numbers.
In the last twenty years, the Republicans have lost four of the last six Presidential elections. If we want to base that tally on the popular vote alone, it becomes five of the last six.
In both 2010 and 2012, the Republican Party should have taken control of the Senate. Instead in 2010, the GOP came up short and amazingly enough in a year where mathematics alone should have given the GOP a majority, the Republican Party managed to lose seats in the Senate.
Thanks to the Tea Party wave of 2010, the GOP kept a majority this year in the House, though they lost seats. Part of the ability to keep those seats was a by-product of the 2010 elections. Because the Tea Party got conservatives elected to the state legislatures and State Houses of a number of states, the GOP was able to control the redistricting process.
That may not be enough as Democrats are not openly talking about getting the House back in 2014 and a supermajority in the Senate in 2016. Neither is just wishful thinking.
The Republican Party is rapidly becoming a party incapable of winning elections. There are four people who should be held responsible for this year’s disaster within the Party.
None of them will be held to account.
Let’s start with John Boehner. After his miserable two years as Speaker, he should have voluntarily stepped down. Yes, the GOP only controls the House but can anyone point to a single time that John Boehner was able to achieve anything?
Everyone knows Boehner will not fight Obama on anything. Obama made his first offer in the fiscal cliff negotiations. His offer could be boiled down to give me everything I want and then some and perhaps in a few years we will think about giving you a little of what you want.
John Boehner is the leader of the Republicans. He is the one who must decide to fight or agree. Obama knows this. Many people think Obama’s offer was simply a way of pushing everyone to the fiscal cliff. It may be. But it also shows something else. It shows a total contempt of Boehner because Boehner won’t fight.
The only thing Boehner has done in the last two years is to consolidate his power as Speaker. By all rights, the Republicans should have expanded their majority in this election. Instead, the GOP lost seats. But Boehner will keep his.
Mitch McConnell became Senate Minority Leader in 2007 as the GOP lost control of the Senate. 2006 was a disaster election for the Republican. 2008 was even worse. In 2010 and in 2012, when they should have picked up seats and a majority, they failed.
One of the jobs of the Minority Leader is to work hard to change his title to Majority leader. After three elections, that has not happened and 2014 does not look much better. If the GOP merely performs as it has in the last few elections, by 2016 the Democrats will once again have a super majority in the Senate.
The only thing the Republicans in the Senate seem to be doing is to work hard to make sure they do not have primary competition. The Republican National Senate Committee is now working to get involved in primaries to help incumbents and stop future Tea Party challenges against RINOs.
Reince Priebus took over the chairmanship of the RNC under terrible conditions. Michael Steele had spent the RNC into serious debt. Priebus has done a good job of rebuilding the Party’s finances. But he is the face of the Party. When the Party loses as badly as it did, you need new leadership.
Priebus will not step aside and odds favor his reelection. And with his reelection, the establishment will remain in charge of the Party. The Establishment is already trying to make certain that Republicans lose the 2016 election. The Establishment is already trying to push Jeb Bush as the old white guy next in line.
With the real possibility of Hillary Clinton running in 2016, the Establishment RINOs and the Bushies are salivating about the possibility of another Bush Clinton rematch. The rest of us with brains realize nominating another Bush would be like the Captain of the sinking Titanic calling and telling the engine room to fire the engines up again so they can hit the iceberg one more time.
Finally, there is Karl Rove.
Rove is a part of the Establishment, but he has his own businesses so it is not like the GOP could fire him. Rove raised and spent $350 million and his efforts did not even move the needles. Any contributor who gives another dime to any of Rove’s organizations is a fool. Save your self the anguish and just go blow the money in Vegas. You’ll have a better time.
Can you imagine what would have happened if only 10% of that money had been sent to local grass roots organizations? Tea Party groups at the local level have one thing in common. By necessity, they are very frugal. Tea Party groups know how to do a lot with a little.
The greater Republican world is not going to change its leadership. Those who drove the last train wreck are still in charge.
We conservatives have often said that the Establishment would rather lose than see conservatives win. At this point, the question we need to ask is, “Can the Republican Party even win elections anymore?”
That is the question we need to ask.
If the answer to that question is no, then it directs our next steps.
Anyone. . .any comments on this--thanks?
While I agree with an earlier comment that the Republican Party has left us, I don't believe us leaving the party is the answer. A third party won't work, instead we need to infiltrate the republican party, working from the lowest levels, up. We need to elect people at the local levels, we need to get like-minded people on local Republican Town and City Committees,and work our way up to the state level. This is the only way we will ever change the current culture.
We need to define what we think the party should be, not let the party define us.
That was the original plan but it isn't working. The conventional GOP doesn't seem to want to be associated with the Tea Party and I don't see us conservatives compromising our American principles to accomodate them - might as well join the Democrats in that case.
Laura, I agree that the establishment wants nothing to do with those of us in the Tea party. This is why we have to work within the system by "infiltrating", for lack of a better term, the party. It wont happen over night but it can happen.
There is one criticism of the GOP which is so true and works in our favor, they are part of old men. As each one retires or passes, we need to work to replace them with real conservatives. I know I am involved with a group working on that now here in MA and it is working in at least one local region through one of our tea party groups.
Keep up the good work, Paul.
No surprise here. . .the establishment strikes again (underlining is mine):
by Matthew Boyle 3 Dec 2012, 4:45 PM PDT
House Speaker John Boehner and GOP leadership have removed several conservative House members from their respective powerful committee positions, Breitbart News has learned.
Effective next Congress, leadership pulled Kansas Republican Rep. Tim Huelskamp, Michigan Republican Rep. Justin Amash and Arizona Republican Rep. David Schweikert off committees from which they could exert conservative pressure on fiscal matters. Amash and Huelskamp were pulled from the Budget Committee and Schweikert from the Financial Services Committee.
Huelskamp, a freshman elected during the 2010 tea party wave, thinks the leadership move to pull him from the powerful committee is revenge for him standing up for conservatism. “It is little wonder why Congress has a 16 percent approval rating: Americans send principled representatives to change Washington and get punished in return,” Huelskamp said in a Monday night statement. “The GOP leadership might think they have silenced conservatives, but removing me and others from key committees only confirms our conservative convictions. This is clearly a vindictive move, and a sure sign that the GOP Establishment cannot handle disagreement."
Earlier on Monday in an interview with Breitbart News, Huelskamp again reaffirmed his support for the Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) anti-tax pledge. He’s encouraging his colleagues in the House to come out publicly against potential tax increases and asking citizens across the country to help.
Huelskamp thinks his most recent challenge to his GOP colleagues – asking them to reaffirm their pledges – is hardly the only conservative thing he’s done to spark leadership retaliation. In his Monday night statement, he listed out a number of other conservative things he’s done that he thinks caused leadership to turn their fire on him.
FreedomWorks president Matt Kibbe bashed the move, too, saying in a statement that “[t]his is a clear attempt on the part of Republican leadership to punish those in Washington who vote the way they promised their constituents they would – on principle – instead of mindlessly rubber-stamping trillion dollar deficits and the bankrupting of America. This is establishment thinking, circling the wagons around yes-men and punishing anyone that dares to take a stand for good public policy.”
Spokespersons for Amash and Schweikert didn’t immediately respond to Breitbart News’ request for comment. A spokesperson for Boehner didn’t either.
Online contact form: http://www.speaker.gov/contact
Thank You Nancy. This certainly is a hostile act by leadership. You said it was no surprise.
Even though I know all in Washington has gone for the present leadership, it still always amazes me. I will never get used to what has happened. The three congressmen that were removed from their committee positions by the (R) leadership should be given medals for standing up for conservative fiscal positions and representing their constituents regardless of threats, punishment and loss of their position.
I will not regret leaving the Republican Party. They do not stand for or represent anything I believe in.
I wish that I could share the optimism that some hold that "things will work themselves out."
We continue to talk about a Republican Party and how we will become relevant within it. Let's face it! If we were not relevant after the 2010 midterms, we will never be!
In many ways, Tea Party was informed of the dance. But, we were never allowed closer than the door. A stunned, bedraggled Republican party gratefully accepted our help in 2010. Then, after an overwhelming turnaround they returned to their 2008 formula.
What irked me the most was the manner that Mitt Romney was "shoved down the throats" of the base. The slogan "anybody but Obama" became the watchwords for his campaign. As predicted, we eventually accepted Mitt, just like we accepted McCain in '08.
The Tea Party needs to forge a new alliance. We need a catchy new name. Any ideas? I have one!
"The Jeffersonian Party."
We would forge a likely three-way blend of "Constitutionalist Republicans, John F. Kennedy Democrats and Libertarians."
My past two posts on Eagles for America underlined three proposals that would differentiate Jeffersonians from Republicans and Democrats. Anyone interesting in reviewing them, please visit www.eaglesforamerica.com
I have read numerous comments and insights regarding third parties in America. To be sure, the country badly needs a third party. Disquietingly, there is no room for a third party. Or, for that matter, a second party!
What we currently have is something similar to the "Party Democracy" practiced in the former Soviet Union. We have opposite extremes of the same ingredient: "Big government run by career politicians in Washington, D.C." True, there are differing visions on how the big government should be administered. But, it's "same song, second verse."
Like the Tories in 1770 Pennsylvania who said, we could "never be anything but an English colony," we are burdened with millions unable to "think outside of the box." But, there are more than a few with the vision that spawns greatness!
I think with Boehners actions the Republican party is done. We need a party that will present our values, whether it be The Tea Party or something else.