I am heading back to New York and back to the fight. The election is instructive. It was not a vote for a "Democratic plan or platform," there is none. It was a Republican smack down. It was not a vote for Pelosi politics.
The Bush Doctrine was a bold, ambitious historic initiative to fight the Global Jihad but was administered to (as opposed to executed) with a half hearted, half assed, pansified plan.
Big government, immigration, the big issues that Americans were passionate about all but languished. But the contraindications of the slap down will be as Jim, one of my readers wrote;
Selling out the troops to Al-Queda
Selling out Israel to Hezbollah
Selling out the economy to welfare pimps
Selling out the tax cuts and a robust economy.
Selling out good to evil.
Looking in the rearview mirror. That's what the Republicans should be doing going forward. They squandered their historic majority and they were punished. But let's not kid ourselves. The American people have been clubbed to death like baby seals by a drive by, jihad loving media and it took its toll. Years and years of lies and propaganda had its effect. The economy is the best case in point. We are experiencing the strongest most robust economy in recent history and if you listened to the media you'd have thought we were in the midst of a great depression. But it had it's effect. It certainly had it delterious effect on the public's perception of the war on Iraq - practically rooting for the enemy.
This is why the blogosphere is of critical importance. Where else will people get the facts? The news. If we build it, they will come. And so we must build it.
What others are saying;
"Nice Guys" finish last....inevitable. You are either perceived as weak or lacking passion.
Notice how Democrats move LOCK STEP AGAINST ANYTHING Republicans do...Bush do anything right? IMPOSSIBLE !
On the other hand, Republicans are constantly reaching out, accommodating, deferential...GAG, GAG, GAG.
"Wrong Direction" polls - Democrats state something like 90-10 on that one...they concede NOTHING and simply REFUSE to be ruled by republican anything. Republicans just try to get along.
Someone on this forum said politics is a bloodsport - so true. Democrats are ALWAYS on the attack while Republicans try to play nice and find the noble intention in their enemies somewhere.
To not hold the Senate is inexcusable. All the close races lost (VA, Montana, Missouri)...unbelievable
for the 2006 election. With the House in Democrat control, we can expect to see flying subpoenas and impeachment hearings, and big parties across the Middle East.
This is a big loss, and it will hurt the GOP and the Bush administration. Even if we do hold the Senate, we will have to find compromise candidates for the federal bench, and also look forward to more taxes and regulation. Free trade is a goner. The prosecution of the war on terror will get limited by a probable repeal of the Patriot Act, or at least an attempt to do so, and I'm very sure the Democrats will move to defund the operations in Iraq by a date certain in order to force a "phased redeployment".
And that's not even counting the myriad investigations that Democrats will launch against the Bush administration. Republicans will keep it from getting out of hand, but the Democrats will want to build enough damaging allegations to win again in 2008.
However, in terms of policy at least, the American people have spoken. The majority endorsed these views, and now we have to see them play out. We can certainly criticize it -- and we will -- but we have to respect the voice of the American electorate. They wanted a different direction, and now they have to experience its consequences.
Conservatism did not lose
... The GOP lost. Conservatism prevailed. "San Francisco values" may control the gavels in Congress, but they do not control America. Property rights initiatives limiting eminent domain won big. MCRI, the anti-racial preference measure, passed resoundingly. Congressman Tom Tancredo, the GOP's leading warrior against illegal immigration--opposed by both the open-borders Left and the open-borders White House--won a fifth term handily. Gay marriage bans won approval in 3 states. And as of this writing, the oil tax initiative, Prop. 87--backed by deep-pocketed Hollywood libs, is trailing badly in California.
How Bush Should Handle Loss [Jonah Goldberg] I think James Baker and Dick Cheney should take Bush out to the woods around Camp David. After 24 hours in a sweat lodge, he should be given only a loin cloth, a hunting knife and a canteen of water. Bush should then set out to track and kill a black bear, after which he should eat its still beating heart so he can absorb its spirit. He should then fly back to Washington in Marine 1. His torso still scratched from the bear's claws, his face bloodied and steaming in the November chill, he should immediately give a press conference at which he throws the bearskin on the front row of the press corps, completely enveloping Helen Thomas, declaring, "I'm not going anywhere."
This will send important messages to Democrats and well as to our enemies overseas, who are no doubt high-fiving as we speak.
But I really liked what Hugh Hewitt had to say going forward.
I have to assume that the Dems will get the Senate as well as the House, though Conrad Burns may be able to pull off an upset, in which case I hope the GOP in the Senate reject the silly rules they agreed to the last time the body was 50/50. They got no cooperation from Dems over the past two years, and if by good luck and the Veep's vote they have the majority, they have got to begin to use it.
The long and short of this bad but not horrific night was that majorities must act like majorities. The public cares little for the "traditions" of the Senate or the way the appropriations process used to work. It demands results. Handed a large majority, the GOP frittered it away. The chief fritterer was Senator McCain and his Gang of 14 and Kennedy-McCain immigration bill, supplemented by a last minute throw down that prevented the NSA bill from progressing or the key judicial nominations from receiving a vote. His accomplice in that master stroke was Senator Graham. Together they cost their friend Mike DeWine his seat in the Senate, and all their Republican colleagues their chairmanships. Senator McCain should rethink his presidential run. Amid the ruins of the GOP's majority there is a clear culprit.
A second loser was Bill Frist. To be the Majority Leader of a majority that did not lead is lethal to his presidential ambitions. Like Senator McCain, it would be easier on everyone if he just exited the stage.
President Bush will not flag in the pursuit of the war, and Senator Santorum is now available for a seat on the SCOTUS should one become available. GOP senators will have the chance to select leadership equal to the new world of politics which, as the past two years have demonstrated, does not reward timidity.
House Republicans as well have to rebuild from the ground up and with an eye on those members best equipped to debate the almost certain overreaches of the Democratic majority. From the first day of the new Congress it is going to be a partisan slugfest or a GOP dismemberment. The GOP must find the fighters with talent and promote them.
The anti-illegal immigration absolutists got their heads handed to them. As the fence goes up, their rhetoric must go down --dramatically.
But there is good news as well.
Hillary's path back to the White House is much more difficult with her party in the majority in the House, and much much more difficult if the Senate falls to Harry Reid's command as well. Clarity as to her party's fecklessness will be back within the first six months, and the GOP frontrunners --Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney-- do not have to serve in the almost certain to be paralyzed Senate.
The Beltway-Manhattan media elite is now stuck "covering" Democratic majorities. Sure, they will go easy on them, but it is much more difficult to cover for a majority than a minority.
And it is a wonderful day for new media, especially talk radio. For two years we have had to defend the Congressional gang that couldn't shoot straight. Now we get to play offense.
I am concerned for the country that the Democrats have won, but the Republicans are indeed going to find this sojourn in the minority a potentially very good thing.
If the GOP adopts and refines the tactics the Democrats have used for the past four years all will be well two years hence, and perhaps even better than well.
OK guys, back to the great fight.
UPDATE: Let the Dems bury the Dems