Wednesday, November 08, 2006

The Republicans Must Do Some Soul Searching

I will concede this...

The Democrats did a good job this election cycle. They took out powerful members of the House. They took our the #3 senator in Rick Santorum. They took out Missouri's own Jim Talent (does he have any future in politics)?

This election came down to a few things.

1) Public unrest on Iraq. I don't know if Americans feel we're LOSING the war. But they don't see much progress. I agree... we could be doing a better job over there. But more importantly, with all the progress we've made over there, we are losing the PR battle. Talk radio and the blog world hasn't been enough.

2) Corruption in their own party. This may prove to be the biggest issue. Between Tom Delay, Bill Frist, Mark Foley (and too many too mention) the Republicans infuriated their base this time around. I don't think it's a winning solution to "teach them a lesson." I agree, the GOP needs to get it together. But in the process they lost great senators like Santorum and Talent (probably Allen) who are solid conservatives. Losing guys like Lincoln Chafee is no big deal. But in showing the Republicans are unrest, the conservates chased out a few followers of Ronald Reagan.

Where do they go from here?

Who knows. I'm not political strategist. But the Republicans need to stand tall on principles they make them great (when they aren't corrupt). They are right on taxes and right on the economy. I believe they're right on Iraq but they have lost the PR battle.

The Republicans cannot blame smear campaigns (though it's tempting) and act like Democrats cheated. True, it's normal for an incumbent president's party to lose elections in his second mid-term. But in the last few years the GOP had a glorious opportunity to show off true conservativism. Instead, too many House members got tied up in corrupt politics. They could have put the Democrats out of power for a decade. Instead they imploded. Now they have to pick up the pieces and focus on 2008.

I'll say it again...

The Democrats did a great job this election season. The right needs to stop carping about smear ads. They need to show America they care about limited govt and the American people. Yes, they had their butts kicked. But they can rebound.


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