Republican Marco Rubio said it best in his acceptance speech after beating Florida Governor Charlie Christ to become Florida’s newest US Senator: “This election was not an embrace of the Republican Party. It was a second chance for Republicans.”
He was so right. Americans did not turn out in record numbers in a mid-term election to pat the Republican Party on the back and say, “Job well done.” The Republicans haven’t done anything. The voters soundly thrashed Democrats in local, state and national elections to tell Obama and all who are foolish enough to align themselves with him that they have done an abysmal job. They’re mad as heck, and they’re not going to take it anymore.
Amusingly, I’ve been hearing “Democrat Strategists” opine that the massive Republican wins only occurred because the Democrats didn’t “energize their base,” so they didn’t go out and vote. In other words, mostly Republicans voted, so naturally Republicans won. Try again, spin doctors. The FACTS are (remember “facts”?) that this was one of the highest turnouts for a mid-term election. In some precincts they ran out of ballots! Some election officials reported higher turnouts than in the 2008 presidential elections.
So, in your face, Liberal pundits. You can’t lie your way out of the fact that almost all the Independents and huge numbers of registered Democrats crossed Party lines to send you one simple message: Obama stinks!
That’s right. This election was about many things, but more than anything else, Americans wanted to tell Obama that:
1) They hate the fact that he lied to them during his campaign – all the while with a big smile on his face.
2) They hate the fact that the National Debt has grown $1.6 Trillion in the short time he has been in office. That’s means the National Debt has grown over 8% since he took office – in just 20 months!
3) They hate the fact that the unemployment rate that he promised to keep below 8% is now almost 10%. And if you include the people who have given up on trying to find a job, and add in the “underemployed” (people who need a full-time job, but can only find part-time), the real unemployment rate is above 17% under Obama.
4) They hate the fact that he looked us in the face and promised to lower taxes, yet he has used lies and subterfuge to sneak new taxes and costs into every piece of legislation, including ObamaCare and his energy bill that will cost every American $3,900 a year in increased energy costs.
5) They hate the fact that, even after his humiliating defeat last Tuesday, he still seems determined to gut the Bush tax cuts, the one “stimulus” that has actually helped our economy. He doesn’t seem to understand that handing out billions to his buddies at big banks doesn’t stimulate the economy, but lowering taxes on job-creators (people he calls “rich people”) DOES stimulate the economy. When was the last time you saw a poor person create 1,000 jobs, Obama?
6) In general, they hate the fact that he fooled them. He seemed like a nice, fresh young guy who would shake things up in DC and bring “Hope & Change.” Instead, he brought corrupt Chicago-style politics to DC, which is even worse than what DC was used to. He turned out to be just another incompetent fast-talker who talked himself into a job that he can’t begin to handle. And they hate that. Good luck on getting re-elected, Obama.
It was bad luck for many Democrat candidates (but good for the Republicans) that Obama wasn’t on the ballot this time. Because he wasn’t there to vote out, voters did the next best thing. They voted against people associated with Obama. About the only Democrats who survived were those who criticized Obama and his policies, and a few like Nancy Pelosi who came from heavily homosexual or Democrat-controlled districts.
So, as Rubio said, this was not an embrace of Republicans. Most people voted against Obama, not for the Republican Party. And the ones who did vote for Republicans did so because - pay attention now, this is important – they either think or hope or expect them to be Conservatives.
So let me say this to Michael Steele, Chair of the Republican Party, and to the Party Leadership in the Congress:
1) Let those who THINK the Party is Conservative continue to think so. I know that, by and large, it is not. But it had better transform itself into a Conservative party very quickly. See below.
2) Those who HOPE the Party is Conservative are going to be watching closely for signs to indicate whether they are right or wrong. You don’t have much time. When people lose hope, they look elsewhere. See below,
3) Watch out for those who EXPECT you to be Conservative. This has been the promise of the Republican Party, one that has not been kept. These people will hold your feet to the fire. See below.
Here is my WARNING for the Republican Party. A good friend likes to say that in the United States we used to have the party of Big Government and the party of Small Government; but that today we have the party of Big Government and the party of BIGGER Government! The Republican Party has lost its way; it is no longer the party of Small Government. Unless it finds its way back to its roots, back to where last Tuesday’s voters expect it to go, it may well find itself facing a viable third party in two years.
“You’re crazy, Tom! Where would a viable third party come from?” I may well be crazy (that’s a matter for debate), but that doesn’t change the truth of what I am about to say. There is ALREADY a very viable third party out there – it just hasn’t declared itself as a formal party. These are the people in my item 3 above, those who EXPECT the Republican Party to get back to its roots and keep its many promises. If it fails to do so, it may find an entirely different political landscape in two years.
You see, the Tea Party was responsible for much of the success of the Republicans last Tuesday. No one knows for sure just how much, but even the Liberal media refers to many Republican winners as “Tea Party Candidates,” meaning they were nominated by the Tea Party and rode into power on the crest of the Tea Party’s popularity.
The Liberal Democrats have much to learn about diversity from the Tea Party, even though they fear them so much they constantly refer to them as “racists.” Even the NAACP, which certainly knows better, has fallen into that trap. Now that formerly great organization has egg on its face as the Tea Party has elected two black Republican Congressmen from states that haven’t done so in over 150 years: South Carolina and Florida.
SC State Representative Tim Scott defeated Democratic candidate Ben Frasier to become the first black Republican sent to Congress from the Deep South since Reconstruction. Florida hasn’t sent a black Republican to the House of Representatives since the mid-1800’s, but the Tea Party helped send retired Army Colonel Alan West there, despite a massive Democrat smear campaign. The Democrats brought in disgraced black former Supreme Court justice Alcee Hastings (who was impeached and removed from the bench due to a bribery scandal) in an attempt to paint West as an extreme right-wing radical. I met Colonel West, and found him to be a reasonable, well-spoken man who I believe will represent Florida well.
Isn’t it funny how vociferously Obama and the Dems play the race card when it comes to getting Liberals elected? But let a black person dare to run as a Conservative or Republican, and they turn into rabid dogs, tearing the flesh off them and hurling the most vicious of lies. They seem to feel betrayed, as if it is somehow treasonous for a black person to be a Conservative.
Another example of Tea Party diversity is the landslide win of Marco Rubio against TWO contenders for the Florida Senate seat. The Democrats spent millions backing their candidate, Kendrick Meeks, who seemed to me to be a much more respectable fellow than the slimy “Independent” candidate, Charlie Christ, the sitting Republican Florida Governor.
Christ’s huge ego couldn’t handle being defeated by a Tea Party candidate, an unknown Florida legislator. So, while still the REPUBLICAN Governor, using money raised in his bid for the REPUBLICAN primary, this turncoat decided to run against the Republican choice as an “Independent.” Fortunately, he got his head handed to him as Tea Party candidate Rubio garnered more votes than Christ and the Democrat combined. (And now Christ, who ran for the Senate instead of seeking a second term as Governor, is going to have to look for a real job. Good look, Charlie, since you and your buddy Obama have turned Florida into a high unemployment state.)
The bottom line: Liberals have tried to paint the Tea Party as racist, but it has gotten more effective minority candidates elected in this election than the Democrats have in the last five elections. Both the Democrat Party and some Republicans who fear it have tried to marginalize the Tea Party, but it has proved itself to be a force that must be reckoned with.
So, who or what is the Tea Party? It has no one face, although many leaders such as Sarah Palin and Jim DeMint have come to be identified with it. It has no centralized leadership (by design), but there are numerous effective organizations across the nation. Basically, the Tea Party is you and me. It is millions of Americans who are sick and tired of government that spends our money as it belonged to the politicians, spends money that doesn’t exist, and pre-spends our children’s and grandchildren’s inheritance. The Tea Party is Americans who pray for the day when politicians remember that we have a Constitution, and start to govern by it.
“Well, if the Tea Party if not an organized political party, why are you issuing a warning to Republicans, Tom?” That’s a good question, gentle reader.
The Republican Party is in danger of falling victim to its own perceived success. Many of the Party leaders – I believe John Boehner is one of them – understand how much they owe to the grassroots efforts of the Tea Party. They understand that if they don’t change the way they do business, radically and quickly, history will leave them in the dust. History gives us many examples of political parties that lost their way and were abandoned by their former supporters. The modern Republican Party was itself born from the ashes of one such party, the Whig Party. (Interestingly, the Republican Party was formed to abolish slavery, while the Democrat Party stubbornly clung to its “right” to own black slaves.)
But many of the old guard of the Republican Party are already showing signs of patting themselves on the back and thinking they can go back to business as usual. One example is the choice Rep. Hal Rogers, who is rumored to be the choice to head the House Appropriations Committee. He is known in Washington as the Prince of Pork. Appointing him would be a huge mistake. He would be the correct choice according to the old system of seniority. But it’s time to forget archaic systems and traditions and do what is right for the American people. This would be a great place for the Republicans to start showing the people that they’re serious about being Conservatives first, and Republicans second.
Another example is John Boehner’s announced intention to oppose all earmarks. Earmarks are a kind of hidden treasure for politicians. An “earmark” is a budgeting term which means setting aside money in a bill for a politician’s state or district, money that will help him or her get reelected. It usually has nothing to do with the bill, and is often hidden in the language. Politicians cover up each other’s earmarks on an “I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine” basis. It is a totally corrupt practice that needs to be stopped – now. Unfortunately, Mitch McConnell, the top Republican in the Senate, oppose Boehner’s idea. Up until now, I have had a lot of respect for McConnell, but he is dead wrong on this. If he doesn’t get it right by the time he comes up for reelection, he may be joining Charley Christ in the unemployment line.
Here’s my prediction. The Tea Party will watch the Republican Party closely for a while. If it doesn’t start showing signs of becoming a true Conservative Party, faithful to the Constitution, we will start to see the Tea Party become a true, viable third party. We will see real Republicans, the ones who have been praying for years for their leaders to honor God and the Constitution, and to actually serve the public rather than their careers, leave the Republican Party and join the new party. Many of them, like myself, will leave reluctantly, having been members all their lives, but leave they will.
We will also see many Democrats join the new party, strange as that may seem. Poll after poll show that when asked to define themselves as Democrats or Republicans, it’s usually 50-50. But when people are asked whether they are Liberal or Conservative, over 60% say they are Conservative; less than 30% identify themselves as Liberals. If a new party that is truly Conservative emerges, it will be an answer to the prayers of the great majority of Americans.
Will it be called the Tea Party? Of course not. That was a name given to a grassroots movement by the media. Obvious choices for a name would be the Conservative Party or the Constitution Party, but there are already small third party movements using those names. The new party would probably use some variation of one of those names, or perhaps it will merge with an existing third party. The name is not important; the principles are.
Perhaps none of this will be necessary. Even though Obama and his Band of Socialist Brothers don’t seem to have heard the message of last Tuesday, hopefully the Republicans have. Hopefully they will once again become the Party of Small Government, and the Tea Party can continue to support them. Time will tell.
By the way, the subtitle of this column was “Obama and Marijuana Defeated at the Polls.” In addition to Obama’s Socialist agenda being soundly defeated nationally, I am happy to report that a California state move to legalize marijuana was also defeated. Even though drug growers spent millions on Proposition 19 and (for some strange reason) it was endorsed by the NAACP, it was defeated definitively. The only counties where it passed were predictably extremely Liberal ones like San Francisco. Sorry, Cheech and Chong.