Ya gotta love it when Democrats and “Progressives” try to analyze the great failings of the Republican Party and instruct the Republicans on how to resurrect their once fine party. How often have you heard Progressives tell us how much we need two strong parties? Then they proceed to tell us what that second strong party should look like. And the description they give is that it should look almost exactly like the Democratic Party, or perhaps something slightly more progressive than the Democratic Party.
Let’s get this straight. If you want two, or more, strong political parties, they can’t be twins one of the other. There need to be real differences, a choice if you will. But, before we even go there, let’s pause for a moment to get past the hyperbole over the recent election. The Republicans did not get their heads handed to them, no matter what any pundit tries to tell you.
Romney, flawed as he was as a candidate, came within a relatively few votes in a relatively few states of ousting Obama, notwithstanding the current clear advantage to Democrats in the Electoral College. Republicans did not do well in the Senate. Admitted, done. But, there were seriously awful candidates, as there were in 2010, and I’m not saying that the Todd Akins and Sharron Angles of the world shouldn’t be more thoroughly vetted (read eliminated) during the nominating process. Republicans held the House. The excuse here is gerrymandering, but that’s basically nonsense. Districts are always gerrymandered. Of more note is Republican strength at the state and local levels where future leadership will come from.
Self examination is in order. This is true whenever a party loses the most important races, in this case Presidential and Senate. But, the self examination needs to be exactly that, self examination. It does not mean allowing the other party and their partisans to define you or your path forward. It does not mean dropping to bended knee to beg forgiveness for not being more like Democrats. It does not mean flushing away core values like fiscal responsibility, low taxes, minimal regulatory intrusion into personal and business life, strong defense and the projection of power as part of a consistent foreign policy.
I look forward to hearing from the Republicans who they are and who they will be going forward. That doesn’t mean I will agree in every particular or that they will bring me back to the fold or even get my vote next time round. What I don’t look forward to is the next progressive pontification on what the Republicans should do and be. Those progressive voices need to have their collective memories jogged. They were almost this arrogant after the election of 2008. Remember 2010? We do need two, or more, strong parties. They do not need to be Tweedle-De and Tweedle-Dum.