by Rick Jensen | October 5, 2014 12:03 am
Fred Barnes of The Weekly Standard is really on to something with his call for Republicans to “Go Big or Go Home.” Fred reminds us that Republicans have won big with big ideas in the past, such as “1978, when the Kemp-Roth tax cut was introduced. It proposed to slash individual income tax rates by one-third, across the board.”
This is not to say a 30 percent cut in marginal rates would resonate with Americans today. It’s a nice idea, but one whose time has come and gone. The point is the fact that it was a big idea whose time was exactly right.
Fred also points out: “Republicans grabbed onto a second big idea in 1978: reversing the national security policies of President Carter. This included support for a hefty military buildup, rejection of an arms control treaty with the Soviet Union (SALT II), approval of the B-1 bomber whose production Carter had canceled, and adoption of a hard-line policy against Soviet expansionism. The idea of such an abrupt turnaround stirred vigorous debate.”
There may be some interest in a return to “America’s ability to project power and influence in the world.” Fred argues, “Just as Republicans called for turning away from Carter’s policies in 1978, they should make reversing Obama’s a major theme. He has shrunk the military to its pre-Pearl Harbor size and backed away from American leadership abroad. This is a historic retreat from our role of protecting world order since World War II.”
While this is not a theme to be published with any enthusiasm in the Huffington Post, I would hope most Americans realize it’s not in our best interest to relinquish international leadership to countries with deadly, conflicting interests.
Fred believes the next Big Ideas should be “Abolish the IRS” and restore America’s international leadership and respect.
The “Abolish the IRS” would likely devolve into liberals clamoring to “save” the IRS because they foolishly believe Democrats could continue to illegally use the agency to silence conservatives.
So, where might be the appeal to moderate Democrats once known as Reagan Democrats?
As for American hegemony, yes, that would certainly appeal to Americans weary of ISIS terrorists beheading their neighbors in Oklahoma, New Jersey and Seattle.
Aren’t we also tired of the lies from this administration about their alleged concern for jobs and the economy?
Republicans need to think bigger and smarter. Think 1994’s “Contract with America,” leading to Republicans being elected to a majority of both houses of Congress for the first time since 1953.
On their first day in the House, the Republicans promised to vote on eight major reforms:
1: Require all laws that apply to the rest of the country also apply to Congress;
2: Select a major, independent auditing firm to conduct a comprehensive audit of Congress for waste, fraud or abuse;
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3: Cut the number of House committees, and cut committee staff by one-third;
4: Limit the terms of all committee chairs;
5: Ban the casting of proxy votes in committee;
6: Require committee meetings to be open to the public;
7: Require a three-fifths majority vote to pass a tax increase;
8: Guarantee an honest accounting of the Federal Budget by implementing zero base-line budgeting.
Some of these would still be popular!
Another popular idea was the “Job Creation and Wage Enhancement Act” featuring
small business incentives: capital-gains cuts and indexation, neutral cost recovery, risk assessment/cost-benefit analysis, strengthening the Regulatory Flexibility Act and unfunded mandate reform to create jobs and raise worker wages.
An even bigger idea would be to develop a national policy based on the “StartUp New York” initiative. Instituted by Governor Cuomo, StartUp eliminates all corporate taxes for qualifying businesses for ten years.
This has brought millions of dollars and hundreds of jobs to New York in just a few months.
Yes, Cuomo is a Democrat. So this would be Republican bipartisanship, proudly expanding a Democrat’s state policy.
It also gives liberals fits because it involves tax breaks and is succeeding!
Now THAT is BIG.
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