You Don’t Win By Losing In Politics; You Win By Winning

There’s a weird strain of thinking on the Right that goes, “The best thing that could ever happen to us would be to lose the next election. It would get people all fired up and then we could REALLY get something done!” Noemie Emery’s latest column is a great example of this type of thinking:

First, they should question how big this election may be. The fact is Obama has been stopped already, and the things they feared earlier have not come to pass: He isn’t, and will not be, President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

He moved the country to the right, not the left, and helped to revive the Republican Party; cap and trade and card check were never enacted, and his health care reform act is coming apart.

He is on a short leash already, and if he makes it through 2012, it will be even shorter.

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People like Obama more than his ideas, and his chances will only get better as people realize he will never be able to pass his agenda. If re-elected, he may pass six of eight years politically neutered. An Obama safely under House (and probably Senate) arrest might be just what the public would want.

Then, after two terms of a left-wing but neutered Obama, the voters might want the next big Republican president. And here we confront the real crux of the problem: A so-so Republican who knocks off a weakened Obama may also weaken the next great conservative star.

If a Republican wins, no one from the class of 2009-2010 can run until 2020, and if a Republican wins in 2016, it gives him an almost insurmountable burden: only three times in the 20th century has a party extended its run for three terms.

A President Pawlenty or Daniels may come at the cost of a President Rubio, who might have united the party, excited the young and vastly expanded the reach of the party. Would it be worth it? Your call.

We heard all this same kind of bank shot logic when John McCain was the nominee. And admittedly, had McCain won, we wouldn’t have had the GOP’s best year since the forties last year. The Tea Party movement also may have never come into being since McCain wouldn’t have chalked up debt as fast of Obama.

So, weren’t we better off that Obama won?

Well, that depends on how much you like Obamacare, the expansion of the bailouts, spending so much that it’s threatening to bankrupt the country, and two new liberal Supreme Court Justices among many, many other things. Yes, we’re more fired up, but that’s because Obama has been such a disaster that his time in office may be known as the “presidential term when the American Dream died.”

Assuming that Obama can’t do any more damage, that some “Star” will come along in 2016, or that the conservative movement will benefit by losing isn’t a safe bet by any means. Ultimately, you don’t win by losing in politics; you win by winning and then enacting your agenda.

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