Giving Republicans Positive Reinforcement

Are the Tea Parties actually discouraging Republican elected officials?

Currently, Republican Congressmen and Senators are sticking together and voting against the horrendous Obama spending package. And yet, there is significant animus toward our elected Republican leadership.

My co-blogger John Hawkins believes we should reinforce Republican politicians when they stick to core principles. I agree. And Republicans will get some, if they continue to demonstrate some toughness.

Part of the Tea Party movement is an angry reaction to what conservatives feel was a total breech of trust by the Republican party–on spending, on expansion of the government, etc. In addition, losing seats in the House and Senate didn’t seem to have any impact on the Republicans. They just motored along, driven by self-interest.

Concrete example: Approving huge earmarks–which are really just pay-offs to get re-elected. So while it worked for Congressmen personally, it killed the party brand generally. And voters on the right saw this. They also saw that the Republicans just didn’t give a damn.

Two huge losing elections later, Republicans, are now in the definite minority. How does it feel? Not so good. But the problem is, it might have been prevented if Republicans had acted, even remotely, like Republicans, instead of big spending, earmark loving Democrats.

It is not enough for Republicans to be the “less bad” party. The Republicans need to convince voters that they are for real. It takes time to rebuild the trust.

Reinforcement will come as Republicans show a record of walking the talk.

Cross-posted at

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