by John Hawkins | November 9, 2004 12:42 am
This last election was a sweet, sweet, victory for the Party. We get four more years of Bush, we have 55 Senators now, a lock on the House at least until 2010, and a majority of governorships. And let’s face it, things are trending our way and have been at least since Ronald Reagan came into office. We have our hands on all the levers of power in Washington, the South has almost finished turning red, and the conservative media has finally gotten strong enough to start semi-regularly countering the dominance of the liberal MSM. Ah…good times!
But fellas, I have a warning for you and it’s one Republicans in Washington had better heed.
Conservatives are not as happy with the Party as those great numbers on November 2nd would lead you to believe. There is a lot of agitation out in “Red State America” over how George Bush’s first term went that was set aside because the idea of having an indecisive and dovish liberal as Commander-in-Chief during a time of war was too horrible to contemplate.
Yes, most conservatives appreciate the President’s strong and principled stand on national security, pushing for a missile defense system, his tax cuts, his fight for tort reform, working to strengthen Social Security, his willingness to stand up for marriage with a Constitutional Amendment, his fight against abortion, and his promise to appoint conservative Supreme Court Justices.
But if you Republicans in Washington want to keep the base happy through 2006, three things are going to have to change.
1) You’re going to have to get spending under control.
2) You need to stop increasing the size of government.
3) You better get a handle on illegal immigration.
Maybe George Bush is a “big government Republican,” but the base is still full of Reagan conservatives who want to see budgets slashed, government weakened, and an end to the never ending stream of our tax dollars flowing out of Washington in the form of pork.
Nobody expects you to wipe the deficit out in a year or two, but let me tell you, the base has had enough of these highway bills, farm bills, Medicare prescription drug programs and other bloated, worthless, government spendfests that sound like they should be coming from the desk of Lyndon Johnson, not from a Republican administration with a Republican Congress.
I will also tell you that much of the base is boiling mad about illegal immigrants. We want the border locked down. We want to see business owners who hire large numbers of illegals doing the perp walk on TV as they’re taken to jail. We don’t want to see illegal aliens getting free college tuition, we want them slapped in handcuffs and sent back to where they came from.
We are a nation of laws and a lot of us are sick and tired of seeing criminals being rewarded for breaking our laws by sneaking across the borders. My guess is that the immigrants who followed the rules and became citizens here aren’t particularly happy about it either, so is it really worth making a misguided attempt to pander to them at the price of infuriating your base? The party got by with it in 2004, but I don’t think it’s going to work again in 2006.
Consider yourself warned you Washington GOPers: the margins are wide enough now that talk radio, the blogosphere, and the rest of the new media can comfortably start going after Republicans we don’t like in the primaries for 2006. Maybe you don’t think a Democrat can take your seat, but there’s nothing many of us in the new media would like better than to see some sitting Republican Congressmen, Senators, and Governors knocked off by conservatives more to our liking during the primaries.
Keep ignoring your base on these issues if you dare, fellas, but I suspect there will be a price to pay for it in primary challenges in 2006 if you keep it up.
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