For the last few weeks, I have been sitting around listening to the right-wing, truth-distorting machine talk about how the American people are upset with the president and how people are tired of tax increases in government-run healthcare.
It just astounds me how quickly the GOP and the far-right extremists in this country can take a few difficult months for the president and turn it into a pre-victory party before the 2010 elections have even gotten underway.
The GOP needs to understand the election season has not even begun, and even though I expect there to be a few setbacks for the Democratic Party in 2010, they are nowhere near where they were when Newt Gingrich was around.
Now, it’s very true Democrats have had a few difficult months. The Republicans, rightly so, outflanked Democrats on the healthcare debate and have really done a good job taking the party to the bank. But let’s understand that is all they have.
The GOP has offered no alternative to the healthcare legislation.
They have offered no real ideas or reform. They have become a party of oppose, oppose, oppose.
The GOP has allowed far-right fanatics to take over their party. The prime example of this is the ever-famous Rush Limbaugh, who gets on his radio show and says things like, ”I want America to fail.”
Now, I hope any American citizen will be concerned by these types of comments from someone who may be the real leader of one of the two biggest political parties in the United States.
It has even gotten to the point where GOP members of Congress have called into the Rush Limbaugh show to apologize for comments made.
Take for example Rep.Phil Gingrey, R-Georgia. In his statement to Limbaugh he apologized for putting his foot in his mouth.
Even Michael Steele, the chairman of the Republican National Committee called in to apologize for statements he made.
It seems no one in the GOP has the guts to stand up to the far-right in their party.
Members of the GOP are not helping themselves by falling in line with people like Rush Limbaugh.
Now it is apparent that many people are unhappy with President Obama. The healthcare debate has not gone the way that Democrats hoped. And certainly there is cause for concern.
We saw this in last year’s gubernatorial elections for New Jersey and Virginia when Republicans in both states won.
There are a few reasons to explain these victories. One may simply follow a trend that has been going on for many years now—the voters usually elect the party opposite of the president. That is why we tend to see the party not in the White House pick up seats in a mid-term election.
Another reason is that the president is not particularly popular right now:
We still have two wars, attempted attacks by terrorist and a healthcare debate that is not going well for the president. But as I said before, these factors are still not enough to put Republicans back into power in Washington.
Now in the early ’90s, there was a similar situation. President Clinton lost control of both chambers not just because his healthcare bill was defeated, but also Newt Gingrich was able to put together a coalition that was removed 40 years of Democratic Party rule.
The GOP does not have a Newt Gingrich right now. I do not believe they are even close to having one. So while they want to have a big victory in 2010, I say think again. There’s a lot more work to be done.