Rather than debating what the national party position should be on foreign policy, health care, education, or social issues – which the party will decide when it chooses a nominee in 2012 – the GOP should focus now, and unite now, on what it will stand against.
Here the party has a good start. With the exception of Specter the Defector and the ladies from Maine, it united against the $800 billion stimulus bill. And as it is impossible to shovel out an added 6 percent of GDP in two years, without vast waste, fraud and abuse, this stimulus package is going to come back and bite Obama by 2010.
And, recall, in his address to Congress, Obama assigned Joe Biden to see to it there was no waste, fraud or abuse in spending the $800 billion: "And that's why I've asked Vice President Biden to lead a tough, unprecedented oversight effort – because nobody messes with Joe."
Joe has been set up to take the fall.
The next place to take a stand is against "cap and trade."
More and more Americans are coming to conclude, after the record cold temperatures in many cities this winter, that global warning is a crock – that there is no conclusive proof it is happening, no conclusive proof man is the cause, no conclusive proof it would be a calamity for us or the polar bears.
But cap and trade would mean a huge hike in the cost of energy for all Americans, the shutdown of fuel-efficient U.S. factories, and their replacement by dirtier and less fuel-efficient Chinese plants.
And we do know the agenda here is a vast transfer of wealth and power from U.S. citizens to government bureaucrats, and from the U.S. government to global bureaucrats who will run the oversight and enforcement machinery set up by the Kyoto II conclave in Copenhagen.
A third issue on which Republicans ought to stand and fight is health care. For the end goal of Obamacare is the same end goal as Hillarycare: nationalization, bureaucrats deciding what care each of us shall receive, when we may receive it, and whether we even ought to have it.
If the Republican Party remains the party of the individual and the private sector, does it have any choice but to fight?
For if cap-and-trade passes, and Obamacare becomes law, the government share of GDP rises to European socialist levels, and, as we saw after the Great Society, there is no going back.
A party defines itself by what it stands for, and what it stands against. After the Bush era, the Republican Party has been given the opportunity to redeem and redefine itself – in opposition to a party and a president who are further left than any in American history.
A true conservative party would relish such an opportunity.
After all, the Goldwater young did not lie down and die after a defeat far more crushing than the one the party suffered last fall.
Is this Republican Party made of similar stuff?
Good ideas, all of them. But, first and foremost, the Republican party should go back to it's roots as the morally and fiscally conservative party. The three aforementioned positions are all very important, but they are second fiddle to a foundation of conservatism.
The Republican party is attempting to win over voters by becoming more moderate, by leaning more to the left. We already have a left leaning party, we don't need a second. The GOP strategy is failing as more and more people fall away and call themselves independents, or join weak third parties.
Our Government runs on the idea of checks and balances, and right now there is no balance between parties. We need the GOP to stand up, and present itself as a clear alternative to the lunacy of the left. We need the GOP to be an alternative for those that don't believe in abortion, for those that believe in the right to bear arms, for those that believe in small government, small taxes, and individual rights. If the GOP wants to survive it needs to grow a pair.