“Well, that was underwhelming.”
If you’re anything like me, a Constitution-revering limited government conservative believer who’s studied history and knows for certain that there are rarely any satisfactory government solutions to life’s most perplexing problems, the results of Tuesday’s elections must have come as quite a downer. For those conditioned to big Republican wave victories whenever the Democrats overstep their boundaries – which is all the time -- we were expecting to hold the door open for senile president Joe Biden’s party members as the election losers sauntered outside with pants down around their ankles and with laptops, coffee mugs and tooth brushes hanging out of hastily packed overnight bags.
But instead of their rapid evacuation from the offices of power, Democrats held onto many if not most of the hotly contested federal political races this year, a result that was truly unfathomable to the swath of Americans who paid attention to who’s running and earning their way in politics. I mean, seriously, John Fetterman won in Pennsylvania? Gretchen Whitmer prevailed in Michigan? Kathy Hochul, of the “why are you concerned about crime” fame in New York? And Katie Hobbs in Arizona is leading the Grand Canyon State’s still yet to be called gubernatorial race, though conservative stalwart Kari Lake insists she’ll win in the end.
These weren’t just your typical run-of-the-mill Democrat socialism touting lightweights and airheads we’re accustomed to seeing in bright blue enclaves like the left coast or New York City, either. No, these liberals were proven brain deficient, couldn’t answer simple debate questions and, in Whitmer’s particular instance, had locked down her state and destroyed its economy as well as having sent thousands of her citizens to perish due to ill-conceived COVID policies.
This was a motley group, folks, and we were going to enjoy seeing them lose, which made the real results from the 2022 midterm elections all the more hurtful. Is it time for a hard reality check? Yes indeed, and The American Spectator’s Scott McKay was just the one to deliver it. In a piece titled “Maybe America Hasn’t Suffered Enough”, McKay wrote yesterday:
“There are so many utterly horrid Democrats who will remain in office after this election that it should be offensive to average Americans. It’s tempting to fall into the trap of believing there must be wholesale corruption in American elections, but the problem with going there is that there must be proof before it’s actionable.
“Until some is presented, we’ll have to deal with something very unpleasant. Namely, here’s the truth that we on the Right are going to have to accept: the American electorate in 2022 is awful. And the axiom about the cycle that involves weak men and tough times is a real thing, and we are in the worst quadrant of that cycle. We are still in the time in which weak men make tough times. We have not gotten to the point where tough times make tough men.
“But get ready because those tough times will do their work. Perhaps for quite a long while. Somehow, the Democrats and their pals in the legacy media managed to convince a large swath of Americans that we’re not in a recession. Four in five Americans are unsatisfied with the economy, a large majority seem to be furious about gas prices, people say crime is out of control, and yet barely half of the country — if that — are motivated to unload the horrid leadership that caused those issues.”
Too true. And one is tempted to simply scoff, go out in the yard and pull weeds or stare at the neighbor’s tree that looks like a dragon’s head and give up. Or to let the blue cities and states wallow in their proverbial slop, right? If some Americans are so obtuse that they’ll take a guy who can’t respond to a question without reading it off a screen first, don’t they deserve whatever they get?
But we can’t just surrender, simply because the “abandon hope” choice is not offered to us. We can’t go hang our heads or bury them in the sand. Wonderful families and grandchildren on the way prevent any such commitment to retreat to play golf and go fishing. Besides, we’re not losers. There’s next season to play and there’s a whole bunch of new formations to draw up to try out in practice.
With that being said, here are some general post-painful election takes:
We won’t be talking about the 2020 election anymore. Conservatives will always look upon 2020 as the one that got away – or more accurately, the one we allowed to stray by not getting to the bottom of the balloting abnormalities with time to spare – but we’ve got more important fish to fry now. Whether we want it or not, Joe Biden lives in the White House and the broken-down old goat’s going to remain there until he’s forcibly evicted by the voters. Or removed, which isn’t at all likely now.
Relitigating 2020 over and over again only got morons like senile Joe griping about “democracy” ending and provided enough motivation for low-information shallow-minded Democrat supporters to vote early and ensure that their candidates started well, everywhere. When combined with the deleterious effect on the conservative electorate, Democrats squeaked by.
Donald Trump remains a big motivator -- for Democrats. As has been repeatedly stated, Donald Trump wasn’t on the ballot this year. Yet many of his hand-picked candidates were subjected to the voters, and several of the high-profile ones either underperformed or went down in flames. Democrats typically don’t have much to offer to get their lazy liberal backers agitated and motivated, but all they have to do is say, “Trump” or some combination of “Dobbs” and “reproductive rights” and “abortion” and the screeching “woke” crowd comes a runnin’.
Trump deserves credit for ginning up Republican votes, too, but there needs to be actual statistical analysis on whether Trump is a net positive or a drag on one’s fortunes. We can’t afford to get it wrong, either, and primaries don’t count in the scrutiny. Trump’s public campaign against Colorado’s Joe O’Dea sealed the man’s fate. I hope those who agreed with Trump on this one are happy when Michael Bennett votes with the Schumer troops every time in the balance of this decade. Stupid.
Democrats win with billionaire fundraising and a superior mail-in GOTV operation, supplemented by fraud. Democrats will NEVER suffer from lack of fundraising because they partner with the big “woke” corporate leadership class and big tech billionaires to sponsor big government, which in turn cooks the rules and guarantees that plenty of money is to be made by the rich, liberal and powerful.
It used to be that Democrats were beholden to small-time labor unions for their contributions and votes. Now, they simply ignore the “little guys” to shower praise and favors on the already fattened faces of the pampered class, which in turn is more than happy to open their checkbooks and write seven, eight or nine figure checks to PACs to get out the message and purchase votes from easily manipulated idiots like college students and abortion-obsessed liberal women.
The females who traded affordable energy and other sound economic policies for some unnamed woman’s “reproductive right” to kill their babies in the womb had better not complain when they can’t afford gas for their unpaid-for SUV or to keep the house heated. Stupid.
The RNC – and everything else – needs new leadership and fresh young faces. The old refrain goes that when your party vastly underperforms in an election, put someone in charge who can produce results. For far too long Republican Party officials (I’m looking at you, Ronna McDaniel) have coasted on Donald Trump’s coattails and resisted turning the GOP into an ideologically based colorblind entity that recruits principled conservatives instead of wishy-washy RINO-establishment perpetuators. The RNC needs aggressive – and young – new leaders, not retreads like Mitch McConnell. Who does “the Turtle” get excited? No one.
It doesn’t just stop there, either. Who couldn’t help but notice 44-year-old Ron DeSantis standing on stage beside his beautiful and vibrant wife and them being joined by their three kids who still need to be picked up and held? Contrast that scene to Donald Trump, who is very “with it” into his late seventies but reality says he’s going to be a great grandfather long before DeSantis becomes a grandpa. Even Melania, as gorgeous, refined and sophisticated as she is, pales in message presentation to Casey DeSantis.
Imagine Ron DeSantis on the campaign trail or debate stage in late 2024 opposite the faltering bag of bones that is teeth-gritting Joe Biden or Bernie Sanders – or some other Democrat dinosaur they rescue from the political tar pit to whine about “democracy” and “climate change”. In the audience there will be the “breakfast taco” consuming fake doctor Jill Biden, and the specter of Hunter Biden will be there beside her, even if the Bidens – and all Democrats – choose to ignore it. Then there’s Casey DeSantis, perhaps with the rest of the DeSantis family. Case closed.
Florida and Texas-like success is the new standard for Republicans everywhere. Examine the results from Tuesday’s vote in Florida and Texas. Study it. Run it through data crunching machines. Pick through Ron DeSantis’s speech for messaging strategies. Hold long sessions with DeSantis’s campaign brains and figure out what they did to help him gain twenty points in four years. Then do it for every GOP candidate, everywhere.
Oh yeah, you might invite Virginia’s Glenn Youngkin to sit in on the sessions. And Kari Lake, too, if she pulls it out.
There’s more than the presidency on the line in 2024, there’s the senate, too. Absent from the soon-to-be-endless discussion of what went wrong for Republicans this year will be the fact that 2024 represents an even better opportunity to pick up senate seats. I believe I read that Democrats will be defending 23 such states, including a dozen or so that Trump won in 2020.
Whoever is at the top of the ticket in two years will be drawing out the GOP base for these candidates. This is about as “team” as a “team election” gets. Nationalize the issues early. Is the RNC listening?
Democrats must be labeled as the pro-death party, and don’t shrink from defending the label. Republicans are for life – unborn babies, preventing mutilation during gender-altering surgeries, negotiating an end to the war in Ukraine, and closing the border so as to clamp down on the influx of fentanyl poison that’s taken the lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans.
By contrast, Democrats want legalized abortion up until the moment of birth, open borders, amnesty for criminals and to defund the police. Calling Democrats “pro-death” may be too kind.
It would seem to make sense for Republicans to take a step back and figure out what happened on Tuesday before diving deeply into 2024. Perhaps Donald Trump should wait a while before declaring his candidacy, for a moment when there’s more of a public mood for it. In the meantime, Republicans should invite Ron DeSantis to speak to the incoming group of new Congresspeople and senators. Let’s get it right next time.
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2024 presidential election