Wednesday, November 5, 2008

We're all growns up, and have lots of work ahead

We Baracked the vote. We are a better nation for it.

Here's some commentary on the GOP and its future:
Conservatives also must decide whether a return to their core economic beliefs will be accompanied by a hard right turn on social issues such as gay rights, guns and abortion. Some feel that Sen. John McCain wasn't conservative enough socially.

Regardless, for Republicans to rebound, they must catch up to Democrats in online organizing and fundraising - a shortcoming made clear in this election.

"The Republican Party is teetering on the brink of irrelevancy," said Professor Lawrence R. Jacobs, director of the Center for the Study of Politics and Governance at the University of Minnesota. "This is about as close to a repudiation as you can get."

What will follow, Jacobs said, "will be a period of bloodletting in the Republican Party. It's going to be a free-for-all, professional wrestling battle royal."
Dick Armey of Texas knows what it is like to revive the Republican Party. A former majority leader in the U.S. House of Representatives, Armey was one of the leaders of the 1994 "Republican revolution" that seized Capitol Hill after two years of a Democratically controlled Congress and White House.

"They need to get back to what worked in the past," said Armey. "We should start by asking ourselves, 'What were we doing when people loved us?' And it's been a long time since some people in this country loved us."
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's future appears mixed. Armey said, "It's hard for me to tell where she will fit in." Franc said, "She's the young athlete who makes it to the big leagues who has 'lots of upside.' " Hawkins called her "a rock star."

Jacobs said: "There's been a lot of hyperventilating about her. But once cooler heads look back on her, she will be seen as destructive to the ticket and more abysmal than (former Vice President Dan) Quayle. There has never been a vice presidential candidate as unpopular as Sarah Palin.'"
GOP has 8 years of Bush to thank for lost love. Even now, Bushco is working on getting his final nail in the coffin with deregulatory measures.
The White House is working to enact a wide array of federal regulations, many of which would weaken government rules aimed at protecting consumers and the environment, before President Bush leaves office in January.
The new rules would be among the most controversial deregulatory steps of the Bush era and could be difficult for his successor to undo. Some would ease or lift constraints on private industry, including power plants, mines and farms.
Those and other regulations would help clear obstacles to some commercial ocean-fishing activities, ease controls on emissions of pollutants that contribute to global warming, relax drinking-water standards and lift a key restriction on mountaintop coal mining.
Once such rules take effect, they typically can be undone only through a laborious new regulatory proceeding, including lengthy periods of public comment, drafting and mandated reanalysis.
Bush's aides are acutely aware of the political risks of completing their regulatory work too late. On the afternoon of Bush's inauguration, Jan. 20, 2001, his chief of staff issued a government-wide memo that blocked the completion or implementation of regulations drafted in the waning days of the Clinton administration that had not yet taken legal effect.
"Through the end of the Clinton administration, we were working like crazy to get as many regulations out as possible," said Donald R. Arbuckle, who retired in 2006 after 25 years as an OMB official. "Then on Sunday, the day after the inauguration, OMB Director Mitch Daniels called me in and said, 'Let's pull back as many of these as we can.' "
Clinton's appointees wound up paying a heavy price for procrastination. Bush's team was able to withdraw 254 regulations that covered such matters as drug and airline safety, immigration and indoor air pollutants. After further review, many of the proposals were modified to reflect Republican policy ideals or scrapped altogether.
So lots to do in the coming years. At least we can send Palin back to the Fortress of Solitude where her and her husband can resume building momentum to support the secession of Alaska from the US. Maybe Russia will take them.

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