Barack Obama may have done more to improve the stature of the Republican Party in two years than it has been able to do for itself in over a century – not to mention bringing the "Slurpee" back to its rightful place in American lore.
By now the smoke has cleared from the Tuesday night massacre, and the revived leaders in the GOP look as if they have just slain Goliath. But before they cut of the head and proceed to Jerusalem, I suggest the GOP not get too far ahead of itself or take the positions of arrogance once occupied by our now contrite president and the defeated speaker.
It was the American people and their sheer disgust for a government gone wild, both Democrat and Republican, that produced the results on Tuesday night. It's not the silly notion that Americans believe the GOP can lead us back to the promised land of balanced budgets and smaller government. We have all heard that before. Now it is time to show us, not snow us.
I think it's well accepted throughout the land that soon to be ex-Speaker Pelosi is still well entrenched in her delusion that her leadership provided what was best for America. And soon her vindication will come for doing so. Go ahead and leave her in her stupor. She can no longer inflict harm.
Can there be any doubt left in the land that Mr. Obama is no less deluded when he suggests America did not reject his policies but his ability to communicate the effectiveness of those policies with the people? And while Democrats will deny they have lost their minds, they have indeed lost the confidence of the people. So leave them in their self-grandiosity. Now we have checks and balances back in place.
So what should the new members of Congress do to stop the train wreck known as the Obama administration? How can they keep themselves accountable to the governed who spoke so loud and clear?
Simple. Listen and act.
Do the will of the people by reducing the size and scope of government. Only spend money we have and stop recklessly borrowing and enslaving future generations to decades of debt. Run the government within its means – just as everyone in America must do. That is where we start to get America back on track. This is not rocket science.
It is time for the GOP to underpromise and overdeliver, to listen to the people, to not allow the bubble of D.C. politics to insulate them from everyday America and what we face. That was obviously lost on Pelosi while she flew around in a custom 757 as well as Mr. Obama spending millions a day on a trip to India. Don't let it happen, new leaders.
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It is time for our elected officials to live like the people they serve, not as royalty entitled to extravagance. If the prime minister of England can fly commercial to visit our White House when his nation is suffering financial chaos, maybe we would be well served to do the same. Could the time have come to show some humility? We have had plenty of arrogance, and look what that has produced.
In the weeks to come, the temptation for newly appointed Republican chairmen to investigate and expose all the shenanigans of the Obama administration will be irresistible. I can hear the salivating of political foes looking for payback, wanting to bring light to all the dark backroom deals brokered by Pelosi, Reid and Mr. Obama. But the new leaders must not fall prey to their desire to humiliate their fallen colleagues. Frankly, they have done a fine job all by themselves. America gets it. We know what happened. We were repulsed by it and threw them out.
Now is the time to focus on jobs and the economy. We must start making the hard choices on how to reduce the entitlements that will bankrupt the nation. There must be a laser-like approach to reductions in spending and debt. That is where the focus of the next Congress must be or else we will see 2012 be a reverse election of 2010. Let's not let the "R" mean revenge but revival and restoration.
With the exception of California and Nevada, the people have spoken. The unions spoke for those states, which will soon send them all into bankruptcy. What else can explain the survival of Jerry Brown, Barbara Boxer and Harry Reid?
But the country, short of those states, could be headed for a new day if our new leaders listen – not just to Tuesday night but every day to the will of the people. If they can ignore the special interests and the union bosses, they will put in place the necessary changes to make the second decade of the 21st century a decade of recovery.
Forget about this foolish notion that Republicans have been given a second chance. This isn't about chances. They have been hired to run the greatest, most prosperous and productive nation the world has ever seen. Chances are for Vegas, not America.
People want to work. We want to produce and contribute to the nation. We don't want the government taking care of our needs. We don't want our country to spend more than we have. We are willing to sacrifice and deal with the consequences of hard decisions. The time of free lunches must stop! And it will – if leaders will listen.
When they do what is best for the country as a whole, they do what is best for all of us individually. That, my friend, was the message sent last Tuesday.
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