Skip to comments.Waterloo (Frum blames Rush)
Posted on 03/22/2010 1:28:19 AM PDT by iowamark
Conservatives and Republicans today suffered their most crushing legislative defeat since the 1960s.
Its hard to exaggerate the magnitude of the disaster. Conservatives may cheer themselves that theyll compensate for todays expected vote with a big win in the November 2010 elections. But:
(1) Its a good bet that conservatives are over-optimistic about November by then the economy will have improved and the immediate goodies in the healthcare bill will be reaching key voting blocs.
(2) So what? Legislative majorities come and go. This healthcare bill is forever. A win in November is very poor compensation for this debacle now.
So far, I think a lot of conservatives will agree with me. Now comes the hard lesson:
A huge part of the blame for todays disaster attaches to conservatives and Republicans ourselves.
At the beginning of this process we made a strategic decision: unlike, say, Democrats in 2001 when President Bush proposed his first tax cut, we would make no deal with the administration. No negotiations, no compromise, nothing. We were going for all the marbles. This would be Obamas Waterloo just as healthcare was Clintons in 1994.
Only, the hardliners overlooked a few key facts: Obama was elected with 53% of the vote, not Clintons 42%. The liberal block within the Democratic congressional caucus is bigger and stronger than it was in 1993-94. And of course the Democrats also remember their history, and also remember the consequences of their 1994 failure.
This time, when we went for all the marbles, we ended with none.
Could a deal have been reached? Who knows? But we do know that the gap between this plan and traditional Republican ideas is not very big. The Obama plan has a broad family resemblance to Mitt Romneys Massachusetts plan. It builds on ideas developed at the Heritage Foundation in the early 1990s that formed the basis for Republican counter-proposals to Clintoncare in 1993-1994.
Barack Obama badly wanted Republican votes for his plan. Could we have leveraged his desire to align the plan more closely with conservative views? To finance it without redistributive taxes on productive enterprise without weighing so heavily on small business without expanding Medicaid? Too late now. They are all the law.
No illusions please: This bill will not be repealed. Even if Republicans scored a 1994 style landslide in November, how many votes could we muster to re-open the doughnut hole and charge seniors more for prescription drugs? How many votes to re-allow insurers to rescind policies when they discover a pre-existing condition? How many votes to banish 25 year olds from their parents insurance coverage? And even if the votes were there would President Obama sign such a repeal?
We followed the most radical voices in the party and the movement, and they led us to abject and irreversible defeat.
There were leaders who knew better, who would have liked to deal. But they were trapped. Conservative talkers on Fox and talk radio had whipped the Republican voting base into such a frenzy that deal-making was rendered impossible. How do you negotiate with somebody who wants to murder your grandmother? Or more exactly with somebody whom your voters have been persuaded to believe wants to murder their grandmother?
Ive been on a soapbox for months now about the harm that our overheated talk is doing to us. Yes it mobilizes supporters but by mobilizing them with hysterical accusations and pseudo-information, overheated talk has made it impossible for representatives to represent and elected leaders to lead. The real leaders are on TV and radio, and they have very different imperatives from people in government. Talk radio thrives on confrontation and recrimination. When Rush Limbaugh said that he wanted President Obama to fail, he was intelligently explaining his own interests. What he omitted to say but what is equally true is that he also wants Republicans to fail. If Republicans succeed if they govern successfully in office and negotiate attractive compromises out of office Rushs listeners get less angry. And if they are less angry, they listen to the radio less, and hear fewer ads for Sleepnumber beds.
So todays defeat for free-market economics and Republican values is a huge win for the conservative entertainment industry. Their listeners and viewers will now be even more enraged, even more frustrated, even more disappointed in everybody except the responsibility-free talkers on television and radio. For them, its mission accomplished. For the cause they purport to represent, its Waterloo all right: ours.
Barack Obama badly wanted Republican votes for his plan.
No, he didn't. He wanted single payer government medicine. He couldn't quite get that but he got a plan that will destroy private medicine. No Republican can vote for Obama or can compromise with Obama without compromising himself.
David Frum is the most depressing depressive writing on politics.
Look on the bright side. Frum says the economy is going to improve by November. (/s)
I agree. We didn’t choose to cheat, lie, steal, threaten; etc; but the Democrats did.
Frum is full of it.
But there is one thing we should re-consider - immigration.
Some kind of immigration reform is going to happen. Many of these immigrants are basically conservative.
We conservatives should not push them away, that will only push them towards the left.
I know, I know, there is a big difference between “immigrants” and “illegal immigrants.” But we can’t change the reality that they are here. They came for the same reasons that out grandparents came: to improve their lives and the lives of their children.
We conservatives will be much better off if we find a way to work with them.
I agree that without a 2/3 majority in both houses any attempt to repeal this would be a waste of time (because of Obama’s Veto.)
And I disagree, this is Obama’s Waterloo. His Congress is in real bad shape and the next order on the agenda is Amnesty and Cap and Tax - two things that are also going to be hard and bloody.
Those voices included Tennessee Governor Phill Bredesen, a Democrat who says ObamaCare will bankrupt state government.
The immigrants that came before insisted their children speak English.
Frum says the economy is going to improve by November.<<<
Unfortunately I believe it will appear to improve before the elections. Then all hell will break lose!!
you’re right — they all signed up and became Republicans after the 1986 amnesty.
Frum’s entire post-Bush administration career is based on looking for someone else to blame for the Democrat’s absolute grip on government other than the Bush administration.
David Frum had best start using an assumed identity when traveling.
How many are conservative, maybe 25-30%? So 20 million new voters will only give them a 7-10 million vote advantage. Sure sounds like winning numbers to me! (eye roll)
PS W, is that you?
Gack. Who dropped him on his head?
I know what you mean. These people are mostly Democrat but they are Catholic and socially conservative. Bush appealed to them.
Isn’t it neat to find out the ones who have been lying to us the whole time? I find it refreshing.
He got a bigger slice of the Hispanic pie than most but it was still less than half the pie.
When he was working for George W. Bush, there was a limit on what he could say. Now he shows us what’s in his mind. Eeyore the donkey was far more optimistic.
If they are conservative then they would have arrived legally.
Frum is the poster child for everything that’s wrong with the Republican party. Ever since he left his gig at the White House he’s done nothing but divide the GOP and feed talking points to the left.
That ain’t gonna happen. The economy is tanking, he’s pulling that out of his butt.
I accept the next move is going to be the cover up of government sponsored lawlessness, but please do NOT float a lie that covering up lawlessness is going to be a 'good' thing for me. I am sick of deception.
WHY in the HELL would I EVER agree to give up “ONE INCH” of AMERICAN SOIL .. An AMERICA that I FOUGHT FOR .. To A GD invading army HUH?
Tell Me .. WHY!?
This argument I have trouble with. A certain demographic that illegally immigrates from down south, has a higher % of gang membership, participation in illegal behavior, the females are more likely by far, to have children out of wedlock, stay single moms, and have multiple children while not married and go on welfare. That’s not conservative nor Catholic values. The politicians that the majority support are Democrats.
One reason that “Hispanics” will be the majority is the birth rate, which is 3 times that of other groups.
When I got married in the Catholic church, young women were to keep their legs closed and young men, their zippers up until marriage, (or darn close to marriage)
Imagine Howdy Doody reading the article to you. That works for me.
If trends keep up, abortion will begin to rise among the illegales till they rival the black community’s.
"Could a deal have been rached? Who knows?"
"The Obama plan has a broad family resemblance to Mitt Romneys Massachusetts plan."
"It builds on ideas developed at the Heritage Foundation"
That one I don’t see. When there is a disproportional percentage of any ethnic population receiving freebies, there will be no incentive.
Incidentally. His criticism makes zero sense. He supports socialized medicine; he says so right here. All he wants are a few tweaks. If that was truly the case, if all he wants is for the GOP to have the option of adding an amendment or two to the final insidious package - then what the heck is he complaining about? Republicans will certainly get that opportunity.
It’s the chance to overturn the whole thing and restore freedom to the nation, that’s what I’m worried about.
>>>Many of these immigrants are basically conservative. We conservatives should not push them away, that will only push them towards the left
Said to a crowd where the ultimate insult to a politician is to call him “Juan” or “Jorge”. Lotsa luck.
oops, no incentive to work.
The usual reasons, kids are such a hassle to raise.
When Fromm says that by slithering into bed with Obama and the Democrats we could have negotiated a less odious healthcare reform, he is saying that cutting and trimming-or triangulating if you prefer-should be your guiding principle. Read the polls and cut a deal.
Ronald Reagan was not ignorant of the polls and he was quite capable of cutting a deal but he had the vision thing. He had three fundamental values in mind to him constituted good sound conservative governance: low taxes, robust defense, small government. These were not preferred options from a Chinese menu of political plays to be selected on reading Gallup. These are compelling goals to be striven after by determined people decade after decade as ardently as the Democrats have sought health care for a century.
The country knew where Reagan was taking the country. The Bushes were left with offering up a "prudent" approach to government, a middle way, a sanitized occupation in the Oval Office, a little of bigger government and a little of smaller government. George W. Bush had a shining vision which was to keep the country safe from terrorism and prevail in the war in Iraq. He told the country that the Republicans offered more prudent governance otherwise but he offered up a hodgepodge of conflicting programatic nostrums.
Then along came the bungle in Iraq which lasted years and along came Katrina which was a metaphor for Iraq and the ineptitude of the administration. No one cares passionately about prudence. People care about a conservative model of government. Betray that model and people who are patriotic conservatives cease to care.
The solution, Mr. Frum, is to cease triangulating off every burp and belch like a Pac-Man figure and start leading America Back into the Morning. It's the "vision thing," stupid.
“These people are mostly Democrat but they are Catholic and socially conservative. “
I think they are fiscally conservative too.
And again. His example in no wise fits. A temporary drop in marginal income tax rates - the ‘rats didn’t like it, but it didn’t fundamentally alter any aspect of the country. A better example would be Bush’s plans for social security reform. They drew a line in the sand over that one, and unfortunately there’s wasn’t anything Bush could do about it.
This guy is no conswervative. These two statements gave him away right away. They DID NOT listen to Rush. They constantly critisized him. They brought this on themselves. Its their baby. Now they can rock it.
Pot calling the kettle black here it seems. Frum did a mighty job bashing Bush and his former WH compatriots to sell a few books. He had no credibility with for sure — not just because he was disloyal, but also because he actually believes the left wants to compromise on anything and that its the right that is obstructionist.
Of course it will. He still has most of the bailout money and gobs of new money from this debacle that will be stashed away and conveniently whipped out right before the election. Why do you suppose the coverage don't actually start till 2014?
That's why you fought.
I truly believe that's why the immigrants are coming here today. We may need their blood, sweat and tears some time in the future.
If we conservatives push them away, surely the Left will open their arms and welcome them. It will be for their enslavement, but they won't realize that for a long while.
I say we conservatives should figure out a way to work with immigrants who are here legally to establish procedures for their families who may not be so legal to merge and adapt into our society and begin the contributions that they can make.
“Its a good bet that conservatives are over-optimistic about November by then the economy will have improved and the immediate goodies in the healthcare bill will be reaching key voting blocs”
Wrong on both counts...but, hey, don’t let facts get in your way.
Note to Mr Frum: You do not compromise when it comes to socialist, freed-robbing, entitlement programs. Why? Because they are wrong. Period.
The people who immigrated here long ago didn’t come here for the handouts. The ones who are coming here now don’t care about America. They are here for the freebies and easy life. They have no intentions of becoming real Americans. Whats in it for me. Thats what they are all about.
Look on the bright side: It just gets worse from here.
The left has all they need to crush this Republic—and they will.
Thanks to all of those brave Republican “leaders” for “risking all” to fight the un-American/anti-American left. You’ll be glad to know that the fat sheep, aka Americans, will run to the polls to vote lots of you cowards into office this November—a dab of salve for our gaping, septic wound.
Thing is, you all serve the left, whether you like it or not. This is now a leftist country. (If you haven’t figured that one out yet, you will.)
You can wave your flags, watch your fireworks on the fourth, and reminisce about the good ‘ol days, but they are indeed behind us.
The optimists can polish this turd all they want. This will be marked as the beginning of the end of very short-lived human freedom on this planet.
David Frum, what in the hell did you do to stop this travesty?
Frum’s liberal tendencies are showing.....gotta “blame” somebody.
Our ancestors came here for a "better life." That's why today's immigrants are coming too.
The Left will offer handouts. We should offer opportunity.
“compromise” with the socialist has only brought us even more loses in the past.
David Frum has lost his mind, we can’t win this fight at all if we fight it his way, we just loses it at a slower rate.
and to be quite honest at this point we would be better off helping the liberals collapse the United States financially.
So that from the ashes of the dead government freedom may be able to bloom again.
There is really no more practical way to end theses socialist programs then to help accelerate their default.
That means if we cant end them directly, we would be better off helping the liberals bring down the United States Federal government. We will start by crippling the military enforcement mechanism so that the advantage will be held more locally by the men still armed.
Then when the federal reserve banknotes are worthless we make our move to free ourselves formally.
Until that happens nothing but compete victory is going to be helpful.
Days like these are the reason the founders set up a system where this type of Government intervention was not possible. That has been corrupted and we no longer have a Representative republic, but a democracy. (Sad to say Ben Franklin, despite your warning, we were unable to keep our Republic.)There are bastions of dependency and perversion where democrats are safe until the end of time, but less and less reliable bastions of liberty. Even the safe Republican districts are heavily dependent on Social Security and Medicare, so they are only only reliable as long as the gravy flows, otherwise they will all turn Democrat overnight if Republicans came out for real Liberty and curtailing the role of the Feds in any meaningful way.
IMHO, it's over folks. "Tax cuts" aren't going to cut it this time and people are not willing to give up their benefits, real or perceived. The ONLY opportunity we will have is the coming Bankruptcy, but the Democrats and the media will be there to shepard in communism at that time, so we may not have a prayer.
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