Who will occupy the RNC Siege Perilous? Michael Steele or Newt Gingrich?
Amanda Carpenter reminds us why Newt not running for the RNC Chair is probably a good thing:
And it would appear that both men might be on the same page.
Bill Sammon’s sources tell him Steele may announce as soon as Thursday, and is courting the endorsement of Newt Gingrich, which if landed, would do much to scare off the incumbent and possible challengers:
The source also contradicted a report in Tuesday’s Washington Times that Steele and Gingrich were competing for the RNC post.
“There is no fight,” the source said. “This tension between Michael Steele and Newt Gingrich is totally fabricated and, in fact, Gingrich and Steele are working together to create a new strategy for the direction of the GOP.”
In a statement issued by the former House speaker, Gingrich said he was not interested in seeking the post of Republican party chairman.
“A number of people have asked me to consider running for Republican National Committee chair. They have been very flattering, and I am very honored by their support,” he said.
It’s time to bring in new blood. Republicans need a fresh makeover even as we speak of returning back to conservative traditionalism. As much as we decry that “race doesn’t matter”, the face of the Republican Party as seen by the American public is that of the stereotypical “white man’s club”. We need the Palins, the Jindals, to bring style with the substance. What the Democratic Party had in 2008 was a charismatic rock star; what we need is not only a “return” to conservative ideology, but also one wrapped in an attractive delivery system. Someone like Alfonso Rachel in the public eye could also do much to reshape the image of the Republican Party. He is someone who the MTV crowd can relate to on style and delivery.
I prefer Michael Steele as RNC Chair on the most superficial of reasons, as well as on the most substantial: He’s black.
The color of his skin shouldn’t matter. But because the country as a whole is still fixated on race….it matters. Let someone like Michael Steele deliver the post-racial conservative message that it’s the Republican Party that’s been living the message of MLK: That the color of one’s skin doesn’t matter; it’s the content of the character.
Michael Steele has character; and to those to whom it matters, he also has the “right” skin color to deliver the message.
One of life’s charms is in paradox.
Michael Medved points out similarities between where we find ourselves politically today, and where we were 16 years ago:
Pouring over the numbers in the Presidential and Congressional elections of 2008, there’s an eerie parallel that deserves far more attention than it’s received.
In races for the House, the Senate and the Presidency, the final totals match almost precisely with the results of the last Democratic sweep in 1992.
That election gave the Democrats 57 Senate seats to 43 for the Republicans. So far, with three races yet to be decided in 2008, Democrats (and the two independents who caucus with the Democrats) control 57 seats and the Republicans control 40.
It is absolutely appalling to me, that an angry and unfunny idiot of Al Franken’s magnitude might steal the election in Minnesota.
Assuming that the GOP’s Norm Coleman hangs on to win his seat after a recount in Minnesota, that Saxby Chambliss wins his run-off election in Georgia, and that Ted Stevens (or a GOP replacement) secures the seat in Alaska, the Senate lineup will match exactly with its contours in 1992—57 to 43. Even if the Republicans lose one of the undecided seats, it’s possible that Independent Joe Lieberman will decide (or find himself forced) to caucus with them, still giving them the same 43 seats they won in ’92.
On the House side, the resemblance is similarly close to the line-up sixteen years ago. After the Clinton landslide (beating President George H. W. Bush and eccentric “Reform Party” contender H. Ross Perot), the Democrats nabbed 258 seats in the House and the GOP controlled 176. At this point in 2008, the Dems have secured 255 seats and the Republicans 174, with six seats unsettled. The most likely outcome of the races yet to be decided would be an exact replica of the House of Representatives that convened in 1993.
As to the Presidential race, sixteen years ago Bill Clinton cruised to victory with 370 electoral votes to 168 for President Bush (Ross Perot drew 18.9% of the popular vote but, like most third-party vanity candidates, earned no electoral votes). In 2008, assuming that John McCain carries the officially undecided state of Missouri (where he’s maintained a slight but steady lead) the final outcome will be an Obama victory by 365 to 173 electoral votes— just a five vote difference from the 1992 race. In the popular vote, Obama prevailed by a margin of 6.5%, while Clinton beat Bush sixteen years ago by a strikingly similar margin of 5.5%.
The resemblance in election outcomes between the triumph of Clinton Democrats in 1992 and the resounding win by Obama Democrats in 2008 ought to fill disheartened Republicans with determination and hope.
Just two years after the electoral disaster of ’92, the GOP came roaring back to capture both houses of Congress in the “Contract with America”/Newt Gingrich revolution. And six years after that epic triumph, Republicans recaptured the White House under George W. Bush in the impossibly close election of 2000.
For several reasons, the election of 2008 left Republicans in an even better position for a quick comeback if they handle their opportunities intelligently.
Above all, the situation with the economy should work to the GOP’s advantage in the Congressional elections of 2010 and perhaps even in the Presidential race of 2012.
When Bill Clinton came to power in 1993, the recession that destroyed the first Bush presidency had already begun to recede and the economy had already begun its recovery, which ultimately morphed into the “Clinton Boom” and secured Slick Willy’s reelection. No one expects a similar economic turnaround for President-elect Obama in the three months before his inauguration and perhaps not even in the first two years of his presidency. If unemployment continues to rise, the deficit continues to explode, and personal income continues to stagnate or decline, the Obama reputation as a messianic miracle worker could collapse in a hurry. As with Clinton, the great expectations surrounding Obama’s election could quickly transform to a sense of betrayal and even disappointed rage.
Don’t worry, folks: The sun will come out tomorrow (or in two years); and the best is yet to come.
A former fetus, the “wordsmith from nantucket” was born in Phoenix, Arizona in 1968. Adopted at birth, wordsmith grew up a military brat. He achieved his B.A. in English from the University of California, Los Angeles (graduating in the top 97% of his class), where he also competed rings for the UCLA mens gymnastics team. The events of 9/11 woke him from his political slumber and malaise. Currently a personal trainer and gymnastics coach.
The wordsmith has never been to Nantucket.