Commentary: Conservatives more concerned with winning than helping
The Republicans appear to be gloating about their marginal wins in two recent gubernatorial races in Virginia and New Jersey. The fact that these two winning candidates, both conservatives, posed as moderates willing to work with the Democrats is frequently not mentioned. We shall see.
The congressional Republicans appear to be very good at gloating, obstructing progress and hiding under the cloak of moderation, but are very poor at governing effectively. If these two new conservative governors do not work well with the opposition and do not provide services to their constituents, they will be gone quickly.
The Republican National Chairman, Michael Steele, claims the Republicans are making new progress and getting ready to upset President Obama during the next presidential election. Current congressional Republicans continue to say “no” to most all of the administration’s proposals, especially health care reform, in an effort to have him meet his “Waterloo.”
As in the past, this hard-core conservative base appears to be more concerned about winning the next election than serving the public’s needs.
Mr. Steele seems to have forgotten about nationally prominent Republicans helping to unseat a Republican congressional candidate in upstate New York, Dede Scozzafava. They brought in an unqualified conservative, and the disgusted Scozzafava gave her support to the Democrat, who won handily. That seat had been in Republican control for more than 100 years; and the conservatives lost it! I believe they should be rethinking strategies, not gloating.
In Nevada, Congressman Dean Heller continues to discount President Obama’s popularity by suggesting his “policies are bad.” The president’s policies are the policies that he promised in his campaign and the majority voted for; they are the policies leading our country out of the depths of a near-ruined economy. They are: federal stimulus, re-regulating a broken financial/banking industry, regaining international respect, stemming the rate of job loss, creating new high-tech jobs, establishing health care for all, improving our nation’s education system, and developing new strategies for Afghanistan – to mention just a few. None of these policies are yet completed. But substantial progress has been made in all.
I don’t understand why the Republicans refuse to work with the administration. It’s not good politics. It seems to me that even if there are substantial disagreements on many of the president’s policies, the Republicans would be better off working with the administration, influencing the policies, reducing costs where they can and working as a political body – with negotiation and compromise – not as know-nothing whiners and complainers.
If they keep it up, the Republicans may have nothing to celebrate, much less gloat about come the mid-term elections.
• Dr. Eugene T. Paslov, former Nevada superintendent of schools, is a board member for Silver State Charter High School in Carson City.