The first step to retaking Congress and the White House is getting back to conservative roots
Republican victories in the New Jersey and Virginia gubernatorial elections were only the foot-in-the-door for any major Grand Old Party (G.O.P.) attempt to “take back” the country from the Democrats.
As much as I’d like to say that winning in New Jersey and Virginia was all the Republicans needed to forecast the political outlook of the country a year from now, I won’t. I’m not that naïve.
The G.O.P. still has too much work cut out for itself before supporters can even think about taking back the majority in Congress next year, let alone having a chance at the presidency in 2012.
Recent polls from the past months and the recent elections, however, reveal that the country at large is beginning to favor a Democratic candidate less than a republican one.
Over the summer months, Democratic candidates held almost double digit leads over Republicans when voters were asked whom they would vote for in the 2010 elections. After last week, Democrats held only slight margins.
Right now, it looks like one of the key factors in next year’s election is going to be health care. With the proposed health care reforms, citizens are going to have a lot to consider when they head to the polls.
While voters will ultimately decide the political demographics of the 112th Congress, G.O.P. candidates have quite a bit to do in order to ensure their victory in the next election.
To reclaim seats in both the House and Senate, republicans need to reevaluate where the party currently stands.
I feel that the G.O.P. has strayed a little, or rather a great deal, too far to the left. This is clearly evident when looking at the fact that Senator John McCain got the republican presidential nomination in 2008. The fact that Maine Sen. Olympia Snowe was supporting the Democrats and their proposed health care reforms adds even more evidence that liberal and moderate Republicans are running the party.
Even while being a moderate republican myself, I do not jeopardize the foundations and beliefs that the party was founded on and traditionally stood for.
Before attempting to mount any type of comeback, the Republican Party needs to take a good look at the direction it is heading, turn around, and get back to more conservative roots. If it does not, all we can expect is more devastating results like those sustained in 2008.
Another factor that is haunting the G.O.P. is that there isn’t a prominent figure leading the party right now. President Obama emerged rather early for the Democrats in the 2008 election, but no one is standing out right now for the republicans.
The media is looking at Mitt Romney, Mike Huckabee, and Sarah Palin as the probable contenders for the nomination in 2012.
While I like all of these candidates, what the G.O.P. needs are young, energetic, conservative republicans to rejuvenate and take control of the party. A strong conservative will lead the party back to its roots and a young republican will help offset the average age of Congress that is well over 50.
When these republicans emerge, then the G.O.P. can consider taking back Congress and the presidency.