2012: Death Knell, or Wake-Up Call For Conservatism?
A worthwhile read by Ralph Benko at Forbes: The End Of The Karl Rove Death Grip Signals A Reagan Renaissance. For those who may think it far-fetched, actually it’s not. It’s an even more prudent conclusion than one that would claim the GOP must abandon its more conservative principles if it wants to win again. That’s actually the more extreme, or hyperbolic conclusion.
Liberals do not grasp the distinction between Ronald Reagan and either George Bush. This blind spot creates a massive confusion and hazard to their ambitions. Obama defeated neither the Reagan Narrative nor Team Reagan. Team Bush appropriated, and then marginalized, both. Obama beat Team Bush, not Team Reagan. The implications are huge.
For many on the Right, the conventional wisdom going into Election 2012 was that Mitt Romney would win, or it’s over – anything akin to a Reagan conservatism would never again win in any perceived new electorate.
We already know how badly the GOP misread the electorate to begin with, so why accept that they’re accurate as regards what American voters want, or don’t? Frankly, they weren’t very thrilled with either side in 2012.
There’s a more thoughtful, less reactive middle ground that seems ripe for conservatives to both explore and potentially exploit in 2014 and 1016. In that view, it isn’t that the American electorate is turned off to what one might call a Reagan-ite conservatism, but that they needed more of a wake up call than many anticipated. Would that really be a stretch in the era of the low information voter? I don’t think so.
We know Obama’s policies are wrong-headed and aren’t going to deliver, just as they haven’t so far. Add in another tax increase and a yammering Left that wants to be paid back on all fronts and Obama’s second term could easily be worse and of more concern to voters than his first, which already cost him significant support.
But if the GOP wants to capitalize on that, it needs a genuinely contrasting vision, not an aged leadership desperate for photo ops captioned with silly notions of bi-partisanship crafted with a Leftist ideologue like Obama who has done everything but compromise from the day he first took office.
Consequently, it remains impossible for me to look at how 2012 played out and not see a clear need for new leadership. And if the GOP is smart, it’ll do it now, not later, as is it’s usual MO. We may yet have reason to hope post-2012. But every day we wait can only bring us closer to too late.
I’d encourage you to read the whole thing: The End Of The Karl Rove Death Grip Signals A Reagan Renaissance