The Dems have been shouting from the mountain top for some time now that the GOP has no plan, or rather, that the GOP plan is simply to go back to Bush policies and in the mean time, just say no. This has been a central point to the messaging of the Dems, with everyone from the President, to his Administration, to the Speaker of the House and the Senate Majority leader , and throughout the- as Gibbs so eloquently described them- ‘Professional Left’. This has been the central message since the first part of the year, specifically around the time of Obamacare’s passage, and the Dems have been consistent in their calls.
This makes the recent Gallop poll on the Generic ballot all that more interesting. The GOP, in rare form, have consistently and- for all intents and purposes- unanimously voted against the major initiatives of the Dems. However, since the Dems control both Chambers of Congress and the White House, there is little the GOP can do to stop the Dems agenda. The issue has been the Dems and the unpopularity of their agenda. But I think it goes beyond just the unpopularity of their agenda, I think it is the collapse of trust in the government and the Dems specifically.
The townhall meetings of last summer, the Dem response to those townhall meetings, and the revelations since of multiple backroom deals like the Cornhusker Kick-back, the Louisiana Purchase, Gator Aid, etc, coupled with the public comment by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Obamacare deals, stating that, “I don’t know if there is a senator that doesn’t have something in this bill that was important to them. And if they don’t have something in it important to them, then it’s — [it] doesn’t speak well of them.” A better example of why the citizenry of this country is so dissatisfied with Washington could not be made.
Which brings us to the question of who the American people think will handle the business of the country better.
The GOP leads the Dems on the following issues: Terrorism 55%/31%; Immigration 50/35; Fed Spending 50/35; the Economy 49/38; Afghanistan 45/38; Jobs 46/41; and Gov Corruption 38/35. It is a statistical tie between the parties on healthcare 43/44 and the Dems lead the GOP on the Environment 54/31. However, in the immortal words of my late Grandmother: “You can’t eat the scenery.” Which, in the greater scheme of things, the American people agree as they prioritize the issues this way (extremely important, very important, and moderately important): the Economy 62%/31%/6%; Jobs 60/32/6; Gov Corruption 51/30/14; Fed Spending 51/30/15; Healthcare 49/30/15; Terrorism 47/28/17; Immigration 38/27/23; Afghanistan 35/33/24; and the Environment 28/32/29.
This is indicative of a greater movement in the nation, and one I’ve commented on repeatedly here, here, and here. The nation is a conservative one, and the ideological focus of this Administration, and the general shift of the Dem party towards liberalism was bound to turn off the electorate. Who would have guessed that it would take just one electoral cycle to do it.
The mistake the Dem party consistently makes at this point is that they fail to recognize the consistent polling showing that independents are calling themselves conservative. So, is it really any wonder when a poll from Gallop shows the GOP leading the Dems in the Generic ballot by 10 points?
So, about that ‘Party of No’ messaging. Regardless of how inaccurate it is (the GOP actually had a healthcare reform plan first, and has had several other legislative initiatives- all ignored by the Dem controlled Congress), the simple fact of the matter is that the message of ‘No’ is kicking the Dems ass. Generic ballot polarity is widening, to the point that you have Dems actively running against the Administration- with the campaign slogan of ‘No’.
Rep. Jason Altmire of Pennsylvania, not only trumpets his vote against health reform, his opposition to the bailout, but also proclaims his willingness to “stand up” to Obama and Pelosi.
Rep. Bobby Bright of Alabama proclaims that he’s an “independent conservative,” who voted against the “massive government healthcare” bill, the bailout, the stimulus and the trillion-dollar deficit. And then there was that little quip about Pelosi.
Rep. Glenn Nye of Virginia is running, proclaiming that he took on Congress by voting against the health care bill and, going against his own party, voted against the bailout.
Rep. Joe Donnelly of Indiana is running spots blasting Obama as part of the “Washington crowd” and hitting “Nancy Pelosi’s energy tax.”
The American people have had enough, and when it comes to this Administration, ‘No’ is the answer.
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