Optimistic? Don’t Be.
Do you have hopes for conservative/Republican legislative progress in 2013?
In Washington D.C., the President received renewed confidence for the coming four years by the American electorate. At the same time, the U.S. Congress remains divided. The House GOP will attempt to restrain the President’s hyper-liberal agenda for the next two years, but Republicans are arguably worse off after the election than before it. Meanwhile, the Senate Democrats will do everything in their power to make permanent the statist policies that were pushed through Congress in the President’s first term.
The battle over the “fiscal cliff” is only the first of many to come. Like future battles, Republicans should prepare to be disappointed. Not because of an incompetent Republican leadership, although arguments can be made that they should act differently, but because of two things that will be out of their control for the coming two years.
First, the GOP does not control the federal government. They don’t even control all of Congress. That might still leave room for sensible reforms and compromises with the other side of the aisle. However, the Democratic side has clearly shown that it has no interest in enacting meaningful reforms to a broken nation. The President earlier said that he doesn’t believe in debt-reduction for the sake of reducing the debt, even though we know that large debts are harmful to the nation’s fiscal health. The Senate Majority leader also took a stand against cuts to vital programs such as ‘Cowboy Poetry’.
These people have no interest in compromise. Their only interest lies in advancing the progressive agenda.
We often read about how Speaker Boehner has to herd cats in the House, and how “Tea Party” Republicans take extremist positions on a wide range of issues that block compromise. Often ignored is the fact that while Tea Party Republicans might have some minor influence in the Republican Party, intransigent hyper-progressives actually lead the Democratic Party.
The House GOP is likely to propose compromise after compromise, and the Democrats will feel safe in rejecting them since they know that the media will blame “extremist” Republicans regardless of the outcome.
Most of us would happily welcome sensible compromises, for example structural reforms in Medicare and Social Security, but that would require Democrats to sit down at the negotiating table with honest intentions. A highly unlikely scenario when you consider past actions of the current Democratic leadership.
I don’t envy House Republicans, a group likely to be faced with tough choices during 2013. Choices that are likely to disappoint hopes of Republicans and conservatives around the nation.
Let’s hope I’m wrong.