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April 6, 2006 [LINK]
Will GOP moderates defect?
Perhaps a better question is Should they defect? I have largely overlooked the FY 2007 budget introduced by President Bush in February, already disgusted with fiscal imprudence. Public awareness of the growing budget deficit is putting increasing pressure on the Republicans in Congress, many of whose members are vulnerable to challengers in the November elections. (Imagine that: competitive elections!)
One of the moderates who is leveraging his faction's clout to get $7 billion in additional Federal funding for popular labor, health, and education programs, is Rep. Michael Castle of Delaware. See Washington Post. I tend to be extremely skeptical of such programs, and much as I would like to maintain a Republican majority in Congress, it may be for the best in the long run that the Republicans slough off a few wayward members. Voters need clear choices when they go into the voting booth, and blurring distinctions on basic policy choices, as many centrists in Congress are prone to do, is not necessarily a good way to attract moderate voters. "Who cares, politicians are all the same!"
To understand the Republican squabbling, it is necessary to grasp that many Republicans wrongly equate loyalty to President Bush with being a true conservative. This tendency is related, in turn, to an unseemly eagerness to use harsh campaign rhetoric against liberal Democrats, ironically emulating the dirty tricks that used to keep the Democrats in power. Until more of the Republican activist base adopts a more reflective attitude about the very real dilemmas in terms of the substance of public policy, as a prelude to reformulating a conservative agenda, I don't see how things will improve. As my mailbox is filled up with crass, dumbed-down appeals for money from the RNC, meanwhile, the party leadership seems utterly tone deaf to complaints from grass-roots conservatives.
A recent cartoon in the Washington Post by Joel Pett expressed the vexing moral quandary many Republicans face on the immigration issue. A senator tells his House colleague, "I'm torn between the security issues and my solemn pledge to help the rich exploit the poor." Hey, the truth hurts.
Posted (or last updated or commented upon): 06 Apr 2006, 11: 43 AM
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January 7, 2006 ~ DeLay gives up majority leader post
January 12, 2006 ~ Alito withstands Dems' "torture"
January 16, 2006 ~ Michelle Bachelet wins in Chile
January 19, 2006 ~ Views on Iran's nuclear ambitions
January 24, 2006 ~ Fallout from Canada's election
January 31, 2006 ~ Second (& third) thoughts on Iran
February 1, 2006 ~ The State of the Union, 2006
February 8, 2006 ~ D.C. Council votes "yes," but...
February 18, 2006 ~ Checks and balances in wartime
February 22, 2006 ~
Neocons & Neolibs: chastened alike
February 28, 2006 ~
The Dubai Ports World uproar
March 14, 2006 ~ New D.C. baseball stadium unveiled
March 24, 2006 ~ In the footsteps of France?
April 7, 2006 ~ Immigration compromise fails
May 16, 2006 ~ Bush militarizes Mexican border
June 6, 2006 ~ Alan Garcia triumphs, once again
June 9, 2006 ~
Zarqawi: The death of a terrorist
July 3, 2006 ~
Election in Mexico: too close to call
July 5, 2006 ~ North Korea goes ballistic
July 28, 2006 ~ Garcia prepares to lead Peru, again
August 4, 2006 ~ Israel invades Hezbolland
September 6, 2006 ~ "Crunchy conservatives": for real?
September 25, 2006 ~ Nationalists thwart conservation
October 3, 2006 ~ Nationals: Year in review
October 29, 2006 ~ Virginia's marriage amendment
November 7, 2006 ~ The people render their verdict
November 8, 2006 ~ Republicans lose big time
November 9, 2006 ~ Allen concedes / Election post-mortem
November 13, 2006 ~ Toward consensus on Iraq?
December 1, 2006 ~ Realism and our goals in Iraq
December 6, 2006 ~ Latin America & U.S. trade policy
December 8, 2006 ~ Iraq Study Group reports
December 22, 2006 ~ Yuletide political roundup
Blog highlights have been compiled for the years 2010-2012 thus far, and eventually will be compiled for earlier years, back to 2002.
The "home made" blog organization system that I created was instituted on November 1, 2004, followed by several functional enhancements in subsequent years. I make no more than one blog post per day on any one category, so some posts may cover multiple news items or issues. Blog posts appear in the following (reverse alphabetical) order, which may differ from the chronological order in which the posts were originally made:
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