What's That Thumping?

It's Time We Get Back To First Principles

By Tom DeLay Posted in Comments (198) / Email this page » / Leave a comment »

RedState is pleased to welcome the Hon. Tom DeLay, former Majority Leader of the United States House of Representatives, to the front page.

“We must be dedicated to our principles, certain in our direction, bold in our action and relentless in our struggle to advance our cause.”
On Wednesday the President accurately described Tuesday’s election as a ‘thumping’. When either party suffers a significant defeat at the polls, a period of recrimination, reprisal and sometimes retreat ensues. But Republicans (and more broadly conservatives) across this great country of ours would be better served by thoughtful introspection and determined resolve to move America forward again.

The cable television pundits and the editorial columnists of America’s major daily newspapers would have us believe that the election of 2006 was a broad repudiation of America’s foreign policy, of our prosecution of the war against terrorists, and of a Republican majority that either did too little or too much depending upon each particular pundit’s world view.

Some self-described conservatives have even said that the House and Senate spent too much time on ‘wedge issues’ like illegal immigration and gay marriage rather than engaging in protracted battles on social security and entitlement reform.

It seems to me that the protection of our border and the legal definition of the fundamental building block of our society are issues at least worthy of consideration in the public square. These fundamental issues are at least as important as retirement security and revamping a broad range of government programs. In fact, the 109th Congress raised all of those issues, and I believe that our nation’s public life was richer for the debate.

I would assert that this election was not so much won by the Democrats as it was lost by the Republicans.

Read on . . .

Too many Republicans failed to continue an aggressive fight for the principles which bring us together as Republicans and as conservatives. As the great political theorist Russell Kirk points out, we conservatives believe in a society built on three first principles: Order, Justice and Freedom. These principles are the three legs of the stool upon which our society rests. With anyone of these legs removed the stool, and our society, topples.

As we go forward to regain our majority and reconnect with the voters, Republicans and conservatives must remember that our society, our government, and our policies must align in a way that promotes and protects these three intertwined principles.

It seems to me that we can reunite and reenergize a majority of Americans by confronting and addressing five major challenges to the principles of Order, Justice and Freedom.

First, we must be able to protect our citizens and our allies from attack and ensure our domestic, national and international security.

America faces threats from committed terrorists who are dedicated to the destruction of our society and all that it represents. We face a growing nuclear threat from rogue nations with irresponsible leaders who seem intent on using nuclear blackmail and regional destabilization as tools in their effort to maintain power.

The primary responsibility of government is to ensure the protection of its citizens and as conservatives we must lead the effort to strengthen our nation’s military and homeland defense capabilities to protect our citizens from attack. This means a thorough modernization of America’s military and the deployment of strategic defenses against missile attack.

Second, we must lead an effort to radically redesign government and return it to its constitutional roots. The problem with our government isn’t simply that it has gotten too big or that it spends too much – but that it is involved in aspects of our lives and our economy in which it has no business. Further, our government has almost become a self-sustaining organism which continues to grow and propagate programs without accountability and without results for the people it is supposed to serve.

We need to completely restructure government to make it more results-oriented, performance-based and accountable to the American people. This is how you reduce spending.

Thirdly, conservatives must fight for fundamental tax reform. While some progress has been made to reduce marginal tax rates, meaningful tax reform will only occur with a radically redesigned tax code. Far too many dollars are taken out of the productive sectors of our economy by trying to interpret and avoid the complicated and onerous nature of today’s internal revenue code. It is time America had a 21st Century tax code so it can compete in a 21st Century global economy.

Fourth, in order to achieve true justice, we must make every effort to reverse the culture of death that threatens the weakest and the most infirm among us. Conservatives want a society that respects and protects all innocent human life regardless of some political activists notion that some lives may not be of sufficient quality to avoid termination at the hands of an abortionist or a euthanizer.

Fifth, conservatives are united in their agreement that we must bring into check the powers of an increasingly imperial judiciary which seeks to manufacture, rather than interpret the law. The Judicial Branch must be returned to coequal status with the Legislative and the Executive, lest we undermine the very principles of Order, Justice and Freedom upon which we believe our society to be built.

As a conservative I share much of Ronald Reagan’s world view; of an America that is strong and free; an America that is a beacon of liberty where individual responsibility is respected and rewarded; and of a government limited in its size, scope and power over people’s lives. Perhaps more importantly, I share Ronald Reagan’s optimism about the future.

I believe as Bismarck said that, “Politics is the art of the possible”. We must be dedicated to our principles, certain in our direction, bold in our action and relentless in our struggle to advance our cause.

So for me, and I hope for many conservatives, this week is a time of reflection and rededication and not one of recrimination and retreat. The ‘thumping’ I hear is of a conservative movement with a strongly beating heart.

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What's That Thumping? 198 Comments (0 topical, 198 editorial, 0 hidden) Post a comment »

Thank you for that refreshing and reinvigorating message, sir, I feel even more confident than I already did that our party has what it takes to regain our majority swiftly.

The best of luck to you and Godspeed in all your future endeavours.

Julian

www.thearmchairpolitician.com

Only, I hope your future endeavours do not include association with the Republican Party.

Where was the following sentiment when we had control of both houses?

[...] conservatives must fight for fundamental tax reform. While some progress has been made to reduce marginal tax rates, meaningful tax reform will only occur with a radically redesigned tax code.

I became involved with this party when I heard this sort of talk- that the republicans would make it a priority to fundamentally reform our tax policy. To be frank, after 6 years in control of both houses while not seeing any sign of fundamental tax reform I'm more than a little dismayed- both at the lack of progress and at the lost opportunity. The talk remained talk. What happened?

It seems to me that the protection of our border and the legal definition of the fundamental building block of our society are issues at least worthy of consideration in the public square. These fundamental issues are at least as important as retirement security and revamping a broad range of government programs. In fact, the 109th Congress raised all of those issues, and I believe that our nation’s public life was richer for the debate.

Kindly, Sir: This statement is freakin' nuts, and this kind of thinking is exactly why Republicans got their "thumpin'". Social Security reform is a hugely important economic issue -- particularly in light of its cost, inefficiencies, and general unsustainability. Ditto revamping government programs. Immigration reform/border security may be slightly less important in the grand scheme of things -- the importance of an issue is not measured by how many Congressmen hyperventilate over it -- but it is at least some relevant function of the Federal Government. Amending the Constitute to ban gay marriage? Possibly the least important activity for Congress to undertake in this, a time of war.

Indeed, DOMA is already in place. Numerous state initiatives have addressed the subject.* There's been no mass exercise in judicial overreaching. To even mention gay marriage as "at least as important" as SS reform or "revamping" -- and here I'll be gracious and assume you mean "eliminating" -- government programs betrays a profound lack of lucidity on your part.

The so-called wedge issues that you defend are what will make the Republican party a minority (Southern) party for a long time to come. Republicans need the moderates and libertarians to win everywhere outside the South -- and that includes traditionally red states (see, e.g., Indiana, where Republicans lost 3 [?] seats).

Let's hope that Adam C.'s analaysis (http://www.redstate.com/stories/elections/2006/election_analysis_the_cen...), not yours, carries the day.**

von

*And shouldn't gay marriage be an issue properly debated and decided at the local level? If Ohio bans gay marriage but Vermont allows it, why should Congress care? Indeed, isn't that the peculiar beauty of our putative system of limited government. Aside from letting the states do what they will (thereby eliminating the possibility that the citizens/judiciary of MA can set policy for the citizens SC, etc.), why is this even Congress's business?

**I admit, of course, that endorsing Adam C.'s analysis is in my self interest, given my libertarian/liberal social leanings. [Full disclosure.]

For we have a peculiar power of thinking before we act, and of acting, too, whereas other men are courageous from ignorance but hesitate upon reflection.

Tom is exactly right on this. Life is more than economics. This is where Republican strength lies. We are on the right side of the culture wars. Otherwise, the parties are not that much different. It wasn't very long ago that people would have laughed when someone brought up so called "gay marriage". We would not even be having a "gay marriage" debate if it was not forced on us by the judiciary. That is what is freakin' nuts. And the way our government has evolved, these issues cannot be solved at the state level, no matter how much we might like.

Social conservatives have not hurt the republican party. They are the strength of the party. Those that have hurt the party are the extreme part of the libertarian movement and the most radical of the so called "free traders". Those so extreme that they nearly call for social anarchy, who complain when government tries to defend the helpless, to install order. Those so extreme that they say the "labor needs" for illegal immigrants demand that we ignore our national sovereignty and any resulting impact on our culture. These are the people who are hurting the Republican Party.

Strong families are extremely important to a strong society. Look what an epidemic of fatherlessness has done to the black community. And who can argue that the rampant increase in divorce rates the last 40 years haven't been terrible for society? Families are important so marriage is important.

The nature of sociology is such that it is difficult to prove/predict what the ultimate effects will be from major changes in the the social order. Just because the full effects of sanctioning gay marriage may not be immediately apparent doesn't mean the effects won't be significant, especially long-term.

And as to the 'it should be left to the states' bit, consider these words from Mitt Romney:

Some argue that our principles of federalism and local control require us to leave the issue of same sex marriage to the states--which means, as a practical matter, to state courts. Such an argument denies the realities of modern life and would create a chaotic patchwork of inconsistent laws throughout the country. Marriage is not just an activity or practice which is confined to the border of any one state. It is a status that is carried from state to state. Because of this, and because Americans conduct their financial and legal lives in a united country bound by interstate institutions, a national definition of marriage is necessary.

of local and state laws on marriage and on a vast number of other things. Somehow life goes on and America functions indeed, functions much better than over-centralized, top-heavy societies. And while life may be more than economics I do not see where it follows that therefore the federal government should or may barge itself into every aspect of life like some pontificating nanny-god from on high who just always knows what's best for everyone everywhere.
Ladies and gentlemen, that was never a view the GOP stood for and if it's becoming acceptable now, then I submit that's part of the problem.
And what about marriage? I've heard people here rant about "government" schools. Well, what about "governmnent" marriages? Do you really think having the state run with such intimate matters has improved the institution? Sure, some laws are necessary in this area, generally in matters that involve the government already (taxes, inheritances etc.) But as a general matter it is better to do too little than to do too much.

There have been, at least until the Mass. Supreme Court decision, great similarities between marriage laws between all states. Age of consent varies some, but by the time you are 21, you are old enough to enter into it anywhere. Generally speaking you can't enter into it before you are 14 elsewhere, even with parental consent. You enter into a legally binding entity in which either spouse commits both to contracts which are signed. Unless there is a pre-nup, if you split up, you divide stuff up 50-50 except if both parties are willing to do otherwise. Even on divorce, there is general agreement in laws. Once upon a time there pretty much had to be cause, now following California's lead, its pretty much no-fault across the board. Sure the 'for cause' laws are still there, but they are mostly as anachronistic as the pooper scooper laws for horses. And it's the combination of the California's lead and the full faith and credit section of the constitution that translates what would otherwise be the Mass. courts, um..., eccentricity into a national problem. We aren't a patchwork of states, we are a national entity, whether we want to be or not.

What happens if a 15 year old wants to get divorced in a state where the age of consent is 18 (having previously, of course, married elsewhere)?

Quentin Langley
Editor of http://www.quentinlangley.net

gets divorced. This presumes that the complainant is residing in the state and the marriage is of a sort legally recognized by the state in which he or she resides when making the complaint. That said, there better not be an attempt at "reconcilliation" after the divorce is final if the complainant is still under 18.

Most states recognize any marriage sanctioned by another, but same sex is beginning to complicate that. Most states also recognize the "common law" marriages of other states, though mine does not. "Palimony" doctrines have made this a distinction without a difference in most cases though. Don't ask me how I know!
In Vino Veritas

>>Don't ask me how I know!

Okay, I won't. But you raise another interesting point. If a married couple move to another state they might find themselves residing under a different age of consent in which consummation of the marriage - or its continued consummation - would be illegal. Presumably those laws apply to them, just as they would if they were not married? If this were not the case, people could simply evade age of consent laws by travelling (with the double L, Moe) to another state and marrying there.

Quentin Langley
Editor of http://www.quentinlangley.net

of my knowledge on this. I learned far more than I ever wanted to know about state residency laws and restrictions on travelling between states a few years ago when we went after a bunch of our maritime employees for claiming AK residency and resident pay but living elsewhere. I think I'll go to my grave being able to quote AS 01.10.055, Alaska's residency definition. We had to dig into where and whether they were married, where the spouse or "spousal equivalent" resided, etc.

Some states require that a person be domiciled in that state to marry in that state, some do not. Las Vegas became a marriage hot spot because NV had no residency or waiting period requirment. States once took marriage laws pretty seriously and many still have them on the books, but my sense is that they're enforced about as much as spitting on the sidewalk laws. In the sixties and seventies, the states seemed to just do everything they could to get out of the marriage and divorce business.

Generally, sexual consent age laws have an exception for lawful marriage, e.g., the case in GA a few years ago where the woman tried to avoid the rape charge by marrying her 15 year old sex toy. So, if the marriage is of a form recognized by the state in which the couple resides and the sexual consent law has the usual exception for lawful marriage, the couple can consumate to their heart's content legally.

In Vino Veritas

Introducing government into the realm which belonged to family played an unquestonable role in the epidemic of fatherlessness in the black community you mentioned.

If you're nervous over the possible effects of change and the unpredictability of major changes of the social order, it doesn't follow that more changes in regulation are in order.

Government isn't the solution. Any time we empower government to control anything, that's just one more thing we have to prevent being abused.

In 1994 we ran as the party opposed to the corruption and entrenched Beltway attitude of the Democrats. It is time to return to those principles as well. We should not be the party of well-heeled lobbyists, beset by ethical scandals and criminal convictions of Congressmen. We're no worse than the Democrats, but we ought to be so much, much better.

Well said, now how do we get the republican leadership to embrace this simple principal?

I take issue with the tax reform (to display what I think is a common concern). Not the goal of reforming it, but a skepticism born of a similar promise and zero results. In a declaration which states that one desires to "re"-gain the majority through a return to principles, it seems prudent to analyze what led us astray the first time and why goals which appear today as they did before were not accomplished.

I regret that you find yourself outside of Congress right now. But given that you have time to post here and hopefully read the responses, let me offer a few thoughts that I would tell you if we were meeting face to face.

When you said "Republicans have done so well in cutting spending that he declared an 'ongoing victory,' and said there is simply no fat left to cut in the federal budget," you showed to me that you had been in Washington too long. I highly recommended you take the time to read Senator Coburn's book: Breach of Trust: How Washington Turns Outsiders Into Insiders. Your quote came also immediately after the House passed an outrageous Transportation Bill with pork barrel earmarks flowing from it. I think the belief that somehow Republicans had trimmed any fat, much less all of it, showed that leadership was not seeing the world how voters were seeing it.

Many things went wrong in 2006, but a leadership that had given up on the 1994 revolution and cared more about pork than principle was a big part of the Republican loss. It would be appropriate for those who were in leadership at the time to admit that problem and apologize for it.

It seems now you understand this a bit:

Second, we must lead an effort to radically redesign government and return it to its constitutional roots. The problem with our government isn’t simply that it has gotten too big or that it spends too much – but that it is involved in aspects of our lives and our economy in which it has no business. Further, our government has almost become a self-sustaining organism which continues to grow and propagate programs without accountability and without results for the people it is supposed to serve.

It is just too bad that it took being an Outsider again before those words were written. If that philosophy is ever able to make the trip from Outsider's writing to Insider's practice, it will revolutionize government. That's what people thought we were getting in 1994. Maybe next time it will work.

Social Security Choice - Club For Growth

"We could find a speck of dust and scribble down our life stories..." - The Refreshments

While I certainly believe the analysis of Mr. Delay is right on, it doesn't match what he did in power. Nor would I say that his idea that there was a choice between fighting hard for Social Security reform and defending Marriage is even nearly reasonable. Congress was out of session longer than any time in recent memory. We could have done both in terms of fighting for social security.

What bothers me about Mr. DeLay's rhetoric and to be honest, Mr. Gingrich's as well is that they come full of these great swelling words about how Congress has done this and that which didn't work is that they never take ownership of any of the problems they had a part in. Instead, we fire arrows at Congress.

I'd be more impressed if he took some responsiility for what happened rather than merely placing blame. It would give his writing far more honesty and credability.
Adam's Blog
The Adam Graham Program

great comments.

Absolutely agree with your comments. Delay et al. should look at themselves as a significant cause for the results of this election. Even ignoring Earle's ridiculous prosecution, the Republicans in the house darn near turned into the demoncrats they were supposed to replace. Corruption, lining the pockets of family and friends, protecting their own who failed the American people, all are hallmarks of leadership that lost its way.

"Republicans have done so well in cutting spending that he declared an 'ongoing victory,' and said there is simply no fat left to cut in the federal budget,"

With all due respect, Mr. Delay was part of the problem. Government did not shrink, spending was not reduced, social security was not reformed.

It still does not appear that the R's are really listening and accepting responsibility.

You can see what I want here.

The "redesigned tax code" topic brings out the Flat Taxers, the Fair Taxers, VAT-heads, and other psychotics. While I think a flat tax on anything above a certain income level (indexed to ZIP code) would be healthier than this monstrous game of hide and seek we play with Washington, the yearly bitter fight over which ZIP codes get which rate would make current pork battles look like so many church socials.

Another problem (that will never get any political daylight) is the levied tax on interest-bearing bank accounts. It's a stupid idea to tax savings interest, and caused the economy no small problem when it was introduced. We've adjusted to it with IRAs, mutual funds with check-writing, and other gimmicks. But its real effects have been discouraging savings, complicating banking, driving people to money managers, and generally inserting government where it doesn't belong. And I bet it doesn't make much money for the Treasury, either, compared to its drag on the economy.


Evil men hide from the truth, but good men stand upon it.

I think much of the corruption was due to the Republican's willingness to embrace pork-barrel projects and log-rolling to keep their majority.

If the Republican Party rejected this type of spending, the pay-to-play type corruption would nearly evaporate.

Usually, congressional lobbyists are looking for some sort of specific subsidy or project.

If a Republican politician says he needs a pork-barrel project for his district to keep his seat, well, he wasn't worth much anyway, let him lose it.

What we need in the House of Representatives is some sort of Commission to revaluate the usefulness of government projects and programs in the Federal Budjet, much like the Military Base Commission that Dick Armey devised, similar to a Congressional line item veto.

Republicans should also push for "sunsets" of all government programs, to make sure these "temporary" projects don't become permanent.

"Back in the thirties we were told we must collectivize the nation because the people were so poor. Now we are told we must collectivize the nation because the people are so rich. "

William F. Buckley, Jr.

One thing that ticks me off, about Congress, is this: I fail to see any advantage in all the happy talk--frankly, just lying--on the House floor about the "virtue" of your colleagues--the other side, who constantly stabs you in the back. All this "I would ask my good friend, the honorable gentleman from New Jersey...." or "I want to thank my good friend, the gentlewoman from Louisiana,..." is obviously pure BS, and everyone knows it. For goodness sakes, call a lying snake a lying snake. Lying is not good manners. Everyone and their uncle knows it's not true, and I think it’s the case, that a little BS is like being a little pregnant. Tell the truth. Call people what they are. If they're liars, say they're liars. They can handle it. The public can handle it. It would be so refreshing to hear the unvarnished truth for a change. Can't we at least get that much?

I'd rather OUR Congress not be dirtied like some legislatures are. England's jeering and Taiwan's fistfights we don't need.

It's bad enough that the Congressional Record is polluted with nonsense from filibusters...
--
If you're seeing shades of gray, it's because you're not looking close enough to see the black and white dots.

American legislatures lack the tradition of boisterous repartee. In a battle of verbal thrusts such as Parliamentary debate a Tom DeLay would be unarmed. In certain segments of American society being inarticulate is considered "manly," though in fact it's merely lumpen.

(yakko)
Annoying, isn't it?
(/yakko)

The Fuzzy Puppy of the VRWC.

My observation about American legislative debate was prompted by a poster's wish that ours was less restrained; my point--that Americans lack the tradition of the rapier verbal thrust, hence require elaborate protocol lest debate degenerate into mindless name-calling--is nicely illustrated by "And yet, we run the world." If one's repartee is limited to "Nah, nah, so's your mother," better it be a ritualistic: "And so's my honorable friend's mother."

...is precisely the same in both cases; your method merely takes longer to not get to the point.

At any rate, this may be all due to a cultural disconnect: we've generally found that people in these parts who use the word 'lumpen' without snickering tend to have other bad habits. :)

The Fuzzy Puppy of the VRWC.

Well, I don't know where "these parts" are, but my fellow travellers favor limited government, not limited vocabularies, and the former isn't served by sneering at those who fail to boast the latter. Indeed, the whole "I'm jus' a simple country boy snickerin' at the fast-talkin' city slicker" thing is as dysfunctional as George Allen's cowboy boots.:)

Or, presumably, "non-British Commonwealth". The extra 'l' in 'traveler' is what they call diagnostic, you see. Which would make your definition of limited government fascinating, as what we would call 'liberal' is usually called 'reactionary' in either England or Canada. Although I suppose you might be Australian, but that would make this conversation even weirder than it is already.

Also, I'm actually originally from New Jersey, to Bostonian parents.

The Fuzzy Puppy of the VRWC.

Notice the missing 'u' in 'favor'.

Quentin Langley
Editor of http://www.quentinlangley.net

The double l thing is more obscure. Not that I'm anything more than amused by this. :)

The Fuzzy Puppy of the VRWC.

Thanks--I never knew the double L in "traveller" was an anglicism. I'm a native-born American, resident in New Hampshire, and I'm always gllad to llearn something. And for those speculating on my politics, I'm what Mr. Lane says--accurately, I think--would be known as reactionary in Canada or the UK, 19th century liberal in my book. Not sure how this grew out of my objection to one poster's belief that the political process would be improved if legislators went around calling each other liars, but it's intriguing that you favor vocabulary and spelling tests to determine ideological soundness. Glad our causes are doing so well.

Yours, for example. Assuming that your debate opponents would all be country boys; tsk, tsk. For shame.

Full humor points on the double l use, btw (and sincerely), but next time include llamas somehow. Excuse me, llllamas.

The Fuzzy Puppy of the VRWC.

Come and visit me in Wales. The double L is very common in Welsh. The longest place name in the British Isles has five pairs of L's, including two adjacent to eachother.

Quentin Langley
Editor of http://www.quentinlangley.net

I know many people with rich vocabularies with whom I would not care to share a croissant. While there are other less articulate individuals, hayseeds, no doubt, with whom I would be proud to share a crust of bread.

Class is funny. You either have it or you don't.

See The World In HinzSight!
Political HinzSight

We seem to save the mindless name calling for a few months every two years, then immediately say I didn't mean it Tuesday night or Wednesday morning, a bit two-faced on both sides. I'd rather the GOP be agressive in going after the oppostition 365 days a year not just during election season. We really need to stop playing nice. Though I don't regularly listen to Rush he had a great point during the whole Michael J Fox debacle, just becuase you are famous, have a disease and have beliefs doesn't mean I don't get to question you and your motives. You attack me and my position don't pretend to be offended when I strike back and claim to be a victim of my assault. When the opposition starts a fight its time the GOP finishes it.

The "sound bite debate" is a very recent creature in American politics and is attributable to mass media. Historically, the Congress and the legislatures have had spirited, pointed debate by members with impressive rhetorical and argumentative skills. Most legislative argument has been moved to caucus and away from the prying eye of television. Consequently, by the time anything gets to the floor, there really isn't any debate. Each side gets up and records its sound bites, but there is no reason to debate in any classical sense. The votes were already counted or the matter wouldn't be on the floor.

In Vino Veritas

In days gone by, before television and radio, keeping the inner workings of government from the masses was not only easier, but necessary. Who wanted to travel for weeks by carriage, just to ask how a particular measure would sit with this merchant or that farmer?
We have the internet now. The time for 'business as usual' is over.The more that they hide from us, the fewer of 'them' there should be.
And, yes; I am aware of the grammatical challenges above.

Have you ever observed the Houses of Parliament?

You cannot seriously be saying they lack elaborate protocol. The fact that the protocol is different from that on Capitol Hill is neither here nor there.

Members, or friends, are not merely 'honourable' but frequently 'right honourable', sometimes 'learned', rarely these days 'gallant', in the Lords, of course, 'noble', and in one notable Commons occasion 'close'.

You also have to wear a hat to raise a point of order and the Serjeant at Arms carries a collapsible top hat to loan to anyone who doesn't have one.

The distance between the government and opposition front benches is deliberately set at more than twice the length of a standard sword, so that only the wit is rapier like.

Anyone, by the way, who can translate the above Parliamentary terms wins a free subscription to my newsletter.

And if you watch the Queen's Speech on Thursday, see if you can pick out Rouge Dragon Pursuivant and the Maltravers Herald Extraordinary. They get much better seats than Tony Blair, being so much more important. Do you know what they do?

Quentin Langley
Editor of http://www.quentinlangley.net

comment I ever heard on RS. Gee, it took you about 49 minutes, that must be some kind of record.

Ever watch CSPAN? While painful you might see that many are not "unarmed" as reported in your rant.

Perhaps where you come from being inarticulate is "manly", but that's not the case here. One sagacious comment; sometimes it's better not to speak at all. A point made by your post.

"Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori"

Brisk verbal combat does indeed encourage a sharpness of thought I sometimes find lacking in our elected representatives.

That's wit, or at the very least, intact critical faculties. A prime minister who cannot emerge victorious --- or at least unscathed --- from Question Time does not deserve the title. It hardly sinks to the silliness of the fillibuster, and it's the one thing our constitution could really use. Oh, but then, if you're a constitutional fundamentalist you could get strung up for suggestion that our constitution ISN'T already perfect.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Question_Time

When men yield up the privilege of thinking, the last shadow of liberty quits the horizon.
— Thomas Paine

Three things seem to happen in Question Time:

1. Members stand up and rant about some issue for a constituent, looking for big government to come in and help with their particular problem.

2. Members taunt the Prime Minister with sound bite questions.

3. The Prime Minister dodges the questions with vague assurances that he'll look into things, and by repeating the stock party line answers to the issues at hand.

Not useful, no thanks.
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If you're seeing shades of gray, it's because you're not looking close enough to see the black and white dots.

the legendary Virginia Daring; thought you were long dead. And, yes, Virginia, it is perfect, at least in its original form. Some of the "progressive" amendments are troublesome.

In Vino Veritas

Unfortunately, those who are screaming the loudest for civility today, are the ones who showed NONE for the previous six years.
Maybe a donnybrook in the Senate well is in order, n'cest pas?

Can we once again be the party of small government? The only counter to the Democrat's vision of a Federal government that is all things to all people is a Federal government that is only a few things to most people.

Americans still buy the notion of individualism, and it will sell. By trying to push for solutions at the national level, we are playing on the Democrats turf and will be doomed to permanent minority status.

By rolling back government Republicans can shape policy at the state and regional level, where solutions will seem more palatable to voters, because they are uniquely tailored. California voters do not want Georgian solutions and I am sure Georgia doesn't want Californian solutions. It will then be possible to once again win elections in places such as the West coast and the Northeast, without sacrificing the values of the South and Midwest.

Then, as the Democrats push there one size does not fit all national solution agenda, there will be a great deal of contrast with the Republicans and the moderates will return, assuring a majority.

We never *were* the party of small government. The Specters, Chafees, and Bushes have been with us for a long time.

Sway them. Challenge them in primaries. That's the way to get a party of small government. That's the only way to get it.
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If you're seeing shades of gray, it's because you're not looking close enough to see the black and white dots.

Well, I hate to do this, but I'm going to...

Mr. DeLay, you are one of the chief reasons that Republicans lost the House of Representatives. You came to symbolize everything that was wrong with politics in general.

If there is any reason why the House was lost, it begins with the name, Tom DeLay. If there is such a thing as karma, you will end up joining your allies Jack Abramoff, Michael Scanlon, Tony Rudy, etc in some form of federal prison time.

You abused power in ways that made Democrats look meek. You took what people like Newt Gingrich and Bob Walker created and trashed it for your own greed and personal benefit, and in the process hurt people that didn't agree or go along with your vision.

What is even more unfortunate, is that many times you invoked things like morality and God in doing so. It is that hypocrisy, in addition to your absolute corruption, that brought down the House of Representatives.

Hopefully, the first thing that the new Republican leadership will do is to turn the page from the era of Tom DeLay and invoke a new sense of dignity and respect for service. Maybe then, Republicans can begin to reestablish a level of trust and respect with the American public and regain the Majority sometime in the next 10 years.

I'm sorry to be so blunt, but you had a lot of nerve coming on here and blaming everyone and everything but yourself for the loss of Congress.

On what basis do you lay the blame at Mr Delay's feet? He was railroaded, charged with things that were not crimes when he didn't do them. He resigned, taking one for the team.

On what basis do you make the claim of greed?

On what basis do you make any of your other claims, such as that he committed a Federal (or any other) crime, personally trashed Gingrich's work, and hurt people who opposed his vision?

If anything, Mr Delay is guilty of being too loyal to a President sharing his party during a time of national crisis. Why did the President not veto anything? He never got sent anything he wouldn't sign. Going along with the President ("carrying his water") is nothing to be ashamed of -- in fact, it's something a lot of us did.


Evil men hide from the truth, but good men stand upon it.

as a conserative. I second your thought that Delay was just being a good solder. I doubt Medicare part D was his Brainchild

You are exactly right. The Bush family has severely damaged the Republican Party.

On 41: Beyond simply stating it, there is no reason to belabor the travesty that "read my lips" represents.

On 43: No Child Left Behind, Medicare Part D, looking the other way (and not using the veto pen) as Congress engaged in go-along-get-along earmarking and pork barrel at unprecedented levels (thereby putting us into massive debt), and a less-than-robust use of legislative oversight -- the whole nightmare unfolded per instructions from the White House.

Some believe that we should not fault the Republicans in Congress who, out of a claimed loyalty to the president, behaved in these obviously anti-conservative, sometimes unethical ways. I strongly disagree. Those who rose to the top of Capitol Hill by obliging W when he proposed items they had to have known were inconsistent with the visions of Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan must pay a steep price now (by, for instance, being defeated for Minority Leader). Only in this way can we 1) prevent a repeat of this disgrace in the future and 2) return the party to its principles.

I agree with you in principle rhatican but unfortunately, I myself have been caught up in circling the wagons no matter what when doing battle with the combined media, party and intellectual opposition arrayed against us. You sometimes forget what your fighting for when survival is at stake which goes back to posts from a few days ago on the need for conservatives to infiltrate media/academia so we can maintain our values on an even playing field.

The longer we dwell on our misfortunes the greater is their power to harm us - Voltaire

Founded or unfounded I think the post saying Delay's name was part of the problem is correct. I'd bet big $ that a national poll on name recognition and favorable/unfavorable would go big against Mr. Delay. Again I'm all for innocent until proven guilty, but the electorate had the impression that he was guilty as soon as Ronnie Earl got his face on TV. Most on here should now in politics fact doesn't have a lot to do with perception. Allegations make the front page, correction or retractions make A-17.

Tom Delay did nothing wrong. He was merely punished for resisting the Democrats. There was absolutely no taint of corruption in him at all; no one even accused him of putting money in his own pocket. All the charges against him involved playing politics too tough.

What a bunch of crap: he was "admonished" for supposedly promising to personally endorse a republican running for office in exchange for a vote on the house floor.

Even the charges against him in Texas involve being too tough on the democrats, supposedly transferring money from one political committee to another. No one profited from it. The only reason why a big deal is being made about it is because the money was used against the democrats, so the MSM and democrats decided to punish Delay.

The real problem is not Delay but his fellow Republicans, who were too wimpy and agreed with these crappy ethics charges. Unfortunately that is the way so many republicans are, focus on the trees, the little details, so much that they ignore the forest, the big picture.

So speaker Hastert ends up supporting the democrat with stolen cash in his freezer from a valid FBI search warrant while supporting phony ethics charges against Tom Delay for nothing more than playing smash mouth politics against the democrats.

an epiphany on the road to Dallas?

He certainly did not legislate in accordance to 'his' conservative talking points laid out above. While it's true he was unfairly railroaded out of office on trumped up charges, he was a leader of the Republican party that, while in control of the House and Senate, set an agenda to make government bigger, more invasive, expand earmarks and so on. A conservative he is not, at least he didn't behave as one while in office. If he was a conservative he would have stood up against Medicare part D, NCLB, expanding farm handouts etc.

====
"Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm." -- James Madison

The only reason why accusations are made against Delay is that he worked in the real world, passing real legislation and winning real elections, instead of a libertarian fantasy world in which we can return to the stone age with a single roll call vote.

No one else in his shoes could have done better for small government. Indeed, no one has, including Ronald Reagan.

The reality is that small government is just a fantasy, which has no votes supporting it and many against. Blaming Delay for the way the real world is, is not fair, and won't change anything.

Do you agree with his statement that there was no more pork to cut in the transportation bill?
Sure Delay passed 'real' legislation - real BAD legislation. That's why he's home now watching from the sidelines. Frankly I found his press release post disturbing in that he still does not admit to the roll he played as a leader who supported the largest increase in government greed in recent history. He's is a major contributor to why the Republicans lost big this election - I don't think he realizes the damage he has personally done to the party and the country.

All pigs eventually go to the slaughter house - even the big greedy ones.

====
"Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm." -- James Madison

Are we talking about a libertarian fantasy world where all the highways are privately owned, so there would be no need for government highway funding at all?

I guess that would be the one in which "$2.3 million for landscaping enhancements along the Ronald Reagan Freeway in Ventura County, $1.8 million to construct a visitor interpretive center at the Gray Fossil Site in Gray, Tennessee, and $432,000 to establish a transportation museum on the Navy Pier in Chicago" [all among the earmarks in the highway bill, see here] are no longer considered worthwile concerns for Congress and left to the respective special interests to raise funds from citizens who agree that these are important projects, without the coercive power of federal taxation to do it for them.

[rolls eyes]

a federal transportation bill that was over $280 billion dollars and had 6000+ earmarks for special projects, many of which have nothing to do with transportation. Why should the federal government transportation bill fund a $6 million snow mobile trail in Vermont or various museums etc, etc, etc, etc, etc?
====
"Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm." -- James Madison

Yes I agree with his statement inasmuch as I agree with the sarcasm of it. To me that statement was a pointy stick at his fellow republicans. Everyone was crying for less pork, he asked for specific places to cut (put up or shut up) and then, surprise, nobody came forward, hence his comment:

"My answer to those that want to offset the spending is sure, bring me the offsets, I'll be glad to do it. But nobody has been able to come up with any yet."

Of course I would like to know if it really was sarcastic or genuine.

and would like to see the same attention turned to the "non-profits" that provide sustenance to the Democrats. That said, when one associates with dogs, there is considerable exposure to fleas, and unfortunately some Republicans got fleas. Mr. DeLay et al. were doing a good thing, but some Republicans should have been better people.

As to the rest of your attack, lets wait for some real evidence adduced in an adversarial environment.

In Vino Veritas

Tom Delay was the single biggest problem in Washington. It turned out that the number one issue on voters minds was not Iraq, but corruption in congress. And Tom Delay and his way of doing things was what put off so many people. I agree that what he did to get charged probably wasn't a crime - he was only skirting the law rather than breaking it - but thank God it happened because if he had still been leading the party in the House, I think we would have lost a lot more seats. I hope he is never in a position to influcence the GOP again.

I'm not convinced that it is the number one issue. I'm not entirely sure that Mr. DeLay is the devil that you're looking for...

Okay, I don't fuly trust exit polls, but the showed it was the number one issue for voters. Even if they got it slightly wrong, it was still a huge issue.

> It turned out that the number one issue on voters minds was not Iraq, but corruption in congress.

That's why Tom DeLay might have saved the Congress for us if he were still in power. Unlike speaker Hastert, he would have used the democrat's cash-in-the-freezer scandal to turn the tables on them.

DeLay was exactly what republicans needed, a smash mouth street fighter.

Delay would have had absolutly no room to talk. Even if the charges against him were trumped up, he was still being charged. he tried to change the rules to suit himself. He had people kicked of the ethics panel for voting to repremand him. Yes, the Dems played nasty with him, but he was no better - using the FAA to track down where the Texas Dems had flown to.
I loved Newt. I hated, hated, HATED Tom Delay. He was the worst thing that ever happened to the GOP. He totally trashed the spirit of 1994. He belongs in some sewer with Jim Wright and Tony Cuello.

I mean for goodness sake, Tom DeLay and Dennis Hastert changed the rules of the House of Representatives so that INDICTED FELONS could remain in elected leadership positions.

Heck, I say, the rules should be that INDICTED FELONS have their voting rights in the House suspended pending the outcome of their trials. And if they resign from office because of their indictments, if found guilty, they should lose their pensions.

We cannot tolerate this hypocrisy any further than we already have.

The Republican conference made it Conference policy (not House policy) that a leader had to step down if indicted. Tom DeLay followed this, despite the obvious political nature of the indictment. He resigned as Majority leader, and eventually resigned completely from the house.

---
Say if ever thou didst find a woman with a constant mind

along with Dollar Bill and we'll see if the culture of corruption really means anything.
_______________________________
If "pro" is the opposite of "con", what is the opposite of "progress"?

Pelosi and the rest of her comrades will demand his resignation just like they did Jefferson's when they found the bribe cash in his freezer. And they'd never support anybody who had any connection to a certified FBI bribery sting for a leadership position.

No, I think Delay got a bum rap on the corruption charges from a political hack of a DA. I think the stupid people deserted him instead of making clear that the indictment rule applied to real police investigations as opposed to political witch hunts. I also think that was the moment Dems smelled blood in the water and realized they just might be able to take back control of congress. I mean, if Reps were willing to throw a man who fought Dem gerrymandering to gain FIVE seats in the House to the crocodiles, who else might they throw to save their own seats? Santorum? Talent? Maybe even Burns.

I may not be happy with everything Tom Delay has done for us, but on the whole, I'd rather he were still on the front lines fighting for us.

corruption poster-boy Alan Mollohan was re-elected, easily. And Harry Reid has yet to resign in disgrace.

Patrick Kennedy was also re-elected, easily. Ted Kennedy was re-elected in a landslide.

You have to thank the media for burying stories about corrupt Democrats and for calling on the rest of us to pity them rather than punish them.

Corruption in the majority party always gets more press. Jim Wright and Tony Cuello were both brought down by corruption when the Dems were holding the Congress and there was plenty in the press about it. And you can't say 'Freezer' Jefferson didn't get a lot of press, either. We put up a weak candidate against Alan Mollohan - as for Harry Ried - now as majority leader, he'll be more under the microscope.

Mr. Delay hits the pertinent points. However in the political arena many show up for the power, the perks and the esteem regardless of party affliation. The opium of big government is too addictive for most to overcome, let alone withstand. And job security comes from pandering to the lowest common denominator of constituent's instant gratification.

The dream of decades, holding the Presidency, the House and the Senate amounted to, well...not much really. If again, will it be for naught again?

Well it looks like a pretty tough crowd around here. I wouldn’t be blaming Mr. Delay for the failures of the republican congress over the past six years. The problem has always been the Senate with the filibusters and the complicit RINO’s that occupy it. When Mr. Delay was majority leader in the house he was able to get just about anything conservatives wanted passed only to see the Senate or White House kill it. As for the lobbing scandal, it seems to me to be a bit overblown. When Mr. Delay is convicted of something, let me know. Lobbyists were here before Mr. Delay and will be here after Mr. Delay. Now that the Dems are running the place they will be renamed things like “consumer advocates” and “civil rights leaders” and “environmentalist” and “union leaders”, and so on. We take our eye off the ball when we take Democratic and msm talking points and use them against out own. I’m certainly not a fan of Big Government Conservatism, but I don’t blame Tom Delay for what has happened. He was majority leader, not house dictator. He could only deal with the hand he was dealt.

We haven't been tough enough with our elected representatives, and yes Mr.Delay does deserve some blame. Not for the false things he was accused of, but for having a cavalier attitude toward pork, earmarks, and big government.

"Nothing works like freedom, Nothing succeeds like liberty"
Kyle

The libertarian party would win more than 1% of the vote...

Big government John McCain and Rudy Guiliani would not be the leading contenders for the republican nomination...

No one could have done better than Tom Delay for small government. Ultimately small government republicans will need to make a choice between sitting on the sidelines with a theory and 1% of the vote like the Libertarians, or working to cut small government an inch at a time, in the face of a hostile media like Ronald Reagan did.

and the GOP could not even defund NPR. At this point I am not even sure that we cut gvernement even an inch at a time. So far there has been a lot of talk small government but no effort to make it happen.

and comparing the talk of small government to the libertarian goals is ridiculous.

Growing our government size by 7%+ each year is "no one could have done better ... for small government"??? If that's the best GOP can do for the principles of regular conservatism then stick a fork in us, we are done.

At least go back to what Gingrich was doing. Cutting the rate of growth would've been an improvement but even that was not done.

Libertarian? Bleh.

"To discuss evil in a manner implying neutrality, is to sanction it." AR

but yes, it was the best that could be done. Every time we conservatives run a viable candidate against a "moderate" the party leaders tell us to shut our traps and stop screwing up party unity. They tell us we have to support Snarlin Arlen, Lincoln Chafee, and Olympia Snowe, because even if they only vote right once in the whole term, on that one vote we get to elect the Speaker or the President pro Tem (sp?). Then the rest of the term those same people it was so critical to elect sabotaged good legislation that Delay and other like him tried to pass. Four years of trying to twist arms in that kind of environment and I'd probably say something more sarcastic and potentially stupid sounding as Delay did when he said there was obviously no pork left to cut because nobody was offering any.

That being said, you were, in the end, a major reason we lost the Congress last week. Your risible statement that there was no fat left to trim from the Federal budget; your attempt to get the Rostenkowski rule changed when your indictment was at hand; your active collaboration with the Administration on big-spending boondoggles like Medicare Part D; and your willingness to encourage the idea, when you were fighting to keep your post, that support for you was the functional equivalent of conservatism(!) -- all these things were intrinsic to our loss of power on Tuesday, 7 November.

You're saying all the right things here. What a pity you didn't display the same principled vision in your final years in power. You -- and we -- might still be there.

We are but warriors for the working-day.

You should hand out tourniquets with those.


Evil men hide from the truth, but good men stand upon it.

Tom Delay was a strong champion of small government, and had impeccable ethics. No one, conservative or liberal, has ever produced any evidence otherwise.

The only reason why accusations are made against Delay is that he worked in the real world, passing real legislation and winning real elections, instead of a libertarian fantasy world in which we can return to the stone age with a single roll call vote.

No one could have done any better than Delay. No one has. There is just a double standard in which Delay is held to tougher standards than other republicans, say real big government ones like John McCain and Rudy Guiliani who support massive new entitlements yet are in first place for the republican nomination.

Or we criticize Delay for being tough while today's republican leaders get rolled and run over by the democrats because they are too soft. Republicans should have supported knocking down the Rostenkowski rule so that their leaders could be as tough as democratic ones. If we let our leaders get knocked down by trumped-up democratic charges, how can we expect them to fight and win for us? They can't, which is one reason the election was lost. Without someone tough like Delay, we end up with Hastert's weak response to the money-in-the-freezer scandal.

Did you perchance pay attention to the government Tom DeLay helped create in the past six years?

While Mr. Delay was twisting arms to pass the largest expansion of the welfare state since the Great Society (Medicare Part D), Mr. McCain was voting against it. McCain also was one of only 3 R Senators who voted against the Transportation Pork Bill and the Energy Pork Bill last year. During that same time, Mr. Delay was informing us that there was nothing left to cut in the budget (i.e. we're not going to do anything for small government conservatives). McCain may not be perfect, but at least he has a record of trying to do something about overspending and pork barreling.

Social Security Choice - Club For Growth

Yup, Tom Delay was a partner of President Bush, agreeing to fight for some of the President's big-government priorities, in exchange for getting some of the House's own small-government priorities.

McCain? He mugged for the cameras instead of working with any Republicans on anything.
--
If you're seeing shades of gray, it's because you're not looking close enough to see the black and white dots.

. . . what were those “small-government priorities” of the House that Delay got through again?

They didn't cut funding to anybody. The Dept of Ed grew quickly. NPR is still publicly funded. Spending shot up over the last 6 years. Delay and Bush stopped believing in small government conservatism (if they ever believed in it in the first place). Several of Mr. Delay's comments showed that he was not listening to or was ignoring these concerns. His belief that pork had been eliminated and his rhetorical question about what could possibly be cut show that he was very out of touch with the majority of the country who see the Transportation Pork bill and Energy Pork bill for what they are.

Social Security Choice - Club For Growth

Sorry, I can't accept the assertion that spending shot up. Earmarks shot up but you of all people, Adam, should know the difference between earmarking more spending and increasing spending.

No, we haven't cut programs. But while we haven't done that, we also haven't created new programs outside of those requested by the President.

OK, so I'll grant you this: We didn't SHRINK anything, but we certainly held the line every time the President didn't run off to the other side.
--
If you're seeing shades of gray, it's because you're not looking close enough to see the black and white dots.

They talk the virtue of “small government” when they want our votes but when push comes to shove they cave to political pressure and vote to make it larger while blaming someone else for it – just like Reagan did.

Tom DeLay is not the kind of man that I think should be in government and I'm glad that he's out the door.

He may put on a good face for all of you who want to follow him and such, but the real Tom DeLay is a rude and unethical man.

Give him some red wine and see what version of Tom DeLay shows up... You'd be surprised...

Good grief... Be glad this albatross is gone...

... the real Tom DeLay is a rude and unethical man.

Who the hell are you for us to believe that you somehow know the real Tom DeLay? Have you met the man? Have you ever worked with him?

Personally, I don't think you have much of a future here. There doesn't seem to be much original thought in any of your posts. You simply sound like a regurgitator of conventional wisdom; a poor man's David Gergen - and the real one is bad enough.

Put up or shut up; what makes you an intimate of the "real Tom DeLay?"

Well, I worked in DC in and around Tom DeLay for about 3 years. The people that worked on his staff operated like a mafia of sorts, never afraid to make threats and invoke his name to get personal favors.

In my dealings with him, I found him to say and act one way, yet in private meetings and negotiations, operate in another. His underlings and staffers, were, with some exceptioons, even worse and more duplicitous than their boss.

It's apparent that when they were caught, as Tony Rudy, etc... were, DeLay played ignorant and voiced that he was surprised by their actions.

Congress as an institution will be better because of his absence. Unfortunately, Nancy Pelosi is just a female version of Tom Delay.

People like Nancy Pelosi and Tom DeLay give public service a bad name.

First of all, all you spout is conventional wisdom. Nothing you say deviates from what you get from watching CBS, and that's as far from accurate as you can get.

You're simply ignorant. So much so that I find it impossible to believe you've had anything to do with anybody in DC, much less Tom DeLay who is obviously quite way above your pay grade.

Your assertion that the GOP opposes, as a whole, stem cell research was clue one - apparently the difference between adult stem cells and embryonic stem cells sailed over your head. Or it's more likely that you have no idea what either one is.

You squeals that electing Mike Pence House Republican Leader would be too much of a "hard right turn" without showing any awareness that Nancy Pelosi is every bit as far to the Left, or even further to the Left, as Mike Pence is to the Right was clue two.

Your screams that DeLay tried to change a House of Representatives Rule so he could remain leader while an "INDICTED FELON" was clue three. One, you cannot be a felon unless you're convicted] - one does not become a felon at indictment. Two, that a leader should resign if under an indictment is House Republican Caucus rule; Democrat leaders are under no obligation to resign if placed under an indictment.

In other words, you do not know what you're talking about.

Therefore, you need to go out, get some more knowledge and then come back when you have something to contribute. Or barring that, sit down, shut up, read Moe, Adam, strieff and pejman, etc. and maybe you can pick up something you didn't know before - and that would be a lot.

Right now, you have absolutely nothing to add here. In fact, every single one of your posts contains such glaring errors of fact that you actually subtract from the sum total of knowledge on this site.

My advice? Just post questions from here on in. You just might learn something.

It is perfectly appropriate, even necessary, for any public figure to have a public persona that is very different from his or her private persona. The hail fellow well met making a speech to bring people to his view is very different from the powerful person at a conference table trying to seal the deal. And the powerful person in the private meeting with a rival powerful person is yet another persona.

And as to staffers, the power of a staffer is the power of his boss; it's his job to use it. "You can work it out with me or you can work it out with the Chairman, Speaker, Governor, Commissioner, Whatever" is the first play in the book. I don't have a problem with a member of the leadership or his staffer telling a recalcitrant member that he's going to pass a bill to start taking things OUT of his district if he doesn't get on board. Show me a powerful person who's a "real nice guy" and I show you a chief of staff who's a real SOB.

I don't know Tom DeLay from Adam's off ox, but I suspect he has more than just a small streak of a*****e; goes with the territory. He must have been doing something right or the Democrats wouldn't have tried the head shot.
In Vino Veritas

Under Mr. Delay, we've thrown the principles of small government conservatism overboard. The truth is the House under him ended the Gingrich revolution.

"To discuss evil in a manner implying neutrality, is to sanction it." AR

And at the risk of sounding ungracious to Mr. DeLay, I don't think it reflects particularly well on Redstate to have a person who is political and ethical anchor around the neck of conservatives posting here.

Remember, it was Mr. DeLay that tried to lead the Gingrich Coup. The man was obsessed with power for himself and his entourage. At every turn, he seeked to enrich himself, his wife, and daughter through his service in Congress.

I have to say, do the means justify the ends? We raised money to maintain our majority, but look at the price we're paying in the end.

Doesn't it matter just as much how you conduct yourself to reach your goals as it is of the goals themselves?

As you can see, I really do not like or respect Tom DeLay.

The Honorable Tom DeLay is the problem, and frankly so is Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh and Ann Coulter. DeLay was on "Hannity and Colmes" last week and when Colmes (the world's wimpiest liberal who is on the show for no reason other than for Fox to pretend they are fair and balanced) asked DeLay if he thought DeLay's ethics problems contributed to the Republican defeat, DeLay acted as if he had no idea what Colmes was talking about. THAT is the problem.

Then Hannity had on David Boies (a Dem but not spokesperson for the Dems) and every time Boies talked about ANY kind of redeployment, all Hannity could do is keep repeating "cut and run, cut and run".

These guys don't get it. The country has had it with right wing extremism and the hate mongers who preach it.

If people like Hannity were REALLY patriots, then instead of attacking Pelosi before she even takes the gavel, they would say something like "we have disagreed with her before, but we are all Americans and we hope for the best".

RedState, go ahead and keep featuring blogs by the likes of DeLay, that is a sure way to guarantee that the Dems win again in '08.

I love the trolls that come in for all of 32 minutes to tell us they have the answers to our problems. Citizen's Blam...take the we all hope for the best back to San Fransisco. Enjoy your last 2 years in power doing what Democrats do best-nothing.

"Five years after 9/11, the worst attack on American homeland in our history, the Democrats offer nothing but criticism and obstruction, and endless second-guessing. The party of FDR and the party of Harry Truman has become the party of cut-and-run."-George W. Bush

Seeing as she's about to promote to Intelligence Chair a man whom she herself voted to impeach as being unworthy of holding federal position. I think that alone is enough for the hairy eyeball... not that this is my problem. Hardly.

Lose the casual accusations of lack of patriotism if you want to keep posting here, by the way.

The Fuzzy Puppy of the VRWC.

I didn't realize Comrade Pelosi had voted to impeach Hastings... Have to remember that for the future.

According to Wikipeida’s entry on Alcee Hastings, the Senate had the option of forbidding Hastings from seeking federal office again but did not do so. I'm not sure if the articles of impeachment Pelosi voted for woudl have had the provision in it or not or if the penalty is up to the Senate. Anyone have the straight info?

I agree that Hanity, Rush, and Coulter are part of the problem. I think the Republican Party needs new leadership, and I think it needs new faces.

One thing I like about Pence is that he is a Christian, a Conservative, and a Republican in that order. He's not afraid to tell the party when it is not behaving as a Christian or a conservative should.

For the last six years, there have not been enough people calling BS on the issues that took center stage and the policies that came out of Washington. That is exactly what Hanity, Rush, and Coulter should have been doing. Instead, they bash away at opponents and do nothing to advance or sell conservative ideas.

If my primary way to sell my ideas relied on disparaging my competition, I wouldn't be in business long. Conservative ideas are good and are accepted. We have hours and hours a day on radio and TV to sell those ideas, and instead we just sit around and bash libs and talk about their ideas. That's just wasted opportunity.

it pains me to say this, but if one is to look ahead, one should not look South (with apologies to the Southern Railway). Almost to a man or woman, Southern Republicans are turncoat Democrats. There is no heritage of thoughtful Republicanism or ideological conservatism in The South. The South's conservatism comes from its rural character and its legacy of post-bellum poverty. Since its meaningful re-entry to the Union in the late 19th Century, The South has had no aversion to spending other people's money. King Cotton was defeated and was replaced by King Pork. Put 'em in when they're young and let them die in office was the Southern Way.

It was and is easy to be a social conservative in a land where the church is the poor man's country club. It was and is easy to be a fiscal conservative in a land where the rich will not pay taxes and the rest have nothing to tax. Now somebody from suburban Atlanta or Charlotte or some other Yankee vidette is going to challenge me about that, but those places are what a quarter million Confederate soldiers died to prevent.

When left to its own devices from '61 to '65, The South established a level of socialism and statism that even San Fran Nan would approve of; state salt distribution, state rail roads, crop confiscation, slave impressment, Widows and Orphans relief, and on, and on. The South even nationalized the "slop jars" for nitre production to produce gunpowder.

Southern "conservatism" is born of poverty, not of an ideological commitment to limited government. If you give a Southerner control of money that isn't his, he'll spend it. Hate to say it, and I await the rebuttal. GC, you out there?
In Vino Veritas

I know that scores of southern Congresscritters switched to the GOP during the 1990s, after the Republicans took control of the House. I wonder if they'll switch back, now that the Dems are in the majority?

I feel that no one represents me. On the one hand, you have the pork barrel Evangelical Republicans, and on the other, you've got RINOs who don't really stand for much of anything. What happened to the Reagan Conservatives?? Where did they all go?

I rarely flame anyone on Red State, but what you posted is stupid in the maximum.

First, the charge that southern republicans are all just ex democrats is patently untrue. Nearly all of the old line southern democrats of my fathers generation have about died out.
There place was taken by Reagan Republicans lie myself who grew up believing in a conservative opportunity society.

As to southern socialism and populism, yes it does exist, but is hardly an artifact of conservatism. Nor is it any more pronounced than the liberalism of northern states or the populism of the Midwest.

Your attack on the intellectual underpinnings of southern conservatism is just another in a long line of attacks on the intelligence and sophistication of Southerners and Southern culture. Please be advised that your bigotry is neither needed nor wanted here.

"Nothing works like freedom, Nothing succeeds like liberty"
Kyle

...(this would be kyle8 & achance) re-examine your last posts, blanch a bit at the rhetoric involved and resolve to do better in the future?

Thank you...

The Fuzzy Puppy of the VRWC.

that I might re-examine is the use of the term "turncoat" because it is perhaps more pejorative than is deserved by some, perhaps many, of the people involved. That said, until the Sixties, there was no such thing as a White, Southern Republican. While Goldwater in '64 and Nixon in '68 got Southern votes, those Southerners remained registered Democrats into the '90s and many remain so despite their recent voting. Any Southerner older than 50 or so certainly cast his or her first vote for any but the President for a Democrat and in all probability has cast far more votes for Democrats than Republicans prior to the last couple of national elections. Beyond that, I await Kyle8 or anyone else's logical, factual refutation of what I said. And just ranting and calling me stupid is neither.

In Vino Veritas

You seem unwilling to validate anyone as an honest-to-God conservative Republican unless they are a direct blood descendant of William F. Buckley.

Plenty of Republicans nationwide, not just in the South, are converts because the Democratic Party deserted them & their values. If you restricted Republican Party membership by your definition of true Republican, it would be about 10% of the electorate.

You may have been born in the South, but birth does not confer understanding. I have lived in Oklahoma and Louisiana all of my adult life. I am 50, so I (marginally) make your cut off. I can count on one hand the number of Democratic politicians I have voted for.

Yes, there are some that match your stereotype, but plenty that do not. I could sit here & idly malign aggressive New Yorkers, stuffy New Englanders, clod-hopping Iowa farmers, polygamous Utahans, and Californians from the "land of fruits and nuts", but what's the point of that?

I was thinking and speaking more in terms of the officeholder and political operative class than of the broader electorate, though I don't recant what I said even in terms of the broader electorate.

One could not get elected as a White Republican anywhere in The South (defining The South as the former Confederacy) until the late Sixties and then only in some affluent suburbs of the big cities. It was not until the mid-to-late Eighties that there really was a viable Republican presence other than in Presidential elections. Consequently, the people who became the political operatives and officeholders were either very young or had cut their political teeth in Democratic Party politics, not Republican politics.

I agree that most converted to the Republican Party because, like Zell Miller says, the Democrat Party left them. Nonetheless, almost all of them over fifty or so got their political experience as Democrats.

In Vino Veritas

I'm not saying you don't have a point, but personally, I don't see it. I would appreciate your expounding on that. If you could excerpt a paragraph or line and dissect it for the subtext you find objectionable, I will have learned something today.

I can say that you speak of a South that was two generations ago. The South I live in is one occupied by aerospace and automobile manufacturers and banking and medical megabusinesses. The modern South I live in could serve as a great example to rest of the nation for racial harmony and acceptance. Yeah, some of the old guard and ole boys still exist, but they are fading into obscurity. The only brand of racism that is not ebbing in the South is that which exists in our big cities... a political tool, not a cultural institution, exploited by those in power.

I do not believe Southern "conservatism" was born just of poverty, but fostered by rural necessities of taking care of one's own when there is not a security net for failure.

Southerner's are proud of this "country" independence and those that have migrated from the fields to the suburbs and professions are proud of their roots, unlike many of the Northeast and West Coast who sneer at their less than polished beginnings with a feigned superiority.

Here's your rebuttal: Give ANY politician control of your money and he'll spend it to buy favor. Give your money to a Southerner and he'll say:

"Boy if brains were grease, you couldnt slick the head of a pin!"

_________________________________________________________
Thou art the Great Cat, the avenger of the Gods, and the judge of words...-Inscription on the Royal Tombs at Thebes

Richard B. Russell
John Stennis
Eugene and Herman Talmadge
Sam Nunn
Lyndon Baines Johnson

I'll take the high road and believe their opposition to federal spending on social welfare programs was principled opposition on limited government grounds, but they sure liked military spending, especially on bases in The South. And just how did Pascagoula, MS get to be a major ship-building center? And why was Houston a logical place to put NASA? And we needed a nuclear sub base in St. Mary's, Georgia? And the terrain and weather at Forts Benning and Stewart, Georgia, Ft. Bragg, NC, and Ft. Hood, Texas is so much like that of places we might actually have to fight that it is perfectly logical to position a huge proportion of the Army there, right?

In Vino Veritas

Richard B. Russell - DEAD
John Stennis- DEAD
Eugene and Herman Talmadge- DEAD-DEAD
Sam Nunn- RETIRED
Lyndon Baines Johnson- DEAD

Men of a bygone era.

They have been building warships in and transports in Pascagoula since the early 1700's so blame the French. As far as space research and the military bases you can look in almost in area of the country and find the same including the East coast, Midwest, and West coast.

___________________________________________________________
Thou art the Great Cat, the avenger of the Gods, and the judge of words...-Inscription on the Royal Tombs at Thebes

that every "Boomer" aged political figure in The South understudied men like that or their proteges. I acknowledge that there is a younger generation of leadership that is up and coming and they in large measure come from a very differnt sociology and economy. That said, they are at best on the fringes of power today waiting their turn.

In Vino Veritas

well, there was also a little thing called civil rights. When did the massive realignment happen? After LBJ betrayed southern democrats with the 1964-65 civil rights acts, and they fled to the welcoming arms of Nixon's southern strategy.

I've always found it interesting that from the civil war to LBJ, no Democrat from the south had any prayer of being elected president. Since him, no Democrat not from the south has had any success in that national election.

And when, precisely, did this supposed Southern Strategy take effect? 1968, when Wallace split the Democrats? 1972, when Nixon pwn3d McGovern? 1976, when Carter split the South? 1980, when Reagan pwn3d Carter across the board? 1984, when he did the same to Mondale? 1988, when Bush pwn3d Dukakis across the board? 1992, when Clinton benefited from Perot and split the South with Bush? 1996, when Clinton beat Dole and split the South? It wasn't until 2000 and 2004 that the GOP swept the South in Presidential elections, and the general realignment on the State level was not only not really visible until the last decade... it's still going on.

Next paragraph deleted; I'd hate to think that one of our regulars would have deliberately written something that would have justified it.

The Fuzzy Puppy of the VRWC.

Sorry, Moe, I wrote that one quickly. I didn't mean to imply that the southern strategy was uniformly successful. Obviously, Democrats continued to be strong in the south throughout the past quarter century.

My point was only that, in the large and, as you correctly point out, continuing geopolitical realignments of the past forty years or so, the civil rights acts of the sixties played a major part in the south's general moving from Democrat to Republican. One example would be Thurmond switching parties following the 1964 act. It's ironic because in the fifties, the Republican party had been the stronger advocate of civil rights (dating from its Civil War heritage) while the southern Democrats like Eastland, Russell, Stennis, Thurmond, Ellender et al provided the main obstruction, at least in the Senate. Johnson correctly saw that by passing a civil rights act, the Democrats could seize the mantle of being the friend to African-Americans--a mantle which they have used quite effectively, if not always truthfully, since then.

My understanding of the southern strategy, and I understand that even the terminology is debatable, is that it was the attempt by the Republicans in the aftermath of the civil rights era to capture the disaffected white voters in the south, which had previously been virtually a one-party region. How they accomplished that--and whether, for example, "states' rights" is necessarily a code term for "we're not going to be too active on civil rights, white folks!"--is debatable, but I don't think anyone can deny the success Republicans have had in courting white southern voters since 1964, especially in presidential elections.

And I'm curious about that paragraph you deleted; my post may have been hastily-written and perhaps something you disagree with, but I'd hate to think it would merit anything you couldn't post in public.

two cents,
Ben

Because, quite frankly, I am not as yet to see any evidence of Republicans explicitly or implicitly appealing to racism in White Southerners in order to win their votes. The South did not move to the GOP column throughout the 1960s, 1970s and really only started going Republican in the 1980s. That would be twenty years later.

You cannot use the Presidential elections because as Moe pointed out:

1968 - Two Democrats running, one on an explicitly segregationist platform. Nixon actually lost votes in many Southern states compared to what he got in 1960 against John F. Kennedy.
     And to make matters even more confusing, Nixon picked Spiro Agnew to be his running mate. In case you didn't know, Agnew ran for Governor of Maryland on a platform of extending civil rights to black Marylanders while his Democratic opponent George Mahony, ran on an explicitly segregationist platform.
     Furthermore, Nixon's campaign explicitly denounced segregation many times, not to mention the fact that Nixon was known for pushing civil rights legislation in the 1950s as Vice President.
      So let's see how this works. Nixon denounces segregation, he picks a famously anti-segregationist running mate, he doesn't do any better in Southern States than he did in 1960. But yet he won in 1968 because he appealed to racism? How does that work?

1972 - Nixon won 49 of 50 states. Did he use the Southern Strategy to win New York, Massachusetts and Maine?

1976 - Carter wins. He wins a significant number of Southern states. He must have appealed to racism too, right?

1980 - Reagan wins. He wins most of the South, except Georgia. And most of the North. He won 44 states after all. But of course the Democrats still stand by the accusation that he won the South strictly based on racist appeals.

1984 - Reagan won 49 states. Only lost Minnesota. Democrats of course believe his win could also be attributed to the so-called Southern Strategy.

I could go on, but I must confess to really doubting your sincerity when you cite Thurmond's switch over to the Republican Party as evidence of the GOP appealing to racism but then citing Ellender, Eastland, Stennis, etc. without taking note of the fact that they remained Democrats until they retired or died in office.

Clearly then, the GOP's dominance in the South can be explained by something other than racism. Maybe you should first of all let go of the bigoted notion that Southern Whites vote based on race above all, and really only pay secondary attention to economics, national security and other social issues like abortion and gun control. That's not true.

Maybe you should also take note of the fact that the Southern electorate that elected Talmadge, Stennis, Ellender and Sparkman are not the same electorates that elected Cochran, Vitter and Sessions in the 1980s and 1990s.

If you had read my post carefully, Martin, you might have noticed that I made no sweping claims about Republicans using racism to sweep white southern voters. Obviously, other factors were important as well. But the south has clearly gone from nearly all-blue to nearly all-red in a generation, beginning in the sixties, and I find it highly disingenuous to claim that the Democrats' opportunism in seizing the intitiative from the Republicans on civil rights had nothing to do with it.

1968 -- Of course Nixon explicitly disavowed segregation. The claim of the southern strategy is that he vociferously proclaimed his support for civil rights in the north and in the media, but sent a subtler message to the south using phrases like "states' rights" that were meant to be understood as a signal that a Nixon administration would not be zealous on civil rights. As I quite clearly wrote above, whether this kind of fuzzy 'code word" campaigning is to be believed is debatable. But Wallace hurt Nixon in the south more than he hurt Humphrey, who won only Texas.

1976 -- Watergate trumped everything in this election.

1972, 1980, 1984 -- Some would argue that these elections are EXACTLY when the southern strategy was most effective. The point is that Republicans used different rhetoric in the south than in the north, and that the Democratic brand was tainted among white voters after 1964.

Look, I'm not spouting any party mythology--if you noticed my sign-in handle, I'm not much of a fan of either party. My earlier post quite clearly identified the southern Democrats as the main obstacle to civil rights in the fifties and sixties (and indeed since the civil war). We can debate the specifics of what "states' rights" meant to white southerners in 1968, or whether Kevin Philips is to be believed because he went apostate, or the myriad social and economic changes that have swept the electorate in the past forty years that have helped the south go from a Democratic to a Republican stronghold. My assertion is that, as part of that realignment, the Republicans very cannily played on white disaffection in the aftermath of civil rights to help bring the south into the fold. This is not, of course, because the Republican party is racist, but because they're a political party which sees opportunities for voters and takes them. The Democrats do the same when they use their class warfare rhetoric to get the support of poor, urban voters, when of course the Democrats are as beholden to lobbying and business and wealth and as unlikely to follow through on any of their radical spoutings as are the Republicans.

Sorry this is a long post and quite unrelated to the very stimulating discussion of Mr. DeLay's post. I admit I am a little steamed at having my "sincerity" questioned two posts in a row. If a post-election-loss pall is hanging over this place and making independent, moderate, non-partisan assessments of politics unwelcome, so be it; I'm an infrequent poster at best, and I could take a break. But I have never posted anything insincere, in this forum or elsewhere, and I take offense at the suggestion.

two cents,
Ben

1972, 1980, 1984 -- Some would argue that these elections are EXACTLY when the southern strategy was most effective. The point is that Republicans used different rhetoric in the south than in the north, and that the Democratic brand was tainted among white voters after 1964.

That's the point. The "some" you're referring to are partisan political liars - just like you. And the fact is that you're trying to have it both ways. Humphrey still won deeply Dixiecratic Texas and somehow, despite that, from no data whatsoever, you're claiming that Nixon was hurt more by Wallace than Humphrey was. How does that compute? Did ballots in the South allow second choices and white voters in Alabama all put a tick by Nixon's name?

Second, Republicans did not use different (let's not kid ourselves, you mean racist) rhetoric in the South and then use different rhetoric in the North during those elections. That was in the age of television so proof should exist if that were true. Southerners are really not the stupid race-obsessed ignorant fools y'all seem to think they are. Again, you're just trying to shore up the contemptible sore loser argument that whenever Republicans win in the South, it must be racism while if Democrats win, it was because of pure sex appeal or some other nonsense.

Your assertion that the Democratic brand was tainted post-1964 in the South due to Civil Rights is another partisan bit of ahistorical idiocy. Especially considering that the GOP played a key role in the passage of those bills - Dirksen wrote the Senate version of the Civil Rights Act. At the local and gubernatorial level in the South, from the 1960s to the 1980S, Republicans were still virtually non-existent. And until Stennis, Talmadge and other well-known Dixiecrats retired in the 1980s (as Democrats), the South was still solidly Democrat. Heck, there are still state Houses of Legislature in the South that have never known a Republican majority i.e. Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Arkansas.

So, yes, I do question your sincerity. I despise weasel words intended to level an accusation with just enough wiggle room for you to claim you did not just make an accusation when you actually did. Like the following ...

My assertion is that, as part of that realignment, the Republicans very cannily played on white disaffection in the aftermath of civil rights to help bring the south into the fold.

What the hell is the above supposed to mean? You think no one here can read between the lines? Despite the attempt to sound "scholarly" you just made an accusation that doesn't even have the benefit of having any evidentiary proof other than Presidential elections in which the Republican candidate won in every single region of the country. So to preserve your bigoted assumption that Southern whites vote is determined solely by racism, you simply repeat partisan Democrat arguments that the Republican must have used racist rhetoric in the South and non-racist rhetoric in the North.

If a post-election-loss pall is hanging over this place and making independent, moderate, non-partisan assessments of politics unwelcome, so be it. ...

I know what an independent, moderate, non-partisan post looks like. None of your posts match that description, despite your lame attempt to shore up your so-called "moderation" with a weak criticism of the Democrats' class warfare tactics. Ask any Republican; he'd much rather be accused of class warfare than racism.

See ya.

Wow, you got it bad, my hostile friend. What's ironic is that your post beats anything I've read at Kos for a while for insults, accusations of bad faith, and sheer partisan slime. Which is too bad, because buried in your post were some points I would have liked to respond to, you know, like in a "discussion" or a "debate."

But rather than dignify that garbage with a proper response, I'll just observe that the lesson you obviously learned from the election is that Republicans and conservatives DON'T need moderates and independents in their big tent.

Ben

I'll just observe that the lesson you obviously learned from the election is that Republicans and conservatives DON'T need moderates and independents in their big tent.

You're neither an Independent or a moderate, your log-in name notwithstanding. I know what real Independents sound like and you simply sound like an undercover partisan Democrat out to shore up a smear on the GOP.

And if you actually researched my history you'd notice that I was practically alone among the folks on this site fretting about the lack of support we're getting from Independents prior to the election on November 7th.

PS: Kossacks use bad language. I don't. I ask for proof and I'm not shy about calling out people who engage in lies and falsehoods. i.e. your idiotic claim that Reagan won 49 states in 1984 but that he won the South because he used racist rhetoric while he won the North using some other type of rhetoric - yep, Alabamans were all set to vote for Walter "I'm gonna raise your taxes" Mondale until Reagan showed up with his racist rhetoric.

Please.

State politics, including Congressional politics, remained almost wholly Democrat in the Deep South into the nineties, and much remains so today. I have old friends in Georgia who are in state and local politics, some of them far more conservative than I am. They wouldn't think of becoming Republicans because there is still no political future in it for them. Old times are not forgotten.

In Vino Veritas

by old people and those who do not wish to see change.

__________________________________________________________
Thou art the Great Cat, the avenger of the Gods, and the judge of words...-Inscription on the Royal Tombs at Thebes

but you have nothing valuable to add.

I grew up in rural wyoming. This is during the tenure of Dick Cheney, Malcolm Wallop, and alan Simpson. Real great Republicans.

I went to college in texas knowing several things - Republicans were right - financial frugality, self assurance, and asking everyone to dig in deep and pull themsleves up from the boot straps.

This was the republican belief.
YOU - TOM DELAY - are a liar and a thief. I am ashamed our party has gone the direction of moraless, win at all costs, deceitful bastards.
I hope you go to jail. It's the only right thing to get our party back on track.
Give me alan simpson any day over you.
ech.

Not fair to Mr. DeLay to convict him on the indictment of a Democrat prosecutor with an agenda. Any prosector can indict a hamburger. Reserve comments like that for after a conviction that withstands appeal.

In Vino Veritas

He has appealed his indictement to almost every level of the judiciary in Texas and it stands up to the scrutiny...

only requires probable cause, a conviction requires a reasonable doubt standard and the appeal is a review of every element of the alleged crime. Very different standards.

In Vino Veritas

Do you really mean "RedState frontpages a DeLay press release"?

Or will he actually engage in this comments thread?

For resume rejiggering. Maybe there's gold in them thar red states!

When men yield up the privilege of thinking, the last shadow of liberty quits the horizon.
— Thomas Paine

Why are you surprised that he hasn't responded? Tom DeLay lacks the courage to actually take his medicine and face his critics.

Without the hocus pocus of power to threaten any of us, he has nothing to stand on.

Sorry folks, but the emperor has no clothes.

I have taken the liberty of disabling your account until you can explain why I should allow that behavior to continue.

-----------
Even those who learn from history are surrounded by those doomed to repeat it.

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad - "We did not have
a revolution in order to have democracy."

View The World With HinzSight

Re: It seems to me that the protection of our border and the legal definition of the fundamental building block of our society are issues at least worthy of consideration in the public square.

Thanks you for your article. My quibble is tyhis: Immigration is most certainly a federal issue, and an important one too. Gay marriage is an issue to be dealt with at the state level and should not occupy the attentions of Congress.

all is fine and good to deal with gay marriage as a state issue, however our federal goverment in set up to recognize the rules from one state to another. What happens when the sodomists in mass. say yes to gay marriage, and then that couple moves to wyoming? The federal law (And international law) says we are to recognize the arrangements of people from their homes - so how are people in good places like wyoming, to protect themselves against the wrongful rulings in mass. or canada?

...that other States are obliged to honor SSMs/civil unions. DOMA's pretty clear on the subject - and for once the Supremes don't seem inclined to interfere with the legislature, and I encourage them to keep it up. As for Canada/far foreign... I missed the actual treaty that requires us to recognize resident alien marriage contracts that would violate American law. Or, for that matter, the federal court case that would mandate same.

Full disclosure: I support the extending of marriage privileges to same-sex couples via appropriate legislation, and not by judicial fiat.

The Fuzzy Puppy of the VRWC.

The key word there is "privileges" but not gay marriage.
I also believe in equality, as in "domestic partners" or their equivalent

The key problem is the federal reciprocity of legally binding contracts amongst the states, especially for marriage. Once two appellate courts have rendered opposing decisions the Supreme Court may be able to delay hearing the case, but they cannot not hear it. When they hear it, conservatives can't ignore that principle as it is core to federalism. Trying to work around it the way liberals work around the clear plain meaning of words is not something we should try. DOMA will be declared unconstitutional as lower law cannot overturn higher law. And then we will have national Gay Marriage, as decreed by the State Supreme Court of Massachusettes. IANAL but I know that much.

I must say, I find the way the word 'sodomists' gets thrown around on this site sometimes to be really nasty. If people object to gay marrage or civil unions, can't that point be made without using words like that? And don't accuse me of being politically correct - that word is over the top and anybody who uses it knows it.

Re: What happens when the sodomists in mass. say yes to gay marriage, and then that couple moves to wyoming?

They will cease to be regarded as married under local laws. Believe it or not that is (in principle) the case even today with marriages that are not recognized in different states (Yes, we have such situations, because of laws involving degrees of kinship, and age of consent). In the past the courts have always allowed that "full faith and credit" does not apply to matters of family law.
As to international gay marriage, nothing we do in this country will prevent Canadians or Dutchmen or (now) South Africans from contracting same sex marriages. At least I trust you are not proposing we invade those countries to prevent them from doing so? Or bar their citizens from entering the US? If not, then the hassles you cite are going to exist no matter what.

but to me the fundamental questions should be -
when are we going to balance our budget? Hello graham rudman?
when are we going to privitize this joke of a federal agency - DHS?
When are we going to seriously go after the enemies of this counrty? How long are we going to to sit by and let Saudi Arabia pull the strings for the rest of the middle east?
Until we have made riyadh as loyal as London, we have a long march ahead.

It is wonderful to see you here and taking an active roll at RedState.

I for one, look foward to your comments and opinions.

Welcome, welcome.

Gordon Taylor

Mahmoud Ahmadinejad - "We did not have
a revolution in order to have democracy."

View The World With HinzSight

This was a drive-by press release. He does not want to read what people REALLY think or face the reality that he was part of the problem.

So what? Is your plan to poison the atmosphere so much with your attacks, that your attack will be self-fulfilling?
--
If you're seeing shades of gray, it's because you're not looking close enough to see the black and white dots.

I am sorry if expressing frustration at the insincerity and hippocracy of the likes of Tom Delay is considered "poisoniong the atmosphere." Should I just get in line and talk about how ethical he was and got railroaded out of town?

I dont believe he really wants to read this feedback and I dont believe any of these guys feel they are part of the problem. It p***es me off to see them come in a forum such as this to espouse the conservative principals that they turned their backs on when they had the golden opportunity to advance them.

For a few months we are going to see born-again conservatives and its no different that the guy with the killer hangover who pledges to never drink again. Right now, to me, it is all insincere talk. I will believe them when they have suffered out of office or in the minority for a few years.

Yes, I am bitter!

Are you kidding?!?!?!?! Tom Delay is a big reason why the GOP is no longer in control of Congress! Good riddance!

Joe Gaylord's Contract with America was one thing, and it won a big election. A constant contract, a set of principles and a code of behavior, would be a good thing. Stuff to which the entire Conference and would-be Conference can agree, which would be what on which most Americans could agree.

We'll know what to expect and to what to hold you.

And it will keep the powerful rhetoric like you've offered us, with us always.

Renew it every two years, rejuvenate it, and practice it. And Republicans can win as Republicans.

paulnashtn "House and Senate spent too much time on ‘wedge issues’ like illegal immigration"
Very sorry sir but illegal immigration is THE thing that the republicians FAILED to stop after 6 years and had a president offering amnesty, second only to Iraq this was what cost the House & Senate.

Wow by kwwood

I am surprised RedState is so excited Tom DeLay is posting on their frontpage. I am from his district, he let voters down, the GOP, and during his stint as majority leader, let conservatism down. Its funny he calls for a return to principles yet he oversaw this drifting ship we call the GOP. What a joke.

"To discuss evil in a manner implying neutrality, is to sanction it." AR

It seems like part of the confusion is based on the false idea that the congressional leader decides all the legislation and then the rest of the party just rubber stamps it. That is false. The US does not have a parlimentary democracy.

It takes 218 votes to pass the House, 51 votes to pass the senate, and the president's signature to pass legislation. Tom DeLay held 37 basis points of that power, which is one-third of a single percent. It is also true that Speaker Hastert's rule was to only pass legislation that a majority of republicans approved. So the double standard where Tom Delay gets blamed for legislation is illogical. (That is why it is also a fantasy to believe that Pence or any other new leader can greatly change the Congress single handedly. They only get one vote.)

I support Tom DeLay strongly. People like him prevent the Republican party from being a worthless, powerless debating society like the Libertarian Party. DeLay had the passion and will to work in the real world, making the compromises necessary to change things instead of just dreaming about them.

Even if someone believed in the leader-is-responsible theory, DeLay was never that leader. He was never the top dog. The Speaker of the House is that leader when Republicans were the majority, and DeLay never was speaker.

Either Tom is posing or your support has blinded you to facts. He was not just "one vote." He was called "The Hammer" for a reason. Who do you think was making deals and twisting arms in the causus to get votes on bills?

Bad tactics on bad bills = Dem majority.

We need to be able to stand up, face the leadership and tell them when they were wrong. They abandoned the Contract with America and they were wrong to do so.

I'm not DeLay, just old enough to remember all the good they did, he & Gingrich & Armey. After 40 years of do-nothing, they took over the leadership, changed the party to get things done instead of being a debating society, knocked the democrats out of power in both houses, and changed this country with the conservative revolution. They had influence even while in the minority.

Their de-evolution of spending back from the federal government to the states cut millions of times more what squeezing a few pork items out of a highway bill would.

...on the first paragraph. They abandoned those principals when they should have most heartilly pushed them - when Bush took office. This was a failure by the whole team: house, senate, president. I recall Bush talking about touching the third rail of american politics and doing something about Socialist Security - this was the time to do it but nothing was done.

It takes 61 votes to pass a bill in the Senate these days. Never mind what it says in the Constitution, the Senate has their own rules, which McCain and the Gang of 14 did their utmost to protect, even if it does more harm to conservative causes than good.

why those out of office can see so clearly, as you illustrate, yet, after they are elected the glasses fog over and so many lose their way.

What is it about the legislative process that so many stray from their principles? Did they really not have the principles to begin with? Is it the fund raising? Is it the scrutiny and beltway influences? Is it the collaboration process?

The reason is because lots of theories sound good in sound bites, like "small government", but trying to make them happen in the real world is totally different.

A congressman from a safe district who is outside the leadership can make speeches all day long about cutting government, and vote against it too. It's because they don't have to get anything done. They don't need to worry about getting the 218 votes necessary to pass legislation. They won't get blamed for losing seats in the next election, and indeed they won't cause seats to be lost because no one pays attention to them. If the leader advocates cutting something, the Democrats might buy ads attacking the party for "gutting lunch programs for the children", but no one would notice if the back bench republican made the same speech.

that Mr. Delay gets/takes the opportunity to come back to RedState and respond to some of the fair and unfair criticism that is happening here.

I must say that it does seem disingenuous but par for the course for politcians to be "enlightened" and "reinvigorated" from a "thumpin" at the polls! And it is understandable for those who have said "where was all of this when Republicans were in power".

Have you checked his user page? It doesn't exist. I'm not sure of the precise mechanic at work in the software Redstate uses, and perhaps someone who does can correct me if I'm wrong, but it suggests to me that he's not a real user with a real account.

This is a press release filled with bromides starkly at odds with his actual record as a legislator. The notion that he will return to face these criticisms and answer them in the comments is laughable.

If I am wrong about that, and he does in any substantive way, I will publicly apologize to Mr. DeLay.

...that this is a real post, and that former Rep. Delay has in fact joined the site. Whether or not he's going to respond to comments is, like so many other things these days, beyond my ability to predict.

The Fuzzy Puppy of the VRWC.

_______________________________
If "pro" is the opposite of "con", what is the opposite of "progress"?

I don't think he really substantively responded to most of the criticisms people leveled at him, but I give him credit for coming back and at least responding to them in their sum. I'll leave it to others individually to decide whether or not they are satisfied with his response.

Mr. Delay,

With all due respect, you talk a good game, but there is a wide chasm between word and deed. During the Bush tenure, you gave us an excessive farm bill, a bloated transportation bill, and the largest new entitlement in 40 years to name a few. Use of earmarks didn't grow, it exploded.

When you made your "no fat left to cut in the federal budget" remark, my emotions vacillated between shocked disbelief at your betrayal and unmitigated fury at the insult to my intelligence that such a statement represents.

This was the first and may be the only opportunity in our lifetime to hold both the Congress and the White House. This was the one good chance to set the ship back on the right course, to educate the American people and take on some of the big issues, and you blew it.

By your deeds, you betrayed my trust and the trust of conservatives everywhere. Can you give me one good reason why I should give your words weight or ever trust you with the reigns of power again? You talk like a Reagan conservative and doubtless want to be a Reagan conservative. But sir, you are not a Reagan conservative.

Regards

The editors at least...

I would agree with assessment that the (D)'s did not win, it was the (R)'s that lost. But not because the (R)'s strayed from message, but because they failed to stay firm, steadfast, and proud of this message. They wimped out, and tried to work with a minority opposition whose leadership was intent on being uncooperative.

My question: What Republican leader will have the courage of MY convictions in the face of a vengeful, now majority opposition?
_________________________________________________________
Thou art the Great Cat, the avenger of the Gods, and the judge of words...-Inscription on the Royal Tombs at Thebes

DeLay cosponsored HR25 - The FairTax Act - for a reason.

The FairTax train is coming through. Get on it or get out of the way.

------------------------------------------------
Eliminate the IRS and all payroll taxes! http://www.fairtax.org

Mr. DeLay

When I saw you were participating here. I resisted taking you to task over the various things that have happened in the past 2 years... some of which you are and some of which you aren't to blame. It would be in bad taste. Before I go forward, I will state that regardless of my disappointment and unexpressed griping, I remain a reluctant fan of yours.

However, that won't keep me from taking you to task on writing a Blog Entry. You wrote an entry which has elicited 110+ responses (which is quite a lot... at least for Redstate). Simply put. It's bad form not to respond!

Would you have a press conference and not respond to questions afterward? Generally not. Same thing here. Politicians* have a bit to learn about blogging... this is one. Continued behavior like this will create new internet/blogging terms such as:

"Drive-by Blogging" "Blog Cuckold" or "DeLaying"

Be warned... you don't want your blogging foray to become a popular culture term fully fleshed out in Wikipedia! Just ask Moby...

*Rick Santorum may have done the same thing as you recently... but he was in the middle of the 2006 campaign. You (sadly) don't have that excuse.
If you aren't going to engage in discussion then I'd advise you to 1) Not initiate discussion or 2) after dispensing your glorious opinion add a disclaimer on the bottom like "It's below my station to respond to any comments from the peasantry".

"Took the nickname Troll long before BlogTrolls existed..."

Well put Troll. Although in fairness to Mr. Delay, pretty much all of the elected officials who have "blogged" at Redstate or the DailyKos have simply posted the equivalent of a press release on the site rather than actually engage the readers. IMO we may as well just post a press release as a press release rather than pretend that we have members of Congress or presidential contenders “blogging.”

Why does Tom DeLay have all the blame for a highway bill that passed congress 506 votes to 20?

Clearly the highway bill isn't DeLay's fault, and as majority leader he had to go along with the 200+ people in his caucus who wanted the bill.

So what is the real reason people dislike DeLay?

Tom DeLay was NOT unethical - he just knew how to play hardball like Democrats had always done, and they hated him for it. But what Democrats hated Tom DeLay for, I loved him for. He was extremely effective and he knew how to really get as hyper-partisan as they were and stick it to them. He knows that these people can't be reasoned with and we can't compromise with them. Our only option is to DEFEAT THEM!

Unfortunately, when he started to doubt that Limited Government Conservatism could continue winning elections and turned instead to Big Government Republicanism, he was all too effective - which helped create a huge budgetary and economic mess. That is the shame of Tom DeLay.

I heard him defend Medicare Part D on Rush. He didn't seem to comprehend that creating a brand new government boondogle in order to apply market principles to it is not a victory. Applying free market principles to current government boondogles when they can't be cut - now, that would be progress.

I fully support Tom DeLay's K Street Project - I just wish that the K Street Republicans weren't so successful in winning the contracts from Capitol Hill Republicans.

But while Tom DeLay was a mixed bag on economic issues and issues of limited government, he was always - unquestionably and unfailingly - there for us on the values issues.

He didn't seem to comprehend that creating a brand new government boondogle in order to apply market principles to it is not a victory. Applying free market principles to current government boondogles when they can't be cut - now, that would be progress.

Wouldn't applying "free market principles" to Medicare Part D have included permitting the government to negotiate for lower drug prices like any other wholesale customer, instead of prohibiting it?

“Negotiations” only work if you force everyone into a single standard (or a few standard) plans which BTW if you had bothered to actually read any of the proposed bills is what the Democrats have been actually proposing. The other effect (which no doubt Dems consider a feature rather than a bug) is that drug companies will respond to the set prices accordingly which will have their R&D directed based on what prices the government is paying instead of what consumers are demanding.

Frankly while I think Medicare itself is bad policy and I wasn’t too keen on adding a drug benefit, I will give credit to Republicans for at least having the good sense to relay on a consumer-driven model which offers seniors a number of different plans in different regions of the country and has the companies compete on both price and the options that they offer within a number of different plans. The result has been that drug costs have been kept under control through competition, seniors have more options (which means that future seniors like myself will have options in the future), and drug innovation is continuing to develop new treatments based on what consumers will want/need rather than what the medicrats in Washington think they should have.

. . . the so-called “values voters” get their red meat tossed to them with the usual symbolic votes that they delude themselves into thinking matter while the limited government/fiscal conservatives get no entitlement reform, increased federal control over what ought to be State issues, and ever-increasing levels of spending.

Newt tried your route and got routed. Then, even though he had managed to keep the House in Rep hands, got handed his head on a platter along with his pink slip, while Trent Lott and the Senate leaders who actually lost the control continued unfazed in their leadership positions. We were willing to support you on those issues, and you folded like chump in a prize fight, leaving us holding the bag. Bring some votes the next time you want those passed and we'll meet you, probably more than half way to your side too.

Why does Mr. Delay who supports all innocent life also support the death penalty. In the past year four cases have come to light that show the high likelihood that innocent people have been executed in the United States in the past few years. Three of those cases are from Mr. Delay's home state.

As a conservative who mistrusts big government how can he think that government can always make the right decision in every case.All prosecutors and state governments agree that it is much more expensive to execute someone than to imprison them for life. A system run by human beings is bound to make mistakes. A conservative who truly supports the protection of innocent life should support life without parole as the ultimate sentence.

In that case how can you support abortion, the termination of the most innocent of life but be so distraught over the execution of rapists, murderers and child abusers?

Hmmm?

lpny

Who says I support abortion? I have met many respect life people who oppose abortion and the death penalty--it makes sense doesn't it? Since there will always be the possibility of executing someone who is innocent, and it is twice as expensive as life without parole.

There exists also the possibility that someone who is innocent would spend 40 years in jail. If that is worse punishment than the death penalty, as you claim, wouldn't it be an even bigger miscarriage of justice?

The fact is; I just don't see any way I can have that much empathy for child abusers, murderers and rapists. They somehow cease to be human to me. Your milage, of course, may vary.

but he's probably noticed that since we've greatly reduced the number of death penalty cases in deference to your saintly concerns that the general acceptance of the bad guys whacking mushrooms has gone up. Now, I maybe a barbarian, but when some gangbanger kills a kid while pumping a few into random houses during a hit on the homies moving in on his turf, I think he deserves his own personal case of lead poisoning, delivered courtesy of a quick trial by the citizens he dissed.

about imposing the death penalty; do something to me or mine and you'd better pray to God that the cops find you before I do. That said, I have grave reservations about the legal system that imposes it.

We Republicans rail about the juries in product liability cases and howl for tort reform and better judges, yet most of us jump to the defense of death penalties imposed by that same jury pool, under the same evidentiary rules, before the same judges.

I've never had anyone's life in the dock, but I've had a Helluva lot of livelihoods in the dock using the same evidentiary rules and a similar though technically lesser burden of proof. I wasn't before twelve carefully selected morons with drivers' licenses, but rather skilled and experienced arbitrators and administrative law judges. I won a whole bunch of cases I should have lost and lost a whole bunch of cases I should have won. I have a hard time trusting the legal system to make an irrevocable decision.
In Vino Veritas

You, more than most here would know the issues that hamstrung the Republican Party in this last election, bringing about defeat. A large measure of that defeat was aided by a mainstream media that was actively campaigning for the Democrats. It was like playing a basketball game in which the referees were not only cheering for one team, but continually stealing the ball from the other team and throwing into their own basket! In my lifetime I have never seen the MSM so obvious in their partisanship. Unfortunately, since they were successful, we can espect it to only get worse in 2008! I predict that the MSM will be SO obviously Democrat in 2008 that even the American not-paying-a-lick-of-attention voters will notice, and become sickened by the media partisanship, and they will revolt against it!

BUT, this will only happen if conservatives continue to fight MSM bias, pointing it out at every instance. IF we try to make nice-nice with the MSM, or just accept them the way they are, we will lose the opportunity to motivate the public to revolt against it!

You said:

I would assert that this election was not so much won by the Democrats as it was lost by the Republicans.

Too many Republicans failed to continue an aggressive fight for the principles which bring us together as Republicans and as conservatives.

Republicans lost the 2006 election because they were elected as conservatives, but governed as liberals. Runaway Government spending, earmarks (which is WAY too polite a word for PORK), massive entitlement increases (can you say prescription drug plan?), and the ever popular culture of corruption (of course ONLY Republicans were corrupt, as we are finally being told now that the election is past)

You said:

It seems to me that the protection of our border and the legal definition of the fundamental building block of our society are issues at least worthy of consideration in the public square.

You are, of course correct. Unfortunately, the Republicans did NOT maintain conservative principles on the illegal immigration issue. The President did NOT lead on this issue, his "amnesty" stance (dress it up and put on a wig, its still a pig!) turned off the conservative base. Republicans were all over on this issue, and the Democrats wisely sat on their hands, careful to take no public stand at all, thereby alienating Nobody. AND the MSM let them get away with it, by never questioning them on their positions.

You say:

America faces threats from committed terrorists who are dedicated to the destruction of our society and all that it represents.

This is the single greatest threat that our nation faces today. Islamofascism it the greatest evil we have ever faced. Even the Communists or the Nazis with their thought control from birth, did not teach their children to strap bombs to their own bodies and instruct them to go out and kill woman and children! No other evil we have ever faced teaches its followers to murder innocents, to even kill their OWN innocents, for the purpose of propaganda. We are FOOLS if we believe we can negotiate with people who want us ALL dead. There is NO compromise with evil, and now, because we have squandered the leadership of this nation, that evil is more emboldened than ever. The Democrats simply do not believe...they are not capable of defending this nation. We will be attacked again, it will be more devistating than ever before, and the American people will ask, "How did this happen?" And they will demand another commission investigate, and they will ask, "Why didn't you put together the dots?"

And finally, Representative DeLay, I must blame YOU for allowing this to happen. YOU chose to step down, presumably to take away the issue from the Democrats. It didn't work. In fact, it merely emboldened the Dems. Apparently there is no compromising with Democrats either. By stepping down, like withdrawing from Lebanon or Somolia, you showed the Dems that they could win by lying. They could win by simply charging corruption.

I believe that had you stayed and fought, you would have been able to stiffen the backbone of our congressmen, and possibly have staunched the bleeding.

We will, of course, never know, but I hardly believe the results could have been any worse!

See The World In HinzSight!
Political HinzSight

There is a cast of usual suspects to blame here. Republicans got away from true conservatism. They were drunk w/ power and became weak. They squandered much of their power by becoming politically correct and pandered to democrats, often playing pattycake & back and forth name calling.

Big government is a dinosaur. Why do we have to learn history over and over?

The more power Washington has, the more Americans lose. Returning power back to state and local where decisions are much closer to the people is the only way. People need to feel empowered to get involved. Government should make it easy for people to be empowered. Federal government can be a liaison and conduit for spreading best practices, NOT a controller of funds to direct our lives. Federal government will have its HANDS FULL w/ national defense from here on out. It is time to "outsource" much of the government back to state and local government.

We have to change the SYSTEM, not the people. WAYYYY too often we blame the people. The corrupt people are SYMPTOMS of a sick system. Don't get me wrong. We should pursue and punish every corrupt politician but at the same time we need to address the corrupt SYSTEM that produces and enables corrupt people. We can send the most well intentioned people to Washington and they get swallowed up by the system before they even get unpacked. Real change requires REAL CHANGE.

You can fool some of us some of the time but you cannot fool all of us all of the time.

CommonCents

"It often shows a fine command of the English language to say nothing at all."

Join to help build a conservative grass roots movement: www.winningthefuture.com

I do hope that I'm not repeating wisdom from other posters, but I have yet to see anyone address two major reasons for the election losses.
1.NO UNITY! How many reps and senators have jumped ship, taking up with the other side in many of our important debates? When a McCain or Chafee show signs of prostituting themselves to the Dems, they should be severely and publicly spanked by the leadership. We're not just fighting Al Quaeda here, folks.
2.Blue dog= New Democrat from 1992. I was suckered in big-time by one of these in the 9th district of Washington state. He was supposed to be a pro-gun, anti abortion 'conservative' Democrat. He was lying, all through the campaign. Once elected, his vote was critical to the passage of the 'assault weapons ban' of 1994. DO NOT TRUST that the blue dogs are anywhere near conservative. After all, I've never seen a Republican campaigning to the left, unless he planned to lose (Bob Dole, anyone?)
Finally, please don't write off 'blue' states like my home. There are plenty of conservatives here, waiting to be discovered. The key that opens our door here is simple; say what you mean, and mean what you say. We here in God's country despise hypocrites. The only way the Dems have to win here is to demonize the opposition. Their message is either wrong-headed or non-existant. Above all, Republicans (or at least, conservatives) must learn to throw a punch or two, in response to Dem attacks. This lily-livered response to flagrant Dem lies has to stop, post haste.
Thank you for the opportunity to get that off my chest.
Charlie Dickinson

Conservatism is the bedrock of this country, and in so far as Republicans chose to support policies contrary to conservatism, whether implicitly or merely by failing to speak up [heh-hem], they rightly lost control. Of course, Dems didn't do anything to win! But you, Mr. Delay, given your "performance" in the House, need not contribute your worth in this time of conservative reconstruction. Thanks, anyway.

This post is to express my sincere thanks to RedState and its readers for accepting my recent post. I also want to thank all who posted responses (positive and negative) because thought and honest debate are two of the essential elements of a vibrant political movement.

To my RedState supporters, I thank you for your kind words and your dedication to advancing conservative principles.

To my RedState critics, I accept your charge that many of the pieces of legislation passed by the Congress in the period from 1995 through 2006 were less-than-perfect. I believe, however, as Bismark said (and as I quoted him in the original posting) that, “Politics is the art of the possible”. In the U.S. House of Representatives the only things that are possible, in a legislative sense, are those which can get 218 votes. As the House Majority Leader, and before that as the House Majority Whip, I did everything that I could to bring the U.S. government closer to the principles of governance that I put forward in my post. I didn’t enjoy the luxury of operating in a pristine, policy laboratory, I had to do my best in the world of the possible.

Often we succeeded, but sometimes we failed. On balance, I think most conservatives will agree with me that our successes far outweighed our failures but there is still much more work to do.

Catsy, (reply post #160) I’ll take that public apology now.

While I am certainly no fan of yours, I am glad you returned to confront some of the criticism leveled against you, and it speaks well of you.

(crossposted at the diary you put up)

Tom,

I'm old enough to remember the way things were, the way they used to be before Ronald Reagan and 1994. I thank you and him and everyone who changed the world. It was a liberal world back then and is a conservative one now.

Thanks also for providing your leadership and advice on how to take the Congress back. It is only with your your help, the 1994 Republicans, that we will avoid being in the minority for 40 years again. We can't let the Reagan Revolution slip away and America go back to liberalism.

I'm certain that you are a busy man, though perhaps you have more free time on your hand these days than you did in Congress. Because of that, it is likely easier to write a "summary" response such as this, rather than spend several hours wading into the comments and keeping up with the replies.

What you will find is that when engaging with an online community, your message will be more effective--and you will be seen as more of an active participant than an issuer of press releases--if you respond individually to people.

It's not just that it feels more personal that way, it's also that it helps match up your replies with the matter to which you're replying. People feel more engaged with you and more connected to what you're saying.

This advice is, of course, yours to take or leave. In any event, thank you for your response to us.

The notion that Delay is the main reason we lost the house is ludicrous unless you mean that his ouster led to our downfall. How quickly people forget how effective Mr. Delay was as Majority Leader. I can only wish we had leaders like him in the party nowadays. I personally believe that Mr. Delays unfair ouster from the leadership is the primary reason we are back in the minority. I can only hope that he will return to Congress soon and lead us out of the wilderness one more time.

Politics is not a church social. To archive conservative goals we need effective partisan warriors. Politics is a battle and I would gladly follow Mr. Delay into the fight.

 
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