Tags: gop | election | loss

Why the GOP Lost

Thursday, 06 Nov 2008 08:53 AM

By John LeBoutillier

A quick sum up of what happened on Tuesday . . . then, let's move on to the future — for the nation, the Republican Party, and the conservative movement.

Barack Obama won on Tuesday because, as Buffalo Bills quarterback Trent Edwards said last weekend, he is “the most opposite of the guy we have in there now.”

Indeed, the exit polling confirmed what I have been writing in this space for a long time: G.W. Bush had become a millstone around GOP candidates’ necks. He, more than anything else, is why the GOP got wiped out on Tuesday.

What President Bush represented a my-way-or-the-highway" persona to a majority of people. Bad for conservatism; in fact, that also became the face of the United States around the world. And it was that face that voters rejected on Tuesday.

President Reagan was just the opposite: He had a pleasant demeanor all while trying to convince, not browbeat or threaten, others to change their minds.

If we, as conservatives, are to come back to power, we will have to project a totally different face and persona.

The Republican Party will have to become a "party of the suburbs" (where we were completely wiped out) and we will have to educate people on the party's mission. And at the same time, we need to keep our base of committed conservatives, too.

In fact, we have to get rid of this exuberant disdain for well-educated people and for education itself.

It used to be in this country that everyone worshiped education and wished to have a great education, but somewhere along the way, many on the right have transposed their hatred (well-deserved, by the way) for the leftism taught in our colleges and universities into hatred of the actual education itself. And that is a tragic mistake.

Because only reading the Bible and nothing else isn’t enough to solve this nation’s multitude of problems. In fact, we need to ask God to help us all learn more and know how to learn more in order to keep up with the ongoing and exponentially expanding base of knowledge on all topics.

So we are going to need to change the face of the conservatism — less anger, more brains.

And we need to move on from the Bush era. Please, no talk of Jebbie in 2012!

Let us first settle on the direction we need to move — and then find new candidates who can sell that message.

For those of you who think the country is doomed, you are wrong. Any time you believe that a majority of your fellow citizens are idiots, you don’t get the majesty of our nation.

Obama’s election means something to the people. It is good that they have their chance to run our country. If they do well, we all do well. And if they can’t get a handle on our problems, and if we re-make ourselves into a smart party, then we can, and will, come back to power.

But first we have to earn our way back.

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