Conservative contract with America
There is no doubt whatsoever that the current Republican Party has moved to the right edges of the political perspective. Whether the Tea Party ever elects anyone with their support, they have had and are having a powerful influence on Republican politics.
What does this shift rightward mean in terms of how Republicans will govern if given the opportunity to lead congress in 2010?
There are many clues, and the most likely policies are those articulated daily by Republican candidates for office. So here is what you might expect from Republican leadership in congress:
The Joe Barton Policy. Sorry about that nasty spill BP. Hope your profits are not harmed and your investors are not penalized.
Somehow we will clean up your mess, and are terribly ashamed you are expected to pay for it.
Don’t worry about the Gulf, in another 50 years the ecology will come back again. Oh, and sorry our corrupt president forced you to compensate all those damaged by the spill, we know you would have done right by them, as their health and safety has always been your deepest concern, cost saving carelessness notwithstanding.
The Rand Paul Policy. To all businesspeople, we deeply regret that corrupt and inefficient government has hindered your efforts to deny the handicapped access to your business, and to force you to seat and serve African Americans in your stores.
In truth, we apologize for any and all government regulation; you should be free to pursue profit at the expense of people without restriction.
The John Roberts Policy. As you know, we at the Right Supreme Court are doing all we can to protect big business. Recently we served up a great new program that will allow you to buy American elections even if you are a foreign company with no interests in our democracy. You corporate “persons” now possess far more rights than our actual citizens. Glad we could help.
The Sharron Angle Policy. All government is bad, except government that restricts morally bad choices.
So let’s start by eliminating Social Security and Medicare, the Department of Education and end our participation in the United Nations.
Then let’s close the IRS and maybe the Federal Reserve. But we will need moral policing, so let’s end abortions, deny marriage to “those people” and maybe consider that alcohol should no more be legal than pot.
The John McCain Policy. I am not a maverick, never have been, never will be. I am in favor of an immigration policy that allows a path to citizenship.
No, that was last year, this year I am running for re-election in Arizona and I want all immigrants sent somewhere, anywhere, without due process. Here in Arizona we intend to take on federal responsibilities and arrest these criminals and then…well, ok, we have no idea what to do then, but so what?
The Tea Party Fiscal Policy. We demand lower taxes. As for the deficit, just stop spending money.
OK, so that means the end of Social Security and Medicare and huge cuts in national defense. So what? Even though our taxes are the lowest in 30 years, it is not enough. And we are damned mad.
Republican Tax Policy. The economy is good, cut taxes. The economy is bad, cut taxes.
Damn it, just always cut taxes. And pay for those tax cuts with debt, like we did the Bush tax cuts. Cut them during wars, cut them during peace, cut them over and over and over.
There you have it, the Right Republican platform for 2010.
Jim Crawford is a contributing columnist for The Tribune and a former educator at Ohio University Southern.
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