I have great understanding of and respect for the frustration Erick (at Redstate) expresses concerning our Senate Republican leadership. Many times it seems as if they don’t know what they are doing and they are missing – or even fighting against – golden opportunities. (Certainly they are demonstrating such error in judgment by supporting the, shall we say, less-than-conservative candidate in some key Republican Senate primaries.)
But then I consider: What would I really and truly be thinking and doing if I were in Mitch McConnell’s shoes during this healthcare fiasco? Could it be that in reality he IS doing the best that can be done in this circumstance? Well,… maybe.
Senators McConnell and Reid are engaged in the ultimate herding cats contest. I do not envy Mitch in the least. Can you imagine having to try to hold together a united block of 40 Republicans (including the likes of Snowe, Collins, Voinovich and Bennett – not to mention the usual suspects on some other issues – Graham, Lugar and McCain) and also attract at least 1 non-Republican to side with this motley crew? While I would love to see the Republican leadership stand firmly on effectively articulated, conservative principles, the simple fact is that Snowe and Collins will not allow any firm foundation upon which to take such a stand in this debate.
So, how do you solve a problem like Olympia? Maybe we have to take the path Mitch is currently forging.
Two key takeaways:
1) The cloture rules that frustrate us when in the majority are also the basis of our last stand against the incredibly harmful legislation we currently face (cap & trade, healthcare takeover). What once was a curse is now our blessing. Reid’s struggles to corral 60 cats reveals the difficulties McConnell had – even back when leading a 55 seat majority.
2) We need 41 reliably conservative cats ASAP. For 2010, 51 Republicans is not nearly as important as is 41 genuine conservatives. It is crucial to pick the right primary battles to focus our energy toward selecting solid conservatives. Rubio’s defeat of Crist in Florida and seeking to replacing Bennett in Utah are the types of activities that will strengthen the Minority Leader’s hand to thwart Obama, Reid and Pelosi.
Cross-posted at www.ruminationsaspirations.blogspot.com