What did we expect? Conservatives in the USA make fun of President Barack Obama spending all his time attending fund-raisers. But they never seemed to notice that Barack Obama is raising funds. Conservatives can’t seem to figure out that what Democrats do at fund-raisers is they actually raise money. Then Democrats win elections.
As news broke of the preposterous indictment of Texas Governor Rick Perry Friday night, Mark Levin – dubbed “the Great One” by Rush Limbaugh – was outraged, despondent, flummoxed and grumpy. All at once. Levin clearly felt and expressed that a line had been crossed (yet again). This wasn’t just about horse-race politics – who’s up, who’s down. We are losing the basic integrity of our Republic. Watching the USA’s traditions dissolve is eery.
But how did we get here? The Travis County prosecutor feels no hesitation abusing his office to manipulate the 2016 Presidential election, despite embarrassing video. Democrats keep winning elections in Travis County. And how would conservatives fix this without defeating Democrats in real campaigns?
Bill Clinton came out of the White House gate aggressively raising money for every Democrat running for office he could find. He had just been impeached, disbarred, and publicly humiliated for his extreme violations of workplace laws with a subordinate. Oh, geez we have to put an “etc.” down or the list could go on for pages. A thousand reasons for Clinton to go hide in shame didn’t stop him from filling campaign coffers for Democrat candidates everywhere.
Al Gore was out there for a while. Joe Biden is raising funds. Conservatives make fun of Hollywood types, but they certainly are busy.
So who is doing the equivalent on the Republican side in U.S. elections? Well, exactly nobody.
This author was shocked to learn that at least three Republican state parties could not get any headliner for GOP events over this summer – even with the help of the Republican National Committee. North Carolina, Oklahoma, and Delaware got no help from any national Republican to build the state party or raise party funds. That’s what the chair of one of those state parties told me in writing. Note that this is for the party. So if you don’t like one candidate over another, that’s not an issue.
I listened to Mark Levin roasting Barack Obama over the last few weeks. And of course the issue is that Obama never actually does the job of President. But it suddenly struck me: Who on the Republican side is doing anything similar to help Republicans win elections?
Where is Rudy Guiliani? Is America’s Mayor traveling from city to city packing out banquet halls at $2,600 a person (the maximum donation)? Ummm… Why not? Well “It’s not my job. Must be someone else’s job.” You can’t expect Rudy to do everything, can you?
Imagine if Sarah Palin had spent the last five years raising money for Republican campaigns as methodically, persistently, and assertively as Bill Clinton did after leaving the White House? Today Republicans in the USA would hold the U.S. Senate, the White House, and the U.S. House of Representatives, and would be posed to appoint a majority of Supreme Court Justices committed to the actual Constitution.
You have to ask what is the measure of what you believe? Republican leaders who won’t back down on their positions are rare indeed. But if a person never puts what they say they believe into action, do they really believe it?
This author proposes the galoshes test. If you don’t actually put on your galoshes to go out in the snow, you don’t really believe what you claim. If your galoshes stay dry by the door, then you don’t believe what you say.
So Mark Levin is on the radio every weeknight. Isn’t that enough? Well, take a look at the headlines in tomorrow’s newspaper. They will tell you. Then check your galoshes.
Sarah Palin sends out tweets from her kitchen table in Wasilla, Alaska. Isn’t that enough? How would we know if maybe it’s time to bump that up a notch? Why should she have to do any more than that? Well, is life fair?
George “W” Bush went home from the White House to Waco to paint paintings of Barney. When the nation is going down the tubes, self-expression can be a very fulfilling hobby. But is that how Democrats win elections?
George “H” Bush the Elder went home to (wherever that is) to go sky diving. Well, you just can’t appear to be too pushy, you know. Wouldn’t be prudent. Sure the world may be falling apart. But you have to look good, too.
Now, let’s be clear: Neither “W” nor “H” wanted to seem to be intruding into the national discussion. They wanted to be fair to the next guy in the Oval Office. They were playing it polite. But who said life is fair?
Mike Huckabee has remained popular. If Mitt Romney spoke at a dinner for State parties or candidates, would people buy a ticket to attend?
But here is the problem: If leaders don’t stay in the public eye, leaders will be forgotten. Can Alan Keyes give a good speech? Would Fred Thompson make a pretty good evening? They cannot hide in the shadows and still remain popular.
Where is Newt Gingrich? Okay, now we get into where some Republicans might prefer one 2012 candidate over another. But who cares? Some will, some won’t, so what? If you hold a fund-raiser with Newt, a lot of people would turn out. Others wouldn’t. So what?
Same with Rick Santorum. Whether he is your cup of tea, I don’t really care. I could fill a banquet hall with donors. Others can skip that night and go to the next fund-raiser on the rotating program.
How about Ron Paul? Some may disagree with his flavor of Republican politics. Others would tear a hole in the wall for a chance to get in and attend a fund-raiser led by him. Don’t Democrats have differences of opinion?
What happened to Herman Cain? One day he is the front-runner in enthusiasm for the Republican nomination. The next day… was he required to completely disappear? If you were a candidate, could you fill a room with Herman Cain as the main speaker?
Let’s say your son or daughter, brother or sister, or friend decides to run for office and make a difference. What do you expect them to do? How do you imagine they are going to raise enough money to get elected and change things? We simply say that Republicans need to win more elections. Okay, how, exactly?
Without the same level of commitment by Republicans to actually win, good candidates are simply going to waste a lot of their personal time and go nowhere. When it comes to campaign funding, we are telling our fellow Republicans short on bread to “just eat cake.”
The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.