The Peter Morrison Report, By Peter Morrison
Election Day is fast approaching, and if the long lines for early voting here in my hometown of Lumberton are any indication, big changes are coming. It appears that the Republican Party is almost certainly going to win back control of the US House of Representatives. There is even a slight possibility that they will also win control of the Senate (although that is less likely).
You don't have to be a prophet to see that this election is going to be a major setback for Barack Obama and the Democrats. All the polls point to major gains for the GOP. Republicans need to take at least 39 seats currently held by Democrats to become the House majority party. Five Thirty Eight, the website which was amazingly accurate in its predictions for the 2008 elections, is currently projecting that the GOP will pick up 61 seats.
Some pollsters are projecting lower numbers, but still enough to control the House, while others are saying that the GOP could even pick up 70 seats. Peter Hart, a well known Democratic pollster, stated bluntly: "It's hard to say that the Democrats are facing anything less than a Category 4 hurricane."
Of course, anything can happen between now and November 2nd, but barring some sort of shocking development, it seems pretty clear that the anger and energy we've seen expressed over the past couple of years at town hall meetings and Tea Party rallies is still going strong, and Democrats are going to be held accountable at the ballot box for signing on to Obama's radical leftist agenda.
This is certainly good news, and it shows what conservatives can accomplish when we work hard and refuse to give up the fight.
However, if we're not careful, a massive GOP victory could actually be a setback in the long run. Many conservatives will be lulled into a false sense of complacency if the GOP takes control of one or both houses of Congress. Far too many people are locked into a "Democrats bad, Republicans good" worldview; they assume that with Republicans in place to oppose Obama, there's nothing to worry about. This attitude is widespread, and it has been one of the main reasons conservatives have seen our agenda remain unfulfilled.
In 1994 a very similar realignment occurred. Voter anger at Bill and Hillary's left wing activism—NAFTA, ordering the military to stop discharging homosexuals, and attempting to socialize health care (not to mention the Waco massacre)—led to the so called "Republican Revolution", when the GOP took control of the House and Senate for the first time in 40 years. For all the talk of revolution, very little came of it.
Which should have been no surprise as the first thing the GOP majorities did was elect Newt Gingrich Speaker of the House, and Bob Dole Senate Majority Leader. Gingrich, for all his conservative bluster, has always been most interested in advancing his own career, not pursuing an authentic conservative agenda. Bob Dole was a McCain-style Republican, a "moderate" who prided himself on being able to compromise with the Democrats.
Both Gingrich and Dole (and most other Congressional Republicans) had helped Bill Clinton pass the disastrous NAFTA "free trade" agreement prior to the 1994 election. After the "revolution", they then helped Clinton secure Congress's approval of GATT/WTO. Together these trade treaties have nearly wiped out America's manufacturing base, and led to increasing economic dependency on Communist China. In spite of all these betrayals (and many more), conservatives became complacent after the 1994 election, simply because they assumed that with Republicans in charge, everything would be fine.
Nothing could be further from the truth, and by now it should be crystal clear that the words "Republican" and "conservative" don't have the same meanings, and that the problem isn't just limited to Gingrich and Dole.
Look at how George Bush treated us. He teamed up with Ted Kennedy to give us No Child Left Behind, the expensive folly that won't do a thing to close the achievement gap, but will fill decent public schools with bad students after their own schools have been shut down by NCLB. He pushed banks to lower lending standards for minorities, leading directly to the mortgage crisis. He bailed out Wall Street to the tune of 700 billion dollars. In 2004 he mobilized Christians and conservatives to rally to the polls to re-elect him by talking tough on gay marriage, but after he won re-election he never mentioned the subject again. He and the GOP Congress gave us the prescription drug bill, which is projected to cost America trillions in the future. They also did nothing as millions of illegal aliens poured into America under Bush's watch.
In spite of all this, many conservatives love to sport buttons and bumper stickers that say "Miss me yet?" with a picture of George Bush, as if he had been a perfect president. That attitude has rendered conservatism almost completely impotent, and we simply have to stop falling for this old, worn out "Dems bad/GOP good" deception, starting right now.
The real battle will begin after the election. We can't sit back and relax; we'll have to be just as energetic and diligent in holding Republicans accountable as we have been the past couple years with Obama and the Democrats.
We'll need to start right here in Texas. We can no longer allow Rick Perry to be soft on illegal immigration. He has betrayed us repeatedly on this issue. Perry has denounced Arizona's SB 170 as a bad law, and bragged about signing a law allowing illegal aliens to attend college at Texas citizen rates. We can't let him get away with this any longer. We also must do everything in our power to force the Republican members of the Texas House to ditch the disastrous Joe Straus as Speaker and replace him with a true conservative.
It won't be easy to keep up the pressure of the last couple of years. It will take hard work, determination, and a never say quit attitude.
Make no mistake, though; we have no choice. The GOP establishment is already talking about looking forward to "working with Obama" on even more anti-American "free trade" legislation, which basically means letting unelected bureaucrats from groups like the UN and WTO dictate our trade policy. The AP recently reported on Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's eagerness to ram through even more trade treaties: "McConnell also suggested that the two sides could write into law trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia and Panama in an effort to create jobs."
(NAFTA and GATT/WTO were supposed to "create jobs", too, and we see how well that worked out. As Ron Paul has pointed out, neither resulted in true free trade, but rather placed globalists in a position to gut America's manufacturing base).
So just realize that, if the Republican Party wins big, it doesn't mean the battle is over. On the contrary, the battle is just starting, and we can't let up now.
We have to make sure this isn't another phony "Republican Revolution" like 1994, but the genuine Conservative Revolution of 2010. If the Republicans we elect this year won't work for genuine conservative goals, then we'll vote to replace them in the 2012 primaries.
When that message finally sinks in with the GOP politicians, and they realize they can no longer take us for granted, many of them will start voting the way we want them to.
So let's make sure that we never let them forget it, starting on November 3rd.
Peter Morrison (email him) is a businessman living in Lumberton, Texas with his wife and four children. He currently serves on the Lumberton ISD School Board and as treasurer of the Hardin County Republican Party. He says "I believe deeply in the principles of limited constitutional government, the sanctity of life and that our state and nation should be run under Thomas Jefferson's principle of 'Equal Rights for All, Special Privileges for None.'" This article is from his free newsletter, which features commentary about current events of interest to Texans—sign up here.