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What we need today is another Jack Kemp

by Speranza ( 57 Comments › )
Filed under Elections 2012, History, Mitt Romney, Politics, Republican Party at March 22nd, 2013 - 7:00 am

Ronald Reagan’s biggest mistake was not picking Jack Kemp for vice president in 1980  instead of choosing the patrician  from  Texas via Connecticut who will not be named.

by Rich Lowry

The harsh assessment of the RNC “autopsy” committee would be that it talked to 2,600 people, yet one of its top proposals is reviving a minority inclusion council from the 1990s. It takes months of research to come up with this stuff?

But that would be too harsh. The autopsy is a good faith effort to stare the Republican predicament straight in the face and begin to come up with solutions.

It’s just that there are inherent limits to any such exercise. The party is not going to be saved by committee. The autopsy inevitably reflects the lowest common denominator of establishment Republican thinking on policy, recommending comprehensive immigration reform and hinting at surrender on gay marriage.

It is more interesting and useful when suggesting process changes that are the RNC’s core competency, especially fewer primary debates.

There were more than 20 of them last time. Can’t every Republican agree that two debates moderated by Diane Sawyer are two debates too many? By all means, the party should have enough debates so dark horses can emerge and the flashes-in-the-pan can be exposed. Any candidate who needs more than 20 of them, though, has a problem. It wasn’t, for instance, that Newt Gingrich relied on the debates to catch fire. His entire campaign was the debates.

[......]

One facet of that ongoing debate is the fight between the grass roots and establishment over Senate primaries, which has been raging for months and got more fuel when speakers at CPAC savaged the Republican consultant class. Rarely has so much heat been generated with so little light.

Some of the same grass-roots conservative leaders banging on the consultants believed, or (in some cases, I suspect) pretended to believe, that Christine O’Donnell would sweep to victory in the Delaware Senate race in 2010. Every time they are about to congratulate themselves on their electoral acuity, they should have to listen to three hours of Chris Coons floor speeches on their iPods.

On the other hand, the establishment was eager to deliver a Florida Senate seat to Charlie Crist, who is as real as a spray-on tan and as appealing as a cheesy billboard for legal services (which he appeared on after Marco Rubio unceremoniously dispatched him back to legal practice).

The important question isn’t so much establishment or grass roots as who and where? Mike Lee isn’t Christine O’Donnell and Utah isn’t Delaware, and that makes all the difference.

Consider Ted Cruz, whose smarts and fearlessness are quickly making him the most dangerous man in the U.S. Senate. He proves that you can be anti-establishment — he ran a grass-roots insurgency in the Republican primary against the well-funded Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst — and yet talented and electable.

So much depends on political horseflesh. Mitt Romney may have been wounded by the 20-odd debates, but he agreed to so many of them in the first place because he was a weak front-runner fearful of doing anything to cross primary voters. If Romney had been granted the Republican nomination with no competition whatsoever, he still would have been a politically inartful former management consultant vulnerable to populist attack.

[.......]

Kemp did his most important work as a backbencher in the House. Where is his equivalent today? It’s too bad John Boehner, Eric Cantor and Kevin McCarthy don’t tell some promising member to spend the next three months coming up with 10 ideas for promoting work in America, or for a new welfare reform agenda, or for replacing Obamacare, or for making college affordable. Instead, it’s all federal debt, all the time.

Two possible Republican contenders in 2016 have demonstrated some of this entrepreneurial spirit. No committee ever would have come up with the idea for Rand Paul’s filibuster. It showed gumption and creativity and caught people’s imagination. [........]

For his part, Rubio has begun to talk about college affordability, an issue that should be part of a new conservative agenda aimed at concrete middle-class concerns. All the action, though, is around Rubio’s other cause of comprehensive immigration reform.

The Republican Party can study itself to death and hire the world’s best marketers, but without some Jack Kemps it will only be dressing up stasis.

Read the rest - Where is today’s Jack Kemp?

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57 Responses to “What we need today is another Jack Kemp”
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  1. 1 | March 22, 2013 7:46 am

    Kemp didn’t really impress me whenhe was Dole’s VP. Maybe nothing could have saved the hapless Dole, but if Kemp is what we need now he didn’t show it in that campaign.


  2. 2 | March 22, 2013 8:16 am

    I’d say we need a modern version of Cal Coolidge.


  3. 3 | March 22, 2013 8:19 am

    Kemp was the most underutilized asset the Republicans ever had. As for the joke better known as Dole/Kemp, the VP spot in a modern campaign is all-but moot, as has been proven a number of times now.


  4. rain of lead
    4 | March 22, 2013 8:20 am

    @ Iron Fist:

    mornin buddy
    TGIF and all that

    hahahahah
    maybe God is sending a small message?

    a wicked sandstorm has grounded President Obama’s helicopter.

    biting winds arrived ahead of schedule here, making it unsafe for Obama to fly by helicopter to Palestinian-controlled Bethlehem, about a 30 minute drive from Jerusalem. Helicopter is the mode of transport Obama used the last time he went into Palestinian-controlled territory, a visit to Ramallah on Thursday.

    Consequently, Obama’s motorcade – which topped 30 cars when it wound through Jerusalem’s streets last night – had to crawl through the hilly roads and clear an Israeli checkpoint to get to Bethlehem.


  5. 5 | March 22, 2013 8:23 am

    mfhorn wrote:

    I’d say we need a modern version of Cal Coolidge.

    Hear, hear! Cal’s rep is undergoing a massive overhaul, and with good reason.


  6. 6 | March 22, 2013 8:23 am

    Wait a minute -- ideas are important? I was told otherwise.


  7. Buckeye Abroad
    7 | March 22, 2013 8:24 am

    Where is today’s Jack Kemp?

    Doesn’t matter as the people from the generation that would support Kemp are long dead.

    Get used to saying “Republican candidate Jeb Bush” in 2016. You heard it here first.


  8. 8 | March 22, 2013 8:24 am

    @ rain of lead:

    Heh! Now he needs a plague of locusts…


  9. 9 | March 22, 2013 8:27 am

    @ Buckeye Abroad:

    That is a guaranteed loser ticket. Bush will lose 30 States. He won’t even do as well as Romney. I am beginning to believe that the Republican Party doesn’t really want to win. THey are content to be the not too effective opposition. It all pays the same.


  10. 10 | March 22, 2013 8:30 am

    @ rain of lead:

    Perhaps GOD is testing أوباما….He is doing this to cement in His mind that The SCOAMF is an egotistical SOB.


  11. 11 | March 22, 2013 8:31 am

    @ Buckeye Abroad:
    @ Iron Fist:

    Not Just No but HELL NO!


  12. 12 | March 22, 2013 8:32 am

    Buckeye Abroad wrote:

    Where is today’s Jack Kemp?

    Doesn’t matter as the people from the generation that would support Kemp are long dead.

    Get used to saying “Republican candidate Jeb Bush” in 2016. You heard it here first.

    I think there’s a problem with people that’s at least as pernicious as the problem with the Republican Party. In short, even if we had pearls, the people have become swine….and sleeping swine at that.


  13. Speranza
    13 | March 22, 2013 8:35 am

    Iron Fist wrote:

    Kemp didn’t really impress me whenhe was Dole’s VP. Maybe nothing could have saved the hapless Dole, but if Kemp is what we need now he didn’t show it in that campaign.

    The most inadequate Republican candidate (think Todd Akin) is still better then the best Democrat. Dole’s candidacy was D.O.A.


  14. Speranza
    14 | March 22, 2013 8:35 am

    MacDuff wrote:

    Kemp was the most underutilized asset the Republicans ever had. As for the joke better known as Dole/Kemp, the VP spot in a modern campaign is all-but moot, as has been proven a number of times now.

    Exactly. Nobody voted for Obama because of Biden.


  15. Speranza
    15 | March 22, 2013 8:36 am

    Mike C. wrote:

    Wait a minute — ideas are important? I was told otherwise.

    For me, winning is everything.


  16. Speranza
    16 | March 22, 2013 8:37 am

    Iron Fist wrote:

    I am beginning to believe that the Republican Party doesn’t really want to win.

    I have believed that for a year now.


  17. 17 | March 22, 2013 8:40 am

    @ Speranza:

    Dole didn’t want to win any more than McCain wanted to. That is part of our problem. There are even persistent rumors that Romney didn’t really want to win, and they are believable because he didn’t campaign like he really cared if he won. We have a good potential field for 2016, though. Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Suzanna Martinez, Nikki Haley, and on and on. Jeb Bush is definately not the best that we can come up with. Whether we will be able to break free of the clutches of the consultant class and actually nominate one of these potential stars is the question. I think 2016 is too late to save America, though. ObamaCare will be entrenched by then, and we will have had nearly a Decade of stagnant economy and persistent high unemployment. People will accept that as the new normal. I think MacDuff has the right of it. It doesn’t matter if we come up with pearls to cast before the swine that are feeding at the public trough.


  18. Speranza
    18 | March 22, 2013 8:41 am

    An interesting take from the Powerline guys
    Can Republicans Close the Pop Culture Gap?
    The thing is not necessarily to win the vast majority of the hipsters and the young people of the pop culture but to start chipping away at the Democrats automatic domination of that vote.


  19. Buckeye Abroad
    19 | March 22, 2013 8:44 am

    @ Iron Fist:

    They seem to enjoy being the losing opposition. Their refusal to lead the fight agaisnst the internal fascists convince me of that. They are dead, but it’s their choice. Hello Constitution Party.

    MacDuff wrote:

    Buckeye Abroad wrote:

    Where is today’s Jack Kemp?

    Doesn’t matter as the people from the generation that would support Kemp are long dead.

    Get used to saying “Republican candidate Jeb Bush” in 2016. You heard it here first.

    I think there’s a problem with people that’s at least as pernicious as the problem with the Republican Party. In short, even if we had pearls, the people have become swine….and sleeping swine at that.

    I made the comment to my sister over the weekend, “America is an unserious nation these days. Look at who is leading and the results around you.”

    When it all falls apart and people suffer more, they may start to reflect and make the right choices. Until then… let it burn.


  20. Speranza
    20 | March 22, 2013 8:44 am

    Iron Fist wrote:

    @ Speranza:
    Dole didn’t want to win any more than McCain wanted to. That is part of our problem. There are even persistent rumors that Romney didn’t really want to win, and they are believable because he didn’t campaign like he really cared if he won. We have a good potential field for 2016, though. Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, Suzanna Martinez, Nikki Haley, and on and on. Jeb Bush is definately not the best that we can come up with. Whether we will be able to break free of the clutches of the consultant class and actually nominate one of these potential stars is the question. I think 2016 is too late to save America, though. ObamaCare will be entrenched by then, and we will have had nearly a Decade of stagnant economy and persistent high unemployment. People will accept that as the new normal. I think MacDuff has the right of it. It doesn’t matter if we come up with pearls to cast before the swine that are feeding at the public trough.

    Dole was a sacrificial lamb and after all it was “his turn”. The problem is the domination of the party by the hacks of the family which shall not be named. “Conservative Victory Project” my effing ass! He is not a “conservative” and their definition of “victory” is not really winning elections but maintaining the fiefdom.


  21. Speranza
    21 | March 22, 2013 8:47 am

    @ Iron Fist:
    Please, right now we have dolts questioning whether Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio and Susanna Martinez are “natural born” Americans. A major problem on our side is the loudness of the dope wing as evidence by the comments on Hot Air and Ace of Spades.


  22. 22 | March 22, 2013 8:53 am

    @ Iron Fist:

    Until something is done to match the Democrat machine like OFA< nothing will change.


  23. 23 | March 22, 2013 8:57 am

    Buckeye Abroad wrote:

    Where is today’s Jack Kemp?
    Doesn’t matter as the people from the generation that would support Kemp are long dead.
    Get used to saying “Republican candidate Jeb Bush” in 2016. You heard it here first.

    Then get ready to say President Hillary Clinton.


  24. 24 | March 22, 2013 8:58 am

    @ MacDuff:

    Calvin Coolidge style Republicanism would be very appealing right now.


  25. 25 | March 22, 2013 9:00 am

    @ Rodan:

    We are well and truly screwed if this comes to pass.


  26. 26 | March 22, 2013 9:05 am

    @ Macker:

    Its going to because the GOP is joke and is heavily outgunned. Hillary Clinton will have Bill Clinton, Obama, OFA, Wall Street money, the Entertainment Industry and the media. That is virtually impossible to defeat.


  27. Buckeye Abroad
    27 | March 22, 2013 9:06 am

    @ Rodan:

    Then get ready to say President Hillary Clinton.

    Fine with me, but I would wish she would get a massive stroke and croke right before the swearing in. The Clintons are evil I wish every bit of bad fortune that comes their way.


  28. 28 | March 22, 2013 9:09 am

    @ Speranza:

    It probably will not happen until 2020. Republicans need another defeat to realize they must adapt.


  29. 29 | March 22, 2013 9:11 am

    @ Buckeye Abroad:

    Only the good die young. Even if its not Hillary, the Dems are going to win 2016. They have the machine and the GOP’s dismissal of segments of the electorate has come back to haunt them. It will take another dfeat before Republicans decide to get serious.

    Until then, enjoy the Democrat Party dictatorship.


  30. Speranza
    30 | March 22, 2013 9:15 am

    Rodan wrote:

    @ Speranza:
    It probably will not happen until 2020. Republicans need another defeat to realize they must adapt.

    Forget everything and learn nothing.


  31. Speranza
    31 | March 22, 2013 9:16 am

    Buckeye Abroad wrote:

    @ Rodan:
    Then get ready to say President Hillary Clinton.

    Fine with me, but I would wish she would get a massive stroke and croke right before the swearing in. The Clintons are evil I wish every bit of bad fortune that comes their way.

    She sucked as Secretary of State.


  32. 32 | March 22, 2013 9:18 am

    @ Rodan:

    You seem to forget that we do have the House. We’d be doing better with some real leadership, but we aren’t entirely powerless. I think we’ll hold the House in 2014, and may even take the Senate. We have to flip six Senate seats. That is a tall order, but there happen to be six Red State Democrats on the block in 2014. Gun control may come back to haunt them, even if DiFi’s bill never sees the floor. Everyone knows that that is the wish list of every Democrat. They want to gut the Second Amendment. If the Republicans are smart enough to campaign on it, that may be enough to counter them.


  33. Buckeye Abroad
    33 | March 22, 2013 9:19 am

    @ Rodan:

    Until then, enjoy the Democrat Party dictatorship.

    I will enjoy undermining, slandering and supporting any type of insurgancy against them. It has been my personal hobby for some time now and probably will be for life.


  34. 34 | March 22, 2013 9:22 am

    @ Iron Fist:

    The GOP was supposed to flip the Senate in 2010 and 2012. It did not happen. I do not see Republicans winning back Senate. They will nominate loons like Akins, O’Donnel and Angle or Establishment losers like George Allen or Tommy Thompson.

    If the Republicans are smart enough to campaign on it, that may be enough to counter them.

    :lol: . This is the GOP we are talking about.


  35. 35 | March 22, 2013 9:23 am

    @ Buckeye Abroad:

    Yup, I am with you.


  36. 36 | March 22, 2013 9:27 am

    @ Speranza:

    We are in a Democrat dominated period and have been since 1992. The tides of political fortune will change, but it will take a real big electoral loss for Republican voters to wake up to reality. The irony is that many of the upper eschalon of the GOP realize this. But many of the base voters love the purity of defeat.

    I think we should let Santorum of Huckabee be the 2016 nominee so they can get onliterated. Only by running a “pure” Conservatives that loses massively, will Republican voters wake up.

    Tough love works.


  37. 37 | March 22, 2013 9:31 am

    A great article on how much damage the Iraq War has done to the GOP.

    Noonan: Can the Republican Party Recover From Iraq?

    It ruined the party’s hard-earned reputation for foreign-affairs probity. They started a war and didn’t win it. It was longer and costlier by every measure than the Bush administration said it would be. Before Iraq, the GOP’s primary calling card was that it was the party you could trust in foreign affairs

    [....]

    It muddied up the meaning of conservatism and bloodied up its reputation. No Burkean prudence or respect for reality was evident. Ronald Reagan hated the Soviet occupation of the Warsaw Pact countries—really, hated the oppression and violence. He said it, named it, and forced the Soviets to defend it. He did not, however, invade Eastern Europe to liberate it

    [....]

    It quashed debate within the Republican Party. Political parties are political; politics is about a fight. The fight takes place at the polls and in debate. But the high stakes and high drama of the wars—and the sense within the Bush White House that it was fighting for our very life after 9/11—stoked an atmosphere in which doubters and critics were dismissed as weak, unpatriotic, disloyal. The GOP—from top, the Washington establishment, to bottom, the base—was left festering, confused and, as the years passed, lashing out.

    The final point is the key. Now every Republican except rand Paul is always calling for wars and Republican voters do not question it. We are still not allowed to critize the Iraq war on the right. It’s like the holy grail.


  38. buzzsawmonkey
    38 | March 22, 2013 9:37 am

    So…the Republican party is unKempt in spite of being well-groomed?


  39. buzzsawmonkey
    39 | March 22, 2013 9:40 am

    Maybe we need a new Jack Ketch in addition to a new Jack Kemp…


  40. theoutsider
    40 | March 22, 2013 9:41 am

    @ Rodan:
    Rodan, I was going to link that column to you. You are one of the few conservatives that say the Iraq war was a mistake.


  41. 41 | March 22, 2013 9:55 am

    @ Speranza:

    There’s someone at #TCOT that is constantly tweeting this bull -- I usually see it because some fool is retweeting it.


  42. Speranza
    42 | March 22, 2013 10:00 am

    buzzsawmonkey wrote:

    Maybe we need a new Jack Ketch in addition to a new Jack Kemp…

    The butcher executioner. I remember him from my British history studies.


  43. Speranza
    43 | March 22, 2013 10:00 am

    Carolina Girl wrote:

    @ Speranza:
    There’s someone at #TCOT that is constantly tweeting this bull — I usually see it because some fool is retweeting it.

    The yahoo nativist wing.


  44. 44 | March 22, 2013 10:02 am

    @ Speranza:

    Her tweet says “not a natural born citizen according to the Constitution.” I tweet back -- “please provide article and section number of the Constitution that DEFINES natural born citizen.”

    Hint: It doesn’t.


  45. buzzsawmonkey
    45 | March 22, 2013 10:05 am

    Speranza wrote:

    The yahoo nativist wing.

    Very hard to Houyhnhnm over.


  46. 46 | March 22, 2013 10:06 am

    I’m trying to decide whether I’ve worked hard enough this week to attempt a serious “eff off” Friday and hope nobody notices…..


  47. 47 | March 22, 2013 10:09 am

    @ Carolina Girl:

    Do you think that, once Обама leaves, an effort should be made to define “Natural-Born Citizen” via Constitutional Amendment?


  48. Buckeye Abroad
    48 | March 22, 2013 10:11 am

    Speranza wrote:

    Buckeye Abroad wrote:

    @ Rodan:
    Then get ready to say President Hillary Clinton.

    Fine with me, but I would wish she would get a massive stroke and croke right before the swearing in. The Clintons are evil I wish every bit of bad fortune that comes their way.

    She sucked as Secretary of State.

    Of course she did. However Obama sucks as POTUS and got re-elected. The majority cannot seem to make the connection, but that seems to be intentional.

    The Clintons, Kennedys and Bushes need to FOAD. I said that in 2008 and continue to say it now. Americans do not need royal families.


  49. 49 | March 22, 2013 10:25 am

    @ Macker:

    Actually, there’s enough precedent in rulings by the Supreme Court that define it. It’s those that seem to think that the Constitution gives a definition that run into trouble. I think Congress could codify it in the U.S. Code without going the amendment route.


  50. 50 | March 22, 2013 10:27 am

    @ Buckeye Abroad:

    And notice, for his first term he had dreadful appointments, and for his second term he’s gone even LOWER in his picks. Except for Holder and Napolitano. Apparently he couldn’t find anyone worse than those two miscreants so he’s keeping them.


  51. buzzsawmonkey
    51 | March 22, 2013 10:46 am

    They were babbling on NPR this morning about Cuomo walking back the 7-bullet magazine portion of his anti-gun law—because nobody makes them. Apparently one is now to be permitted to own magazines which take more than seven bullets—but may not load more than seven bullets into them.

    While utterly absurd, this is also extremely serious; by granting this “partial indulgence,” Cuomo has gone a long way towards rendering one of Americans’ most important civil rights against the government into a “human right” granted by the government and alterable or revocable at whim.


  52. 52 | March 22, 2013 10:53 am

    @ buzzsawmonkey:

    I saw that on ZIP yesterday. There’s a story there today about a homeowner who faced down two thugs that were armed and breaking in. He managed to kill them both. They were teenagers, so I’m sure we’ll be hearing the Lamestream media lament how they’ve been deprived of promising futures.

    However, it does point out a problem with the 10-round magazine limit, as I posted there:

    Since the gun control nuts are so enamored of “what if” scenarios, let me point out that here are TWO thugs breaking into a house, who don’t give a crap about the gun laws, and may have magazines holding 17 bullets. If the dirtbags in Congress had their way, the homeowner would be facing down the possibility of combating 34 bullets with his legally allowed 10.

    Now do you dip****s see the problem with your 10-round limit???


  53. 53 | March 22, 2013 10:56 am

    I see no shortage of asshatedness among former Carter administration idiots:

    http://weaselzippers.us/2013/03/22/former-carter-adviser-zbigniew-brzezinski-hints-bush-was-jewish-puppet-says-obama-should-side-with-iran-and-stop-possible-israeli-attack/#disqus_thread

    Well, now I see where his idiot daughter gets her superior political reasoning ability.


  54. 54 | March 22, 2013 11:15 am

    @ Carolina Girl:

    Side with Iran?!?!?! Wow. It’s nice to see he doesn’t learn from his mistakes. He’s one of the idiots that gave us the Mad Mullahs to begin with.


  55. Buckeye Abroad
    55 | March 22, 2013 11:21 am

    @ Carolina Girl:

    Except for Holder and Napolitano.

    They are pair of jokes like most of the administration. From the peeps on the ground I spoke with, they are hated, not feared and the armored up DHS and a billion .40 roundss isn’t going to change that. In fact, as a relative of mine mentioned, they fear us and their prepping is revealing that.


  56. 56 | March 22, 2013 11:38 am

    New Thread.

    theoutsider wrote:

    @ Rodan:
    Rodan, I was going to link that column to you. You are one of the few conservatives that say the Iraq war was a mistake.

    I’m more of a Libertarian and I am strongly opposed to the Islamic agenda. There was nothing Conservative about the Iraq war.


  57. Speranza
    57 | March 23, 2013 11:38 am

    Rodan wrote:

    I’m more of a Libertarian and I am strongly opposed to the Islamic agenda. There was nothing Conservative about the Iraq war.

    A futile exercise in nation building.


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