Our panel of experts reports on the first national elections of the Tea Party era.
(Page 3 of 7)
Therefore, the most important outcome of the 2010 elections is the opportunity for House Republicans and a growing pro-growth, principled Republican bloc in the Senate to frame the 2012 debate in the clearest possible terms. The American people will always choose freedom and opportunity over tax-spend-and-debt big-government liberalism, but only if they are given that choice to begin with. Before a true conservative mandate must come true conservative leadership.
The task ahead for conservatives, then, is to insist the new House of Representatives and larger Republican Senate conference do their job: to frame the debate clearly between lower taxes, reduced spending, regulatory reform, entitlement reform, and debt reduction on one hand, and more debt, more government, and less freedom on the other. That means tough bills, tough votes, tough veto fights — the kind of hard work conservatives inside Washington do only if held closely to account by conservatives outside Washington.
If conservatives around the country make sure Republicans follow through on their campaign rhetoric, they will drive the debate and ultimate choice in the next election. And 2012 will not only be the most important election of our lifetime, but also the happiest.
Chris Chocola is the president of the Club for Growth.
The pro-life movement scored important victories in the 2010 midterm election. Candidates’ stances on the abortion issue, as well as their support or opposition to taxpayer funding of abortion in Obama’s health care legislation, played a significant role. In fact, a poll sponsored by the National Right to Life Committee found that one-third of voters said abortion affected their vote. Of that one-third, 73 percent voted for a pro-life candidate, while only 26 percent voted for a pro-abortion one.
The SBA List’s efforts to increase the number of pro-life women and decrease the number of pro-abortion women in Congress and state offices raked in major victories. We sought out and endorsed pro-life women leaders who will be voices for l ife on the floor of Congress and in state houses across the country. We also endorsed men running against pro-abortion women who have led the women’s movement far off course with their abortion-centered understanding of feminism.
With several races still waiting to be called, we can already claim a 60 percent increase in the number of pro-life women in the U.S. House of Representatives and a 16 percent decrease in their pro-abortion counterparts. We can also count an increase in the number of pro-life women governors from one to four and a 70 percent success rate among our pro-life endorsed candidates — men and women — overall. This shift in numbers from pro-abortion to pro-life women is historic, and it is no accident. It is a corrective moment for the women’s movement, which must either drop support for abortion as linchpin of its agenda or risk irrelevancy. This is especially evident in SBA List’s head-to-head matchups with the pro-abortion EMILY’s List — SBA List candidates won 83 percent of the time.
Support for the health care reform bill — which brought about the biggest expansion of abortion since Roe v. Wade — played a significant role in the defeat of self-described “pro-life” Democrats who betrayed their constituents by voting for it. The Susan B. Anthony List successfully targeted and defeated 15 of these 20 so-called “pro-lifers” through our “Votes Have Consequences” project. The message sent by those defeats is unmistakable: you cannot call yourself pro-life at home then vote another way in Washington and get away with it.
Votes Have Consequences began more than a year ago when we toured the districts of so-called “pro-life” Democrats to rally support for the pro-life Stupak Amendment and opposition to the Senate version of the health care bill — legislation that allows for taxpayer funding of abortion. When those Democrats caved and passed the Senate version, our mission had to change. And, by defeating 75 percent of them, we have unequivocally communicated that voting against the deeply held pro-life views of your constituency has serious political consequences.
In these key races, the pro-life movement flexed its muscles. Now our mission is to translate these pro-life electoral victories into legislative gains. Specifically, we will focus on passing legislation that repeals abortion funding in health care, defunds Planned Parenthood and other abortion providers, along with passing other life-saving legislation. The future for pro-life women — and the pro-life movement as a whole — looks very bright.
Marjorie Dannenfelser is president of the Susan B. Anthony List, a national pro-life group that spent $11 million influencing the 2010 midterm elections.
Now comes the hard part.
Clearly, this year’s elections provided great reason for joy among Republicans and conservatives. Amidst the joy, though, please consider a few reasons for caution.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?