Jeb Bush, Obama’s EPA nominee, and the tie to Republican moderation.
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Which is to say, the Reagan and Bush models have now been separately road tested. Mr. Gerson got his way and now proposes — having helped toss the party in the dumper — to recommend more of the same.
Issues can change — or they can never change. Economics, after all, was as big an issue for Harry Truman and Tom Dewey as it was for Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. Climate change, on the other hand, is relatively new.
But the moderate GOP approach is always the same: Concede the main issue to the left, tinker at the edges. Then sit back and enjoy a hell of a ride.
This is what the Bushie moderates are recommending in Commentary. Gee, isn’t it time for Republicans to admit that they can be, um, “hyper-individualistic,” they ask? Shouldn’t we just “acknowledge climate disruption” to show that we’re not “anti-science”? Can’t we signal that conservatives really don’t believe in a “closed society”?
Isn’t this what Jeb Bush has been all about in saying the GOP needs to get over Reagan “nostalgia” — as Reagan biographer Craig Shirley pointed out the other day over at Townhall? (Craig also notes there is no “Reagan panel” at CPAC this year. It is an excellent suggestion for next year.)
Which is to say, if George H.W. Bush set out to deliberately drop the Reagan agenda, and George W. Bush set out to do more of the same to move beyond what Gerson called “Reagan-era nostalgia” — is it not reasonable to believe that when the same words come from Jeb Bush that the GOP is setting itself up yet again for another presidential election disaster?
This is, it is critical to note, not about the Bushes. This is about moderate Republicanism and the unbelievably long and unbelievably feckless trail of political disaster it leaves in its wake.
The fact that someone like Gina McCarthy could even shadow the doorstep of a GOP governor’s administration, much less be appointed by a man who told his CPAC audience last year that he was a “severe conservative” — is symbolic of the GOP’s real problem. It says all you need to know about the intellectual bankruptcy of moderate Republicanism.
What the Commentary article is really about is writing the screenplay for another moderate Republican disaster. Revving up the limo — with Jeb Bush or some other moderate behind the wheel — for one more moderate-style “hell of a ride.”
For which no serious conservative should have “nostalgia.”
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?