Hidden Silver Linings for the GOP From the Midterms - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
Hidden Silver Linings for the GOP From the Midterms
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis celebrates his reelection, Nov. 8, 2022 (FOX 4 Now/YouTube)

Watergate spelled doom and gloom for Republicans. Confused GOP voters rejected a movie actor whom America’s leftist media depicted as a warmonger and dummy. Jimmy Carter got elected president. However, Carter’s one term proved disastrous, with 18 percent interest rates, 14.8 percent inflation, and 444 days of the Iran Hostage Debacle. Then, Americans perceived that Ronald Reagan could not be worse, even if Bonzo were chief of staff.

The most successful leaders, the greatest ones, often terrify a mediocre electorate and cannot win until things get so bad that people decide: “May as well … Anything else — anything. Even Bonzo.” It took a trio of successive flops — Millard Fillmore, Franklin Pierce, and James Buchanan — to give us Abraham Lincoln. Indeed, that is how Donald Trump got elected in 2016. Obama had been catastrophic, and Hillary augured worse. So … “May as well. Anything else — anything. Even a nut like Trump.”

Two years of Biden-Kamala now have been catastrophic: Afghanistan, the southern border, inflation, baby formula, gas prices, crime, suppressed energy exploration, race divisions, transgender childhood education, supply lines, and so much else. Biden is a bumbler. Kamala is court jester, even laughing like Joaquin Phoenix’s Joker. The greatest silver lining is that Republicans now are assured that the Democrats, convinced they are on the right path, will stick with Biden-Kamala. They will lead America to another Ronald Reagan day of reckoning.

This election, Republicans believed too much in the “common wisdom” and refused to confront realistic facts on the ground. Even so, a ton of Republican conservatives did fabulously in formerly blue states:

  1. Despite Maggie Hassan’s Senate reelection over a political novice, New Hampshire’s Chris Sununu was reelected governor by 16 points.
  2. Pennsylvania is a northeastern, mostly blue state. Yet it was just outside GOP reach for only two quirky reasons: (1) Doug Mastriano had no business heading the ticket — in a year when so many Republican governors won by mind-boggling landslides, he predictably went down in flames, hurting Mehmet Oz, a quasi-carpetbagger from Jersey; and, especially, (2) more than 600,000 Pennsylvanians cast mail-in ballots weeks before the debate, when John Fetterman revealed himself unsuited for the task. That is the price of unbridled mail-in balloting and vote harvesting practically a month before Election Day.
  3. Democrats have been saying that North Carolina no longer is red but tilted blue. Yet Ted Budd won North Carolina.
  4. The media contended that Wisconsin was now too blue for Ron Johnson to win again. But the unabashedly conservative Johnson won yet again.
  5. On the other hand, GOP rebels Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger are out, both replaced by profoundly stronger conservatives. Harriet Hageman won by 45 points in Wyoming, and Darin LaHood won by 33 in Illinois. It is like Republicans picking up two more House seats.
  6. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis crushed Charlie Crist. Likewise, Sen. Marco Rubio crushed his opponent. Democrats said that DeSantis had overplayed his hand, shipping illegals to Martha’s Vineyard; frontally taking on beloved Disney, the happiest place on Earth; confronting teachers unions; and keeping Florida open when “more prudent” states were closed. In reality, DeSantis not only proved popular, but he has attracted mass legal immigration to Florida from all over the country. It has been a national news story, for example, that Orthodox Jews are fleeing New York for Florida. That added to Florida going red and accounted for Lee Zeldin falling just short in blue New York, as so many likely GOP voters kissed the subways goodbye. Even so, the GOP did its best in 20 years in New York, flipping four House seats and ousting Sean Patrick Maloney, the head of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Ask him whether there was a red wave.
  7. If California has turned from Nixon-Reagan-Deukmejian red to Jerry Brown–Gavin Newsom blue, Florida has turned from Bill Nelson–Bob Graham blue to red. Texas (Lyndon B. Johnson, Lloyd Bentsen) has turned from blue to red. Ohio (Howard Metzenbaum, Sherrod Brown) has turned from blue to red. Tom Harkin’s Iowa, the Beshears’ Kentucky, Robert Byrd’s West Virginia. Blue has turned red all over Middle America, much as it has throughout the Deep South. California has not heralded a one-way transformation. Republican conservatism emerged very much robust and successful throughout America. Look at this map. Mike DeWine won Ohio in a 25-point landslide, and newcomer J.D. Vance beat “centrist” Tim Ryan there for U.S. Senate. Joe Lombardo beat Harry Reid’s machine in Nevada. Sarah Huckabee Sanders won Clinton’s Arkansas by 28 points, and John Boozman won there by 35. Brian Kemp won Election Denier Stacey Abrams’ Georgia by a very comfortable 8 points, Kim Reynolds won Iowa by 18 points, Jim Pillen won Ben Nelson’s and Bob Kerrey’s Nebraska by 24 points, Chris Sununu took New Hampshire by 16, Bill Lee won Phil Bredesen’s and Al Gore’s Tennessee by 32 points, Greg Abbott buried three-time loser Beto O’Rourke in LBJ’s Texas by 11. DeSantis took Florida with hurricane force by 19 points and Rubio by 16. Mike Crapo won by 32 points in Idaho and Brad Little by 40 there. Two Republicans in Alaska are headed for a runoff, with the GOP taking 90 percent and crushing the Democrat who attracted only 9 percent — and that wipeout is no optical Aleutian.

And on and on. Kristi Noem won in Tom Daschle’s and George McGovern’s South Dakota by 27 points and John Thune there by 43. Tim Scott by 26 points and Henry McMaster by 18 in Fritz Hollings’ South Carolina. Glenn Youngkin in Ralph Northam’s and Terry McAuliffe’s Virginia. Phil Scott won Bernie Sanders’ Vermont by 47 points. John Hoeven by 31 in Heidi Heitkamp’s and Kent Conrad’s North Dakota. Todd Young took Joe Donnelly’s and Birch/Evan Bayh’s Indiana by 21 points. Jerry Moran won Kathleen Sebelius’ Kansas by 23. Eric Schmitt by 13 in Claire McCaskill’s and Jay Nixon’s Missouri. Mark Gordon won Wyoming by 62 points. Rand Paul by 23 in Wendell Ford’s and Steve/Andy Beshear’s Kentucky. Country Boy John Kennedy took the Landrieus’ Louisiana by 44 points. That possum’s on a stump! And that just dills my pickle! James Lankford and Markwayne Mullin by 32 and 26 respectively in Oklahoma, and Mike Lee by 12 in Utah.

A bad night for Republicans? A wipeout? ReallyNot a single incumbent Republican governor or U.S. senator lost. No mourning in America here. (READ MORE from Dov Fischer: Now the Real Work — the Hard Work — Begins for the GOP House)

Bear in mind: When a new president enters the White House, a large cohort of new congressional representatives enter on his coattails. Then two years later, as voters respond with disappointment, they throw out those freshmen and some others, hence a midterm bloodbath. But 2020 was profoundly different. Almost without precedent, Republicans flipped 15 House seats when Biden came in. The midterm “red wave” largely took place in 2020, two years ago. The expected motherlode of freshman Democrat House representatives ripe for unplucking never materialized for 2022 because you can’t throw out someone who never entered. Only Democrat incumbents were left to be displaced this time. And at least 19 such seats were picked up now. Fifteen plus 19 equals 34 flipped Democrat seats. There’s your 30-seat red wave.

There are many silver linings, even in deep disappointments. Carter led to Reagan. Obama and Hillary led to Trump. This cycle’s main silver linings include these:

  1. Democrats were preparing to dump Biden-Kamala in advance of 2024. Now they are stuck with them. You can’t displace your party’s president after a first term if he refuses to leave unless he has led to electoral disaster, and that catastrophe was averted. Good now for Democrats, but great for Republicans in two years when the real marbles are on the table: the White House and 23 Democrat Senate seats. A Biden-Kamala ticket in 2024 is delicious. The Democrats are stuck with Kamala because they dare not displace a Black Woman, even though they cannot define “woman.”
  2. Beto O’Rourke — “Man, I’m just born to be in it” — is cooked. He can return to skateboarding and filming his flossings. Stacey Abrams probably has one more election yet to deny. She was their superstar, the face Democrats put on national television to respond to the 2019 State of the Union. She single-handedly drove the baseball all-star game out of Atlanta. She’s next.
  3. The GOP has a wealth of electoral superstars, including Ron DeSantis, Mike Pompeo, Mike Pence (yes), Brian Kemp, Nikki Haley, and several others. An abundance of riches.
  4. States like Florida, Texas, and Georgia have revamped voting rules aimed at tightening their elections’ reliability. Now Republicans across the country finally have received the memo, a wake-up call that, state by state, they must do something about (i) universal mail-in balloting, (ii) vote harvesting, (iii) unattended ballot drop boxes, (iv) voter identification, and (v) ridiculously early voting. Either they must restore their states’ voting rules to pre-pandemic practices paralleling the rest of the free world, where this nonsense does not exist — or they have to learn to play the same mischievous games. Republicans have two years’ warning, ample to emulate Texas, Georgia, and Florida.
  5. Republicans — specifically MAGA Republicans — now will enjoy two years’ unexpected advance warning to weigh their relationship with Trump, one of America’s greatest presidents and certainly the most unfairly abused. He will be 78 in 2024 and would be 82 at the end of a term. Having served once, he also would not be eligible for reelection, unlike all others, who would be eligible to leverage eight years’ extended time to implement a counterrevolution. Four years is not enough time to drain the Swamp, as Trump’s term showed. A counterrevolution demands at least eight years, as Reagan demonstrated. It will be challenging to motivate Trump to stop calling DeSantis “DeSanctimonious,” whatever that even means. Republicans must never “move on” from Trump’s MAGA revolution. But the next two years will allow time for soul-searching to decide who best should lead that revolution in 2024 against Sleepy Joe and Kamala the Klown.
  6. As of this writing, the GOP stands only two seats short of a confirmed House majority, with 13 seats remaining to be called. Republican control of the House means:
  • Nancy Pelosi is out as speaker;
  • Jerrold Nadler is out as chair of the House Committee on the Judiciary;
  • Adam Schiff is out as chair of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence;
  • Maxine Waters is out as chair of the House Financial Services Committee;
  • James Comer may chair the House Oversight and Reform Committee;
  • Jim Jordan may chair the House Judiciary Committee;
  • And so much more.

GOP House control will mean committee majorities, investigations into Hunter Biden’s laptop and into Biden family corruption all the way up to “the big guy,” an end to annual impeachments of Trump, and the long-overdue impeachment of Alejandro Mayorkas. Marjorie Taylor Greene and Lauren Boebert will be permitted to sit on congressional committees, and perhaps Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib finally will be suspended instead.

Pretty, pretty, pretty good silver linings.

Dov Fischer
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Rabbi Dov Fischer, Esq., is Vice President of the Coalition for Jewish Values (comprising over 2,000 Orthodox rabbis), was adjunct professor of law at two prominent Southern California law schools for nearly 20 years, and is Rabbi of Young Israel of Orange County, California. He was Chief Articles Editor of UCLA Law Review and clerked for the Hon. Danny J. Boggs in the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit before practicing complex civil litigation for a decade at three of America’s most prominent law firms: Jones Day, Akin Gump, and Baker & Hostetler. He likewise has held leadership roles in several national Jewish organizations, including Zionist Organization of America, Rabbinical Council of America, and regional boards of the American Jewish Committee and B’nai B’rith Hillel Foundation. His writings have appeared in Newsweek, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Post, the Los Angeles Times, the Federalist, National Review, the Jerusalem Post, and Israel Hayom. A winner of an American Jurisprudence Award in Professional Legal Ethics, Rabbi Fischer also is the author of two books, including General Sharon’s War Against Time Magazine, which covered the Israeli General’s 1980s landmark libel suit. Other writings are collected at www.rabbidov.com.
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