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Lloyd Waters: If Republican Party is near death, what's next?

February 17, 2013|By LLOYD WATERS

I always enjoy reading fellow columnist Allan Powell. His columns are always thought-provoking and well-written. His recent column titled “The decline and fall of the Republican Party” was particularly interesting.

In his column, he writes that the Republican Party for the most part is in serious decline. He suggests that Republicans have brought us to the brink of financial chaos and are no longer deserving of a leadership role. He also shared a list of Republican presidents ranked inadequate by historians.

Is our nation really turning blue (liberal and Democrat) from the rigor mortis of the Republican Party? A review of the 50 governors in our country reveals 30 of them to be Republicans.

I agree that greed often drives the bus in a capitalist society.  I do not believe, however, that one party owns that particular vice.

Maryland, contrary to the positive propaganda coming from Annapolis about being No. 1 in education, entrepreneurship,  businesses owned by women and median family income, seems always to be dealing with a billion-dollar budget deficit.

Words don’t always make it so.

As Gov. O’Malley touts his fiscal prowess on his way to a possible role in national politics, the town he once called home, Baltimore, is heading toward bankruptcy. I suppose the Republicans might be blamed for that failure, too. 

If you don’t believe that one-party rule is the best approach for democracy, then you have to hope a competitive Republican party will rebound.

I personally don’t like all the ideas of the Republican party; neither am I thrilled with all the proposed solutions of the Democrats to solve our nation’s problems.

Andrew Jackson was a Democrat, and I liked him a lot. He looked after the less fortunate while opposing the wealthy. I, too, liked Franklin D. Roosevelt for his handling of the many problems during the Depression and wartime. A very popular fellow, he was elected to office four times.

A contributing factor to our rise from the economic ashes of the 1930s under Roosevelt was that generation’s work ethic and the creation of jobs.

Lyndon Johnson gave us the Civil Rights Act of 1964, but failed in other areas. He continued a war initiated by his predecessor, sent 500,000 troops to Vietnam, and his decision-making contributed to 58,000 American deaths. His war on poverty promoted some successes but also caused generations to become more dependent on government resources and welfare instead of promoting a better solution while encouraging work toward prosperity.

When you examine Bill Clinton’s successes, some of his ideas actually were cultivated among Republicans. He initiated a balanced federal budget, and brought forth welfare reform and the idea to reduce benefits and require recipients to take jobs.

Perhaps President Obama might embrace those same Clinton concepts.

Although I agree in premise with Professor Powell that it would be nice to hear more intelligible words from the Republican side of the aisle, I am not convinced that many Democratic ideas will reap the success many expect.

Actually, I believe there is a calamity lurking in our future and the Republicans will be resurrected because of those inadequate Democratic solutions.

When I look at some past examples of Democratic candidates like Carter, McGovern, Mondale, Dukakis and others, I’m sure there were many who thought the Democratic Party to be near death as well.

In regard to presidential ratings, however, I, too, must be humbled by the advice of John F. Kennedy, who said, “No one has a right to grade a president — even poor James Buchanan (a Democrat rated near last) — who has not sat in his chair, examined the mail and information that came across his desk, and learned why he made his decisions.”

The Republican Party might be on the decline and near death, but I wouldn’t break out the whiskey just yet for a wake.

Lloyd “Pete” Waters is a Sharpsburg resident who writes for The Herald-Mail.





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