Tuesday, November 11, 2008

He Will Be Tested

When Vice-President elect Joe Biden first broached the subject of President-elect Barack Obama being tested in the first few days or months in office by rogue elements in the nefarious underworld of terrorist states and “Axis of Evil” residents the McCain campaign and the RNC couldn’t wait to tout it as some sort of backside endorsement of McCain and his experience. My belief is that while there could be those who may rattle sabers to get a reaction from the new President, the reaction from the world has been one of refreshing good-will even from those elements who were considered unapproachable by the Bush administration. The truth is that President Obama will be tested in the early days of his administration, but it won’t come from those predicted by Biden.

The new President will and already is being tested not by external terrorist, but by internal dissent from the losing Party. Since the election what few Party leaders the Republicans have left have been on a non-stop effort to diminish and tarnish the election of President Obama. The marginalization of President Obama has begun. I guess it isn’t enough to disenfranchise and marginalize millions of American voters since that strategy has failed their next line of attack is to marginalize the election itself. I can understand trying to find a silver lining in the clouds but this is ridiculous. According to these home grown rogues the American electorate did not sign on for any wholesale changes in how the government does business. The fact that they have lost millions of voters obviously has escaped their attention. Another minor detail they have failed to notice was that this election was more than a referendum of George W. Bush; it was a repudiation of the Republican brand. The country has turned the page, but the Republicans have not. They want to continue the same practices that caused them to lose Virginia, Ohio, and North Carolina.

Rather than rolling up their sleeves and joining with the rest of us in seeking out what we can do to help this nation, they have already begun to dictate to the next President what he will and won’t be able to do. In the same breathe they talk about bi-partisanship and obstructionism as if this is what the American public voted for. I don’t think so. The choice is simple: lead, follow, or get out of the way. Stagnation and hindering are not opinions in today’s America. The quickest way to ensure that the Republican Party will become a fringe Party is to continue this false narrative of what this election signified. I thought it was just a campaign tactic but now I am convinced that they truly believe that if they say something enough it is either true or will become true. I hope that the Republicans do try to obstruct the new policies and legislation of the President-elect and the Democrats. With the country in free-fall I want to see how they spin doing little or nothing to help middle-class America after offering up 700 billion to the banks and CEO’s. I can’t wait to see how that socialism argument flies with 10% unemployment and millions of foreclosures. Maybe they can talk about abortions or same-sex marriage that ought to help comfort those suffering during this depression.

The true test of the relevancy of the Republican Party will be in their response to the crisis and their willingness to support efforts to fix it. Now, more so than at any time in recent memory President-elect Obama has a bully pulpit, he has mobilized millions of Americans to believe in and expect change. I would not want to be a Republican slowing down any relief for those suffering the most from this crisis. My guess is that they really don’t get it and despite their “Country First” rhetoric they would allow the country to suffer if they thought it would allow them to return to power sooner. We shall witness first hand if the Republicans really are willing to put demagoguery aside for the greater good of their countrymen and if they don’t they will remain adrift in the wilderness of American politics. If they underestimate the political savvy of Obama or the desire for change as they did in the election they will pay dearly. They will create a generation of Democrats that will insure the Democrats majority status for years to come.

The President-elect’s first test will not be from the “Axis of Evil”, but from the “Excesses of Evil”. I guess it isn’t enough to be the authors of the biggest economic meltdown since the Depression through negligence, greed, and tax-cuts for the wealthy, now we want to compound the problem through obstructionist’s tactics. Please Mr. Boehner and Mr. McConnell do try to block the much needed relief for middle-America; let’s see how that works out for you in 2010. The long-term future of your Party is at stake, I hope you don’t misread the public on this one it will cost you big time. This isn’t the 90’s we are now in uncharted waters with grave dangers for all. I hope you choose wisely.

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