Rejoice! Rejoice! Victory, oh Victory!

 

shutterstock_158132165The most common form of contemporary conservative electoral argument is flawed in its premise. They argue that we don’t win elections because we don’t follow their advice (give up on social issues / double down on social issues / the same for fiscal issues and/or foreign stuff / use stronger language / use more moderate language / educate the public on abstract issues / stop talking about abstract issues / talk about gaffes more / talk about gaffes less).

In fact, we win elections. We run the legislature in most states, reaching a level of (small d) democratic control rarely seen in American history. We have most governor’s mansions, again, right at the edge of the historical record. We have the House; after decades of suffering from Ike’s neutrality and Watergate, we got it back in 1994 and we’ve mostly kept it. We have the Senate. Even presidentially, we’ve lost just five out of the last twelve races, with the “always losing” argument often resting on the last two. If you decide on the basis of receiving two tails after tossing a coin twice that the coin must be faulty and have no heads on it, you’re probably excessively predisposed that belief.

When people tell you that we’re losing and the only way to win is to buy their snake oil, whether classy snake oil like Arthur Brooks’ or off-brand oils like Mike Murphy’s or Mark Levin’s, they’re wrong in two ways. Firstly, we’re winning, and secondly, many of those who are winning are not from their faction of the party. Ron Johnson and Pat Toomey win in blue-purple states while being unapologetically socially conservative, whatever Murphy might prefer; while Graham, McCain, Murkowski, Capito, Cochran, and Alexander can win in red states despite Levin’s assurances that their path is doomed to fail.

Allied to this is the claim that we don’t win on the issues. Sometimes this is specifically aimed at McConnell and Boehner. In the comments, I’d like people to suggest a Senate leader and speaker who have been more effective at stopping the legislative agenda of a post-war President. I don’t believe that such a man exists. Bush got what he really wanted from Daschle and Reid. Clinton got a bunch of what he wanted from Dole and Newt. Anyone who wants to argue that Reagan and 41 failed to leave a legislative legacy has a tough case to make. And so on. From tax cuts to gun rights to trade agreements to partial birth abortion to bankruptcy to the surge, the Democrats never united in the way that McConnell and Boehner have kept the party together in opposition to Obama, so time and again Bush could peel off enough Democratic moderates to get his reforms passed. Today, pro-choice Republicans refuse to vote for pro-choice bills. Pro-union Republicans don’t vote for pro-union bills. Obama has been reduced to acting through executive orders by the most effective and courageous Republican party leadership in a half century. Obama did pass radical reforms, but only while he had a supermajority; a supermajority that was kept brief between the death of Ted Kennedy and the election of Scott Brown. It’s the united efforts of moderates and less moderate Republicans that has won us our position.

At some level, most of us are aware of this. Over and over again, I speak to closeted McConnell fans who will not admit it in public (some, like James O’Keefe, are open about it if they’re asked, but don’t raise the topic). It’s not cool, and it’s bad for fundraising, to declare that affection. I’ve spoken to people who were coming off a panel discussion angry because they didn’t get to demonstrate their bona fides by attacking McConnell on a point irrelevant to the discussion. Our pundits have overwhelming incentives to bad-mouth our leaders. There’s sometimes almost as little respect for the achievements of our governors and state legislators, although the Constitution gives them the scope to go on the offensive even when there isn’t a cooperative President. Our states are popping and fizzing like mad, deregulating labor, protecting electoral integrity and self-defense rights, closing abortion clinics, cutting taxes, reducing recidivism by expanding religious charitable access to inmates, expanding school choice, shoring up the Constitution with anti-Kelo laws and the like, and finding many other ways of expanding Americans’ freedom.

It’s my belief that America, and the world, were in a precarious state in Reagan’s first term, but that we are in a better position now, and that we were in a precarious state when Ted Kennedy died, but that we are in a better position now. I outline why in posts addressing each of the three legs of the conservative stool and comparing our position to Reagan’s first term and to what one could refer to as the B.M. period of American history (“Before McConnell,” the period of supermajority).

I’ll conclude with a post on the stakes for the upcoming election. We can fix entitlements to make them affordable, but not every party is likely to do so, and even four years would make the problem much harder. We can restore American leadership to the world, but we would have to choose to do so. Almost all the regrettable Court decisions are 5-4, so we can revive our Constitutional fidelity to unprecedented levels, but the good decisions are also mostly 5-4. It is merely likely, not certain, that the shining city on a hill will illuminate the world even more brightly than before.

Published in Domestic Policy, Politics
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  1. Sabrdance Member
    Sabrdance
    @Sabrdance

    James Of England:

    Amy Schley:

    Leigh: Here in Virginia? It’s pulling teeth trying to figure out what’s going on in Richmond, beyond the major newspaper coverage.

    Here’s the thing — on the one hand, we have the MSM constantly telling us we’re losing as a way of demoralizing us. “Arc of history” and all that nonsense. And on the other, we have the conservative media telling us that we’re all doomed because that’s what gets people to tune in. It fits their prejudices.

    But we should be proclaiming the good news! We are winning, and as we do, we need to proclaim “Democrats are swallowed up in victory. O Reid, where is your victory? O Pelosi, where is your sting?

    This is far classier than the Thatcher line I was thinking of. Still, I should note that on Ricochet, we use bold or italics to emphasize text, rather than all caps.

    Can we keep the blasphemous boasting to a minimum, please?  In addition to not tempting fate, if we’re going to compare Democrats to Death and the Devil we should do so far more directly.

    • #31
  2. Arizona Patriot Member
    Arizona Patriot
    @ArizonaPatriot

    About the picture in the OP:

    The optimist sees the glass as half full.

    The pessimist sees the glass as half empty.

    The engineer knows that the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.

    • #32
  3. Z in MT Member
    Z in MT
    @ZinMT

    Another way the Congressional leadership could win points with the frustrated base is if they forced Obama to blink on any issue. I think all agree the sequester was the best conservative victory during the Obama presidency, but it only worked because the caucus stood up to McConnell and Boehner when they wanted to end the sequester caps.

    • #33
  4. Z in MT Member
    Z in MT
    @ZinMT

    Arizona Patriot:About the picture in the OP:

    The optimist sees the glass as half full.

    The pessimist sees the glass as half empty.

    The engineer knows that the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.

    The four basic personality types:

    The glass if half full.

    The glass is half empty.

    The glass is half full…no empty…what was the question again?

    Hey! I ordered a cheeseburger!

    – Gary Larson

    • #34
  5. BrentB67 Inactive
    BrentB67
    @BrentB67

    Frank Soto:I’d help you here, but I was battered heavily when I was making these arguments in your absence.

    Did I miss out on this? Darn it.

    • #35
  6. Sabrdance Member
    Sabrdance
    @Sabrdance

    I was at a conference a couple years ago, had a big panel on federalism.  There was much kvetching.  I went to lunch with another professor who is, like me, a moderate-hang-out conservative at a neighboring institution.  We got to talking about the panel, and concluded that there were some people who were just not happy that Conservatives had discovered this whole federalism thing and were using it to create “red state federalism.”

    My current State Politics textbook calls it “Bottom up Federalism” which I strongly suspect is burying the lede.  The Federal Government is not cutting off the states, the states are telling the Federal Government to go to hell.

    That said, I am not as optimistic as Amy.  We are still in the new phase of this revolt by the states.  They’ve already been slapped down in some places by willful Democrats (Hollingsworth v. Perry) with the help of Federal judges.

    And I’ve seen the anger in my colleagues.  Which is why I am a moderate-hang-out, and not a full-hang-out-raise-the-black-flag conservative.  I will feel more comfortable when we consolidate our victories and the Democrat’s responses fall apart.  Wisconsin is still close -even with the John Doe investigations falling apart, the Left isn’t done yet.  And Brownback won’t be in office in Kansas forever, even though I do like him.

    So I still see the storms, but I am willing to acknowledge silver linings.

    • #36
  7. Whiskey Sam Inactive
    Whiskey Sam
    @WhiskeySam

    Leigh:@Amy – Part of why Walker was so successful — and so popular with his own party in Wisconsin — is that conservative media in-state has done a much better job of that — a much better job in general.

    Here in Virginia? It’s pulling teeth trying to figure out what’s going on in Richmond, beyond the major newspaper coverage. Maybe I don’t know where to look, but there simply doesn’t seem to be the same quality available. Maybe all the talented people get sucked into the DC orbit. I can find lots of blogosphere name-calling between various factions of the Republican Party, but not much solid conservative analysis of the state’s politics. (James, if you know some wonderful source I’ve missed, please share.)

    I know more about the last legislative session in Wisconsin than I do that in the state where I actually live and vote.

    In Wisconsin, the Republicans have very narrowly won almost everything statewide the past four years (and did things with those wins). In Virginia, the Democrats have very narrowly won almost everything. Virginia still seems fundamentally the more conservative state, but Wisconsin clearly has a more effective conservative movement. Leadership matters (McDonnell heading to jail doesn’t help), but I suspect that media difference is a factor.

    I can’t prove the average conservative voter in Wisconsin is more informed — and thus more motivated — compared to Virginia, but that’s my very strong impression.

    I cannot agree with this enough.

    • #37
  8. Sabrdance Member
    Sabrdance
    @Sabrdance

    Z in MT:

    Arizona Patriot:About the picture in the OP:

    The optimist sees the glass as half full.

    The pessimist sees the glass as half empty.

    The engineer knows that the glass is twice as big as it needs to be.

    The four basic personality types:

    The glass if half full.

    The glass is half empty.

    The glass is half full…no empty…what was the question again?

    Hey! I ordered a cheeseburger!

    – Gary Larson

    You left out “Is she single?”

    • #38
  9. Whiskey Sam Inactive
    Whiskey Sam
    @WhiskeySam

    James Of England:

    Whiskey Sam:

    Frank Soto:

    I’m talking much longer term than just Roberts and Alito. We have decades of judges moving leftward to consider. Not all move, but when they move, they always move left. We also got Roberts after nearly appointing the President’s friend Miers. The problem with Roberts is it doesn’t really matter if you get all the minor things right but blow the major ones that cost you the game. Yes, Obamacare was two decisions, but they were pretty big decisions that had far-reaching negative consequences. I’m not sure we’ve gotten better.

    We’ve gone from having 1/1 justices being bad (Ford) to 2/3 being bad (Reagan) to 1/2 being bad (Bush) to 1/4 being bad (Bush). Once you go back beyond that, you start to see their justices being turned, too. Justice White was particularly powerful as a conservative Democratic pick. They developed a better network than we had, and profited from it. Now we have a sound network, too (the Federalist Society has done simply amazing work), and life is good.

    Sebellius was terrible in that it perpetuated much of Obamacare, but it is the strongest Interstate Commerce decision in since Wickard, and it made the exchanges optional for the states in the strongest Tenth Amendment decision in history. It made the Constitution stronger even as it allowed the political branch to get away with terrible policy. We have gun rights, speech and donation rights, religious liberty rights, abortion restriction powers, and such that are stronger than ever before (well, since Roe for abortions). Those are important issues, too.

    We do need to demand from our nominee that they devote a bunch of time to this. The day that they hear about the retirement/ death/ sickness of a judge, they need to have a name ready, and a couple of spares. I think that we have a bench that knows this, though. Walker’s administration had a judicial fight as one of its primary issues, Cruz and Bush both spent years obsessing about this stuff. We’re just not the amateurs that we were twenty years ago.

    James this is true, but they could have done more.  We had the votes to end Obamacare on constitutional lines.  That we didn’t and instead authenticated an expansion of federal authority into places it didn’t exist cannot be counted as a victory.

    • #39
  10. BrentB67 Inactive
    BrentB67
    @BrentB67

    Couldn’t agree more regarding republican success at the state level. It is impressive and deserved. My question is why don’t republicans celebrate it?

    We have six (6) (I think) accomplished governors running for POTUS. I include Christie, Pataki, and Gilmore as accomplished because living in the state mansion with an R behind your name in New York, New Jersey, and Virginia of late is an accomplishment.

    However, it appears when they all run for POTUS they want to be central power executives rather than get the federal government out of the way of their former peers and let the republican party really put on a show at the state level.

    I always laughed at the hypocrisy of G.W. Bush in his first term. His brother was known as an Education Governor in Florida, yet G.W. Bush was partnered with Ted Kennedy to ram through NCLB. How does that work?

    “Jeb, you are such an awful governor that I need Ted Kennedy to ride shotgun and bring the full force the federal gov’t to bear on Florida’s children to ensure they are properly educated”. I wonder how that went over at Thanksgiving?

    • #40
  11. BrentB67 Inactive
    BrentB67
    @BrentB67

    Two thumbs up for the fluid dynamics engineer in the picture.

    • #41
  12. Whiskey Sam Inactive
    Whiskey Sam
    @WhiskeySam

    BrentB67:Couldn’t agree more regarding republican success at the state level. It is impressive and deserved. My question is why don’t republicans celebrate it?

    We have six (6) (I think) accomplished governors running for POTUS. I include Christie, Pataki, and Gilmore as accomplished because living in the state mansion with an R behind your name in New York, New Jersey, and Virginia of late is an accomplishment.

    However, it appears when they all run for POTUS they want to be central power executives rather than get the federal government out of the way of their former peers and let the republican party really put on a show at the state level.

    I always laughed at the hypocrisy of G.W. Bush in his first term. His brother was known as an Education Governor in Florida, yet G.W. Bush was partnered with Ted Kennedy to ram through NCLB. How does that work?

    “Jeb, you are such an awful governor that I need Ted Kennedy to ride shotgun and bring the full force the federal gov’t to bear on Florida’s children to ensure they are properly educated”. I wonder how that went over at Thanksgiving?

    Gilmore was the end of a run of GOP governors in VA.  The rest of the state has been turning redder and has been solidly Republican for decades now, but the DC area continues to explode with transplants working for the federal government who keep that area Democrat.

    • #42
  13. Manny Member
    Manny
    @Manny

    James Of England:
    The most common form of contemporary conservative electoral argument is flawed in its premise. They argue that we don’t win elections because we don’t follow their advice (give up on social issues / double down on social issues / the same for fiscal issues and/or foreign stuff / use stronger language / use more moderate language / educate the public on abstract issues / stop talking about abstract issues / talk about gaffes more / talk about gaffes less).

    In fact, we win elections….

    Yes, yes, yes!  I’m tired of the whiners and complainers.  The fact is our form of government is slow and changes evolve at a snail’s pace.  Obama didn’t get a third of what he wanted done, so that snail’s pace works for and against both sides.  This whole Trump phenomena is built on a false premise that the elected GOP aren’t trying to change the status quo.

    • #43
  14. Manny Member
    Manny
    @Manny

    Frank Soto:Adding to what James has written, conservatives have been quite effective at slowing the growth of government. Claims (usually by my libertarian brethren) that the Republicans are just as bad as the democrats on spending are, to put it generously, over blown.

    Notice what happens in the 90s when Republicans took the house for the first time in 40 years, and what happens again in 2010.

    spending

    Frank, Gov’t as a percent of the GDP can be deceiving.  The GDP has been down the last few years and so makes that growth seem high.  GDP in the 1990’s was very high, so it makes it look as if gov;t shrank.  True reduction of the size of gov”t should be compared both as a function of GDP and independent from GDP.  The better the economy does not give gov’t the right to spend more, at least from a conservative perspective.

    • #44
  15. Manny Member
    Manny
    @Manny

    Arizona Patriot:

    And it will get better with a Republican in the White House. Even if it’s Jeb!, who has been the target of so much criticism around here lately (though not from me).

    Thank you for the kind word for Jeb, who I’m supporting mostly because of his conservative record in Florida.  Sometimes it seems like I’m the only one who sees how conservative he actually governed.

    • #45
  16. Leigh Inactive
    Leigh
    @Leigh

    Whiskey Sam: I cannot agree with this enough

    Sigh.  I was really hoping someone from Virginia would tell me I didn’t know what I was talking about and proceed to educate me.

    I’ll keep banging my head against the wall, and maybe someday write the post I’ve had at the back of my mind on the subject.

    Whiskey Sam: Gilmore was the end of a run of GOP governors in VA.

    McDonnell?

    In the spirit of the OP, watching Gillespie almost win in Virginia was simply thrilling.  A pity he didn’t quite make it over the top, but when you erase a 30-point lead by the most popular politician in the state — and no one saw it coming — you get to claim moral victory.

    Virginia’s not a blue state yet.

    • #46
  17. Manny Member
    Manny
    @Manny

    Amy Schley:

    .

    If it bleeds, it leads.

    I love that phrase.  Did you make that up?  It’s great.

    Apocalyptic doomsaying sells, and let’s never forget that in the end, pundits are about selling their books, their opinions, and their sponsors’ products.

    Yes, and I’m sick of the conservative versions of the MSNBC demagoguery.

    • #47
  18. Manny Member
    Manny
    @Manny

    Whiskey Sam:

    Slowing is an achievement, but if the goal is reversal how much does it matter? Are we rather just prolonging the misery? The larger problem is that while we’re winning elections and holding the line fiscally, culturally we seem to be in full retreat.

    Yes, I agree.  Unfortunately the culture is being altered in two ways that I see.  (1) Gov’t ability to effect the culture is far less than how it effects fiscal policy and the economy at large. (2) From the political perspective, the conservative side is being fragmented because the Libertarians essentially agree with the cultural values of the left.  Cultural conservatism can’t build enough of a head of steam to effect the country.

    • #48
  19. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Manny:

    Arizona Patriot:

    And it will get better with a Republican in the White House. Even if it’s Jeb!, who has been the target of so much criticism around here lately (though not from me).

    Thank you for the kind word for Jeb, who I’m supporting mostly because of his conservative record in Florida. Sometimes it seems like I’m the only one who sees how conservative he actually governed.

    He can govern as a socialist for all I care, as long as he cuts corporate welfare, cuts the size and scope of government, and returns power to the states and the people.

    • #49
  20. Whiskey Sam Inactive
    Whiskey Sam
    @WhiskeySam

    Leigh:

    Whiskey Sam: I cannot agree with this enough

    Sigh. I was really hoping someone from Virginia would tell me I didn’t know what I was talking about and proceed to educate me.

    I’ll keep banging my head against the wall, and maybe someday write the post I’ve had at the back of my mind on the subject.

    Whiskey Sam: Gilmore was the end of a run of GOP governors in VA.

    McDonnell?

    In the spirit of the OP, watching Gillespie almost win in Virginia was simply thrilling. A pity he didn’t quite make it over the top, but when you erase a 30-point lead by the most popular politician in the state — and no one saw it coming — you get to claim moral victory.

    Virginia’s not a blue state yet.

    I’ve lived here in central VA my entire life, and the local media never cover what’s going on in the state legislature unless it’s something major.  It’s just an afterthought for most for some reason.

    McDonnell came after Warner and Kaine.  Gilmore damaged GOP credibility when he ran on eliminating the car tax then did an about face once he got in office for “budget reasons”.  He became such a non-entity most in this part of the state even knew he was running for Senate against Warner until they saw his name on the ballot.

    Gillespie should have won, but that was loss wasn’t on him.  It was due to the McDonnell scandal, the dysfunction of the state GOP, and the static from the government shutdown being played up by the Washington press.

    It was very encouraging to see Cantor replaced and still retain the seat despite the handwringing by some over how we were handing that seat over to Democrats because of an inexperienced candidate.

    • #50
  21. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    Sorry, all I can think of is:

    winning

    • #51
  22. Whiskey Sam Inactive
    Whiskey Sam
    @WhiskeySam

    Leigh, let me add, VA is about 80% GOP if you go district by district.  But statewide, it’s 50-50 and depends on turnout in any given election.  Red local, purple statewide.  McDonnell ran a masterful campaign and showed a solid GOP candidate can win statewide, but then came the downside.

    • #52
  23. Mike LaRoche Inactive
    Mike LaRoche
    @MikeLaRoche

    Count me in with John Derbyshire.  We are doomed, we are doomed, we are doomed.

    • #53
  24. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Smile, peasants. This is as good as it’s going to get.

    • #54
  25. Leigh Inactive
    Leigh
    @Leigh

    Whiskey Sam:Leigh, let me add, VA is about 80% GOP if you go district by district. But statewide, it’s 50-50 and depends on turnout in any given election. Red local, purple statewide. McDonnell ran a masterful campaign and showed a solid GOP candidate can win statewide, but then came the downside.

    Wisconsin’s slightly bluer than that, I think, and presidential election results would back that up.

    It’s bizarre to me that I feel less informed about state government in Virginia than county government in Milwaukee — and not for lack of trying.  And I don’t know which is more typical.  I need to write that post.

    It’s on that turnout issue where I suspect the media makes a difference.  It makes a difference in candidate quality, in keeping government accountable, in promoting political involvement, and — to bring it back to the OP — in letting people know when they have genuine victories to celebrate.

    • #55
  26. Frank Soto Contributor
    Frank Soto
    @FrankSoto

    Manny:

    Frank Soto:Adding to what James has written, conservatives have been quite effective at slowing the growth of government. Claims (usually by my libertarian brethren) that the Republicans are just as bad as the democrats on spending are, to put it generously, over blown.

    Notice what happens in the 90s when Republicans took the house for the first time in 40 years, and what happens again in 2010.

    spending

    Frank, Gov’t as a percent of the GDP can be deceiving. The GDP has been down the last few years and so makes that growth seem high. GDP in the 1990′s was very high, so it makes it look as if gov;t shrank. True reduction of the size of gov”t should be compared both as a function of GDP and independent from GDP. The better the economy does not give gov’t the right to spend more, at least from a conservative perspective.

    That’s not deceiving, that’s a feature of looking at it this way.  Holding spending down as the economy grows is an effective method of getting the government’s finances under control without electoral backlash.

    • #56
  27. Whiskey Sam Inactive
    Whiskey Sam
    @WhiskeySam

    Leigh:

    Whiskey Sam:Leigh, let me add, VA is about 80% GOP if you go district by district. But statewide, it’s 50-50 and depends on turnout in any given election. Red local, purple statewide. McDonnell ran a masterful campaign and showed a solid GOP candidate can win statewide, but then came the downside.

    Wisconsin’s slightly bluer than that, I think, and presidential election results would back that up.

    It’s on that turnout issue where I suspect the media makes a difference. It makes a difference in candidate quality, in keeping government accountable, in promoting political involvement, and — to bring it back to the OP — in letting people know when they have genuine victories to celebrate.

    It’s definitely not solely because the media doesn’t want to talk about the GOP.  I’m 40 so I can remember when VA was solidly Democrat, and they never covered it then either.

    • #57
  28. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    I’d be interested to see a demographic by age on attitudes toward Republican victories. I’m in the over 50 set, and I see the trends being very bad for the country, whatever the state houses and legislatures are doing. My perception is that we’re much less free, much more in debt, and our moral compass is broken. But, other than that…

    • #58
  29. The Cloaked Gaijin Member
    The Cloaked Gaijin
    @TheCloakedGaijin

    James Of England:I’d like people to suggest a Senate leader and speaker who have been more effective at stopping the legislative agenda of a post-war President. I don’t believe that such a man exists.

    Your imaginary man comment reminds of the complete helplessness in deporting or even finding illegal immigrants, but the same government functions quite well when used by the IRS or EPA to intimidate relatively honest Americans.  Read Conrad Black’s comments about the American legal system’s power to intimidate rather innocent Americans.

    Politicians are fearful creatures.  If you attack the king, you have to kill him.  Leaders like Churchill, Lincoln, Washington, Thatcher, Reagan, and Eisenhower are the exception.  Such people often earn respect before moving to elective office.  Fighting the establishment is also a young man’s game.  Who to replace Mitch McConnell?  McConnell is more of a McClellan or Meade instead of a Grant or Sherman.  Let anyone have a shot at it.  Inhofe and Sessions are both senior statesmen ready for a fight.  If not Cruz, Cotton, or even Rubio, why not a Grassley or Portman just for a change of pace?

    Who would do better as speaker?  Heck, any random name would work for me.  Congressman Daniel Webster, former Florida speaker, seemed like the best candidate 7 months ago.  You could let Rubio run the senate and have two former Florida speakers running Congress, but Rubio wanted to rush into immigration with Schumer and quit to run for prez.

    • #59
  30. Arizona Patriot Member
    Arizona Patriot
    @ArizonaPatriot

    The Reticulator:He [Jeb] can govern as a socialist for all I care, as long as he cuts corporate welfare, cuts the size and scope of government, and returns power to the states and the people.

    Well, cutting the size and scope of government is pretty much the opposite of governing as a socialist.

    If elected, I am absolutely confident that Jeb would govern as a conservative, and that the country would be vastly better off after his term(s) in office than under any Democrat who might be nominated.  He’s not at the top of my personal list at the moment.  I don’t agree with him on everything, and I don’t expect to agree with any candidate on everything.

    Obviously I don’t know him personally, but from everything that I’ve seen and heard, he is a fine and good man, of tremendous talent and accomplishment.  I would say the same for everyone involved in the first debate, with 2 exceptions.

    Fiorina appears to be a fine and good woman.

    And I don’t think that I’d call Trump “fine and good,” but he is undoubtedly talented and accomplished, is often entertaining, and there is something likeable about his brashness.

    • #60
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