Fortunately, there is no sign that will happen. John Boehner, the presumptive new Speaker, has never taken an earmark. Eric Cantor, leader of the Young Guns and the likely Majority Leader, will certainly not resort to the type of behavior that got his predecessors tossed out on their ears. They have a clear objective – to create an economic environment that encourages free enterprise, creates jobs, and secures the future of individual Americans. They will have to confront the massive and invasive federal government, and not only start to rein it in but to dismantle it. In the President’s news conference following the election, he muttered some platitudes that sounded nice. But it’s clear that he does not fully understand the magnitude of this defeat, nor does he realize the scope of the overwhelming rejection of his radical policies. He somehow dismisses the idea that the 5,000 pages of regulations contained within his healthcare and financial system “reforms” – which will promulgate hundreds of commissions that will themselves create thousands of new regulations – had a chilling effect on private industry.
While the election has undoubtedly placed a huge stop sign in front of the leftist agenda of the last two years, Republicans will have to start taking steps to dismantle these policies. A full reversal will not occur during the Obama Presidency, so the Congress will have to take it apart brick by brick, commission by commission, and regulation by regulation. They will have to defund (or leave unfunded) those commissions established only for the purpose of controlling every minor aspect of American lives. They should start by defunding the President’s 496 czars that circumvent the constitutional process. The President has clearly shown that he remains an ideologue. He and his minions will attempt to accomplish his agenda through executive fiat where it cannot be legislated through Congress. That will be the central point of the battle ahead.
The Republicans have been given a clear agenda by the American people. They have been told that they do not want to continue on the path that our federal government has taken for years. While compromise may be necessary because they do not control all elements of the government, it should be done cautiously. When liberals want to expand government by $5 billion, Republicans should not settle for $3 billion and say it is a victory. Regrettably, the creeping growth of government has occurred with the participation and complacency of the GOP. Americans have responded loud and clear: No more creeping unless you’re in reverse.
Tuesday’s message to the governing class was crystal clear. If Republicans do not listen to the message, their heads will soon be rolling just like last week’s losers.