The liberals' goal is not to shrink the growth of government, rein in Social Security and Medicare entitlement spending, tax us less or allow Americans to pursue their own economic freedom. Rather, their clear objective is redistribution of tax receipts to potential voters in the form of tax credits, earmark - spending projects and social engineering programs.
The two major political parties are attempting to convince voters that ideology and policy prescriptions are no longer relevant. Election contests are no longer a forum to discuss individual candidates' solutions to the big issues of the day. Instead, candidates receive their talking points from the party leaders, reducing the election and public policy process to little more than a popularity contest. We the voters are rendered tailgaters in the parking lot, waving our red or blue flags in support of our favorite team.
It is little wonder policy discourse was noticeably absent throughout the 2006 election season. The Democratic strategy was to make the House and Senate elections a national referendum on President Bush and his oversight of the war in Iraq. Republicans played right into the Democrats' hands. Few Republican candidates discussed their plans to restructure Social Security, fight the global war on Islamic terrorism, simplify the tax code or cut federal spending. Instead, the Republican strategy was to scare their base to the voting booth with the threat of a "Speaker Pelosi." Hope and optimism, not fear, motivate and inspire voters.
We arrived at this bipartisan assault on common sense because most members of the House and Senate are in permanent campaign mode. Save a handful of principled conservatives in both chambers, liberals in both parties long ago abandoned their oath to support and defend the Constitution.
Government cannot and will not solve our problems or the problems Congress itself created. Despite the countless platitudes toward bipartisanship, the hard work of solving the hard problems will remain in two years for a new president and a new Congress.
Congressman Rangel's comments should offend not just Mississippians, but any American concerned about the future of a political system that places pork over fiscal discipline and party over policy.
Herman Cain is the National Chairman of the Media Research Center’s Business & Media Institute. He is the former president and CEO of Godfather’s Pizza, Inc., and currently is CEO and president of T.H.E. New Voice, Inc., a business and leadership consulting company.
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