The antiwar activists who funded Obama's campaign expect him to pull troops out of foreign hot spots, but Obama later campaigned in support of increasing troops in Afghanistan. All sides of the Middle East disputes think Obama will implement change in their conflicting directions.
The middle class expects tax cuts from Obama, but his socialist supporters expect spread-the-wealth redistribution to the poor. Obama's supporters want change, change, change, but he has been stacking his Cabinet with retreads from yesteryear.
The Obama administration will probably have no more direction or clarity than the Carter administration. Congressional Democrats can still remember how many of their colleagues lost their jobs in 1994 after they tried to push through Bill Clinton's liberal agenda, including Hillary health care, and they don't want to repeat those mistakes.
It may be that Democrats, including Obama, will try to be re-elected rather than to implement the change Obama promised. While they fight over who gets which government titles and bask in favorable media attention, conservatives should educate the grass roots and the potential candidates.
Opportunities to help our nation and please the voters exist at state and local levels for conservative efforts in education, regulation, taxes, social issues and dealing with illegal aliens. Missouri, the traditional bellwether state, resisted the national trend and not only carried for John McCain but gave Republicans three new seats in the State Senate.
In 1996, Bob Dole failed to learn from Reagan's example. Dole remained for years in the Senate in both mind and body, and was unable or unwilling to run a grass-roots campaign against Clinton.
Clinton failed to get 50 percent of the vote in 1996 and could have been defeated by a fresh, Reagan-like approach rather than a rehash. John McCain repeated Dole's mistake, trying to run for president from inside rather than outside the Beltway.
Increasingly, voters believe we have one-party government: the party of the D.C. insiders who socialize together, appear in the media, and give handouts and bailouts to their powerful friends and favored constituencies. Conservatives can defeat that party by campaigning from the ground up, not the top down.
Obama began running for re-election in his acceptance speech in Grant Park in Chicago when he told his supporters that his "change" could take more than one term. Republicans should follow Ronald Reagan's example and focus on the grass roots with a campaign that will be a learning process for both the voters and potential candidates.
Phyllis Schlafly is a national leader of the pro-family movement, a nationally syndicated columnist and author of Feminist Fantasies.
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