Ideas, not Bipartisanship, Should be the Goal

Calling for bipartisanship has become a crutch in Washington As 2010 renewed small-government arguments in Washington, the Establishment in Washington has been crying for bipartisanship as the country realized that big-government solutions are an anathema to our recovery. Not surprisingly, the e idea is popular among journalists too.

Too many in Washington still cling to the notion that massive spending on welfare programs will lead to growth. But we saw over the past three years that is simply not the case. Conservatives were supposed to change all that last year, but after coming out swinging with spending cuts and the Ryan budget, they were thwarted by the obstinate defenders of big-government, including President Obama.

Many look back to “bipartisanship” in the past, like a Social Security bargain in 1983 and the spending cuts in 1997 (which weren’t so much bipartisanship as they were a wearing down of President Clinton by Congressional Republicans). It wasn’t bipartisanship that led to such landmark reforms, it was one group painting in bold, bright colors and refusing to let the other group water down the reforms to the point of redundancy.

What began as a bold agenda devolved into a race for bipartisanship on small ball issues that led to higher spending and dismal economic growth.

Now we’re in an election year, and everyone knows that little will get done because of it, which is really absurd, since the House faces re-election every other year. By now they should know how to get work done even while campaigning.

Last year, the GOP-led House passed 27 bills they say will lead to job creation and economic growth which were never brought to a vote in the Senate. The Democrat-led Senate, in conjunction with the White House, furthered the myth of the “do-nothing Congress,” with the insinuation that the GOP was to blame.

That is why messaging will be so important this year. Conservatives need to get out in front of the issues, propose bold legislation and fight for it, without backing down. They need to explain to the American people that the President‘s ideas of more spending, more government, have not worked, and won’t work now. Thankfully, CQ reports that:

“House Republicans are discussing a fiscal 2013 budget resolution that would lay out their vision of a tax code overhaul and changes in domestic entitlement programs.”

If conservatives lay the groundwork for true reform and stick to that plan, the American people will see who is really fighting for this country. Simply seeking bipartisanship is what has led to the dismal state of affairs we are in. As an end goal, it does nothing to help our country. It will take the hard work of good conservatives to lay out a blueprint for the future, but they can’t be afraid of the heat it will bring.

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