Former U.S. Republican Presidential candidate Jeb Bush penned a column for the Wall Street Journal in which he discussed what should be the G.O.P.’s strategy, moving forward, in the aftermath of Donald Trump’s election as President.
“Donald Trump’s successful primary campaign was predicated on the idea that the G.O.P. needs a new messenger and a new message,” wrote Bush in this WSJ opinion piece, continuing with the following.
“Mr. Trump proved that he was right—as I well know, since I was often in his target sights! He successfully tapped into the anger and deep distrust that voters feel toward Washington. These voters believe the American dream is increasingly out of reach. They believe our system is skewed in favor of the powerful and the connected. They believe that the politicians elected to right these wrongs have only made them worse. And they overwhelmingly voted for Mr. Trump, giving him a hard-won victory.”
It is this same anger and resentment toward the same-old, ho-hum, do-nothing politicians, many believe, that also cost publicly blemished and severely flawed Hillary Clinton during the general election as well.
In spite of his message, Jeb noted that there was also a gleam of hope in the message sent by American voters.
“Here’s something we shouldn’t forget: This election was more about voting against something than voting for something,” observed Bush.
“Americans voted against the ‘establishment,’ against the country’s changing culture, against a dysfunctional Washington, against the privileged, against Hillary Clinton—and, yes, against Donald Trump.”
And for this failure, Bush believes, the Republican Party cannot and should not make an excuse.
After all, the G.O.P. has what Jeb calls “the power to set the agenda.” The party, which will lead both the executive and the legislative branches moving forward, will, according to Bush “have the responsibility to govern, not merely on behalf of the voters who supported President-elect Trump, but for all Americans.”
In other words, Jeb Bush believes that the Republicans in office need to make a choice to say no to politics-as-usual, which is an area that many of the voters feel that President Barack Obama and mainstream media-appointee to President, Hillary Clinton, both severely failed.
“For the GOP to build on its victory, Republicans have to recognize that we’re still in a divided country,” continued Bush.
“Republicans need to do more than oppose things. We have to be for a few big ideas and show that we can put them into action.”
Potential “game-changers,” according to Jeb, could include the backing of a constitutional convention to pass term limits, as well as a balanced budget clause and restraints on the commerce clause.
The federal government, Bush noted, has way more regulatory power than the U.S.’ founding fathers ever envisioned.
More importantly than anything, however, Bush noted that Republicans need to come to accept that “Americans, by wide majorities, agree that Washington is broken, [and need to] send power back to the people and back to the states.”
“The federal government has become too unwieldy, too powerful and too distant—precisely the problem that the Constitution was designed to avoid. The breakdown of our constitutional system isn’t a theoretical discussion. It’s affecting every American in real ways. [The] Republicans’ job is to make a compelling case for change and then help citizens regain power over their lives, from the bottom up.”
Perhaps most importantly to Jeb Bush’s plan for Republicans, however, is that Republicans can and should attempt to reverse Obama policies that he believes have “made America weaker, both here and abroad.”
Tenets of this plan include repealing and replacing “ObamaCare,” eliminating what he considers to be “business-killing” regulations and reversing large government expansion.”
“Republicans must restore our brand as the party of conservative ideals, shared prosperity, liberty and responsibility,” continued Jeb Bush, concluding that Republicans “can’t expect to be trusted to lead unless we help restore American leadership in the world. We must act with clarity, consistency and resolve.”
And it is these tenets, Jeb Bush believes, that could help to reverse the fortunes of ALL Americans, and not just Republicans, moving forward.
[Featured Image by Sean Rayford/Getty Images]