HomeInvestmentRepublicans Should Stand for More Than Opposing Democrats

Republicans Should Stand for More Than Opposing Democrats

I much dislike sentences that begin “Polls have shown . . .” Still, but, yet, nevertheless and however, polls have shown that the confidence Republicans earlier felt in the forthcoming midterm triumphs may not be justified. The gain in House seats is now predicted to be less than expected and hopes for a Republican Senate majority dimmer than a few months ago. Among the causes of this are the Supreme Court decision overturning Roe v. Wade, which is said to have roused many women against the Republicans; the poor quality of the current batch of Republican candidates; and the division within the party between pro- and anti-Trumpers. But I wonder if something deeper isn’t in play.

I wonder if the problem isn’t inherent in our political parties, at least in their current propensities. Here the Democrats feature the particular, the Republicans the general. Democrats are for, among other things, fighting climate change, eliminating student debt, taxing corporations more heavily; the Republicans, among other things, are for entrepreneurship, laissez-faire economics, strict construction of the Constitution. With their specific programs, the Democrats seem always on the political offensive; with their general principles, the Republicans on the defensive, seeing it as their chief task to block costly Democratic bills and other attempts at radical change. The best offense is a good defense, or so it is often said in football and other sports; it is less certain that this is so in politics.

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