Republicans Need To Debate Policy, Not Personality

Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY-14) is the current wunderkind in left-of-center circles it appears to me. She’s also *very* engaged with Twitter and social media. In fact, if there’s one thing Republicans need to do is to observe how she interacts online. Perhaps we can learn a thing or two to emulate.

She’s an intelligent, witty, and attractive woman who isn’t afraid to engage the leadership of her own party or the opposition to challenge the status quo. She’s quickly becoming the face of democratic socialism that a lot of people my age and younger are seemingly infatuated with. She’s become quite popular and has stepped out onto the national stage. Quite a feat for a freshman member of Congress of either party.

She’s someone we will probably keep an eye on if she inherits the mantle of democratic socialism from Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT). We agree on very little politically, but she’s still an intriguing person to watch as my generation now begins to make its way into the halls of Congress. Although, it does sound like she and some of her freshmen colleagues are causing a bit of indigestion for the current Democratic leadership. As a Republican, it’s good to see the Democrats try to figure out what to do with their younger version of the TEA Party.

Ever since her election, I’ve seen news reports of how Republicans are sparring with her. Ed Rollins referred to her as “the little girl” on Lou Dobbs’ show to some reports have said “conservatives” are shaming her over a dance video she made nine years ago (although there hasn’t been evidence of this). Now, I have seen memes floating being passed around by conservative friends of mine that poke fun at her intelligence. They’re for cheap laughs, and they’re about as useful as the memes about former President Barack Obama, Secretary Hillary Clinton, etc. at spreading what the Republican Party is “for”. I want a party “for” moving the policy football towards the conservative end zone; not a party that creates lame memes that gets tittering from the talk radio crowd.

to some reports have said “conservatives” are shaming her over a dance video she made nine years ago (although there hasn’t been evidence of this). Now, I have seen memes floating being passed around by conservative friends of mine that poke fun at her intelligence. They’re for cheap laughs, and they’re about as useful as the memes about former President Barack Obama, Secretary Hillary Clinton, etc. at spreading what the Republican Party is “for”. I want a party “for” moving the policy football towards the conservative end zone not one for creating lame memes that gets tittering from the talk radio crowd.

I’ve said this before, but I’ll say it again. We, Republicans, need to promote what we are for: reducing the size of government and pushing governance as close to the citizen as possible, keeping taxes low, cutting spending (even though this seems to be a difficult thing to do in the Era of Trump), etc. We don’t agree with policies that Democrats advocate, but we need to do a better job of explaining what our policies are and how they benefit the American people.

We can dismiss Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez at our own peril, but mocking (or perceived mocking) from talking heads or through social media is only giving her a hammer to hit us with in the future. We need to stay on message and push for conservative policy and solutions. Engage and debate policy points, but don’t try to take cheap shots. We should and are better than that.

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Kara
Kara

I want a party “for” moving the policy football towards the conservative end zone

So what is the “conservative end zone” other than against anything and everything that supports the average person? As someone who has followed politics for 30+ years, I can’t figure out what conservatives want other than to leave the common person in the lurch.

J. Wagon
J. Wagon

There is currently a policy debate going on right now, and republicans are losing it. Badly.

Republicans are debating with dems and the president over the policy of building a wall, asylum seekers, and family separation.

I understand you’d like to fight on the two issues that you sound good on. But credibility will be lost if republicans can’t debate cogent and rational policies around immigration.

Seems like there’s plenty to debate without having to talk about AOC, but you don’t want to. Because you’ll lose.

Benevolus
Benevolus

“the current wunderkind in left-of-center circles”

Conservative media is much more obsessed with her than liberal media, seems like to me.

In any case, as long as Fox news controls the conservative dialogue, it will be driven by scandal, controversy, and outrage, not policy. Y’all need to divorce yourselves from them somehow if you want to be respectable again.

downthemiddle
downthemiddle

Oh this is rich. So the liberals have been running on policy the last 2 years as they scream I hate Trump, wearing pink hats and screaming racist Nazi like Andrew?! No, their policies is what gave us Trump.

Good lord folks, talking about a group of folks that are not focused on policy other than the 70% tax is like the pot calling the kettle black!!

Chatsprint
Chatsprint

Conservative Nathan: I’ve said this before, but I’ll say it again. We, Republicans, need to promote what we are for: reducing the size of government and pushing governance as close to the citizen as possible, keeping taxes low, cutting spending (even though this seems to be a difficult thing to do in the Era of Trump), etc. We don’t agree with policies that Democrats advocate, but we need to do a better job of explaining what our policies are and how they benefit the American people. Conservative DTM: Oh this is rich. So the liberals have been running on policy… Read more »

downthemiddle
downthemiddle

Thanks for answering the basic question of how a 70% tax on anything is good! Nice whiff! That is her ONLY policy so far. Whatever is targeted at 70% will be either avoided or be out of existence. Case in point! Do you remember that John Kerry simply moved his $7 million dollar yacht to Rhode Island from Massachusetts when the liberals in Massachusetts thought it was a great way to raise revenue on rich yacht owners!!!! How hard is this!?!?!? This is arguing policy, not name calling! The policy is simply sheer idiocy. Even liberals are not stupid enough… Read more »

bethebalance
bethebalance

There’s a small Great Lake full of research on tax policy and interstate migration, and business re/location, economic growth, etc. Spoiler: None of it is a black and white issue, as you seem to imply. Also, an anecdotal “case in point” is exactly that- one case. Worth a mention, sure, but not worth the excitement as if it makes the policy a done deal, in theory or reality. But the arguments about policy are framed by the language and style of how they’re communicated, and that is the sprit of the post. So the positive sentiment is appreciated, Nate’n (Nathan… Read more »

Baker
Baker

I’d add that I think it’s a mistake for the GOP to slander her and the Bernie-types as wanting to make us Venezuela or China. They want to make us Europe – that’s clear enough to the younger folks – and if the GOP doesn’t want that, they’re going to have to explain why.

downthemiddle
downthemiddle

Why in the hell do we want to be Europe?! That is the freaking question Baker!! I don’t want anything to do with Europe. Why don’t you explain that to us!!!! Is it the great European economy, the $8 gas, the lack of upward mobility, it is being attacked in multiple wars every century since the beginning of time, it is the lack of power and success, the total lack of resources, it is not being able to protect your own county with a weak underfunded military? Is it the extraordinarily high tax rates? Maybe its the massive illegal immigration… Read more »

Dave Bearse
Dave Bearse

The GOP explanation—so much to dispute it’s not worth the time.

downthemiddle
downthemiddle

No sh-t Dave.

downthemiddle
downthemiddle

You like a 70% tax rate and think Europe is the way to go. Good luck with that! I can’t argue with that. Just move. Save us all by do. I like the USA. I don’t want that to end up in a socialist gulag.

downthemiddle
downthemiddle

So you are WHIFFING AGAIN Andrew. You cant and will not name a policy that is somehow racist or Nazi like from this administration. Isnt if funny when you are directly challenged you just sit and can’t reply? Why is that? Shocker right? And there is Cortez yappin about Trump being a racist and Anderson Cooper looking so concerned….spare us….Trump the racist who lives right there n the heart of liberal Manhattan and he was a democrat for 50 years and never a racist until now….. You will not or cannot mention anything positive about the 70% tax rate. I… Read more »

downthemiddle
downthemiddle

Andrew how many folks paid that tax? Oh, that 91% tax is as GD stupid as the 70-75% tax for the same reasons I mentioned. Yea, Eisenhower was an idiot to propose that. Am I waffling on that? Now tell me how YOU think it is a good idea. I pointed out why it is absurdly stupid. Try this. Put a 91% tax on anything. Whatever product that is, it is most certainly dead and will never be used again…unless it is addictive. A 75% is just as stupid. That is what happens to socialist economies. You run out of… Read more »

Noway2016
Noway2016

With the allowable deductions to match!

chefdavid
bethebalance
bethebalance

Headline: “Man cites historical example; we should thus assume he will be the worst.” But if we’re going to debate what the top marginal tax bracket and tax rate should be, I would start with a question just to see if we know how numbers work. The Q: Imagine you are an equity investor with, over the past 10 years, an average annual income of $20 million. With partners, you invest/rehabilitate/flip/sell companies in values ranging from $100M to $500M. An opportunity arises where you can earn $100M over 5 years. Of course, there are other opportunities also available. At what… Read more »

bethebalance
bethebalance

The comparison to Europe is off. The comparison to a gulag is just beyond absurd, as is even mentioning Venezuela. Plain nonsense. But as for Europe, the comparison is like saying that because we imported the format of a British TV show, or listen to the Beatles, that we’ll suddenly embrace a Constitutional monarchy. No, one thing most Americans agree on is how independent we like to be. We like to do things our way. And that’s awesome. We’ll find our way, and it may mean a robust public option of health insurance, or high taxes or fees on proportionately… Read more »

Ellynn
Ellynn

Tax rate explained… (not an endorsement of either side, just to a FYI)

https://www.axios.com/alexandria-ocasio-cortez-tax-proposal-wealthy-f1eea529-0476-4516-8227-03573d0f7516.html

Baker
Baker

Don’t want to be Europe. Just saying screaming about socialism isn’t good enough because AOC/Bernie are aiming at the UK, Scandinavia, Germany etc, not Venezuela or Cuba. Enough people see that and believe the UK, Scandinavia, Germany etc are fine. The GOP, if they want to win an argument, need to understand how to argue why they are not.

All this is really moot anyway because the orange guy from Queens is going to continue to dominate the conversation for at least two more years, rendering any real ideological arguments null and void.

Ellynn
Ellynn

In a related link…

https://thebulwark.com/how-aoc-owns-the-cons/

By the way, this is a new conservative site run by one of my two favorite pundits named Charlie.

bethebalance
bethebalance

deleted

Gregs
Gregs

Thoughtful post but I fear that the Republican base-hungry for blood and red meat-will not accept any candidate who speaks thoughtfully to policy questions. I don’t know if this caused by talk radio and the Fox News Channel or if it birthed those two elements but I do know any candidate not sufficiently angry at immigrants, feed up with the welfare state, filled with nostalgia for “merry christmas’ past” and packing several guns has little chance in the GOP. Casey Cagle decried the very “crazy” that he pandered to. Kemp/Williams lived and died during the primary on stoking fear and… Read more »

FreeDuck
FreeDuck

The Republican Party lost me when it became evident that their policies were only loosely based on evidence, if at all, and when they abandoned their core principles. I became anti-Republican when it became clear that a significant portion of their base has issues with women and melanin, and the leaders of the party not only are ok with that, they subtly nod to it in order to win. When y’all walked away from fiscal conservatism you left us holding a near empty bag of misogyny, racism, creeping authoritarianism, and climate ignorance. When you’ve had control of all three branches… Read more »

Baker
Baker

A trillion a year added to the debt during an economic boom is…not great.