by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
The idea that nothing much will change if the GOP captures the whole Congress is just plain wrong. The politics and policies in Washington are about to change in a major way.
Obama may still be president. But he is going to be immediately confronted with a flood of new bills that will change the debate on tax reform, energy, health care, education, international trade and regulations.
Obama will no longer be able to hide behind Harry Reid, who has stopped all voting on these matters. And Mitch McConnell, as Senate majority leader, will be able to move forward the reform ideas of his caucus and House policy leaders like Paul Ryan, Jeb Hensarling, Kevin Brady and many others.
Obama’s head will spin with all the new paperwork on his desk. He may even have to cut back on his golf game.
Of course, because of his left-wing ideology, Obama may veto everything. But if he does, he’s setting up a new Republican agenda for the 2016 presidential race. Either Hillary Clinton completely jumps the Obama ship, or she’s pulled way left by the Democratic party’s Bill de Blasio/Elizabeth Warren/Sandinista wing. Either way she’s in trouble.
And maybe some Senate Democrats vote to override Obama’s vetoes, with some even converting to Republicanism. An Angus King or a Joe Manchin may cross the aisle after the likely midterm GOP landslide.
Unfortunately, the current GOP never put together a clear national-policy election agenda. Not even a downsized Contract with America. But I suggest two Big Think thoughts for the first 100 days of the new Congress.
First is optimism: We know what the problems are, we know what the solutions should be, and we can make these changes quickly. Second is a re-energized evangelism by the Republican party for pro-growth, market-oriented, consumer-driven, pro-family policies.