Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Against the policies, not the man

Last night Democrats Jon Corzine and Creigh Deeds, the incumbent governor of New Jersey and candidate for Virginia governorship, lost last night. Republican Bob McDonnell trounced Deeds, a pro-labor, pro-Keynesian, pro-Obamanomics candidate by 18 points in a state Obama won last year and in which Obama campaigned for Deeds this year.

Chris Christie beat Corzine in New Jersey despite being outspent 3-1 and running in a state that Obama carried by 15 points last year. Even with the loss of an upstate New York congressional district due primarily to its own stupidity, last night was a good one for the GOP.

Corzine is an a*s. He's a poor man's George Soros -- wealthy beyond description after a successful career on Wall Street, Corzine turned to politics as a tax-tax-tax-tax-tax-and-spend-spend-spend liberal in one of the highest tax states in the country. He's a redistributionist, pure and simple, which is fine for him now that he has more money than Croesus, but is harmful to the small businesses that form the backbone of New Jersey's economy. And he's nearly as corrupt as Tony Soprano. Christie won because he's moderate, affable and made his reputation as a corruption fighter as the United States Attorney for New Jersey.

Peter Wehner says McDonnell "ran what will become a model campaign for many other Republicans. Virginia’s governor-elect came across as conservative and practical, substantive and solution-based, disciplined and focused, calm and reassuring. He tapped into the fears and concerns of voters and seemed able to channel them in all the right ways. For Republicans to continue the restoration of public trust in their party, they must stand against Obamaism, in all its particulars, and offer compelling answers to pressing public needs."

Most importantly, McDonnell ran against Obamism, not Obama. And that's what the GOP must learn from. The American people generally like Obama personally. Running against the man is a fruitless endeavor. Running against his policies, now that we know them and can define them (unlike in the 2008 campaign), is a winning strategy because his policies are dreadfully unpopular. Lump in running against Nancy Pelosi and Congress with that strategy and the GOP has the ingredients for success. Now, it needs the candidates.

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