Vilifying Republicans has become a cottage industry among Democrats who are under the impression that aggressive, insulting talk about one’s political rivals is a sign of authority and purpose. Yeah, well. Strategically placed White House claims that the Grand Old Party is “reckless and irresponsible” have gone on for days. The news media has chronicled every barb and sting. But one longtime observer of political theater says the Grand Old Party could capitalize on the trend.
“I propose it’s time to mount a Republican ‘charm offensive.’ Don’t laugh,” declares Roger L. Simon, founder of PJMedia. “Here’s what I mean. Mount a charm offensive toward the American people. Start to seduce them. Almost everyone believes in conservative ideas, especially in the economic area, when they stop to think about it.”
Mr. Simon continues, “Stop yelling and screaming about President Obama and calling him the worst president in history, even if he is. Stop fulminating against Harry Reid and Eric Holder and the rest of the abysmal crew. Stop even excoriating the execrable Democrats in Congress who just voted themselves exemptions from the Orwellian Affordable Care Act that you can’t have.”
Republicans should treat liberals like “misguided children” in a folksy way, he advises, as Ronald Reagan once did in a 1980 presidential debate with then-President Jimmy Carter. With steely resolve and friendly grin, Reagan told Mr. Carter, “There you go again,” which became an iconic phrase of the era.
“Approach it this way,” Mr. Simon advises the GOP. “And do it smiling. In other words, co-opt America. It’s waiting for it. And it needs it.”
AND THE MAYORS CHIME IN
Hey, why not make a little political hay while you can?
“Regardless of what happens in Washington, the nation’s mayors will continue to lead, balancing budgets and solving problems. We do not have the luxury of turning our backs on our residents,” declares Scott Smith, mayor of Mesa, Ariz., and president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors, which represents some 1,295 mayors around the addled nation.
“We are pragmatic doers who believe in rolling up our sleeves, finding common ground on even the most difficult of issues and getting things done for the good of the whole. We encourage Washington to do the same.”
THE MOST TELLING NUMBERS
OK, now this is from a CNN poll released Tuesday: 52 percent of Americans say that the Affordable Care Act is a “disaster waiting to happen.” Here’s who agrees: 85 percent of Republicans, 76 percent of conservatives, 19 percent of Democrats, 16 percent of liberals, 60 percent of independents, 46 percent of moderates, 88 percent of tea party supporters, 54 percent of men, 51 percent of women, 33 percent of “nonwhites,” 57 percent of whites, 41 percent of urban residents and 62 percent of rural residents.
More numbers in today’s Poll du Jour at column’s end.
FULFILLING THEIR PROMISE
Republican senators get some applause for a change.
“Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Mike Lee, Marco Rubio, all of these guys were all elected running against Obamacare, promising constituents they would do everything they could to end it. What would you do, break that promise to your constituents? They want them to act like this. I see it all day on Twitter. ‘Thank you, Ted Cruz for standing up for us.’ ‘Thank you for trying to put an end to this.’ “