COUNTRY FIRST…. About a week ago, former Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell, now seeking the chairmanship of the Republican National Committee, explained his opposition to an economic stimulus bill. “[I]t could create a major electoral advantage for Democrats at taxpayer expense,” Blackwell said. “That would be unacceptable.”

Rush Limbaugh is apparently thinking along the same lines. (via memeorandum)

Obama’s plan would buy votes for the Democrat [sic] Party, in the same way FDR’s New Deal established majority power for 50 years of Democrat [sic] rule, and it would also simultaneously seriously damage any hope of future tax cuts. It would allow a majority of American voters to guarantee no taxes for themselves going forward…. Put simply, I believe his stimulus is aimed at re-establishing “eternal” power for the Democrat [sic] Party….

All of this is reminiscent of the memo Bill Kristol wrote for congressional Republicans in 1993, when he insisted that the GOP had to block any efforts to reform healthcare, because if Clinton and Democrats were successful, it would “give the Democrats a lock on the crucial middle-class vote.” What helps Americans is nice, but the real concern is blocking any policies that they perceive might give Democrats an edge.

Remember that Republican slogan from not too long ago? “Country first”?

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Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.