‘Outside’ the beltway

‘OUTSIDE’ THE BELTWAY…. As part of the Republican Party’s rebranding effort, House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.) hosted a National Council for a New America event at a pizza shop over the weekend. Roll Call reported, “Cantor said the idea of the road show is to gather ideas from outside the Beltway to shape the Republican agenda.”

CQ had a similar item: “After consecutive catastrophic electoral losses … Republican leaders are turning their attention outside the Capital Beltway — and outside their severely diminished party ranks — to gather ideas from the public that they hope will help them rebound.”

At the risk of sounding picky, it’s probably worth noting that Republicans started gathering ideas “from outside the Beltway” at an event inside the Beltway.

A place called Pie-tanza, in an Arlington strip mall, hosted the event. Pie-tanza is just a few minutes from the Washington Golf and Country Club. Indeed, it’s only about six miles from Capitol Hill.

Far be it for me to offer the National Council for a New America suggestions, but it seems to me that GOP leaders are far more likely to get “ideas from outside the Beltway” if they actually go outside the Beltway.

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Steve Benen

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.