‘TEN FOR ’10’…. One of the more common criticisms of congressional Republicans is that they have no real policy agenda and offer nothing in the way of constructive ideas. The criticism reinforces the notion that the GOP is the “party of no,” and it has the added benefit of being true.
CQ‘s Alan Ota reports today that the House Republican caucus, hoping to nationalize next year’s midterm elections, is putting together a platform of sorts, which has been “informally dubbed ‘Ten for ’10 ‘.” It’s intended to mirror the style of the Democrats’ “Six for ’06” platform.
While GOP leaders would not discuss the specifics of the emerging agenda, they said it will make the case that Republicans are better suited to revive the nation’s economy. […]
Tom Price of Georgia, chairman of the House Republican Study Committee, said members of the conference are coming up with recommended policy planks that would provide voters “a commitment to accomplish certain ends.”
Among proposals floated so far by members: a ban on spending unused funds from this year’s economic stimulus law (PL 111-5), tougher earmark disclosure requirements and an “all of the above” climate change plan that would expand offshore oil drilling.
It’s hard to be too critical of the ideas thus far; they’re only proposals that have been “floated,” and there will apparently be 10 measures, not three.
But at this point, I think “Ten for ’10” may not be such a great idea. Two of three ideas that are apparently on the table are just holdovers from the McCain campaign. The third, scrapping the economic recovery package, may have some political juice — most of the public probably doesn’t realize the stimulus’ role in prevent a wholesale economic collapse — but it only offers Democrats another opportunity to remind voters that the recovery package was only necessary because Republican policies help bring the global economy to its knees.
And beyond these three, I’m not sure where else Republicans intend to go? They want to privatize Social Security and Medicare, but those aren’t exactly electoral winners. They hate gays and abortion, but these are hardly issues that will help “rebrand” the GOP.
I tend to hope the House caucus does pursue a “Ten for ’10” initiative, if for no other reason, because I honestly have no idea what congressional Republicans want to do with the levers of power except undermine the Obama presidency.