(CNN) ‚Äď National Republicans have shifted so drastically in the past decade that the party‚Äôs most vaunted figure - former President Ronald Reagan - would no longer find a home in the GOP, former Sen. Bob Dole claimed Sunday.
‚ÄúReagan couldn‚Äôt have made it,‚ÄĚ Dole said, adding he too would also have faced challenges in today‚Äôs Republican Party.
Instead of operating day-to-day in a nonelection year, the national party should focus on broader plans to rehabilitate itself after the losses of 2012, the former Kansas lawmaker said.
‚ÄúI think they ought to put a sign on the national committee doors that says ‚ÄėClosed for repairs‚Äô until New Year‚Äôs Day next year. Spend that time going over ideas and positive agendas,‚ÄĚ Dole, who was the Republican nominee for president in 1996, said on ‚ÄúFox News Sunday.‚ÄĚ
He also assigned blame for Washington‚Äôs current state of gridlock to President Barack Obama, who he argued was failing to bridge divides between the capital‚Äôs ideological camps.
‚ÄúI think that the president, he lacks communication skills with his own party, let alone the Republican Party. And he‚Äôs on the road too much,‚ÄĚ Dole said, quipping Obama was a ‚Äúgood golfer.‚ÄĚ
‚ÄúI think one mistake he‚Äôs made was not getting together more with Congress early on in his first administration. There's nothing like knowing the person you are talking to on the telephone, if you had an opportunity to sit down with that person and visit - not about anything, but just visit."