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More issues for Republicans....

Posted by on Nov. 26, 2012 at 10:05 AM
  • 25 Replies

What's the GOP message if the economy booms?

By David Frum, CNN Contributor
updated 6:46 AM EST, Mon November 26, 2012
A trader works at the New York Stock Exchange, which has seen rising prices due to optimism about the prospects of a
A trader works at the New York Stock Exchange, which has seen rising prices due to optimism about the prospects of a "fiscal cliff" deal.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • David Frum says signs pointing to the economy gaining steam in next two years
  • He says household debt is down, consumer confidence is up, jobs are returning
  • Republican message in 2010, 2012 was that Obama's plan wasn't working, he says
  • Frum: GOP needs a new message if the Obama economy produces real gains

Editor's note: David Frum, a CNN contributor, is a contributing editor at Newsweek and The Daily Beast. He is the author of eight books, including a new novel "Patriots" and his post-election e-book, "Why Romney Lost." Frum was a special assistant to President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2002.

(CNN) -- Here's the next thing the Republican party needs to rethink. What does it say if and when the United States returns to prosperity?

For five years, U.S. politics have been shaped by economic hardship. In 2008 and 2010, voters rejected the party in power, booting Republicans out of the White House, and then sweeping Democrats out of Congress.

Mitt Romney campaigned in 2012 on the slogan, "Obama isn't working." President Obama responded by attacking Romney as out of touch, assuming (probably correctly) that he could not win by running on his record.

David Frum
David Frum

But the indicators are suggesting that by 2013 and 2014, the Obama record will begin to look a lot better, assuming, that is, that the two parties in Washington don't recklessly push the country off the fiscal cliff at the end of the year.

The nation's economy added 171,000 jobs in October 2012, for a total of almost 700,000 in the four months before Election Day. More than half the jobs lost in the crash of 2008-2009 have now been recovered, even as public-sector employment has shrunk by a net 500,000.

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The economy is recovering because consumers are less burdened by debt. They are paying down their credit cards, building home equity and strengthening their personal balance sheets.

As household debt burdens become lighter, consumers express more confidence. They are allowing themselves to spend a little more. They are even buying new homes again. Housing starts in October 2012 rose to a level 41.9% over a year before.

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Accelerating economic activity is rapidly reducing the budget deficit. The deficit has contracted since 2009 at the fastest rate since the end of World War II, faster even than during the late 1990s boom.

Wages remain flat, and will likely stay flat until unemployment contracts more, but Americans can begin to see better times ahead for the first time in a long time.

As they do glimpse that better future, two things will happen in politics:

1) President Obama will begin to claim more credit. In 2012, the word "stimulus" went unmentioned by Democrats. It was Republicans who tried to make political use of the $800 billion spent on job creation in 2009-2011. In 2013-2014, however, the shoe may suddenly rematerialize on the other foot.

2) Republicans will discover that their old "Obama isn't working" theme has become obsolete. By 2014, again assuming that Congress does not leap off the fiscal cliff, it will likely look as if Obama is working. What then? If negative messaging failed in 2012, it will fail bigger in 2014.

For too long, the Republicans have predicted apocalypse, debt crisis, the loss of freedom, the overthrow of the constitution. As the economy improves, that doom-saying will seem even more out of touch than ever.

Republican political chances will depend on the Republican ability to devise a positive program to address the country's fiscal problems in ways that improve people's lives. It's a new day, guys, and it demands a new game.

by on Nov. 26, 2012 at 10:05 AM
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Replies (1-10):
sweet-a-kins
by Emerald Member on Nov. 26, 2012 at 10:19 AM
2 moms liked this

 After one of the debates, there were some pundits talking and one was the bald guy from McCains campaign and he agreed with the others that everything was on the up swing including housing...and who ever won this election would get the credit for it even though the foundation was laid by the Obama admin...

looks like he will get credit for his own work ;-)

 

 

kidlover2
by Bronze Member on Nov. 26, 2012 at 10:23 AM
2 moms liked this
Sadly enough... I fear republicans will never acknowledge it. Either they will chalk it up to fluke, something obscure that they did, " it was bound to happen anyways", & last, but most likely.... that it is all a conspiracy and the democrats lie about everything to make themselves look good.
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Sisteract
by Whoopie on Nov. 26, 2012 at 10:28 AM
4 moms liked this

IMO, and I said this 2 years too, the TPM fractured and weakened the GOP- it is at a crossroads and now must decide who it really wants to be and who it wants as its core base.

shannonnigans
by Gold Member on Nov. 26, 2012 at 10:30 AM
2 moms liked this

What floors me is that this is written by a Republican.  He gets it.  But none of them here seem to, at least not the ones that I've run across. 

lga1965
by Ruby Member on Nov. 26, 2012 at 10:33 AM
2 moms liked this

 

Quoting kidlover2:

Sadly enough... I fear republicans will never acknowledge it. Either they will chalk it up to fluke, something obscure that they did, " it was bound to happen anyways", & last, but most likely.... that it is all a conspiracy and the democrats lie about everything to make themselves look good.

 Or they might say that our economy is improving because of something George Bush did 4 or 5 years ago?  J/K....but that's just as irrational as most of the wacky statements Conservatives/Tea Party have been giving us,right?

Sisteract
by Whoopie on Nov. 26, 2012 at 10:35 AM
2 moms liked this

They were so misguided- Many actually thought (and stated) that Romney would win in a landslide. IMO, many in the general populace "get it," party insiders, I am not so sure.

The GOP really needs to retool.

I hope both sides are able to come together to make decisions appropriate for most Americans and the American economy- not just certain folks, big businesses or unions...the last 2 years have been a congressional disaster and waste of time and money. 


Quoting shannonnigans:

What floors me is that this is written by a Republican.  He gets it.  But none of them here seem to, at least not the ones that I've run across. 


12hellokitty
by Platinum Member on Nov. 26, 2012 at 10:37 AM

I guess libs think if they start now with talking points implying the economy is booming the people will think it's true? 

Well at least we won't have to listen to another 4 years of Obama blaming Bush...

 

lga1965
by Ruby Member on Nov. 26, 2012 at 10:38 AM
1 mom liked this

 

Quoting shannonnigans:

What floors me is that this is written by a Republican.  He gets it.  But none of them here seem to, at least not the ones that I've run across. 

 Yes, he gets it because he is rational and educated and actually thinks for himself instead of automatically spouting the "party line" as most Republicans do. The moms at CM can't come up with rational ,original thoughts. They just take the easy way out and copy what they have read at Breitbart or heard on Faux News. Too bad, huh.

You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You're on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go...”
― Dr. Seuss, Oh, the Places You'll Go!
12hellokitty
by Platinum Member on Nov. 26, 2012 at 10:39 AM


Quoting shannonnigans:

What floors me is that this is written by a Republican.  He gets it.  But none of them here seem to, at least not the ones that I've run across. 


laughing

lga1965
by Ruby Member on Nov. 26, 2012 at 10:41 AM

 wow,you just proved my point! Exactly what I was discussing in my reply a few minutes ago!  Thank you!

Quoting 12hellokitty:

I guess libs think if they start now with talking points implying the economy is booming the people will think it's true? 

Well at least we won't have to listen to another 4 years of Obama blaming Bush...

 

 

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