McConnell Outlines a GOP Version of Change
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is addressing the Young Republican Leadership Conference today in Washington, though large excerpts of his speech have been available to the press since early this morning. Naturally, everyone is focusing on the part where McConnell gushes that “we got our groove back,” but The Washington Post’s Chris Cillizza notes that McConnell’s speech is something of a three-part preview of the Republican strategy for 2010.
The first part is about change – not Barack Obama’s version, but rather an effort to hold onto some of the magic from Sen. Scott Brown’s (R-Mass.) party-energizing special election victory in January. The second part is about the virtues of divided government. Here McConnell (and Republicans in the fall) are hoping to draw strength from the idea that a (slim) majority of Americans, according to a Post poll, continue to believe that a Republican Congress would be the best way to maintain a system of checks and balances against a Democratic president in Washington.
The third “groovy” part, however — the message that Republicans have regained popularity through obstructing Congress at every turn — just seems wrong. Democrats in Congress aren’t exactly racking up points as far as confidence, but congressional Republicans are doing even worse. Notes Cillizza:
Again, the Post poll. Forty-three percent of those tested said that they had either a “great deal” or a “good amount” of confidence in Obama to make the right decisions for the country while 32 percent said the same of Democrats in Congress and just 26 percent said it of Republicans in Congress.