Get real, Republicans. Americans elected you to work, not obstruct | Lloyd E. Sheaffer

And then you can stop spreading the Big Lie and defend democracy like Real Republicans would

January 26, 2022 6:30 am

WASHINGTON, DC – JANUARY 23: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) walks to the Senate floor following a recess in the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump at the U.S. Capitol on January 23, 2020 in Washington, DC. Democratic House managers will continue their opening arguments on Thursday as the Senate impeachment trial of President Donald Trump continues. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

This is a column I never imagined writing. I am offering some ideas that might help real Republicans glean more votes in the next election. Do not misread me, though, I remain a member of the Democratic Party.

Lloyd E. Sheaffer (Capital-Star file)

First of all, real Republicans, grow a pair. Stand up to and move against the obstructionist, anti-everything confederacy of pseudo Republicans who through inaction have put a strangle hold on the political process. Make the McConnell mob declare what they are for rather than what they are against.

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., expounded last year that he is “100 percent focused on stopping President Joe Biden’s administration.”

Thus far, he has been good to his word. Instead of falling in line as a minion to the Kentucky Tory, real Republicans must band together and devise political proposals that can be debated and considered thoughtfully; some genuine, worthwhile programs might come to light. Voters can then, when they approach the voting booth, make their choices based on what is best for the nation.

Second, but related to the first, real Republicans must stop kissing the ring and/or gluteus maximus of the still Prevaricator-in-Chief, who persists in spewing blatant lies that deepen the splits in our nation. He continues to emulate the propagandist’s model offered by another narcissist characterized by the OSS in WWII this way:

“His primary rules were: never allow the public to cool off; never admit a fault or wrong; never concede that there may be some good in your enemy; never leave room for alternatives; never accept blame; concentrate on one enemy at a time and blame him for everything that goes wrong; people will believe a big lie sooner than a little one; and if you repeat it frequently enough people will sooner or later believe it.”

Moderates must get off their knees, stand up straight, and courageously counter the divisive lies with the truth as has been attested to in court after court opinion: Donald Trump lost; Joe Biden won the presidency fairly.

Real Republicans can crack open the shell of the Big Lie by speaking the truth to both their own fractured party and to the public. If the truth is shared as insistently as are the lies, people will be drawn to the truth tellers and might even vote for them.

Real Republicans must evict the white supremacists that have attached themselves to their party. True adherents to the Constitutional values of the country must expunge any sect that espouses or practices hatred and violence to gain political victories.

Next, real Republicans can garner some votes if they return to the tenets of the original Republicanism. For instance, the GOP was founded as an anti-slavery party and desired to protect the individual rights of all people, including African-Americans.

The party even helped enact The Civil Rights Act of 1866, the first civil rights action in the nation’s history, by supporting the overriding of President Andrew Johnson’s veto of the bill.

Real Republicans must evict the white supremacists that have attached themselves to their party. True adherents to the Constitutional values of the country must expunge any sect that espouses or practices hatred and violence to gain political victories.

At the end of his first year, it’s Biden versus his implacable foes | Dick Polman

Traditionally Republicans have valued the importance and protection of individual rights and other conservative beliefs; that is not the case in 2022.

International relations writer and U.S. Naval Academy professor Tom Nichols writes, “The survival instinct that this white-minority rage has triggered in craven Republican politicians is how the GOP mutated from a party championing individual liberty into a movement pushing monstrously statist authoritarianism. It is how the party of limited government began agitating for government truth ministries. It is how the party of exuberant free marketeers became a cabal of crony capitalists and knee-jerk protectionists.”

I have a couple of life-long Republican friends who claim they will never vote Red again unless their beloved party returns to its roots which my right-leaning companions found appealing.

I am sure there are many others, including Democrats and independents, who would consider voting for moderate Republicans who proffer proposals and policies that put the welfare of people over the maintenance of power and that assure a return to genuine American values.

Republicans have placed a high priority on people supporting themselves rather than depending on government handouts. If GOP advocates of individual independence were to take a walk across the proverbial aisle and work with their Blue colleagues, they could find that several aspects of the current administration’s policy proposals will make more jobs available for people to fulfill.

Pass these programs, real Republicans; the folks who benefit from having these jobs in the areas of construction and other industries might feel enough gratitude to reward supportive Republicans with votes in the next election.

A Moody’s Analytics study found that Biden’s “Build Back Better” economic plan, if enacted, would create 18.6 million jobs and result in an almost $5,000 boost in annual household income for middle-class Americans. Nearly 20 million new jobs could engender tons of gratitude and votes.

Beyond the jobs themselves, these new positions with good salaries would result in more tax revenue for state and national governments.

In Year Two, no more Mr. Nice Biden, please | John L. Micek

With more proceeds coming in, the need for raising taxes lessens; real Republicans would relish that consequence. Increased jobs and increased wages would mean fewer folks depending on the public dole, thus lessening pressures to raise welfare expenditures, another win for those who choose to serve their constituents than to kowtow to power mongers and demagogues.

To the current cadre of recalcitrant Republicans, compromise is a dirty word and anathema to their governing methods. However, real Republicans recognize that an effective democratic republic runs on compromise.

In the give-and-take of civil negotiations, both sides will likely lose a little, but the body politic will gain much. Certainly there will always be some obdurate souls, such as local representative Perry’s 42-member House Freedom Caucus, who view compromise as treasonous; nonetheless, moderate representatives must free themselves from the clutches of the tyrannical minority and work together to accomplish what they were elected to do—govern with integrity for the commonweal of all citizens.

Once more, thoughtful voters will presumably return to office those incumbents in local, state, and national governments who put the common good above their own interests and benefits.

Our states individually and our nation collectively face a menacing and perilous future if upcoming elections become nothing more than choices among pigheaded partisans. Unless Real Republicans—and Real Democrats—act with fortitude and honorable character, our constitutional democracy will be lost.

I have noted previously in this space that I have never been a single-party lever puller—or, now, a digital screen tapper; I have assiduously based my votes on policies that will benefit all my fellow citizens over party loyalty.

It is time for our elected officials to do the same if we are to remain the United States of America.

Get real, Republicans.

Opinion contributor Lloyd E. Sheaffer, a retired English and Humanities teacher, writes from North Middleton Township, Pa. His work appears monthly on the Capital-Stars Commentary Page. Readers may email him at [email protected].

Our stories may be republished online or in print under Creative Commons license CC BY-NC-ND 4.0. We ask that you edit only for style or to shorten, provide proper attribution and link to our web site. Please see our republishing guidelines for use of photos and graphics.

Lloyd E. Sheaffer
Lloyd E. Sheaffer

Opinion contributor Lloyd E. Sheaffer, a retired English and Humanities teacher, writes from North Middleton Township, Pa. His work appears monthly on the Pennsylvania Capital-Star’s Commentary Page. Readers may email him at [email protected].