It seems that, in recent years, the Republican Party is battling itself as much as, if not more than, it is battling against its adversaries in the Democratic Party. Republicans haven’t seen a strong leader who declared the Party’s stance to the nation since President Bush left office, and the tenuous state that the nation was in at that time did not help them decide where they stand. Losing the White House always brings out problems in a party, and Romney’s loss in the last election didn’t help bring members back together, either. If anything, it left people questioning what exactly the Republican Party stands for even further.
It’s About Big Issues
The current big issues are bringing out Republican disunity even more extensively than it has been in the past. Gun control is a topic that the party has always been divided on, with disagreements on what, if any, restrictions the Party should support. While many had hoped that the intense budget issues would at least bring the Party together to fight for their universal beliefs, this caused greater unrest. Many disagreed on what level of compromise should have been reached as far as spending cuts go, and a large percentage of Republicans believe that not enough was demanded and too much was settled for during budget negotiations to solve the fiscal cliff crisis. Without a strong base of support within itself, it is hard for the Republican Party not to compromise, but under the current political conditions they will be losing too much if they can’t stand together for what they believe is right.
The Tea Party
The Tea Party movement brought out some energy in Republicans, and seemed like it could bring together a party that was slowly drifting away from itself. While it seemed to do so for a short time, helping the Party with the 2010 Congressional elections, it also brought out differences between separate wings of the party, and elevated tension there.
What Republicans need at this point is a definitively strong Republican leader with a clear vision for the party. Since they need to sort through the contenders for the upcoming 2016 election, this should be something they are already starting to do. Winning the White House would certainly reunite the disjointed party, but the question is whether or not the Party can set its differences aside long enough for that to happen. They need to pick a few key issues that the entire Party can stand together on, and rally against the forces opposing those issues. Republicans need a candidate that can fight against the financial problems in this country, point out and reveal to the country what the current health care reform plans will do to further these problems, and show the country why the Democratic Party did not help this country the way they thought it would, and certainly will only cause more damage if left in control.
Few will see a Party that is this disjointed as a viable option to control the White House. At this point, maybe they would be right. If Republicans can band together in time for, and long enough to gain support, for the 2016 election, they can certainly get back on track with their political goals. However, as long as the internal fighting persists, it is questionable whether or not the Party can survive long enough to meet any of its goals at all.
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