Wednesday, November 08, 2006

On Record

In the wake of last night's defeat, Republicans have begun jockeying for position in the new House Minority leadership. It's already been made clear that Speaker Hastert will not return to a leadership position. But who will?

At least one report has Mike Pence and current Majority Leader Boehner squaring off for House Minority Leader while Arizona Congressman John Shadegg (briefly considered for Majority Leader earlier in the year) has already staked his claim for minority whip:

"I am deeply disappointed by last night's election results. After being a part of the Republican majority in the House of Representatives since its inception 12 years ago, I am saddened to see it come to an end. I am proud of our many accomplishments. Over that time, we balanced the federal budget for the first time since 1969, reformed the welfare system and enacted the largest tax relief legislation in American history."

"Twelve years ago, we took control of the House of Representatives for the first time in half a century. It was an historic achievement, and it was possible because we stood for the principles the American people believe in: a smaller federal government, lower taxes, greater individual freedom, and - above all - reform. Unfortunately, over time, Republicans stopped acting like Republicans and we ceded our reform-minded principles in exchange for a seemingly tighter grip on power."

The historic Contract with America made this pledge:

"We propose not just to change the [House of Representatives] policies, but even more important, to restore the bonds of trust between the people and their elected representatives."

We must rededicate ourselves to that task. We also said we would end:

"government that is too big, too intrusive, and too easy with the public money," and begin "a Congress that respects the values and shares the faith of the American Family."

We were right then and we are right now.

"Last night's election was NOT a revolution, nor was it an endorsement of a true or real Democrat alternative. It was a rebuke of the way Washington has conducted itself as of late. This past year, we were presented with many opportunities to act decisively, but instead we wavered in our responsibilities. Yet in defeat there is hope, and now we are presented with an opportunity to reevaluate, unite, and change course."

"It is for these reasons, along with the urging of my colleagues that I have decided to run for Minority Whip. Now is the time to return to the ideals that swept us into a governing majority. The Democrats that were elected yesterday do not represent the reform that Americans want. They do not stand for a strong national defense, nor do they stand for fiscal restraint. They will not end pork barrel spending or reform the earmarking process, and they will not change the way Washington works."

"The campaign to take back the majority begins today. I have no doubt that we can reclaim our rightful place as the governing party of reform and individual empowerment, but we must begin with a renewed vision for this Conference now."

Shadegg is the real deal. Had more Republicans taken a similar stance on things like earmarks we might not be where we are.

Guys like he, Arizona's Jeff Flake and Pence must be involved somewhere in this new leadership group. I won't speak for my colleague, but as far as I'm concerned this blog stands 100% behind Congressman Shadegg's leadership run.

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