❄ Christie: “For our ideas to matter … ” Ideas?

❄ Christie: “For our ideas to matter … ” Ideas?

The Republican politician Chris Christie spoke to a gathering of party faithful this summer, and said (in part):

We are not a debating society. We are a political operation that needs to win.

I’m in this business to win. I don’t know why you’re in it.

I think that we have some folks that believe that our job is to be college professors. Now college professors are fine, I guess. You know, college professors basically spout out ideas that nobody ever does anything about. For our ideas to matter, we have to win, because if we don’t win we don’t govern. And if we don’t govern, all we do is shout into the wind. [Note 1]

How would I respond to your asking me “what could I do?” A good starting point would be to take Christie’s insight seriously, recognize that the Republican Party is discredited, and replace career obstructionists with good-faith legislators.

“What is the difference between Republicans and Democrats?” you ask. Democrats are not saints, and they consider—as they must—reelection and their futures. Having said that, we can tell Republicans from Democrats by how they cavort in Congress. Democrats believe the aim is agreed—form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty—and that differences about the best ways to do this invite collaboration among good-faith legislators, whatever their party. Inclusion and collaboration. Republicans believe that the only good government is one they control, that obstruction of public servants is good public policy, and that they will prosper from unbridled selfishness. Exclusion and obstruction. [And to Republicans who might say “no, no. That’s wrong, that’s not why I’m a Republican” I suggest listening to Mitt Romney’s characterization of the 47%, and Boehner’s threats to prevent the United States from meeting obligations Congress has already approved.]

[Note 1] Quoted by Maureen Dowd, “Less Bully, More Pulpit,” The New York Times, 28 August 2013, citing Politico as her source.

[Bruce’s Blog: 2013.08.28. Post A42. Short Link: p=463. Front Door Index: http://design.learnworld.com/. Permalink: http://www.learnworld.com/BRUCE/uncategorized/❄-christie-for…o-matter-ideas/]