Thursday, November 06, 2014
The Most Important Gains Might Be GOP Governor Wins
Gov. Scott Walker, a likely 2016 presidential contender, is arguably the most admired Republican governor among party members of all stripes for his exemplary governing of a blue state while simultaneously successfully fighting off multiple assaults by the entire Wisconsin Democrat party.
After inheriting a massive deficit from his Democrat predecessor, Walker now has the state nearly $1 billion in black. He cut taxes by more than $2 billion, spurring an economic revival that reduced unemployment from 7.7% to 5.5% and raised per capita income by 9%. Confidence in the state’s economy among employers skyrocketed.
Perhaps more than anything else though, he won the respect and admiration of decent Americans for his stalwart stand against the massive barrage of every dirty trick in the Democrat playbook, including false charges of campaign financing violations by Democrat district attorneys, all of which were summarily tossed out of court. Walker’s third win in four years only solidifies his 2016 presidential résumé.
Gov. Sam Brownback of Kansas likewise governed as a fiscal conservative, although his opponents were often those in his own party. He wants to reform Kansas' economy and winnow down its unfunded liabilities. His most controversial act involved cutting the state’s personal income tax by nearly half, one of the largest tax cuts in the state’s history. He also rejected the feds' money meant for setting up an exchange under ObamaCare. His efforts angered a number of “moderate” Republican lawmakers, and as payback, they stymied several of his other agenda items.
In fact, a number of “moderate Republicans” were so angry with Brownback that they formed a group named “Republicans for Davis,” his far-left Democrat challenger in yesterday’s election. The group grew to 104 members, 53 of whom are former legislators, including 37 who’ve long been out of office, but all are still politically active in the party. That 104 “Republicans” would do their best to replace a Republican with a far-left governor might indicate that Brownback lacks some negotiating skills, but it speaks volumes more about those Republicans.
Brownback’s win undermines the Leftmedia narrative of a repudiation of his conservative fiscal policies. In fact, a large percentage of conservatives and their allies see his work as a giant step in the right direction, and Kansas voters gave him a second term.
Posted by John J. Ray (M.A.; Ph.D.).