HealthCare: Fellow Republicans, Scare Tactics Are Doomed

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As the debate over healthcare finally comes to an end, I have been amazed and almost embarrassed at how the Republicans have responded to the Democrats creative maneuverings to get the bill up for a vote.  The Democrats have decided to use a parliamentary rule called reconciliation.

So, the Republican's response?  To whine and complain about how unfair the Democrats are being to the minority party.  Republicans, stop it! Grow a pair.  Elections have consequences.  So, if you don't like what is going on, win elections, regain the majority and then lead the country.

Finally, President Obama and the Democrats decided to act like they have a spine. They have a majority in the House and the Senate and have earned the right to take the country down a path that is consistent with their vision. 

I think the White House and the Democratic Congress have been nothing short of incompetent in their governing. This health care bill should have been past and signed into law by last September at the latest. 

Republicans need to stop complaining about how they are being treated and start laying the groundwork to offer the country a clear governing choice: more government to the nth degree or reasonable government to address the public's fears and concerns not only about healthcare, but also, about the economy and terrorism.

It's not enough to use bumper sticker rhetoric:  lower taxes, smaller government, more individual freedom, yada, yada, yada. These words are like the tinkling cymbals, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing!

People don't want to hear Republicans talk about how the government is the problem.  Before that issue is addressed, Republicans must lay out to the American people, in specific detail, what is the legitimate role of the government in our lives in the 21st century. 

Once the role of government is clearly defined in a way that makes sense to the average American, then we can have the discussion of a Republican vision for healthcare, taxes, education, terrorism, etc.

Everyone admits that our healthcare system is broken, so Republicans what is your solution? Please don't continue to say the "free market."  In the midst of this current financial crisis, Americans don't trust the market.

They feel like we drifted too much towards laissez faire.  Nor do Americans trust government to solve problems.

Americans don't want no government.  They want effective, sensible, reasonable government.  Neither do they trust the marketplace to respond rationally to changes that occur at the speed of thought.  

Herein lies the opportunity for Republicans to retake the House and make major gains in the Senate.  By clearly articulating the legitimate role the government should play in our lives, then to advance policy solutions based on that premise.  That is the winning election strategy.

Not trying to scare people into thinking Obama is going to "destroy" our country, turn it into a socialist state, or make us a weak nation.  No one wants to hear this idiotic talk.  Campaign on how Republicans will solve the problems that Americans are concerned about. 

If we campaign on how ineffective the Democratic Congress has been in legislating or how Obama is not focused on the economy, then we win.  But, if we campaign on is Obama a citizen, is he a communist, or does he want to destroy the country, then we lose.

As a political consultant, I would love to have a juicy issue like a horrible healthcare bill passed by my opposition to run against. The bill will pass and it's going to turn out to be disastrous.  Republicans can't win the election on bashing the government.  They can win by running on effective government, partnered with a free market environment that is governed by clear rules of engagement.   

There is a clear line of demarcation in governing approaches between the Democrats and the Republicans, especially with Democrats controlling the entire federal government.  The only question is whether the Republicans want to win or do they just want to scare people.

We don't need harsh rhetoric, racial code-words, or bashing of the government.  We simply need to clearly define our vision and convince the American people that our vision will solve problems.  If we do that, victory is ours.  Of this, there is no debate.

Jackson is president & CEO of Raynard Jackson & Associates, LLC., a D.C.-public relations/government affairs firm. 

He is also a contributing editor for ExcellStyle Magazine (

"Speaking Truth To Empower."

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