Listen to Newt

Gingrich Says Ohio Race Holds Lesson for GOP

On the close outcome in a solidly and historically Republican district in Ohio:

Former House speaker Newt Gingrich (Ga.) warned fellow Republicans yesterday not to ignore the implications of the party’s narrow victory in Tuesday’s special election in Ohio, saying the public mood heading into next year’s midterm elections appears to helping Democrats and hurting Republicans.

“It should serve as a wake-up call to Republicans, and I certainly take it very seriously in analyzing how the public mood evidences itself,” Gingrich said. “Who is willing to show up and vote is different than who answers a public opinion poll. Clearly, there’s a pretty strong signal for Republicans thinking about 2006 that they need to do some very serious planning and not just assume that everything is going to be automatically okay.”

Listen to the man, GOP. Not too long ago, somebody (I don’t think it was me) said something to the effect of “The way they’re going right now, the Republicans could lose very big in 2006 if the Democrats would just shut up for five minutes.”

I think this remains true, though I don’t really know if this Ohio special election underscores that or not. It could just be that the Dems were more motivated to get out and vote. As we saw last November, the Republicans can be motivated when they want to, too. (via, of all places, Scrappleface)


  1. Part of the problem is republican governor Bob Taft. Taft is, by all accounts, a complete moron. My cousin lives in Columbus and is a solid conservative and former member of the Republican party apparatus there. He absolutely hates Taft. Most of the other republicans I know back home can’t stand him either. Lingering education, economy and other problems have not been effectively addressed at all since Taft became gov. Taft’s approval ratings are in the low twenties, which means that the only people who support him are the kind of people who’d vote for Lucifer hisself if he was on the Republican ticket. Having that level of hatred aimed at the visible symbol of republicanism in Ohio will have a enervating effect on conservative voters. I don’t think that Ohio is actually any more or less conservative than it was in ’98, ’00 or ’02. I think a lot of it is just Taft sinking and taking the party with him.

  2. Of course, whoever said the Democrats could do better if they jsut shut up for five minutes is absolutely right. However, it seems that (thankfuly) they are constitutionally incapable of not flapping their jaws. Hell, look at some of the rhetoric from Dem discussions of why they lost in ’04. Many of them think that they lost because they didn’t get their message out. If only they had been able to penetrate the veil of lies and reach the people with their message, everyone would have voted Dem. If anything, there’s even less of a chance that they’ll shut for one minute, let alone five.

  3. Gingrich is wrong if he thinks the problem is that the Republican Party is complacent. The problem is that the Republican canidiate was a middle of the road candidate. I heard from people who nearly stayed home because they were wanting to vote for a conservative, and had to hold their noses to vote Republican this time. The lesson to learn here is that running a squishy Republican against a ‘Liberal running as a conservative’ is dangerous. It could cost us elections in 2006 and 08. Note that Hillary! is fast becoming a conservative. She is already Pro-Iraq war. 12 months from now she will be Pro-Tax Cut. 18 months she will be Pro-Life.