Do Republicans need either different strategies or different leaders? “Both,” answers Victor Davis Hanson.
VDH also asks, how can it be that the Republican Party, stalwarts of Capitalism, were easily outfunded, outspent, outsmarted?
In almost every important Senate or gubernatorial race, the Democratic candidate was the far better funded of the two. In some races, like the New Hampshire U.S. Senate election, the Democrat outspent his Republican counterpart by a staggering 17-1.
Republican expectations were high, explains VDH in American Greatness. VDH writes that the “blame game for the loss is as strident and confusing as the election itself.” Below VDH covers the most common targets of criticism:
#1: Donald Trump – Erratic and Reckless?
(Now there’s a surprise.)
VDH: Before the midterms, Trump strangely attacked Florida Governor Ron DeSantis before he loudly hinted that he would run again.
#2: Trump promoted many losing candidates, often on the narrow basis of whether they had accepted his charges of a rigged 2020 election.
VDH: Some important Trump-supported candidates did win, including J. D. Vance in Ohio and Ted Budd in North Carolina. At the same time, many centrists and moderates, such as Joe O’Dea in Colorado, lost.
#3: Why did Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and the fossilized Republican hierarchy short candidate Blake Masters in Arizona, while pouring money into an internecine fight in Alaska on the side of the less conservative Republican candidate?
VDH: Republican House and Senate coffers probably gave MAGA candidates more than Donald Trump did from his $100 million-plus campaign stash.
#4: We are in the midst of the greatest political revolution of our age?
VDH: Election Day voting in most states has been reduced to about 30 percent of the electorate. What replaced it is an utter mess of early balloting, absentee balloting, mail-in balloting, ranked voting, run-off voting, and endless counting.
#5: This time the silent and undercounted voters were not disillusioned MAGA supporters who hung up on pollsters’ calls.
VDH: Instead, pollsters missed the 70 percent of those under 30, along with single women, who voted straight Democratic tickets.
#6: Usually, reliable conservative pollsters forecast a huge Republican victory. Apparently, they oversampled conservative voters, reasoning that left-leaning pollsters usually under-sampled them.
VDH: They were not just wrong, but way off. And the ensuing hubris of certain victory led to nemesis as Republicans let up the last few weeks. Thousands of conservative voters may have passed at the chance to go to the polls deeming their votes superfluous.
#7: The Left smeared conservatives as democracy destroyers and violent insurrectionists.
VDH: (W)hen the Republicans offered nonstop negative appraisals of Biden’s failed policies without commensurate alternative positive agendas, they (the left) unknowingly fed into the Democrats’ false narrative of cranky nihilists.
Could not Republicans have offered an upbeat and coherent contract with America that offered uplifting, concrete solutions to each of Biden’s messes?
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