Congressman James C. Greenwood (R-PA), Feet Planted Firmly in
by Wayne Lutz
Headline in the Montgomery
County Record on Thursday, December 21st was hardly original,
but the voice of warning this time issued from a Republican"
Bush must govern from center to succeed"
some conservatives have called for George W. Bush to push
an extreme right agenda after he becomes president in January,"
gushes staff writer Sarah Larson, "U.S. Rep. Jim Greenwood
said Wednesday the new president must embrace bipartisanship
if his administration is to succeed".
time for him to be presidential [emphasis added] and
do what the Republican Party has always needed to do, which
is tell the people on the fringes that their tail will not
wag the dog", Greenwood is quoted as saying.
learned from eight years of Clintonian indoctrination that
words are now defined in whatever way we need them to be in
order to justify ourselves, we are not surprised then when
told that to be "presidential" in this brave new
century requires that Bush abandon his core beliefs, toss
his campaign promises aside like so much unwanted parchment
and flip the figurative bird to the party's base.
is a four term congressman from the 8th district in Pennsylvania,
Bucks County. He never has been known for staunch conservatism,
to put it politely, but his nonetheless Republican voice is
an unwelcome addition to the "Bush MUST govern from
the center" choir.
to a gaggle of local reporters, Greenwood planted his feet
firmly in mid-air and pontificated:
need to "govern from the middle" is all the more
urgent in light of the narrow Republican margin of control
in the House and the 50-50 split in the Senate, he said. That
will "force Bush and conservative Republican leaders
such as House Majority Leader Dick Armey to craft laws that
govern from the center".
is interesting to this humble observer that Bush's platform,
the one that won him the Presidency, is now characterized
as an "extreme right agenda", one that he is somehow
obligated to abandon. We expect this kind of rhetoric from
the liberals, which makes it all the more distressing to find
Republicans who lack the spine to stand resolutely behind
the new president-elect.
by declaring that "the new president must embrace bipartisanship
if his administration is to succeed," Congressman Greenwood
is laboring side by side with the liberal Democrats, frantically
shoveling fuel into an already glowing furnace of resentment.
George Will pointed out in his column
"Beware The Bipartisanship" today, Republicans
know that bipartisanship is usually a partisan tactic. The
purpose of the calls to bipartisanship is to strip power from
the party in power. It is to entice the winning Republicans
to abandon their base, to abandon their principles, and to
adopt the principles of the party they defeated.
Bush probably knows this. He has already given every indication
that he intends to push forward with the issues on which he
ran. But in order to succeed, he will require loyalty from
the Republicans in congress.
he does not need, what the Grand Old Party does not need,
is Republicans like Jim Greenwood giving public aid and comfort
2003 Tocqevillian Magazine