Michael Gerson: Rand Paul can never be part of mainstream GOP

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  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    July 20, 2013 9:32 p.m.

    He is not radical enough.

  • Mister J Salt Lake City, UT
    July 20, 2013 10:09 a.m.

    to Mountanman

    "The trouble with the GOP is that many have rejected the vision of America held by our founding fathers (freedom, self reliance and free market capitalism)"

    Actually, these people exist. They are called Libertarians.

    The GOP, however, is full of Ivy league educated crony capitalists or Nascar watching, bible thumping apologists for the previous group.

    LDS Lib hit it spot on yet again. There is an interesting comparison between Jefferson & Palin towards the end of The Sign by Raymond Khoury

  • JoeBlow Far East USA, SC
    July 20, 2013 6:06 a.m.

    Until we stop the R vs D fighting and focus on the common problem, nothing will change.

    R and D do very similar things for very similar reasons.

    M O N E Y

    Our politicians on both sides put themselves first, their party second and the American people third.

    Until we get the corporate and union money out, both sides will cater primarily to them.

    Most of you don't get it. And it is so easy to see. So you continue to fight between R and D.

  • HaHaHaHa Othello, WA
    July 19, 2013 5:18 p.m.

    If the GOP nominates anyone more "moderate" then the last 2 candidates, they might as well blow it up and become democrats. This is why they lose, they don't nominate candidates that will bring their base to the polls. Rand Paul is an interesting candidate, because he is well spoken, very conservative, but doesn't appear to have all the nuttiness, and cowardly baggage his father has. Name one GOP candidate who would be more popular, and don't keep throwing out airhead ideas like Jon Huntsman. Give me a break.

  • spring street SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    July 19, 2013 3:14 p.m.

    "Why vote anyway? The two parties are the practically the same anyway!"

    This, my friends, is a well-documented disenfranchisement strategy being perpetuated upon the gullible American public.

    When the public is not involved and voter turn-out is low, those in power tend to remain in power and the status quo does not change.

    To claim that you can change things from outside of the system - by refusing to participate and vote - shows a clear lack of understanding of our form of government.

    I mean, seriously - how well did not voting work for you in the last election?

    There is no minimum number of voters needed or required. Whoever gets the most votes wins. If the only people who vote are the politicians, they are still going to win and be politicians.

    If you are unhappy with elected officials - vote them out! Don't just sit around and think they are going to notice or care.

  • SEY Sandy, UT
    July 19, 2013 2:52 p.m.

    Thanks, Edgar, but I'm pretty sure you won't like my ideas. Ideally, I don't WANT congress to get anything done because so little good (if any) comes out of there. Compromise only means they agree on another bad idea. Sorry I'm so cynical, but I think Ron Paul had it right. Vote "no" on just about everything, Republican or Democrat. That's why he was known as "Dr. No" by many.

    The only real suggestion I have for you is to stop believing that voting will make things better. It doesn't matter who you vote for or against anymore, they're nearly all there to enrich themselves and their cronies. The idealists burn out quickly and become part of the problem in a very short time. Any real changes will come outside of the system. Working within the system for change is an oxymoron. Either you work within the system OR you work for change. Not both.

  • m.g. scott clearfield, UT
    July 19, 2013 2:28 p.m.

    Well Obama had much worse people in his past and his administration and somehow he still qualifies as a mainstream Democrat. Such a double standard. Democrats can have any baggage in their past, but find a Republican who chewed gum in class and off with their political head. What a stupid country we live in, and guys like Gerson only make it worse.

  • Edgar Samaria, ID
    July 19, 2013 12:38 p.m.

    SEY - I understand your sentiment - that Democrats and Republicans are almost indistinguishable anyway - but if that is the case then why do the Republicans in the House, without any exception, consitenty vote unanimously against legislation proposed by the Democratic President and approved by the Democratic Senate? I'm not trying to be sarcastic or be arumentative. I really want to know what happened to the pragmatic members of the Republican party who always came to the conclusion that getting part of what you want is better than nothing at all. I'll admit that some Democrats are just as partisan but I think anyone looking at the situation rationally would have to admit that Democrats, during this administration and the previous one, have been the ones more likely to compromise, if for no other reason than to get SOMETHING done.

    Any ideas?

  • SEY Sandy, UT
    July 19, 2013 10:57 a.m.

    Better yet, Maverick, why not just have Republicans merge with Democrats since they're almost indistinguishable anyway. We have what is basically one-party rule in Washington: the government party.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    July 19, 2013 10:45 a.m.

    And neither can Sarah Palin, Sharon Angle, or any other of the assorted Tea-Party right-wing-political fringe.

    Limbaugh, Hannity, and Beck have their fans...
    and they by themselves can't win elections.

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    July 19, 2013 10:04 a.m.

    I love how folks are bashing the messenger rather than the message.

    Making Gerson look bad doesn't make Paul look any better!

    They're both crazies that should be abandoned by their parties. The GOP needs to find real leadership. Chris Christie anyone?

  • ScottChallenger Scottsdale, AZ
    July 19, 2013 8:59 a.m.

    Gerson - you've danced and drank, socialized and laughed, joshed and plotted with Rand Paul over the last few years. Now you turn on him, as if to say - he's not one of "us" conservatives.

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    July 19, 2013 7:23 a.m.

    The trouble with the GOP is that many have rejected the vision of America held by our founding fathers (freedom, self reliance and free market capitalism) and have resorted to trying to out democrat, Democrats with redistribution, socialism and big government. The blind trying to lead the blind and both shall fall into an economic and social ditch!

  • SEY Sandy, UT
    July 19, 2013 4:50 a.m.


    Gerson desperatly tries to paint Jack Hunter, now a Rand Paul staffer, as a neo-confederate. In Gerson's mind, anyone who disagrees with Abe Lincoln's decision to invade the South must be pro-slavery and racist. Nothing could be further from the truth. But that's how the "good vs. evil" mind of Gerson works. Everything is simple: black/white, light/dark, either/or. Complexities are for loonies and liberals.

    The Republican Party is dying because it is trying desperately to woo voters by cozying up to independents and conservative Democrats without appearing to become a mere echo of the Democratic Party. It's failing on all counts. It has long ceased to be a countervailing choice in American politics. It is merely playing catch-up to Democratic Party successes.

    Gerson's attempt to vilify the growing surge of Rand Paul Republicanism by punching below the belt is reprehensible and deserves to be repudiated for what it is: the politics of desperation.

  • SEY Sandy, UT
    July 19, 2013 4:38 a.m.

    When a prominent writer embarks upon a smear campaign of guilt by association against someone from whom he wishes to distance him- or herself, it might be a good idea to understand the writer's own perspective.

    Michael Gerson is, among other things, a committed neo-conservative. He was George W. Bush's head speechwriter 2001-2006, hand-picked by none other than Karl Rove. He is the creator of the "smoking gun/mushroom cloud" metaphor used by then-Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice to scare the nation into supporting the (can we say it?) looney notion of invading Iraq. He coined the phrase "axis of evil," another looney concept that contributed to the idea of an American crusade to cleanse the world of "evil-doers." Time Magazine named him the 9th most influential Evangelical in America in 2005.

    With that background, is it likely that Gerson can be regarded as a spokesman for what is or is not "mainstream" Republicanism? I'd have to agree that he can. The truth of the matter is that these ideas are the reason the Republican Party is in a tailspin and on the path to irrelevancy.

    (to be continued)

  • The Real Maverick Orem, UT
    July 19, 2013 12:24 a.m.

    The GOP is such a wild mess right now. It's almost time to just blow it up and start over.

    Paul would have us become 50 independent countries. We've seen this. The Articles of Confederation failed. Out of it was born our Constitution. Having us revert to the Articles of Confederation would just about destroy what is left of this country.