First, the Democrats deserve to have won both the House and Senate. Unlike the Republicans, they have been on offense for over a year. But, what do we Republicans do now.
Well, we do need to clean house and senate. So far that is a mixed bag. In the senate, Mitch McConnell will be the minority leader. Maybe Trent Lott will be the minority whip. I am not sure how that will play out. I like Mitch McConnell. He will give the Democrats fits. But Trent Lott, I wonder how that will play out. I think the senators need a fresh and engaging face. One thing is who they get to recruit candidates in 2008, when they have a good chance to take the senate back. Rumors are John Ensign of Nevada has the inside track. I think that is a good choice.
In the House, it is murky.
There are three candidates. They are John Bohener, I think a mistake. Also Mike Pence, a Reaganite and a much better choice. Also, Joe Barton of Texas, also a Reaganite. That is what we need, some one who remembers what it means to be a Republican.
It is not to have "earmarks" or cravenly keep raw power. It is not to try to keep scandalous people and encourage them to run for reelection. We probably lost at least 10 seats because of just that!
We need to stop being watered down Democrats. We need to stand on what got us the majority in 1994 in the first place. We need to reinvigorate the Contract With America. The Republican party was founded and thrived on reform. Not to expand government, one of the great failings of the present Bush administration.
One other thing. WE MUST get all 50 state parties in order. We need to, if it takes the next RNC national chairman to do it, get strong chairmen and recruit good candidates to run everywhere. We can not give up on places in the Northeast. We can't keep running squishy moderates who do not give the voters in this part of the country a real choice. Remember, they took a brunt of losses last night. Yea, we can lose a couple of election cycles in Massachusetts, but people will take a look if we provide a viable alternative. I would refer anyone to read "Painting The Map Red" by Hugh Hewitt (www.hughhewitt.com) for a roadmap. New York state should not suffer because soon to be former Governor George Pataki made it all about him at the cost of building a viable Republican party. Note that Governor Arnold!
That maybe a good long term strategy. Right now, we need to show America that we listened and will return to our roots at the national level. We have to keep that in mind at the state level as well.