Need proof that the GOP is slouching towards a drubbing in three weeks? Behold, National Review's symposium on how the party can win the election. I don't know if the Bush era has made NR more sycophantic to the Elephant Party than The Nation is to the Donkey Party, but this page tilts the wheel in NR's direction. After some grumbling about how Democrats have no ideas and the GOP can only defeat itself, there comes a pattern:
Republicans must flat out tell the American people that "Speaker Pelosi" would endanger our country, period. (Cesar Conda)
Pelosi will become hated as quickly as you can say "out of touch liberal." (Robert Moran)
Can Americans really believe that Nancy Pelosi should be shaping the nation's policy on war; our safety; the economy; or nail polish regulation? (Lisa Schiffren)
Let the American public know what a Nancy Pelosi-led Congress will look like and what it will mean for them, i.e. that she represents the San Francisco wing of the Democratic party. (Peter Schweizer)
Summoning the dread Pelosi has become such a rote part of GOP-boosting that I don't think Republican strategists realize how lame it is. For one, outside the city by the bay and the city by Bay Buchanan, no one gives much of a crap about Pelosi. She's not popular, but she's less unpopular than George Bush, Dennis Hastert, Bill Frist, and Dick Cheney. The GOP, perhaps unwittingly, is replaying the rock-bottom strategy Democrats tried in the waning days of 1994, of obscuring their own unpopularity by sacking the other team's quarterback. It's ineffective, and it bespeaks an absolute lack of governing ideas.
One of NR's experts who doesn't knock Pelosi says this:
Republicans can (and I believe will) retain their majorities in both houses of Congress in the 2006 elections by focusing on the three t's: taxes, terrorism, and turnout.
That's Ralph Reed, last seen getting his ass kicked in his first-ever run for office in Georgia.