Sunday, November 11, 2007

Virginia Congressman Tom Davis says GOP Needs a Broader Base

This is an interesting story about remarks made by Northern Virginia GOP U. S. Congressman Tom Davis, whose own wife lost a re-election bid in last week's Virginia state elections. Davis is not just all hot air - he voted for passage of ENDA, so he is trying to practice what he is preaching. Hopefully, most of the wingnuts and minions of Daddy Dobson will disregard Davis' comments until much more damage is done to the GOP. I have told those I know who have not yet left the GOP the same sorts of things, only to have it all fall on deaf ears. Am I vengeful? You bet. In my view for what the GOP has done to this country, the Party needs to be severely punished. Prolonged minority party status is a good first step. Here are some highlights:
WASHINGTON — - In bowing out of next year's U.S. Senate race Thursday, Rep. Tom Davis might have ceded the Republican nomination to former Gov. Jim Gilmore, a staunch conservative.But Davis — part of a dwindling breed of moderate Republicans — didn't go quietly. The veteran Northern Virginia congressman vented his frustration at a Republican Party that he says is failing to broaden its base to better address the needs of an increasingly diverse electorate.

"This state is changing markedly," Davis said, pointing to Virginia's job growth and influx of people from other states and countries. "The country is changing markedly. And the party has to change along with it."The tax-cutting, anti-abortion agenda of conservatives like Gilmore, Davis suggested, will no longer be a winning formula for Republicans seeking statewide office.
After losing the governor's mansion twice in a row and a prized U.S. Senate seat last year, Republicans now risk losing their other, once-secure Senate seat when Sen. John Warner retires next year at 81.Davis' hopes of succeeding Warner were effectively dashed two weeks ago, when the state party decided to choose its nominee through a convention of party activists, instead of a primary election. Conventions typically draw the party's base of hard-core conservatives. Davis was counting on a primary election to draw more moderate, independent-minded voters."It is a control factor to limit participation," Davis said of the convention. "We need to grow the party at this point, not shrink the party."

"There is no longer room for a Tom Davis in the shrinking Republican tent," state Democratic Chairman Richard Cranwell said, in a statement issued shortly after Davis' announcement: "The fact that Davis is abandoning his Senate campaign after years of planning, even though he is not comfortable with a Jim Gilmore candidacy, speaks volumes about how divided and out of touch the Republican Party of Virginia has become."
Mark Rozell is a political analyst at George Mason University who studied the rise of the Christian Right in Virginia in the 1990s. He agreed with Davis that the Republican Party must change."I think he realizes the Gilmore formula is a potential disaster for the GOP in the long run," Rozell said. "You can't just run up the hot-button issues and expect to win an election in many parts of the state anymore."
I hope the extremists who control the RPV continue to make their way into oblivion. Virginia needs to look and move to the future, not attempt to turn back time to a society which, in fact, never really existed.


Java said...

Oh, BTW, I checked in the paper yesterday. Both of the reps. from our district, both GOP of course, voted against ENDA. No big surprise, but disappointing nonetheless.

Anonymous said...

So Michael, please tell us what it was about the GOP that once appealed to you.


Anonymous said...

I'm not disappointed he is not going to run. I really feel like he could've given Mark Warner a run for his money. Jim Gilmore won't.