Advice to the GOP: Bush Needs a Republican Agenda

by | Sep 19, 2000 | Elections

Salsman said that the Republicans' only real option to win is to adopt a consistent, principled message that resonates with voters: less government and more freedom.

The GOP could spend four more years locked outside the White House for one reason: George W. Bush sounds too much like Al Gore, said a senior writer for the Ayn Rand Institute.

“At the nominating conventions, both candidates endorsed ‘sacrifice,’ ‘community,’ and ‘big government,’ ” said Richard Salsman, president of InterMarket Forecasting in Cambridge, Mass.

“These positions should be expected from Al Gore — the Democratic Party is the traditional party of big government and statism — but not from a Republican candidate. Indeed, a strong case could be made that America’s current prosperity is a result of the Republicans’ pro-freedom, pro-individualist policies in the 1980s and early 1990s.”

“But in the overriding drive to ‘win’ the White House, Bush and other Republican leaders have hidden or evaded these policies, which, incidentally, Bill Clinton adopted in his successful second bid for the presidency.”

As an example of Bush’s anti-individualist policies, Salsman pointed to both of the candidates’ recently announced Medicare plans, and noted that, except for the dollar figures, they’re ominously similar in how they will continue government’s nanny-state role in senior citizens’ lives.

In a BridgeNews-produced editorial, Salsman wrote:

“Philosopher Ayn Rand once observed ‘in any conflict between two men (or two groups) who hold the same basic principles, it is the more consistent one that wins . . . . When opposite basic principles are clearly and openly defined, it works to the advantage of the rational side; when they are not clearly defined, but are hidden or evaded, it works to the advantage of the irrational side.’

“Given only an echo, not a choice, by the Republicans, voters may well opt for the real McCoy, Al Gore.”

Salsman said that the Republicans’ only real option to win is to adopt a consistent, principled message that resonates with voters: less government and more freedom.

Copyright Ayn Rand Institute. All rights reserved. That the Ayn Rand Institute (ARI) has granted permission to Capitalism Magazine to republish this article, does not mean ARI necessarily endorses or agrees with the other content on this website.

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The author is a contributing writer to Capitalism Magazine.

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