Republican Presidents More Harmful: A Republican President Can Often Enact a More Liberal Agenda Than a Democrat Could Because Many Republicans in Congress Are More Loyal to Party Than to Principle

By McManus, John F. | The New American, June 27, 2005 | Go to article overview

Republican Presidents More Harmful: A Republican President Can Often Enact a More Liberal Agenda Than a Democrat Could Because Many Republicans in Congress Are More Loyal to Party Than to Principle


McManus, John F., The New American


Over the past few generations, congressional Democrats could customarily be relied upon to promote a liberal agenda while their Republican counterparts developed the reputation of being stalwart opponents of our nation's slide into big government and internationalism. The record shows, however, that during the past 50 years, congressional Republicans have exhibited such opposition only when a Democrat occupied the White House. Because recent Republican presidents have capably talked a conservative game while acting as convinced liberals, they have won support for leftist programs not only from congressional Democrats, but also from easily persuaded middle-of-the-road and liberal Republicans.

In 1981, Ronald Reagan took office amid widespread expectations that he would engineer substantial cuts in federal regulations and nondefense spending. But at the time, Hoover Institution researcher Thomas Gale Moore promptly predicted that those expectations were completely illusory, based upon Reagan's performance during his eight years as governor. Moore then looked back over several decades and concluded that "a voter who wants a liberal policy should vote Republican; conversely, if he yearns for a conservative policy, he should cast his ballot for a Democrat." It may come as a surprise to many, but his conclusion is remarkably accurate.

Ongoing Pattern

The pattern detected by Moore has once again become obvious during the administration of George W. Bush. Helped by the liberal mass media, the president has successfully stolen the word "conservative" while promoting increases in government that most Republicans in Congress would never have approved had a Democrat proposed them. The first Bush term saw more than $2 trillion added to the national debt that now exceeds $8 trillion. Instead of using his influence to try to put the brakes on profligate spending by Congress, he has abetted it. The latest Bush budget actually calls for 38 percent more spending than the largest of Clinton's eight budgets.

All of this becomes more astounding with the realization that Bill Clinton was able to point boastfully (if dishonestly) to budget surpluses during the waning years of his presidency. Those "surpluses" were products of accounting gimmicks. But the fact remains that under Clinton federal spending was more restrained than it has been under Bush. Nor is there hope for fiscal sanity in the future because the Congressional Budget Office predicted in 2005 that recently approved Bush programs would escalate the debt by more than $5 trillion over the next 10 years.

The Bush spending binge has included increases for social programs, farm subsidies, the National Endowment for the Arts, foreign aid, and virtually everything else. Federal outlays for education rose enormously when Mr. Bush signed a bill sponsored by ultra-liberal Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.), whom he praised for the effort. And our military is now bogged down in a costly (in both fives and fortune) UN-authorized war against Iraq that was based on false claims about weapons of mass destruction, aid to al-Qaeda terrorists, and threats aimed at the United States. Wouldn't Republicans in Congress have stopped a Democrat such as Bill Clinton from much, if not all, of this?

Before Bush

Thomas Gale Moore's 1981 survey of post-World War II administrations led him to state that "Republicans increased real spending 60 percent faster than Democrats [and boosted] social welfare programs 14 percent more generously than did the party which trumpets its concern for the poor and the elderly." The Eisenhower years saw entrenchment, not a promised elimination, of the Roosevelt New Deal programs, the beginning of payments to farmers for not planting, and the appointment of left-leaning Earl Warren and William Brennan to the Supreme Court. Under Eisenhower, the federal Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (now Health and Human Services) was pushed through Congress after attempts to do so by Presidents Roosevelt and Truman had failed. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Republican Presidents More Harmful: A Republican President Can Often Enact a More Liberal Agenda Than a Democrat Could Because Many Republicans in Congress Are More Loyal to Party Than to Principle
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.