2010 is shaping up as a possible wave election for the GOP. I emphasize the word "possible" as in never underestimate the RNC and the GOP party structure's ability to shoot itself in the foot and blow it.
November 3rd, 2010 will also mark the beginning of, whether we like it or not, the possible beginning of a civil war inside the GOP. If you want to know what why this might happen, look what has happened to the GOP in Florida over the past 12 years.
In Florida, the supposed party of small business and small government has morphed into the establishment defender of the big spending, intrusive state government. It started with Jeb Bush, who, for example, wrested much of the local school districts ability to decide how to conduct education and imposed a monstrously expensive "Standardized Test" to judge pupil and teacher alike and that robs close to a month of educational time from our children. That essentially resulted in our children being robbed of a over a year of valuable education time during their 12 year journey in the Florida Public School system. The GOP led legislature embraced the concept, totally.
Jeb was followed by Charlie Crist, who, after less than two years in office was actively running for the VP slot with McCain. Then, when that failed, he openly embraced, both figuratively and literally, the Obama Stimulus plan of 2009. What did the party elders in the Florida House , Senate and RPOF do? They grabbed the money with open arms. If you want to study a picture of a party that has lost its soul and embraced flat out corruption and financial profligacy , then read this, then this and then this.
Then there was the whole spectacle of the resignation and subsequent indictment of RPOF Chairman Jim Greer. This post about sums it up.
Charlie Crist handpicked Jim Greer when he was elected Governor in 2006. Charlie Crist, despite his embrace of Obamanomics and his corruption of the RPOF, was THE ESTABLISHMENT CHOICE for the Senate Seat vacated by Mel Martinez. After putting his crony, George LeMieux, in as a placeholder, Charlie essentially abandoned his duties as governor and started full time campaigning for Senate. Unfortunately for Crist, Marco Rubio was also interested in the Senate Seat and surprise, surprise, Republicans preferred an economic conservative to a fiscally irresponsible Governor.
No problem for Charlie, he just dropped out of the primary and is now running as a independent. And I want to make this next fact perfectly clear: The Republican Establishment has not done one thing that can be attributed as an act of "revenge" or attempt to make Charlie pay for his disloyalty. Jim Greer is spilling his guts on what Crist and LeMieux knew and not one Elected Republican has called for an official investigation of these two obviously corrupt politicians. NOT ONE. If there is a case to made to indict Jim Greer, then there is a case to indict Charlie Crist and George LeMieux.
If you want to know why, it is probably because Charlie and George know where all the bodies are buried and the RPOF and Crist are stuck in a Mexican standoff. If Charlie Crist wins the Senate Seat in 2010, heads should roll in the RPOF and the grassroots MUST insist that a criminal investigation be immediately launched against Crist and LeMieux. Let me be the first on record to insist on an investigation should start BEFORE November 2nd and if it turns out established, elected GOP officials go down with Crist, then I say, it's a start....
Now look at what is happening in the Florida race for Governor. Bill McCollum, who in his last debate, said "Charlie Crist has only flipped a bit", is the establishment GOP candidate of record. He was there when Charlie, Jim and George raped the Republican Party of Florida and for all intents and purposes, did absolutely nothing. Like Charlie, he thought that as the Establishment candidate, he was a shoo-in, until, "Enter Stage Right", Rick Scott decided to toss his hat in the ring.
Since that day, Bill McCollum has run what can only be called a campaign of decadent desperation. Even the new head of the RPOF, Senator John Thrasher chose to ignore McCollum running one of the most ugly political campaigns ever conducted in Florida and instead, attacked Rick Scott, a legitimate Republican Candidate during a primary.
Why? Because Rick Scott, for all his alleged flaws (which are totally overblown - Truth be told, The Frist Family, a Bush family ally, hold as much, if not more blame for the HCA mess and the real villain is the byzantine Medicare system) threatens the established order of the Old Guard GOP. He can only gain by exposing corruption and rein in spending of Florida's budget. (I suggest a good first act is to ask that the 6 BILLION dollars the Florida GOP led legislature accepted from Obama to build a worthless High Speed Rail that will cost twice as much to build and WILL require our taxes to operate, be returned to the national treasury and challenge other states to reject unspent stimulus dollars. Don't let the politicians lawyer speak fool you. IT CAN BE DONE.)
So come August 24th, If Bill McCollum manages to eke out a win, mark it as a win for the Florida Establishment GOP. Expect the "Railroad to Hell" be built and expect the same old corrupt good ole GOP politics to continue in Tallahassee. Do not expect an investigation into the corrupt regime of Charlie Crist and do not expect any real reform of how our precious tax dollars are spent. And expect Democrat Alex Sink to join forces with Crist in order to win the election for Governor as campaigning as an "outsider" and against the Corrupt (She's Right!) GOP Old Guard.
Bill McCollum cannot win against the much more likable Sink and Crist is banking on a depressed GOP turnout because, truth be told, Bill McCollum inspires zip, nada, nothing, NO ONE! That means Charlie Crist will win the Senate Race against Rubio.
When that happens, look for the everyday Republican grassroots supporters to insist on wholesale change on who runs the RPOF and expect insurgent candidates to sprout up statewide to challenge the established GOP. It will be Civil War in the Florida GOP from 2010 to 2012.
So, let this be a tale of warning for the National GOP. If you gain power in 2010 and the same old politics and policies trump real meaningful reform, expect a full scale GOP civil war on your hands in 2012.
Unless the newly empowered GOP advances a truly radical and game changing agenda to economically save our country, expect disaster in 2012. That is what the Florida GOP faces if Bill McCollum wins the nomination for Governor. Regardless of the outcome of the November election, the entrenched old guard GOP will remain and that is not good for Florida or the Nation. Voters want REAL change that SOLVES PROBLEMS, and unlike 2008, won't be fooled again.
Finally, I cannot help but notice that the St. Petersburg Times endorsed McCollum for the GOP Nomination Sunday (And will Endorse Democrat Alex Sink in the General) and ran a real puff-piece bio of McCollum today.
My Favorite line is this Pièce de résistance of hard hitting journalism comes during the summation article and tries to tell us what Bill McCollum is all about:
McCollum's idea of a good time is a relaxing meal at a Golden Corral — not surprising for a politician whose stump speech has an eat-your-vegetables quality.
"There's a lot of Golden Corrals in the state. I like the fact that I get vegetables there, and I get ice cream at the end," he said. "That's really nice."
WOW!!!!!!!! NOW THAT is a game changer of an endorsement.... words, for once, fail me...