Greetings, Gridlock


“If you think you have seen gridlock, just wait and watch Goldwater’s final victory.” That’s how Mark Mardell, the North American editor of BBC News, snarkily concluded his column bemoaning Indiana State Treasurer Richard Mourdock’s resounding defeat of 36-year incumbent U.S. Senator Dick Lugar in Tuesday’s Republican Primary.

Goldwater?Barry Goldwater

Noting that when Ronald Reagan captured the White House in 1980, George Will quipped, “It took 16 years to count the votes, and Goldwater won,” Mardell added that with Mourdock’s victory, “Goldwater has now won his campaign to purge his party of moderates; it has just taken him 48 years longer than he had hoped.”

Indeed, Goldwater helped define conservatism as favoring less government, and his 1964 presidential campaign led to a more pro-free market GOP. But Mardell’s implication is that those who want less government are inherently unreasonable, always and everywhere the cause of dreaded “gridlock” in Washington, while those who favor ever bigger government are just being reasonable.

Barry Goldwater, in his 1964 conservative presidential campaign, proclaimed, “I would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice! And let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue!”

“Bipartisanship has brought us to the brink of bankruptcy,” Republican Senate nominee Mourdock said during his campaign. “We don’t need bipartisanship, we need application of principle.”

Being serious and committed to restoring fiscal sanity to Washington is no vice.

And even the dread gridlock would be a welcome change over out-of-control spending and debt.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

5 Comments so far ↓

  1. May
    Liz Nash

    This is how it should be done. Work within the GOP to change it, rather than split the vote with a third party. There are similar battles going on all over the US, and they are worth watching, and supporting.

  2. May

    I’m confused. Is gridlock a euphamism for sticking to the 17 enumerated and constitutionally authorized duties of the federal government? If so then bravo for Congress and how do we get the executive branch to read the Constitution also?

  3. May

    As a teen, in 1964, I worked for the Goldwater campaign (in New York City, no less). He was WIDELY MISQUOTED, and accused of ideas that he never promulgated. One of his famous quips, was to the effect that if what was attributed to him had been said, he would vote against him(self).

    The Republicans under Bush 2–especially (with Tom DeLay really-in my view-running or should I say ruining- things)- were totally out of control.

    Pelosi reallyt ook a page (or two or three) from DeLay and jsut expanded it.–The lobbyists having to be loyal Dems. (With DeLay-loyal Republicans, etc).

  4. May

    3rd paragraph- shoudlr ead: really took ——————

  5. May
    Mark Read Pickens

    Liz Nash: The only thing that will “change the GOP” is “splitting the vote with a third party.”

    The most influential political party in the twentieth century clearly was the Socialist Party. When they got enough votes, it frightened the major parties enough to adopt huge parts of the Socialist platform, for example, Social Security, Unemployment Insurance, and tax-financed Welfare.

    A vote for Gary Johnson is a vote to change the GOP.

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