Most of the mainstream media and political pundits will spend countless hours in the days to come reflecting on who did what right or wrong. While the postmortem might be interesting, I don't see where it serves any constructive purpose. Any so-called insights would continue to be argued across party lines and when we once again find ourselves at this same crossroad, the landscape will be different and the insights either meaningless or forgotten. After all, voters just elected a President whose campaign motto was Forward and we've already spent the day dwelling on yesterday.
Obama's small popular vote victory tells me that now -- more than any other time in our political history -- we have an opportunity that doesn't come along all that often... one where we should be taking stock in who we've become and the direction we'd like to see for this great country of ours. This opportunity will last but a brief while because before you know it, it'll be business as usual and nothing changes.
Today is the day to start building the Republican Party of tomorrow and if you're not willing to do that -- right now, this minute -- you've already lost the future. I think the phrase of the day is that the Republicans do not possess a broad appeal across all demographics. That statement is already a step in the wrong direction. Every time I hear it, the first image in my mind is of a used car salesman trying to close the deal by making you focus on the clunker's shiny new paint job while he's standing between you and the hood to prevent you from looking at what's inside.
If you really want to accomplish something great, then fix what's under the hood. Replace the parts that are broken to the point where you're proud to open it up for all the world to see. Take a long hard honest look at what you believe in, rebuild the foundation of the Republican Party on those core values and let those beliefs determine the way you govern. Do that... and while most of today's Republicans will disappear, a new breed of leader will emerge with a level of optimism, character and resolve we've not seen since the American revolution. Build that kind of leader and you might be able to guarantee your existence into the decades to come.
I'm not nearly as worried about the size of government as I am about its complexity. I think one reason the Democratic Party is growing is because they've managed to convince people that a bigger government will simplify their lives -- "don't you worry, we'll take care of everything". It's like lawyers burying the other side in paper to make it harder to get at the truth, leaving you so overwhelmed you're thankful when the media spoon-feeds you the cliff note version, albeit not necessarily an unbiased one.
Rebrand yourselves as the new kind of leader that practices integrity, sensibility and accountability above all else and refuses to be defined by anyone's standards but your own. If you can't sell it, then just let the Republican Party die with dignity because there really isn't anything you can do to save it.