Former GOP Senator Bashes Party: “Most Americans Are Simply Ignoring Republicans — and They Should”

JuddGreggIn a Monday morning op-ed published on TheHill.com, a former Republican senator had some harsh words for his own party based on the current wave of radicalism that seems to be taking over the GOP.

Judd Gregg, who’s a former senator from New Hampshire, had a detailed and very critical assessment targeted at his party and how they’ve let the fringe radicals take over the “mainstream” message of the GOP.

Gregg wrote:

“Most Americans these days are simply ignoring Republicans. And they should.  The self-promotional babble of a few has become the mainstream of Republican political thought. It has marginalized the influence of the party to an appalling degree.”


But he didn’t stop with just that.  He went into great detail when attacking the utter stupidity of any politician who thinks the vote to increase our debt ceiling should be used as some kind of political leverage:

“An approach to the debt ceiling that says one will not vote for its extension unless ObamaCare is defunded is the political equivalent of playing Russian roulette with all the chambers of the gun loaded.  It is the ultimate no-win strategy.

You cannot in politics take a hostage you cannot shoot.  That is what the debt ceiling is.  At some point, the debt ceiling will have to be increased not because it is a good idea but because it is the only idea.

Defaulting on the nation’s obligations, which is the alternative to not increasing the debt ceiling, is not an option either substantively or politically.

A default would lead to some level of chaos in the debt markets, which would lead to a significant contraction in economic activity, which would lead to job losses, which would lead to higher spending by the federal government and lower tax revenues, which would lead to more debt.”

And everything he said is absolutely true.  This Republican strategy makes absolutely no sense.  How anyone takes these people seriously baffles me every single day.  There’s a difference between an ideological difference on issues such as abortion or spending, and taking care of fiscal obligations.  When you’re operating on some kind of “reality” that simply does not exist, as people like Senator Ted Cruz and other fringe radicals have been, how am I not supposed to consider you insane?

Like I’ve said before, they can shutdown our government and default on our debt, but you know what?  Obamacare will still be the law of the land.

So in the end, what will they have accomplished besides hurting millions of Americans and crashing our economy?  The answer is simple—absolutely nothing.

Well, maybe not “nothing.”  Ted Cruz has done a masterful job at using his entire term as United States Senator as a taxpayer funded presidential campaign.  Because that’s all this really is —  Ted Cruz using his position in the Senate to get taxpayer-funded exposure for a 2016 presidential bid.

But it is refreshing to be reminded that not all Republicans are insane.  Once upon a time, some Republicans actually made sense.  It just seems like those days were very, very long ago.

 

*Correction added 9/25/2013 5:30 PM PDT:

This article has been corrected to reflect the fact that Gregg is a former senator from New Hampshire, not Rhode Island as was originally incorrectly stated.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.

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  • JULESFROMPHILLY

    Very, very, very long time ago…

  • Kevin Mulligan

    Judd Gregg was a Senator from New Hampshire, Not Rhode Island. Fact Check please.

  • Joe Cogan

    Oh please, oh please let Ted Cruz run in 2016!

    • CherMoe

      Any of their “players” that have been mentioned for 2016 are totally laughable … Rand Paul, Paul Ryan, Scott Walker, what’s-his-name Christie and Ted Cruz … all radicals who have done NOTHING except make our country look bad, cause people to hate Americans, tank the economy AND cause us to hate THEM and their whole party. They won’t get any women voting for them except the “pro-life fetal cell” people. The young women and women of my generation who finally got the birth control pill will ALL vote against these douches. The poor and minorities will find that their need for food is greater than the religious clap-trap that Republicans spew as their campaign “tool”. I think these jokers are in BIG trouble. In the meantime, they are great fodder for Jon Stewart and the REAL news. Pretty bad when you have to get your NEWS from Comedy Central and your COMEDY from Fox “news.”

      • Jennifer Baugher Recktenwald

        You obviously don’t actually do any research on your own. Apparently, you believe the dribble the media tells you. I believe in choices. I will gladly vote against ALL Democrats since they are stealing my choices and forcing me to buy into their horrible health system stripping me of ALL medical choices.

      • CherMoe

        How?

      • strayaway

        Read the James Hoffa letter concerning the ACA. Excerpts:

        “We can no longer stand silent in the face of elements of the Affordable Care Act that will destroy the very health and wellbeing of our members along with millions of other hardworking Americans.”

        “The ACA will shatter not only our hard-earned health benefits, but destroy the foundation of the 40 hour work week that is the backbone of the American middle class.”

        The head of the Teamsters is pleading with the Obama administration to make changes in the ACA. He seems to think it is fixable but that it will hurt people like his union members until it is fixed.

      • walmart is evil

        dont blame obama because employers like walmart are dropping people from 40 hours, its employers that are being greedy. if your a full time employee and get dropped to 28 hours or less, walk out on thos son of a bitches. i for one will boycott any corporation that behaves like this. I suggest we all do the same!

      • strayaway

        Why not just modify Obamacare so there is no reason to cut workers hours? Individuals and corporations will almost always take legal tax deductions and the like. Meanwhile, it might make good sense to resist the tide as you suggest.

        “According to an April survey conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management, 41% of 603 small business owners said they have delayed hiring because of the federal healthcare law. One in five already cut hours, while 20% have reduced payroll.

        Mercer, a human resources consulting company, said its own survey found that 12% of all U.S. employers reported plans to reduce workers’ hours as a direct result of the Affordable Care Act. The impact was more pronounced in the retail and hospitality industries, with 20% of employers saying they will cut part-time hours.”

      • Dale Mulkey

        the health care act is not why companies are cutting hours. its because their coe’s are money hungry greedy bastards . learn some facts idiot

      • strayaway

        Dale , Calling two people here “idiot” probably doesn’t help you make your point. There are things you can do such as boycott such businesses or start one of your own. My suggestion was to modify Obamacare and trade laws so it wouldn’t be so easy to skip out on Obamacare costs.

      • suburbancuurmudgeon

        We call people idiots because the truth is fairly obvious but some people like to stick to fantasy, no matter how many times we prove those fantasies wrong.

      • Doy Ballard

        What? How is this possible and his statements are based on which facts? Incredible grouping of words. Makes no sense in the real world.

      • strayaway

        My suggestion is that you do a Google search for Hoffa’s letter regarding the ACA to read his comments in context. Unlike Cruz, Hoffa was looking for a fix.

      • suburbancuurmudgeon

        What kind of “fix”? Things are still run by the insurance companies. Maybe Hoffa doesn’t like the idea of union people having to contribute to their health care? The UAW notoriously demanded first dollar coverage, no co-pay and no deductible.

      • suburbancuurmudgeon

        BLah Blah Blah…The GOP has done a great job of shattering the middle class. How, exactly, will it hurt the few union people left?

      • strayaway

        Government unions are still pretty strong because government jobs are less likely to be sent abroad and government workers are less likely to be forced to compete with less expensive immigrant labor for a variety of reasons. The middle class was and is being destroyed under both Bushes and Obama. The law of supply and demand teaches us that an added surplus of labor, be it in a foreign country or added domestically, reduces middle class wages. This isn’t the only cause for the demise of US non-governmental unions and the middle class but is significant. I also recommend shifting taxes back to import corporations and off the backs of middle class tax payers.

      • suburbancuurmudgeon

        I’m not sure how Obama is destroying the middle class. And taxes need to shifted to corporations in general, the way it used to be.

      • William Carr

        No, cheap foreign labor doesn’t reduce middle class wages.

        The lack of Import Tariffs does that.

        In Germany, the average worker in their automotive sector is making $52 an hour.

        That because Germany has Value Added Taxes.

        A German buys a German car, and the VAT is waived; a German buys an American car, and gets hit with an additional 18% tax.

        This is why Germany makes and exports cars, CNC machines, all sorts of high-quality manufactured goods.

        THEIR jobs are protected by law. And their families are prosperous.

        In America, the Billionaires figured out that they could outsource American jobs to Korea, India and China, if they could just lobby to have Import Tariffs diminished.

        So, they bought Congressmen.

        And it paid off; American Import Tariffs vanished.

        The Billionaires made more money; and that made them happy.

        This strategy also weakened Unions, which made the Billionaires VERY happy.

        But a funny thing happened. Without those good manufacturing jobs, the American Middle Class began to evaporate.

        Where families had been doing well with one bread-winner, two became mandatory.

        And then THAT wasn’t enough.

        Without Americans able to buy the products the Billionaires were making, the Economy began to founder.

        All of this can be fixed by simple Tariff Reform.

        For example, we could match the Tariff of any country we trade with; if they have an 18% VAT, we should have an 18% Tariff.

        That’s fair, right?

      • strayaway

        Forcing US workers to compete with foreign workers either abroad or at home involves more workers competing for almost the same number of jobs. Either way, the labor pool is larger. The law of Supply and Demand says that increasing the supply of anything faster than demand, reduces its price. Ask the former union meat packers who were all replaced by foreign non-union workers for about 1/3 pay and no benefits. Ask unemployed union construction workers who have been replaced by 30% foreign construction workers. Ask high school kid who used to have a lot of job opportunities working for landscapers and McDonalds. On second thought, that latter group is blissfully unaware as they’re too busy filling out college loan forms.

        German jobs are protected by law only to a point. If a consumer chooses to buy a Korean car because it is cheaper than a German car, there is that much less work for Germans. German companies also have Chinese and other operations.

        I’m all for tariffs replacing middle class income taxes. Tariffs were the main source of federal revenue until Wilson promoted the 16th Amendment to transfer the tax burden from import corporation to the backs of the middle class.

      • HelenRainier

        Destroying the middle class did not begin with the Bushes — Ronald Reagan began that fight in earnest when he fired the PATCO air-traffic controllers.

      • strayaway

        I don’t think I claimed that destroying the middle class began with Bush. I don’t know what air traffic controllers are earning today so I can’t compare although I opposed Reagan’s move. I would plant the seeds of destroying the middle class with Woodrow Wilson who helped establish the Federal Reserve and transferred much of the federal tax burden from import corporations to middle class tax payers. However, sending our jobs off with with various trade deals and importing too many foreign workers had a much larger impact on middle class and working class Americans.

      • HelenRainier

        Oh no, you didn’t claim that — I just think it’s important that people who may not know do know that St. Ronnie Ray Gun wasn’t the great President they think and that he played a big part in the destruction of the middle class. That’s all. I apologize if you thought I was attributing something to you that you didn’t say.

      • strayaway

        Understood. I would add that Reagan also the federal debt up by $3T (multiply that by 2.8 in today’s dollars) largely by cutting taxes for the rich. Debt also represses the economy in the long run.

      • HelenRainier

        People who think the Repubs are the party of fiscal responsibility have never taken a look at the figures. I’m one of those who can’t remember the figures, but remember what I have read and/or seen. This country is in a hell of a mess and it’s going to be very hard to climb back out until our politicians stop being politicians and start being statesmen. Happy Holidays to you and your family!

      • strayaway

        Happy Holidays to you and yours too.

      • JY

        Unions by nature operate by contract. That’s up to the union to include hours of work as part of the contract. I work for the post office as a letter carrier and our language defines full time at 40 hours per week. The AWPU did too for years until their last contract.

      • Pipercat

        You wont get an answer, but you’ll get a few red herrings disguised to look like one!

      • jchastn

        The only medical choice that they are “stripping” away from you is the choice of non-coverage because the result of non-coverage is uncompensated care. Uncompensated care is the number one cause of the increase in the cost of healthcare. No American should be without health coverage. We are tired of paying for young, poor people to go to the ER when they crash on their snowboards. We are tired of paying for adults who have lived without coverage for years because they are “healthy” who are hit with a catastrophic illness and cant pay who drive up the cost of healthcare for all the rest of us.

      • Lianne Schneider

        Right you are!! And now – if it weren’t for Tea Bagger governors refusing to participate or greedy employers cutting hours to avoid coverage – millions more would be covered at far less cost. Check out Maryland if you don’t believe me.

      • ed

        they cut the hours of all the part timers ware i work so that they don’t have to pay for health care for them no part timer can work more than 28 hours

      • suburbancuurmudgeon

        “They” have been doing that for 20 years. Obamacare just provides a convenient excuse.

      • Sally Somes Laird

        jchastn, unfortunately your common sense is lost on Jennifer. I would appreciate her sharing her “research” with us. I differs greatly from what I have found. Actually reading the ACA. It is long, and full of legalese, but full of choices.

      • Lianne Schneider

        They are stripping you of NOT ONE SINGLE medical choice and anyone who tells you they are is lying to promote their own agenda. How terribly sad that you settle for getting your information from biased speeches. You are the pot calling the kettle black – you clearly have done NO research at all – just bought into the propaganda.

      • jennifer is dumb

        jennifer you are a moron. an uneducated buffoon. If you were right even a little bit, i would back you, but your wrong, so very wrong, the dems are giving you choices not taking them away. why would any woman vote republican? they despise you and feel that your inferior, and if you cant see that, maybe you are!

      • Lyola M Roeske Shafer

        I’m sorry that you actually do not know anything about it. Listen up and find the truth.

      • Dale Mulkey

        you poor poor diluted idiot. you should have an adult make all of your choices for you as you are not adult enough to do it yourself. as it is you shouldnt even be allowed out of your house with out an intelligent adult to follow you

      • Doy Ballard

        Dale, it’s “deluded” not “diluted”. Name calling doesn’t help you make your point.

      • suburbancuurmudgeon

        I dunno, Jennifer’s brain seems to be “diluted.”

      • Clay

        That’s just bullshit.

      • Doy Ballard

        You’re serious, aren’t you? You get to believe whatever dribble you like. Your choices are limited by your own party’s ideology. Democrats aren’t stealing your choices. Apparently that “uncle sam” doll popping up between that actress’ legs really got to you, huh? haha

      • DougNTexas

        You are a fool

      • wheatly

        dude u r a retard!!!

      • Terry Knepper

        got a clue for ya, toots….Ted Nugent is NOT interested in you….and BTW, it’s “drivel”, not “dribble”…”dribble” is something you do to a basketball, or what teabaggers do with any beverage that’s not alcoholic….

      • theabby

        LOL

      • suburbancuurmudgeon

        What choices have you lost? Please list them.

      • gemma liar

        well; we here on the left are SDTILL breathlessly awaiting any and all alternatives to OBAMA legislation,,,,,,which of COURSE regressives such as U don’t have— so please enjoy your one-way ticket to political extinction. popcorn anyone?

      • gemma liar

        jen is another pissed off women who is either overweight or flatchested,,,or BOTH— that’s why she hates life. Give her a break: she is going to heaven anyway ( just ask her)

      • Daddycool67

        Awwww … your poor poor fweedom!

        Make the mean liberals give it back !!!!!!!

      • theabby

        You have plenty of options! Just do a little research into the state health exchanges and see what there is to offer. I hope, for your sake, you live in a state that is participating, otherwise you’re right-you won’t have many options.

      • JY

        You still have choices, buy health care, pay the penalty or pay out of your pocket. Why wouldn’t you want healthcare? If you’re that adamant about not wanting health care. then write a letter stating that you and your family refuse health care in all forms (including emergency room treatment) when you do get sick and make sure everyone has a copy. You do have a choice as I said before; but there’s a consequence of that choice good, bad, or indifferent.

        Instead of criticizing, post some ideas to improve it. What is so bad about the ACA? Specifics based on fact would be appreciated.

      • jchastn

        Just exactly what healthcare choices are you being deprived of? Be specific or be SILENT.

      • Andrew Morris

        Actually, Chris Christie is a GOP candidate that I can get behind. He doesn’t try to play politics – see his interactions with President Obama around Hurricane Sandy – and seems genuinely concerned about his constituents.
        Which is more than can be said for the others in the list; none more so than Ted Cruz.

      • dont be stupid

        hahaha Cris Christie….your another uneducated buffoon! he is misogynistic, hates the poor, and only gives a shit about getting re-elected. Andrew, young andrew, please dont be this gullible. Do some research, go see how your beloved cris fatass has oted, go listen to some of his speeches, he doesnt like you unless your wealthy!

      • JY

        You forgot to mention Christie using a state helicopter to go to his son’s game at a private school. While he paid the money back, the point is the fact he used taxpayer money to do something unofficial shows where his thinking is.

      • artisanr

        Yeah, Chris Christie, the guy that has STELLAR taxpayer funded socialized health care….that doesn’t want anyone else to have health care.

        New Jerseyans should demand their money back for Christie getting his stomach stapled.

      • lurch394

        All I will say about Christie is that he looks less crazy by comparison. That is a low bar.

  • Lianne Schneider

    The problem is that while he’s right about all of the bad effects, he’s wrong on his major premise…most Americans are NOT ignoring the Republican party, especially the Tea Bag Darlings like Ted Cruz. They may be laughing at him in Washington, but out in the hinterlands they’re listening. Unfortunately.

    • Pipercat

      Only because he’s saying what they want to hear, anyway. Add in some good old fashioned fear mongering and you get, in a nutshell, the usual diatribe from my junior Senator.

    • Lyola M Roeske Shafer

      There seems to be an educational blank spot in the “hinterlands,” rapidly being filled by reactionary religion.

    • disqus_6AeSbMRBY2

      Most Americans are not the Tea Party; they are a small, albeit noisy fringe group. “The hinterlands,” while significant in the south, cannot carry a national election.

  • James Thompson

    in a galaxy far far away

  • William

    umm Judd Gregg is from New Hampshire, not Rhode Island as you claimed in the article.

  • Cuta

    Anything on this website is 1/2 truths and bias nonsense. Has Odumbo been successful on ANYTHING besides wasting money and spending more. Shut it down! and get rid of these absurd policies that help almost noone but the can nots!

    • Dale Mulkey

      you poor diluted traitor. you should be arrested and imprisioned for life in getmo you dont deserve to be free in this country to spread not only your hatred but also your stupidity

    • rick astley

      your screen name shouldn’t be “CUTA” it should be “PUTA” …

    • Terry Knepper

      please give generously to the Fund To Help Cuta Get Laid….

    • Mary Ellen Crawford

      People that need to call others names already turns me off. These names don’t come from the people usually, but from the untruths they’ve listened to. The rest of sounds like talking points from the places these ridiculous names come from. When will people educate themselves with facts and find out the real truth and think for themselves!?

    • suburbancuurmudgeon

      Lessee, unemployment was 10% October 2009. It’s now, what, 7.4%. Sounds like a success to me. What kind of help would you like, troll?

  • WHY

    Question…can Cruz run for POTUS? I thought he was born in Canada???

  • Lyola M Roeske Shafer

    So great to hear real sense, truth indeed, from a Republican.

  • JphnReedjr

    Gregg is from New Hampshire not RI, and is moderate and fairly reasonable.

  • Picky point. Judd Gregg is from the Granite State, New Hampshire not Rhode Island.

  • William Pead

    Alan, Gregg represented New Hampshire, not Rhode Island.

  • Terry J Marsh

    Judd Gregg is from New Hampshire, folks.

  • cablepuller

    He’s from New Hampshire. Jeez get it right!

  • artisanr

    We CANNOT afford to ignore the crazy Right. They are more destructive than the Iranians, North Koreans, and rebel Afghanis put together!!

    We CAN NOT ignore these people!!

  • suburbancuurmudgeon

    Still waiting for Jennifer and any other right-winger to list the choices they’ve lost because of Obamacare.

  • Daddycool67

    I started ignoring them in 2011, when it became apparent that they had nothing of value to offer America.