Kevin Rennie a Hartford Courant moderate Republican highly praises the prospective Republican Party chairman, Rob Simmons, in his most recent column.
"Simmons would be a high-profile chairman who could command attention and is conversant on important issues. In addition, Simmons is not afraid to take the fight to the Democrats…
"Simmons has already met with the new chairman of the Republican Congressional Campaign Committee, the political organization of House Republicans. He talked about the "investment" the party needs to make in moderate Republicans in the Northeast and Midwest. The party can be shrilly conservative and stay in the minority, or it can stop emphasizing losing social issues and have a shot at winning the seats it needs. "If you regularly present a right-wing agenda, you isolate moderates…"
“At the distance of 13 months before the presidential caucuses begin, Simmons thinks 2008 could be a good year for Connecticut Republicans. Two popular Republicans, John McCain and Rudolph W. Giuliani, are already very popular in Connecticut. He thinks outgoing Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney might also have some appeal here. His animated talk about the presidential race, which is already upon us, is more evidence that Simmons does not intend to hang up his cleats.”
This is tendentious and self serving analysis bordering on the criminal.
The Connecticut Republican Party has been neither shrill nor conservative; it has been an accomodationist party--and it has gotten nowhere.
Rennie would be hard put to identify one “conservative” program put forward by the Republican Party in Connecticut during the last two decades; still less could he point to shrill Republican Party office holders. There are none.
Rennie is nudging Simmons towards positions advocated by the paper for which he writes, the Hartford Courant--hardly a shrill, conservative voice.
Those positions would include, of course, “property tax reform” and “anti-sprawl” measures that would plunge a dagger into the heart of Connecticut’s ailing economy.
One reason the economy is ailing is that there are too few “shrill” Republicans in the legislature opposing Democrat programs. Virtually all Republican legislators, a dwindling cohort, are moderates who have been co-opted by the Democrat Party. But then, Rennie is used to co-option, as are most other liberals who write for the Courant--which is not part of the solution to what ails the Republican Party, but rather its principal cause.
The old Greek warning applies here: Beware of Trojans bearing gifts. Perhaps someone could persuade the Courant’s cartoonist to draw a picture showing a Trojan horse labeled “Sprawl” entering the Republican Party bastion, a fortified castle labled “Moderateville.”
Pictures are always worth a thousand words.