If Repub­li­cans don’t make a move, they de­serve to lose

Manila Times - - OPINION - BEN SHAPIRO con­ser­va­tive CRE­ATORS.COM Ben Shapiro ,33, is a grad­u­ate of UCLA and Har­vard Law School, host of“The Ben Shapiro Show” and edi­tor-in-chief of Dai­lyWire.com.

WASH­ING­TON: Pol­i­tics is the This is an art Repub­li­cans sim­ply don’t un­der­stand. Per­haps it’s be­cause they spend so much time at­tempt­ing to stop the Demo­cratic snow­ball from run­ning down­hill too quickly, but Repub­li­cans in power have an un­for­tu­nate ten­dency to con­serve their po­lit­i­cal cap­i­tal rather than in­vest it. That’s un­for­tu­nate be­cause po­lit­i­cal cap­i­tal doesn’t ac­crue when you save it; it de­grades. Just as stick­ing your cash in a mat­tress is a bad strat­egy when it comes to in­vest­ment, in­ac­tion in power is a bad strat­egy when it comes to pol­i­tics.

Democrats un­der­stand that po­lit­i­cal cap­i­tal must be used, not to pass pop­u­lar leg­is­la­tion but to fun­da­men­tally change the na­ture of the po­lit­i­cal game it­self. Democrats do not see Oba­macare—a piece of leg­is­la­tion that cost them the House, the Se­nate and, even­tu­ally, the pres­i­dency—as a dis­as­ter area. They see it as an in­vest­ment in a left­ist fu­ture: By mak­ing Amer­i­cans ac­cus­tomed to the idea that the gov­ern­ment is re­spon­si­ble for uni­ver­sal cov­er­age, they un­der­stand that any fu­ture fail­ures will be at­trib­uted to lack of gov­ern­ment, not an ex­cess of it. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) un­der­stood that in 2013 when he at­tempted to block Oba­macare fund­ing. He quite rightly ex­plained that once Oba­macare went into ef­fect, it would be nearly im­pos­si­ble to dis­man­tle it. That be­came ob­vi­ous this year, just four years af­ter its full im­ple­men­ta­tion, when con­gres­sional Repub­li­cans ob­vi­ously have no po­lit­i­cal will to get rid of Oba­macare at all.

This is the dif­fer­ence be­tween Repub­li­cans and Democrats: Democrats see their rad­i­cal leg­isla­tive moves as build­ing blocks for the fu­ture. Repub­li­cans, afraid that their care­fully crafted tower of electabil­ity will come crum­bling down, make no rad­i­cal leg­isla­tive moves.

That ba­sic for­mula is play­ing out yet again with re­gard to for­mer Pres­i­dent Obama’s ex­ec­u­tive amnesty. Obama im­ple­mented the De­ferred Ac­tion for Child­hood Ar­rivals pro­gram, or DACA, know­ing full well that a Repub­li­can pres­i­dent could get rid of it with the stroke of a pen. But he also knew that Repub­li­cans would not want to be re­spon­si­ble for changing the sta­tus quo -- they wouldn’t want to own the po­lit­i­cal con­se­quences of al­low­ing the de­por­ta­tion of DACA re­cip­i­ents.

And Obama was com­pletely right. Repub­li­cans promised for years that they would get rid of Obama’s ex­ec­u­tive amnesty if given power. Fi­nally, Pres­i­dent Trump has pledged to get rid of it ... in six months. And ev­ery­one knows that he is will­ing to trade away DACA en­force­ment for bor­der-wall fund­ing. The Demo­cratic sta­tus quo will win out, one way or an­other.

Now, quickly: Name the last trans- for­ma­tional change Repub­li­cans have made—a change would re­dound to the detri­ment of Democrats. It’s pretty tough. That’s de­spite Repub­li­can con­trol of the leg­is­la­ture and the pres­i­dency from 2002 to 2006; that’s a longer pe­riod had from 2008 to 2010.

- trol of gov­ern­ment once again. But they seem less will­ing to use it than ever, afraid that their ten­u­ous con­trol will dis­si­pate.

That must end. If Repub­li­cans hope to set a foun­da­tion for fu­ture vic­tory, they’ll need to do more than act as an im­ped­i­ment to bad Demo­cratic ideas. They’ll need to take po­lit­i­cal risks in If they don’t, they’ll lose quickly. And they’ll de­serve to lose.

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