The GOP Plan for the Economy GOP

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March 9, 2009 8:58 a.m.

I mentioned a few days ago that congressional Republicans were simply not part of the conversation on saving the American economy. The policies they’re pushing don’t even amount to conservative. In most cases they’re pushing stuff that’s just transparently ridiculous. Like a federal spending freeze in the face of massive economic downturn and possible deflationary spiral.

And now Greg Sargent has dug up a quote where a leading Republican admits that this is in fact their strategy. It’s not about coming up with policies to save the country; it’s all about pulling down Nancy Pelosi’s and her caucus’s favorability ratings.

“We will lose on legislation. But we will win the message war every day, and every week, until November 2010,” said Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., an outspoken conservative who has participated on the GOP message teams. “Our goal is to bring down approval numbers for [Speaker Nancy] Pelosi and for House Democrats. That will take repetition. This is a marathon, not a sprint.”

That’s not really surprising. But it’s a bit stunning, though perhaps also refreshing, to see them say it out loud.

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