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Republicans' Minority Mentality Is Dangerous

Cal Thomas | Syndicated columnist | Monday, June 4, 2001

Republicans' Minority Mentality Is Dangerous

The Senate changes hands tomorrow with Democrats assuming majority status, though they have only 50 votes. All of this is thanks to Vermont Sen. Jim Jeffords defection from the Republican Party.

Listen to outgoing Majority Leader Trent Lott: "There is something liberating about being in the minority. You're not as consumed with trying to move the train. You're freer to advocate positions and amendments you really think should be adopted."

Democrats don't talk like that. When they are in charge, they push for everything they believe - from tax increases, to minimum wage hikes, to a patients' bill of rights to their social agenda.

This is minority mentality. It is why Republicans have so much trouble when they are in charge. They seem to have no convictions and no courage. Democrats will be all too happy to help the Republicans feel "liberated" by remaining in the minority if it makes them feel better. Maybe what Republicans need is a new leader.