What Small Government Republicans?

Oct 18 2010 @ 10:18am

In a column complaining about Carl Paladino and Christine O'Donnell, Tunku Varadarajan comments on the midterm elections generally:

My first instinct as a libertarian is, of course, for Republican victories everywhere, particularly for candidates running specifically on a small-government platform. The big-government Bush Republicans have already been punished; now it's time to get rid of the big-government Democrats—i.e., all of them.

All Democrats are "big government"? Please. And funny, but I don't remember Tunku alongside some of us arguing against Rove's big government agenda in 2001 onwards. I also don't recall him backing the Dems in 2006.

And he backed McCain in 2008, so one wonders where he gets the gall to posture in this way without some personal accounting. (Oh, I forgot, he's a conservative pundit.) He's also in total denial, as Radley Balko points out:

The label “big-government Bush Republicans” implies that there’s an alternative sort of Republican. Time and again, they’ve proven there isn’t.

The Republican Party was and is filled with big-government Republicans, before, during, and after the eight years that Bush was president. There are some genuinely limited government Republicans, just as there are some Democrats who give a damn and are willing to fight for civil liberties. But they aren’t in the leadership, and they won’t be calling the shots in a new GOP-led Congress. Even now, in the minority, with public sentiment pretty solidly against Obama, all but assured of big gains this November, the GOP figureheads still don’t have the guts to name specific federal programs they’d target for spending cuts.