I just had to post this, because it echoes my earlier post on the inauguration (you can scroll below). Read the whole thing here, it's worth it! It's by Fred Barnes from the Weekly Standard. Here's an excerpt:
This echoes precisely what I was arguing earlier: that Obama's inaugural sounded like it could have been (largely) given by former President Bush. Republicans should get over their loss, because whining won't get them anything, and neither will attacking Obama for everything and anything. Barnes' advice is essential: we must use what Obama says that we agree with to promote the Republican agenda, which, as I argued in an editorial in the Claremont Independent, has a lot of cross over with Democrats.
"In 1994, congressional Republicans carried laminated copies of their Contract With America (tax cuts, term limits, etc.) in their pockets. They may now want to laminate President Obama's inaugural address and carry it around.
This is not as silly as it sounds. Republican leaders believe the speech pleased them more than it did House speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate majority leader Harry Reid. Obama's "new era of responsibility" echoed the "Personal Responsibility Act," the third of the ten planks in the Contract With America. Obama also said that it's not the size of government which matters but whether it works. Newt Gingrich coined that thought years ago. Obama lauded "risk-takers." Democrats want to tax them to death.
For the foreseeable future, attacking Obama will be counterproductive for Republicans. He's both enormously popular and the bearer of moral authority as the first African-American president. So the idea is for Republicans to make Obama an ally by using his words, from the inaugural address and speeches and interviews, against Democrats and their initiatives in Congress.
Obama is for bipartisanship. Pelosi, Reid, and their cohort are heavyhanded partisans with no interest in accommodating Republicans. Obama favors transparency. They don't. Obama says he wants "to spend wisely" and promises that "programs will end" if they don't work. That's hardly the philosophy of congressional Democrats."