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Ray Haynes

In Praise of Barack Obama

Ok, I admit. I titled this article in a way to encourage people to look at this post, so they would think what the heck is this guy talking about, and how did this end up on this site?

First, I have to say, too many of my conservative friends are way too negative. They always look at the negative side of things. The Reaganesque optimism that made conservative values so preeminent in the last two decades of the last century didn’t stick. Most conservatives who claim the Reagan mantle are not pleasant people to be around, because all they do is complain. They never see the bright side of life, they never look for the positive. Since I am an optimist, I wanted to find the bright side of having Barack Obama as our President, and I found it. So, I am here to praise him.

What is that bright side, you ask? Very easy, no one since Ronald Reagan has done more for the conservative movement than Barack Obama. Let’s be honest, in 2008, when Obama took over as President, the movement was in crisis. The Republican Party had rejected our principles, the Republican establishment had reasserted their control over the party, and conservatives in general were constantly the source of ridicule.

Then, Obama took over.

From that point forward, the resurgence began, to the point that now, Republicans control more legislative bodies in this country, and have more power, than they have since the 1920’s. The Reagan Revolution is complete, and no one has done more to complete that revolution than Barack Obama himself. No one united Republicans better than Obama, and no one gave more credibility to the conservative agenda than Obama.

It certainly wasn’t Republican leadership. The Republican leaders around the country did all they could to tear down conservative values. The Republican legislative leadership in Washington told us constantly why the conservative agenda could not be advanced. So how did we win? The nation’s antipathy to Obama constantly caused voters to ignore the foolish pronouncements by the Republican leadership, and caused them to vote against Obama.

And even better than that, it appears that Obama, and the Democrats, haven’t learned that harsh (for them) reality. Obama has promised to attack Trump, in violation of the long standing tradition of previous living Presidents to never discuss the current President’s actions. Democrat leaders in Washington promise to do all they can to thwart Trump and his agenda. Even Democrats in California have hired the worst of the Obama administration, Eric Holder, to spend taxpayer dollars on an exercise in futility. Some Republicans complain about these actions. I say, keep it up. California’s voters need the education. Constantly reminding them of the liberal failure in Washington for the last eight years, by pushing the leaders of that failure in the faces of California voters can only help Republicans.

The only thing that can hurt Republicans in California is for Republican legislative and party leaders to continue to be “Democrat lite.” A principled stand against the Democrats in Sacramento will lead to a resurgence of the Republican Party in California, just as it has throughout the rest of the country. We have lost over the last several years here in California because Republicans in California have been convinced by the actions of Republican legislative leaders that there is no good reason to vote Republican. Republicans in the Legislature have rejected the conservative agenda, the agenda of freedom, family, and security, time after time, alienating the Republican base in pursuit of an alleged agenda that seeks to “add” voters.

Trump won because Obama campaigned against him. Republicans won throughout the country because Obama united Republican voters by alienating them. We will win again here in California if voters here are convinced that we will oppose taxes and bigger government, promote an agenda that strengthens families and communities, and an agenda that we will stand for this state’s security, including securing our border and our communities. If we don’t make these values our agenda over the next two years, we will richly deserve the defeat that will be visited upon us by California voters.

So I say, praise Obama for the great things he has done for Republicans. Praise Democrats for handing us the issues that will restore the Republican party in California, if we are ready to seize the mantle that Democrats seem eager to hand us. Thank God for the great opportunity he has handed us, if our leaders are willing to be real leaders. That’s the positive that comes from the last eight years, and we should always look for the good.