“The Republican Party is dead!” cried Sean Hannity -again- following the passage of the bloated omnibus bill. Really? For a party that controls the U.S. Senate by a single vote, I think they’re accomplishing an awful lot. And while I, too, am frustrated with the lack of progress that comes out of the U.S. Senate, the answer isn’t to punish the good Republicans – it’s to send more good Republicans to Washington!

I know, things look pretty bleak for Republicans. We’re losing special elections in districts we shouldn’t. We’re underperforming in seats we normally win by nearly 20 percentage points, and we blew yet another U.S. Senate seat by running a whack job in Alabama.   

Here in Wisconsin, we elected a soft-on-crime Milwaukee liberal to the state Supreme Court, by a landslide, for the first time in 23 years and we overwhelmingly voted to keep the State Treasurer’s office, an office that literally has nothing to do all day, when the current treasurer was elected on the promise to work to eliminate the job!

I know, the media is focused like a laser on Trump, ignoring the policy successes, instead focusing on the “Trump Drama” of which, sadly, there is a lot. There is the White House turnover, the lack of a consistent message, Stormy Daniels, Twitter fights, and a personal life which is a bit of a garbage fire. All of this has kept the president’s approval ratings in the mid-40s at a time of a booming economy and relative peace around the world, meaning a more traditional president would likely have an approval rating of around 60 percent.

I know, Republicans are depressed and frustrated after the failure to completely repeal ObamaCare and after the deficit-exploding omnibus package that was just passed.

I know, Democrats are red hot and energized, and it appears they’re going to vote in near-record numbers for a mid-term, bringing out a new generation of voters who want to punish the GOP for bringing Donald Trump to power. In Wisconsin, Democrats hope this hatred and anger causes a “Blue Wave” that will be big enough to take out Governor Scott Walker and the GOP majorities in Madison, where Democrats can start to undo all of the great reforms over the last 8 years and destroy the Republican Party for a generation.

The good news is we don’t have to just sit back and let it happen. It’s time we Republicans stop feeling sorry for ourselves and fight back! As Republicans, we’ve come too far to just let it all go.

Our values are under assault. The left is in full-fledged gun-grabbing, censorship, and hate-mongering mode, but Republicans have a great story to tell, and it’s time we start telling it!

Nationally, the economy is booming, and the president has delivered on promises to appoint conservative judges to the federal courts. Republicans are slowly but surely delivering on more border security, fencing, and funding for ICE. Republicans are restoring our military, weakening ObamaCare, and overhauled the tax code. The African American unemployment rate is at an all-time low, and consumer confidence is high.

Here in Wisconsin, we have the best governor in the country and it’s imperative that we get him re-elected because Wisconsin Republicans have delivered the bold conservative reforms that turned a $3.6 billion deficit into a surplus. They’ve cut our property and income taxes and eliminated the state portion of the property tax. They’ve given us concealed carry legislation, voter ID, record low unemployment, the largest economic development project in Wisconsin’s history (Foxconn). They’ve expanded school choice, defunded Planned Parenthood, and funded our public schools at record levels.

Speaking of public schools, it was former Governor Jim Doyle’s Democrats that cut funding to schools in the 2009-11 budget without giving schools the tools to offset the cuts. Thanks to our great governor and ACT 10, schools have those tools and can hire and fire teachers based on merit, and reward the great teachers who deserve it!

When put into proper perspective, it’s easier to see why we Republicans must get engaged and work to save what we’ve accomplished. We’ve come too far to give up now, and we don’t have to settle for useless Senators like Tammy Baldwin who did nothing when told about a veteran’s overdose at the Tomah VA.  

We can do better than Baldwin and we can win, even in a bad year nationally, because we’re Wisconsin Republicans and we have a history of leading the party.

The Republican Party was created in Wisconsin. Wisconsin Republicans helped elect Abraham Lincoln who gave us the Emancipation Proclamation. Wisconsin Republicans helped pass the 13th. 14th, and 15th amendments to the constitution. Wisconsin Republicans were leaders for the 19th amendment giving women the right to vote. Wisconsin Republicans elected Tommy Thompson in 1986, a bad year to be a Republican by the way, and he became a national leader for school choice and welfare reform. In 2010, the Walker Revolution was launched and Wisconsin has led the nation in positive conservative reforms for the last decade.

In 1992, James Carville headed up the Clinton Campaign with the slogan “It’s the Economy, stupid!” Well, in 2018 the economy is strong, America is strong, and Wisconsin is thriving! We Republicans have a good story to tell, but we need to tell it. That’s why as a county party chairman I’m begging Republicans to re-engage. Write a check, knock on a door, volunteer at a Victory Center. Come be a part of the best Republican Party in America. Let’s tell our story and together we can keep Wisconsin moving forward!

Rohn Bishop is Chairman of the Republican Party of Fond du Lac County

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