How To Fix The GOP

So how do Republicans recover?

They get their first chance this week, when Congress returns to address the fiscal cliff. They need not pre-emptively agree to raise taxes, but they do need to ensure Speaker of the House John Boehner has enough room to negotiate so the blame—if this fails—won't rest entirely on him. Americans understand that he and the president have a complicated relationship, and they don't demand capitulation. But they do demand reasonableness. Republicans must appear reasonable, and they must appear to negotiate in good faith.

For Republicans, the blame game is in full force. It was communications. It was mechanics of the campaign. It was outreach. It was social conservatives. It was economic conservatives. If Republicans kicked everyone out of the party the blamers suggest, there wouldn't be much of a party left.

On the other hand, it can't keep losing female voters by double digits, the youth vote by 20 points, and Hispanics by 40 and hope to win the White House.

[Simply put, the] Republicans' present approach doesn't add up or make sense or portend future electoral success.

Read more from Ford O'Connell at U.S. News & World Report

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Analysis & Political Strategy