If Donald Trump has done anything it has been to demonstrate how incompetent the Republican Congress is. During the Obama years, the Republican Congress told voters they couldn't get anything done because they didn't have the presidency. Yet the Republicans couldn't do anything when they had the presidency and both houses of Congress.
In the recent election, the Republicans failed to provide any reason to vote for them. Their main message in the last campaign was, "Do you want Nancy Pelosi as speaker of the House?" Flip that around and that same message is, "Do you want (someone like) Paul Ryan as speaker of the House?"
The Republican House has been rudderless since Newt Gingrich left.
Here in New Jersey, my own congressional races highlighted the problem of not having a positive message. In the case of the Senate, Bob Hugin had little chance of winning. A state like New Jersey deserves a senator like Bob Menendez.
I knew little about Hugin until his victory party after the primary. After his victory speech, I knew he had zero chance of winning. In his speech, every position he took was the same as Bob Menendez (including amnesty for illegal aliens). His campaign strategy was to be Bob Menendez without the corruption.
Throughout the campaign Hugin gave little reason to vote for him rather than against the crook Menendez.
When Menendez came out in favor of replacing Americans with foreign workers while campaigning among the H-1B bodyshops, that gave Hugin a chance to distinguish himself from his opponent. If Hugin came out and said he was against replacing Americans with foreign workers that would be a reason to vote for him. I contacted his campaign several times to ask if he would take up this issue. Each time I simply got routed from person to person until I got dumped into a voice mailbox where I never got a reply.
My soon-to-be-former Republican Rep. Leonard Lance ran a similarly vapid campaign. He seemed to spend all his efforts attacking Donald Trump. When he made anti-Trump posts on Facebook, Democrats would respond that he was not attacking Trump hard enough — and Republican voters were left wondering who Lance was trying to get to vote for him.
New Jersey's heart of corruption, the Newark Star-Ledger, claimed Lance voted with Trump 87 percent of the time in their endorsement of his opponent. Lance managed the feat of both regularly undermining Trump and being a Trump stooge all at the same time.
Meanwhile in the lame duck session, the Republicans in the House are intent on demonstrating why both Republican and Democrat voters hated them. Soon-to-be-a-former-Rep. Kevin Yoder (R-Kan.) is hell-bent on creating a train wreck in the immigration system with his bill designed to exclude nearly everyone outside India from employment-based immigration. When the committee chairman in charge of the DHS budget is completely in the pocket of foreign interests who are trying to wreck the system to their own advantage, it demonstrates the incompetence of both the chairman in question and the House leadership that put him in that position. It makes one wonder if Yoder already has a lobbying job lined up.
Trump won on putting Americans first. Yet, in their last hurrah, the Republicans have also come up with a deal for more cheap, foreign labor to displace the most vulnerable American workers. Once again, the congressional Republicans demonstrate why they lost.
The bottom line of the midterm election is that it was a referendum on the Paul Ryan-led Republican Congress. The result speaks for itself.