What the Pennsylvania Results Meant

The author of "Will Pennsylvania Loss Revive Rockefeller Republicans?," Nov. 8, suggests that Richard Thornburgh's loss in Pennsylvania's Senate race may be a sign that the Bush administration should turn to the liberal Republicanism represented by Dr. Herbert Stein, a former Nixon administration aide. And yet the article and the election returns show why Dr. Stein's version of Republicanism should be rejected by George Bush.Contrary to what Stein believes, the voters told the politicians that the middle class is not living very well and is not undertaxed. Mr. Thornburgh's loss was an indication that President Bush is vulnerable and that his vulnerability stems from his support of liberal Republicanism. Bush has not cut taxes; he has increased them. He has not cut spending; he has allowed it to rise. The real message for Bush from the '91 elections is clear: If he wants to be reelected, and if he wants a more supportive Congress, he should reject the liberal Republicanism both he and Stein have supported. In turn, he should embrace a vigorous tax-cut proposal to get the economy started. Jordan C. Wethe, Burke, Va.

Regarding the article "Health-Care 'Revolt' Seen On the Horizon," Nov. 14: As shown by the Pennsylvania election, voters apparently feel so strongly about national health insurance that this issue alone could tilt many elections to a Democrat. But socialized medicine would demand an enlarged government sector. Health care is about 12 percent of our GNP, and less than half of that is funded by the government. In one swoop, socialized medicine could enlarge the federal government's economic involvement by an amount comparable to all the New Deal. What, then, would be the meaning of the entire Reagan-Bush presidencies, which were mainly predicated on reducing government? The Reagan revolution would be exposed as a myth, a dreamy interlude of delusion that futilely tried to alter the natural course of history. John Bridgman, Edina, Minn.

of 5 stories this month > Get unlimited stories
You've read 5 of 5 free stories

Only $1 for your first month.

Get unlimited Monitor journalism.