Rich Lowry writes:
The fundamental problem congressional Republicans are experiencing now is that they have almost no moral capital left after the last two years. Again and again, when given the choice to reform their practices or do little or nothing, they always picked the latter. On travel, on Abramoff, on earmarking—you name it. The impression they always gave was that the integrity of the institution and the public interest had to take a back-seat to their own convenience. They wanted to squeak by this year on gerrymandering, negative ads, and money, and just might have succeeded—had nothing more gone wrong. Well, now it has and people feel confirmed in what they always suspected about this Congress—that it is unable to police its own practices and is full of people who don't follow the same rules as the rest of us. This is deadly. So, in one sense, the best way to have coped with the fall-out of the Foley scandal would have been long before the Foley scandal ever broke, when all the other scandals were breaking. Then, congressional Republicans would have had some reserve of credibility to fall back on. Now they have very little.
Read it here.
Rich is as mainstream a conservative as you can find, and his opinion is well worth reading. He is in touch with serious Republicans and moderates, and he is articulating a sense, not just in conservative circles but within the electorate at large, that the current congressional leadership is corrupt, insensitive, and radically out of touch with their constituency. His comment about squeaking by pretty much sums it up. These men and women are not concerned with responsible governance – simply with manipulating the system for their own aggrandizement.
I will be voting Republican this fall, simply because I thoroughly despise the Democratic Left and think that Democrat control of either house of Congress would be disastrous for the nation and the world; but with one exception I will be holding my nose when I mark my ballot. That exception is Senator Rick Santorum who is genuinely serious and thoroughly responsible regarding his duties, and whom I consider to be a good man and an excellent Senator.