…A long article about Republican fears for meltdown in 2008 is found here at thepolitico. What I find most striking about the article that talks about Republican drops in money raising, in candidate recruitment, and general chaos is this – not a single Republican mention of the poor, or compassion issues or anything resembling those issues. This isn’t a party driven by ideas anymore. It once was. In the 1990s, ideas propelled the party to power – ideas like balancing the budget and limiting congressional terms and providing school choice for poor kids and raising the standard of living for all Americans. They were powerful ideas. Now there are only discussions about how to get more votes, how to stay in power, how to raise more money. So long as that remains the topic of discussion and ideas – ideas like caring for the poor through innovative programs – are on the sidelines Republicans will be on the sidelines too.