Celtic, you just taught this old dawgHate to burst your bubble, but unless someone steps up in the Newt Gingrich role, the Republicans have a long way to go.
Eric Cantor could quite easily fill those shoes. He's not quite the idea machine that Gingrich is, but he's smart and articulate. What he has not done (yet) is put out that succinct statement of principles that people can gravitate towards the way Gingrich did with the Contract with America.
You can argue the extent to which the Republicans were sincere with the Contract overall, but what you cannot argue is that the Contract framed the 1994 elections more than any other issue. After seemingly endless gridlock in the Congress during George H.W. Bush's term of office, and the seeming persistence of gridlock during the early Clinton years, the Contract was a pledge to bring legislation to the floor, come hell or high water.
The party that can frame 2010 in similar terms is going to make huge gains at the polls. This is where the Anti-Republicans are doing themselves serious damage as a governing party. They have made great sport of talking up how marginalized and irrelevant the Republican Party is, only to fall back on blaming them for not being able to pass health care reform on Dear Leader's timetable--John Kerry Syndrome apparently is contagious, with the Anti-Republicans firmly entrenched on both sides of the question of how relevant the Republican Party is in Congress. They have the votes, presumably, to govern as they desire, yet for all of the hoopla surrounding Dear Leader and a supposed feverish pace of legislation, they have moved exactly one major piece of legislation all the way through the system--American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (PL 111-5). Total number of laws enacted by Congress to date--47.
Search Results - THOMAS (Library of Congress))
Doing an advanced search on THOMAS for all public laws in the 110th Congress introduced in Congress through 8/11/2007 results in a count of 214.
Congress, with an Anti-Republican Majority (same as in the 110th Congress) and an Anti-Republican President, is passing less than one fourth the legislation the last Congress worked on. With more of their own to work with, they are accomplishing less, and blaming the minority party for their ineptitude.
Thus, the stage is set for a Republican resurgence, but only if the Republicans can make a case as a party that will move legislation through the system, as a party with the discipline and the vision to actually govern and attend the nation's business. If they can make that case, they will own the midterm elections, because the Anti-Republicans have made a stellar case already that they are not such a party.
However, there is no indication the Republicans are setting the stage to make such a case, and, until they do, their midterm gains will be modest.