GOP Struggles to Regain the Offensive

Children's health veto, spate of retirements damage Republican image
By Caroline Zimmerman,  Newser User
Posted Oct 14, 2007 7:00 PM CDT
Senate Minority Whip Trent Lott of Miss., left, and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Ky. leave the West Wing of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2007, following a meeting with...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – GOP lawmakers admitted to low morale when they met with Bush the other day, the New York Times reports. A spate of retirements, and bad PR over Bush's stance on children's health care, have recently stung the party. “The president has let the debate on health care down by not offering an alternative,” says one rep. “We are not happy, no doubt about it,” admits a senior GOP aide.

Their fear of a fight on Iraq policy proved idle, but Republicans were shocked by public outcry over Bush's veto on children's health care—which will face an override vote by lawmakers this week. Dems aren't getting rave reviews either, as polls give them low grades on work in Congress. But the GOP took yet another hit when old ally Dick Armey predicted Hillary to be the next president.