But as Republicans grasp for answers, they might be surprised that the solution is staring them right in the face. The party boasts an accomplished array of governors whose achievements present a clear-cut path for a future GOP governing agenda. If its congressional wing has been characterized by adherence to tea party dogma, its governors have shown a pragmatic streak, a zeal for fiscal discipline and pursuit of government reforms.
Looking for a governor who worked with Democrats to overhaul New Jersey’s bloated pension system and now is receiving fulsome praise across the aisle for his leadership in the wake of Hurricane Sandy? New JerseyGov. Chris Christie’s your guy.
Searching for an executive whose education reforms have revitalized the schools in New Orleans in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, giving a much-needed boost to students who had been left behind? Look to LouisianaGov. Bobby Jindal.
On the demographic front, too, Republican governors are a world apart from their congressional brethren, and reflect the changing face of America even better than their Democratic counterparts. Deval Patrick ofMassachusetts is the Democrats’ only governor from a minority group, and he could be leaving office to join a second-term Obama Cabinet. Republicans boast four: Jindal, Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval, New Mexico Gov.Susana Martinez, and South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley.