Following this week's historic and resounding victories by Barack Obama and the Democrats in the House and Senate, there's been much talk about what the Republican Party must do next. That it's "brand" is bankrupt and it's time to regroup and reposition. Being the generous bi-partisan patriot that I am, I am hereby offering some free advice to the GOP on how to wage more effective campaigns in the future:
1. Find some less-polarizing mouthpieces than Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh. They stir the pot, but not in that awesome Rachel Ray way.
2. Immediately distance yourself from Fox News. To be sure, there's nothing Fair and Balanced happenin' over there.
3. Stop being so partisan. Some things (global warming, supporting the troops) are black and white, not red or blue.
4. Stop being so hypocritical. You gotta practice what you preach, or you'll continue to have zero credibility.
5. Bone up on Separation of Church and State. The Founding Fathers gave it to us for a reason.
6. Accept that most Americans do not want you regulating what goes on in their personal lives and bedrooms. So (and take a deep breath now...) just accept the fact that abortion and gay relationships are here to stay.
7. Start truly thinking about the poor and middle class instead of just your own pocketbooks. Politics is more than just lowering taxes for the rich. Whatever happened to your big tent?
8. Stop spying on and torturing people. That's not very nice.
9. Don't send our troops to die in battle unless you really know what the hell you're talking about.
10. Start agreeing with Democrats that Bush 43 is the worst president in history. Trust me, it's really fun when 99% of the world agrees with you.
11. Ya might also want to reconsider pairing up guys named Dick and Bush. Those two things always lead to trouble.
12. Stay away from angry, sarcastic, condescending candidates. Voters prefer humility, respect and class from their presidents.
13. Nominate a candidate who is intelligent, curious and articulate. The whole "have a beer with the guy" thing is so passe. The bar's officially closed.
14. Pay more attention to people like Mitt Romney. Your traditional "base" has shrunk to the size of a pimple on an elephant's ass. Romney, with his fiscal conservatism and moderate social positions, represents your future.
15. When Americans are facing the worst economic crisis in 75 years, terrified for their jobs, homes and savings, do not obsess for the final months of your campaign that your opponent (a) pals around with terrorists, (b) has a half-Aunt who may or may not be an illegal alien, and (c) is both an elitist and a socialist. Kinda makes voters feel like you're utterly clueless about the issues most important to them.
16. Stop playing so damned dirty. It clearly doesn't work anymore.
17. If you see Karl Rove and Steve Schmidt coming down the street, run the other way.
18. No matter how strong the temptation, do not make as a centerpiece of your campaigns the support of cartoon-like characters like Joe the Plumber, Ed the Dairy Man, Doug the Barber, Tito the Builder, Christine the Florist, Phil the Bricklayer, Cindy the Citizen, Rose the Teacher, Corina the Nurse, Vicki the Realtor or Clark the Cook. This cheap tactic turns your campaign into Sesame Street, and toddlers don't vote.
19. For what it's worth, unmarried teenage pregnancies are nothing to be proud of, especially when you're the Family Values party.
20. And for God's sake, whatever you do, do not put anymore vacuous MILFs a heartbeat from the Oval Office, especially when the person at the top of your ticket is a 72-year-old cancer survivor. Americans want a vice-president who can name the countries in North America and knows that Africa is a continent not a country. They want someone smart and qualified...like Dan Quayle.
On another subject......TICKETS ARE NOW ON SALE for the November 17 Second Annual Adrienne Shelly Foundation Fundraising Gala at New York University's Skirball Center for the Performing Arts. Join us for a terrific evening of music, comedy and film, with scheduled appearances by Paul Rudd, Jeremy Sisto, Cheryl Hines, Mary Louise Parker, Lili Taylor, Karen Black, Ally Sheedy, Keri Russell, Maria Tucci, Michael Cerveris, Gina Gershon and others. To learn more about our mission, to make a tax-deductible donation, and to purchase tickets, please visit our website. Every contribution helps preserve Adrienne's legacy, allows us to help others, and creates something positive out of the tragic loss two years ago of an incredibly loving and talented woman....who also happened to be my amazing wife.