GOP as the "iPhone party"
April 19th, 2014
11:43 AM ET
3 months ago

GOP as the "iPhone party"

(CNN) - "Imagine your government as your iPhone."

That was the message from Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tennessee, in the GOP's weekly address Saturday.

In a call for free markets and open platforms, Alexander argued that government should be more like Apple, Inc. - working to give private citizens the means "to create a happier, safer, more prosperous life."

It's an idea that "Republican enablers" have fought for for years and that "Democrat mandators" have prevented, he said.

"Republicans want to enable and empower you. We want to be the iPhone party."

Specifically, he cited House Majority Leader Eric Cantor's JOBS Act, which passed in 2012 with bipartisan support and was signed by President Obama. It eases the rules that the Securities and Exchange Commission enforces on small companies going through the process of becoming a publicly traded company, opening up access to new sources of revenue and lifting some regulatory burdens.

Alexander referenced the Dodd-Frank law as a Democrat counter-example, saying it makes "community bankers spend more time filling out forms than... making loans." The sweeping financial reform bill was signed into law in 2010 and meant to strengthen consumer protection, rein in complex financial products, and head off future bank bailouts; critics call it more harmful red tape.

He also pointed to legislation proposed by Republicans as examples of the "iPhone government," including pushing for more school vouchers and giving states more control of their Medicaid programs. Democrats, on the other hand, want "fixed wages and more lawsuits," he said.

Alexander chided other government organizations, too.

"Just imagine the Internal Revenue code, the Food and Drug Administration or the Labor Department enabling you rather than ordering you around," Alexander said.

Healthcare is the biggest divergence, according to Alexander, who slammed Obamacare for "mandating" too much.

"Too often, Obamacare cancels the policy you want to keep and tells you what policy to buy, even if it costs more and restricts your choices of doctors and hospitals. Republicans believe that freedom and more choices will empower you to find a policy that fits your needs and your budget," he said.

To drive home the point of an e-government, Alexander finished his address by calling on constituents to submit their own ideas.

"We'll learn from you," he said, closing out with Easter wishes.


Filed under: GOP weekly address • Lamar Alexander
soundoff (480 Responses)
  1. Michael SC

    yep, they are all paid and elected by chinese companies or so-called American companies selling chinese products.
    GOP = communists in disguise

    April 19, 2014 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  2. Michael SC

    so Republicans admit that they actually are communists

    April 19, 2014 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  3. The Real Tom Paine

    Whatever. No matter what they try to portray themselves as, they are still out of sync with the rest of the country.

    April 19, 2014 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  4. Tampa Tim

    If you don't like republican obstruction, you can vote the GOBaggers out in November.

    April 19, 2014 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  5. jrybock

    Also, Apple is one of the most closed "ecosystems", which has been a strength, but also a big weakness. Steve Jobs dictated how people should use his products and kept tight controls on people being able to modify it and personalize it. In many ways, he was the biggest "mandater" in Silicon Valley.

    April 19, 2014 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  6. peter

    they need change their image. they are like an old suite that's been in storage for several years. They don't even understand that other phones like the galaxy are now exceeding the market. One idea would be an age cap on how long they can stay in power. Too many old men.

    April 19, 2014 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  7. The Republican Party Is Dead To Me

    A load of garbage if there ever was one. Pandering, has sank to new low's. With empty heads like this to muddle the airwaves, it will never get better.

    April 19, 2014 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  8. Blake Milledge III

    Any phone besides an iPhone is for poors.

    April 19, 2014 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  9. Mark

    "In a call for free markets and open platforms" - that sounds a lot more like Google than it does Apple in terms of their smart phone operating systems.

    April 19, 2014 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  10. Fricker

    iPhone party?? Apple is definitely not the model to build on if you are interested in developing free markets and open platforms.

    April 19, 2014 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  11. Lucky18

    The "I-phone" is made overseas...That's what Lamar Alexander wants...

    April 19, 2014 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  12. cali818

    That's it, no iPhone for me...ever.

    April 19, 2014 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  13. peter Nguyen

    GOP is scary

    April 19, 2014 01:11 pm at 1:11 pm |
  14. Mark

    Bwahaha the only problem with that is that the GOP is the BlackBerry party – because no one's buying it!

    April 19, 2014 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  15. Train that never stops

    The irony in this is so great. The iPhone is the most restrictive of the smartphones, as we cannot install anything on it unless apple approves of it. Unless you jailbreak your phone that is.

    April 19, 2014 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  16. Michael Jones

    Does he realize that the iPhone is NOT an open platform?

    April 19, 2014 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  17. gregorypierce

    I can't imagine a message that failed so hard since the "series of tubes" comment from Ted Stevens. The iPhone is a platform which heavily restricts how it is used, the applications available for it based upon its walled-garden criteria, and comes at a price premium. So the GOP wants to heavily restrict our choices, give us only things that match their criteria for good and at a higher price than the alternatives? Hmmm... maybe they DO want to be the iPhone party.

    April 19, 2014 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  18. mike3k

    Funny, since Steve Jobs was a liberal.

    April 19, 2014 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  19. gregorypierce

    The iPhone is a platform that restricts how it used, heavily restricts the choices available and requires you to go into contractual debt with a corporation in order to own one? Hmmm.... maybe they DO want to be the iPhone party.

    April 19, 2014 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  20. Scott

    corporate rhetoric in politics is extremely dangerous

    April 19, 2014 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  21. Democrats

    Democrata are the Sumsung Glaxy 5 party, steal innovative ideas from apple and market them as their own.

    April 19, 2014 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  22. Casual Observer

    Relaxing the banking regulations are what led in part, to the financial meltdown. I was about to also note, what ThinkAgain already said. iPhones from from slave labour camps in China – but then again – that's what makes big business profitable and Republicans are all about profit, at any cost. (As long as it doesn't cost them!)

    April 19, 2014 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  23. Tom

    I almost fell over laughingThe Iphone is dated and made by slave labor in China by a company that dodges US taxes by setting up in Ireland where it pays no corporate tax. This about sums up what the GOP stands for alright.

    April 19, 2014 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  24. Mark

    Does the Republican Party want to be like Apple in supporting the Employment Non-Discrimination Act and the right of gay couples to marry?

    April 19, 2014 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
  25. DL

    Guess it's time to sell my iPhone

    April 19, 2014 01:25 pm at 1:25 pm |
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