GOP as the "iPhone party"
April 19th, 2014
11:43 AM ET
4 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. JakeF

    More like the rotary phone party. Old white guys trying to be hip come off as pathetically sad.

    April 19, 2014 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  2. Richard

    Oh I get it now, they want to be over priced, proprietary, over simplified, ugly and made overseas in slave labor camps by underpaid "workers" who routinely commit suicide?

    That's entirely different than being a bunch of old, non tech savvy, over paid, under educated, wind bags who's only goal in life is to sell ignorant people lower taxes and smaller government while sucking on the corporate welfare teet and kissing corporate lobbyist bu tt while slamming welfare and bribery at the same time telling gay and lesbian couples that god hates them.

    If you ask me, they should go for both images, each one is equally insane so they might as well go for broke.

    April 19, 2014 02:45 pm at 2:45 pm |
  3. Noish

    Well that does make at least some sense. This current administration seems to be far more interested in telling businesses how to operate than letting them innovate the next generation of technology.

    April 19, 2014 02:47 pm at 2:47 pm |
  4. Loathstheright

    GOP as the IPhoney party, for racists, bigots and just downright hateful people.

    April 19, 2014 02:48 pm at 2:48 pm |
  5. V

    Let me guess, they also want to sit down and "rap" with us too, right? Is that what the cool kids say? Radical?

    Sorry, but I've had enough of the "free market" influencing my government. The establishment clause of the constitution needs to not just put up a separation between church and state, but private money and state as well.

    Get private money out of our elections and I guarantee you that our politicians will be more responsive to the people instead of big donations.

    April 19, 2014 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  6. easchner

    Not only is the iPhone made overseas in near slave conditions, but it's exactly the opposite of a free market or open platform. I bought an iPad for development purposes. It's the only computer I've ever owned that requires you to pay the manufacturer to put software YOU WRITE onto YOUR OWN DEVICE. Apple says what does and does not get onto their app store, and they take a hefty percentage. Plus Apple, unlike Microsoft or Google, requires you to purchase the device they make without licensing the software to anyone else. None of these things promote an open market.

    April 19, 2014 02:49 pm at 2:49 pm |
  7. harrisonhits2

    If by stealing what little remains of America's wealth the GOP means "enable and empower" then they will indeed by the "iPhone Party".

    Please, the entire world knows very well the GOP cares only about the 1% and considers everyone else slaves or little more than slaves with the sole purpose of generating income for the 1%.

    April 19, 2014 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  8. Kapi

    "In a call for free markets and open platforms, Alexander argued that government should be more like Apple, Inc.."

    Typical GOP. Apple is one of the tightest, closed platforms around. I know they used the analogy to try to sound cool and forward thinking, but I think it's totally appropriate and fitting that they don't even realize that most people are moving away from iPhones. I had an iPhone once...for 4 months...before going back to an android phone because of how much the iPhone wanted to limit my activity and restrict my use of the phone. Yes, very fitting analogy indeed. Even then, GOP as iPhone might still be a step forward as they are currently telegraph party at best.

    April 19, 2014 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  9. a4mrtheist

    Also Apple tries to sue everyone else into submission/

    April 19, 2014 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  10. david saint

    if Wall St could figure out a way to make money of the homeless dying they would do it. Easing regs isnt the answer, I think 2008 proved that.

    April 19, 2014 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  11. Repugnants

    The repugnants are ranting election losers.

    April 19, 2014 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  12. teapooper

    Just what they(GOP) want.. They can play the business and the little people will play the employees getting paid "jibbles" BTW look up the TRUE meaning of a free market and you'll find socialism at it's roots. Don't believe these thief's, they just want to control you..

    April 19, 2014 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  13. Adam Kushner

    Who in their right mind would ever want republicans to govern or lead thhhis countery ??

    April 19, 2014 02:52 pm at 2:52 pm |
  14. Repugnants_are_losers

    The repugnants are ranting election losers.

    April 19, 2014 02:53 pm at 2:53 pm |
  15. Adam Kushner

    Who in their right mind would ever want republicans to govern or lead this countery ??

    April 19, 2014 02:55 pm at 2:55 pm |
  16. Thurman R Willis Jr

    What the GOP needs to do is move to Russia and stay there!! Get out of America we don't want you here!

    April 19, 2014 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  17. brez

    the GOP is the dinosaur party. lets go ask eric cantor how well their amazing blackberry based whipcast software worked a couple of years ago.. you cant get anymore technology lame then the GOP – just look at how delusional their election prediction data was last election – they had no idea they were going to get trounced

    April 19, 2014 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  18. brez

    oh right – dinosaurs dont know how to use smart phones

    April 19, 2014 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  19. thatissilly

    Oh man does the GOP not understand that the only way to get an app onto the store is to go through APPLE'S SELECTION PROCESS?? As in APPLE PICKS "WINNERS AND LOSERS." There isn't much that isn't exactly a free market system involved in the app store.

    April 19, 2014 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  20. kurt

    While this is a good method of selling the GOP, it's not generally a good thing.

    The GOP is very big about taking away government rules and restrictions. But they focus mainly on taking away restrictions that are put in place on those in power, not those that affect the middle and lower classes.

    The GOP worked hard (with President Clinton's buy in) to take away tons of rules an regulations on banking through laws like the Graham-Leach-Bliley act. They attacked regulations on bankers put in place by Glass-Steagal in the 30's to prevent financial crisis. And through that, they helped cause the 2008 financial crisis.

    Those weakening of restrictions didn't enable most people... just wealthy wall-street types. And we got to pay the price for it.

    If the GOP wants to enable things by making applications for student loans simpler, making insurance simpler, more affordable and easier to purchase, make the tax code less complicated with less deductions and exemptions (which are primarily targeted at the wealthy)... then I might support them.

    But the things they want to "enable" end up helping those who already have money get even more money without helping those who are trying to improve their lives through hard work get ahead at all.

    I WANT those in power to have more limitations and restrictions. Making it easier for them to use the power their wealth gives them to screw the working class people over even more is NOT something I'm going to get behind.

    Show me the GOP plans that help "enable" those making less then 100,000 dollars a year MORE then those making a million a year... not the ones that give a crumb to the working folks and a steak dinner to the wealthy. They don't NEED their congressmen making live easier for them as much as the rest of us do. Focus your effort on the 80%... not the 20%.

    April 19, 2014 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  21. Jmgest@optonline.net

    HAHA unfortunately Apple is not free market. They control everything. They don't like you...no app in their store. So GOP is finally telling the truth. We will control you and you have no say!

    April 19, 2014 02:59 pm at 2:59 pm |
  22. JustForMe2

    More like iPhony party.

    April 19, 2014 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  23. Carol

    Sounds good, in fact it sounds like the United States of America we and our children grew up in. Clear water is always better than cloudy water, you can see to the bottom and what lies ahead of you. Right now it is getting closer to muddy.

    April 19, 2014 03:03 pm at 3:03 pm |
  24. bob

    I love when ignorant old men try to use"hip" topics to make a point when they have no idea what they are talking about ;-)

    April 19, 2014 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  25. raforrester

    Apple heavily regulates who can put apps on its iPhone, and checks them out thoroughly for being offensive or harmful before they will put them in the App Store, which is the only way to get apps onto your iPhone. It does not allow anyone to use Java to write apps for the iPhone, because that would make it easy to migrate apps to other phones, and it provides the software that is needed for writing apps itself. In short, Apple development is the Nanny State of software.

    Sounds like Alexander is endorsing a strongly regulated environment.

    April 19, 2014 03:06 pm at 3:06 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20