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Some People Say, “Republicans Don’t Care"
March 18, 2013 6:57 AM   Subscribe

The Republican National Committee released its "autopsy" report [PDF] today, analyzing what's wrong with the Grand Old Party after two presidential defeats, with recommendations.
posted by chavenet (247 comments total) 21 users marked this as a favorite

 
Autopsy : inspection and dissection of a body after death.

If only that were true.
posted by HuronBob at 7:04 AM on March 18, 2013 [38 favorites]


“There is a genuine generational split in the Republican Party on that issue. Many, many young conservatives are for gay rights, are for gay marriage and we openly talk about that, acknowledge that and welcome that,” he said. “That is part of what a big tent should be about. You don’t find that in the Democratic Party.”

Yes, if there's one thing liberals are known for, it's their lockstep agreement on every major doctrinal issue!
posted by showbiz_liz at 7:05 AM on March 18, 2013 [86 favorites]


CTRL+F "rape"

0 results found.
posted by zombieflanders at 7:05 AM on March 18, 2013 [77 favorites]


If the GOP remains stagnant on message, policy, appeal and mechanics, it will atrophy as a national party.

One can hope!
posted by grouse at 7:06 AM on March 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


IS this the 'bargaining phase' or the 'angry phase'? Because when such intelligent people as Sarah Palin are not only still listened too, but have the gall to blame the consultants rather than the.. you know.. candidates they haven't quite reached acceptance stage yet.
posted by edgeways at 7:07 AM on March 18, 2013 [16 favorites]


Republican Party ‘autopsy’ report says voters find it ‘scary’ and ‘narrow minded’

You don't say.
posted by googly at 7:08 AM on March 18, 2013 [12 favorites]


The farce is strong within this one.
posted by Repack Rider at 7:09 AM on March 18, 2013 [6 favorites]


CTRL+F "rape"

0 results found.


Several of the links mention how certain comments repelled women voters and that has got to stop. This is why bothering to read 1, maybe two of the links provided can be helpful to understanding what the post if about.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:09 AM on March 18, 2013 [16 favorites]


Relevant: What happens when CPAC puts on a panel called How Not to Sound Racist?

If you checked: "white supremacists/Slaver Rebellion apologists show up, cause mischief", go to the head of the class.
posted by MartinWisse at 7:09 AM on March 18, 2013 [39 favorites]


The "bold" recommendations at the "recommendations" link do seem bold for the GOP, but seem completely understated for the real world. It's an interesting dichotomy.
posted by OmieWise at 7:09 AM on March 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


So basically what I'm hearing is "we need to encase every single political view not encased directly by the Democratic Party"... Instead of creating a viable third party for far-right Republicans who aren't extreme-right like most of the GOP leadership, we're just going to continue forcing this one-size-fits-all monolith on everyone? Way to be democratic, bros
posted by Mooseli at 7:11 AM on March 18, 2013


(Of course, the Dems are guilty of same, but at least their propaganda isn't so realpolitiky about it)
posted by Mooseli at 7:12 AM on March 18, 2013


Surely this.
posted by I'm Doing the Dishes at 7:12 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


In all seriousness, this:

It recommended that the party reach out to Hispanics, Asian and Pacific Islander Americans, African-Americans, women and young people by hiring more diverse staff and recruiting minority and female candidates.

combined with this:

“We have become expert in how to provide ideological reinforcement to like-minded people, but devastatingly we have lost the ability to be persuasive with, or welcoming to, those who do not agree with us on every issue.”

makes it sound like their strategy is going to be less "stop having policies that hurt minorities" and more "convince minorities that even though some of our policies hurt them, they should vote for us anyway."
posted by showbiz_liz at 7:12 AM on March 18, 2013 [46 favorites]


Surely "necropsy" is more appropriate for a dead elephant, right?

The "bold" recommendations at the "recommendations" link do seem bold for the GOP, but seem completely understated for the real world. It's an interesting dichotomy.


Not to cut them any slack at all, but they are supposed to be the conservative party, so that, at least, kind of makes sense. Of course, this just means that they are out of step with most of the country, which isn't exactly news.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 7:12 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


Which one mentions the 47% Strategy?
posted by Mezentian at 7:13 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Several of the links mention how certain comments repelled women voters and that has got to stop. This is why bothering to read 1, maybe two of the links provided can be helpful to understanding what the post if about.

You're right, in this bold new GOP era, you're allowed to have disgusting viewpoints on sexual assault and women's bodies, you're just not supposed to say anything while voting against things like the Violence Against Women Act (which a majority of the GOP did).

Got it.
posted by zombieflanders at 7:14 AM on March 18, 2013 [11 favorites]


their strategy is going to be less "stop having policies that hurt minorities" and more "convince minorities that even though some of our policies hurt them, they should vote for us anyway."

To be "fair", again, this has worked for quite some time for them with poor white people, so trying to roll out the "vote against your interests because we scare you to do so" to other groups makes a weird, sad kind of sense.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 7:14 AM on March 18, 2013 [21 favorites]


Maybe the era of being conservative on social issues is dead.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 7:14 AM on March 18, 2013


Crack the Party.
There's a "conservative" case for gay marriage. There's a "conservative" case for environmentalism (used to be called conservation). There's a "conservative" case for financial reform, for de-militarization, for lots of things.

The Republicans don't make them on any consistent basis, don't make them their party platform, and don't appear interested in actual solutions to the problems that face us today.

The American Conservative:The GOP's Vietnam
The root of the GOP’s problem now is the same as that of the Democrats in 1969: the party’s reputation has been ruined by a botched, unnecessary war—Vietnam in the case of the Democrats, Iraq for the GOP. This may sound implausible: every political scientist knows that Americans don’t care about foreign policy; certainly they don’t vote based on it. But foreign policy is not just about foreign policy: it’s also about culture.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 7:15 AM on March 18, 2013 [16 favorites]


Maybe the era of being conservative on social issues is dead.

Not sure if serious.
posted by zombieflanders at 7:17 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


the man of twists and turns,

That makes sense if you use an outdated definition of conservatism that no one uses today.
posted by MisantropicPainforest at 7:17 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


Romney blames loss on successfully communicating his message to minorities.
posted by Lemurrhea at 7:19 AM on March 18, 2013 [18 favorites]


TAC: Beyond Fox News - "Meet The Post-Movement Conservatives"
Of course, the Viereck disposition was never meant for the high-pitched fervors of movement conservatism. Viereck himself accepted the New Deal and trade unions as “counter-revolutionary” measures and acknowledged the rootedness of both the American conservative tradition and our “moderate native liberalism.” “The Burkean builds on the concrete existing historical base, not on a vacuum of abstract wishful thinking,” he wrote. He warned against conservatism as a zero-sum political program, and he decried its adherents’ stubborn ambivalence toward McCarthyism as the movement’s “original sin.” He was equally uncomfortable with its later fixation on Goldwater: “Fortunately [Russell] Kirk’s positive contribution sometimes almost balances such embarrassing ventures into practical national politics.”

Above all, Viereck worried that a politically charged conservatism would degenerate into “a transient fad irrelevant to real needs.” A static conservatism “does real harm when it … enters short-run politics conjuring up mirages to conceal sordid realities or to distract from them.” He quoted a 1953 essay by philanthropist August Heckscher: “Conservatism at best remains deeper and more pervasive than any party; and a party that does claim it exclusively is likely to deform and exploit it for its own purposes.”
posted by the man of twists and turns at 7:19 AM on March 18, 2013 [4 favorites]


Not sure if serious.

I am being serious. You're not going to win in 2016 if you oppose gay rights and the right to choose.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 7:20 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


To be brutally honest, without its racist, sexist homophobic core there's nothing in the Republican Party that you can't get from the Democrats, as both parties' politics outside of what we called "lifestyle issues" back in the nineties are more or less rightwing in both economical and foreign policy: devoted to the free market and maintaining America's military standing. Ideologically, there's little difference between the parties had the GOP not been so deliberately bigoted.

Suppose the GOP does honestly attempt to rid itself from these bigotries, what would it gain, after four - five decades of deliberately chasing the white resentment vote? How long would it take before the groups of voters it would like to gain -- "Hispanics, Asian and Pacific Islander Americans, African-Americans, women and young people" -- would actually trust the party to fight for its interests and not throw them over board if/when the alter kakker brigades start grumbling?

In other words, is there room for the GOP to become a normal conservative party, perhaps in the style of an European christian-democrat party, that is not already taken by the Democrats and is there an electorate waiting for them to occupy said space?
posted by MartinWisse at 7:21 AM on March 18, 2013 [17 favorites]


There is a great deal of common sense advice in the pdf. It's definitely worth reading.

From early on:
6. The Republican Party must be the champion of those who seek to climb the economic ladder of life. Low-income Americans are hard-working people who want to become hard-working middle-income Americans. Middle-income Americans want to become upper-middle-income, and so on. We need to help everyone make it in America.
7. We have to blow the whistle at corporate malfeasance and attack corporate welfare. We should speak out when a company liquidates itself and its executives receive bonuses but rank-and-file workers are left unemployed. We should speak out when CEOs receive tens of millions of dollars in retirement packages but middle-class workers have not had a meaningful raise in years.
8. If we believe our policies are the best ones to improve the lives of the American people, all the American people, our candidates and office holders need to do a better job talking in normal, people-oriented terms and we need to go to communities where Republicans do not normally go to listen and make our case. We need to campaign among Hispanic, black, Asian, and gay Americans and demonstrate that we care about them, too.

Which sounds nice, doesn't it? Especially that last one: 'If we could just talk to them and convince them we care, they'd vote for us!' The thing is... Republican ideology and policies clearly aren't aimed at improving the lives of minorities or lower-income Americans. If they were, they'd get more votes from those segments. Republican economic and social policies and machinations literally work to disenfranchise minorities, gays, women and the poor and keep them second-class citizens. Some of this is addressed in the pdf. But considering the massive shift to the right the party has undergone in the last decade, it seems really doubtful they'll listen or attempt to shift their ideological stances.
posted by zarq at 7:21 AM on March 18, 2013 [12 favorites]


There's really nothing I can say to the current GOP other than "Fuck you". That's not a emotional responsible, it's based on a rational appraisal of the party. Under George Bush Jr. they had no problem bleeding the country dry for a phony war and saying "fuck you" to anyone who wasn't a white male. They worked their ass off to turn gay marriage into an issue on 2004 on a state level, to bring out the crazy racist vote.

I'm not aware of a single Republican who called out other party members for attempting to suppress the vote in the 2012 elections. They praised the shit that went down with unions in Wisconsin. They've spent spent decades saying screw you to everyone else. They're currently dragging the party from one financial crisis to another, fought like hell against a health care plan a member of their own party put into place on a state level, have behaved like immature frat boys with women voters and become the whores for big business interests.

As a black guy, I'm open to voting for a party other than Democrats, but with the GOP's current antics, I will happily continue voting for mediocre Democrats if the Republicans keep up their usual shit.

Fuck the current GOP and burn it with fire.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:21 AM on March 18, 2013 [99 favorites]


The 97-page report also recommend that the GOP champion low-income Americans and do a better job of “connecting people to our policies” rather than sounding “like bookkeepers.”

According to the report, focus groups of former Republicans in Ohio and Iowa found that the Republican Party is seen as “scary,” “narrow minded,” “out of touch” and made up of “stuffy old men.”


Being “scary,” “narrow minded,” “out of touch” and made up of “stuffy old men” is not the result of sounding "like bookkeepers". It's the result of sounding like hateful, bigoted, intellectually bankrupt old men.

I could respect a party that sounded like bookkeepers. Because bookkeepers wouldn't go out of their way to alienate women and minorities. Bookkeepers don't exist to piss off their competitors. As it stands, the GOP has nothing to say to women and minorities. And its biggest justification to exist is to piss off liberals. That's about the extent of its intellect. Its hallmarks are proudly backing failed foreign affairs, and failed fiscal policy, having yet to distance itself from Dubya's legacy.
posted by 2N2222 at 7:22 AM on March 18, 2013 [24 favorites]


As long as large devout families send their six kids to public school for the cost of 100K per year to the taxpayer, and yet still believe they aren't on welfare and are completely self-reliant, then we'll always have a Republican party. Brainwashing like that is probably genetic and a free gift to the would-be masters of the universe.
posted by Brian B. at 7:22 AM on March 18, 2013 [6 favorites]


Autopsy : inspection and dissection of a body after death.

If only that were true.


So... vivisection, then?
posted by ricochet biscuit at 7:24 AM on March 18, 2013 [5 favorites]


I am being serious. You're not going to win in 2016 if you oppose gay rights and the right to choose.

That's not guaranteed (look at the rise in anti-choice laws in the last several years), but even if it was, there's almost no evidence that the GOP will stop opposing them. Which is their problem, I guess, but the likelihood of "the era of being conservative on social issues is dead" is still very, very low.
posted by zombieflanders at 7:25 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Maybe the era of being conservative on social issues is dead.

Or maybe they could use their social conservative powers for good. I may be an unabashed socialist liberal, but I could definitely get on board with fighting the spread of casino gambling under a banner of morality. And seeing as how some presumably drunken idiot in my neighborhood decided to celebrate St. Patrick's Day last night with extremely loud fireworks around 11pm, I might be amenable to a little old-fashioned temperance as well.
posted by RonButNotStupid at 7:28 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


Brandon Blatcher: "I'm not aware of a single Republican who called out other party members for attempting to suppress the vote in the 2012 elections. "

Charlie Crist. But he was no longer governor of Florida by then.

On the other hand, there's a theory that the GOP's voter suppression tactics so pissed off minorities that they backfired.
posted by zarq at 7:30 AM on March 18, 2013 [6 favorites]


CTRL+F "racism"

Not all results were returned (too many results were found).
posted by Fizz at 7:30 AM on March 18, 2013


I find it very odd that social issues get mentioned in so many comments here but the economic issues are ignored. After all, the GOP really would love to privatize all the programs that were developed by FDR and the Dems, and those programs are essential to folks not doing well in our economy and they too are programs needed by a middle class that yearly takes a greater beating with the pay gap.
posted by Postroad at 7:31 AM on March 18, 2013 [10 favorites]


My Google-fu is failing me, but has the (black) host of that CPAC panel on racism actually denounced the white-supremacist heckler in the audience yet?

He seemed incredibly nonplussed about it immediately following the incident, which is just completely incomprehensible to me. How can he claim any legitimacy without denouncing the guy in the strongest terms imaginable?

For the sake of political diversity, I'd like to believe that the leaders of the Frederick Douglass Republicans and the Log Cabin Republicans aren't turncoats who sold their souls to gain credibility and status with their enemies. However, that's pretty difficult to believe when the scripted response to a pro-slavery white supremacist is "Eh, whatever."

Why does the party profoundly lack the ability to self-correct, or throw its most egregiously terrible members under the bus? It took months for the GOP establishment to distance itself from Todd Akin, which speaks volumes about the rest of the party.
posted by schmod at 7:33 AM on March 18, 2013 [8 favorites]


I find it very odd that social issues get mentioned in so many comments here but the economic issues are ignored.

Because the GOP isn't making any noise about changing their economic stances like they are with social issues. If anything, they're calcifying them as quickly as possible. But that's somewhat irrelevant in a discussion about what they're proposing on changing.
posted by zombieflanders at 7:33 AM on March 18, 2013


Josh Marshall
So drastically shorter primary phase, much earlier nominating convention, many fewer debates. Aren’t all of Reince Priebus’s structural reforms basically aimed at dramatically reducing the time period in which the actual Republican party base is on display for the public at large?
posted by zombieflanders at 7:37 AM on March 18, 2013 [13 favorites]


How Not To Sound Racist

In this picture there are forty people. None of them ARE RACIST. In this film we hope to show you HOW NOT TO BE RACIST.

HM GOVERNMENT, PUBLIC SERVICE FILM NO. 42 PARA 6. "HOW NOT TO BE RACIST"
posted by JHarris at 7:41 AM on March 18, 2013 [12 favorites]


I am being serious. You're not going to win in 2016 if you oppose gay rights and the right to choose.

All that indicates is that those two issues (if you are correct, and I think you are woefully optimistic but what the heck let's take it on premise) are no longer on the table, not that "the era of being conservative on social issues is dead". There are lots of other issues to be conservative on; there may well be issues in 2016 to be conservative on that aren't really issues right now, or the extent of which isn't currently realized. Conservatism in its purest form, as the opposition to radical change, never goes out of style, because it's not tied to a fixed ideology or political goals. (Cf. tmotat's link to Viereck, above.)

And even with that said, acknowledging that the current Republican party isn't especially 'conservative' but more regressive / 'reactionary traditionalist', I think it's dangerous to assume that just because a consensus appears to exist with regard to a particular issue at some point, that the issue is dead — as we've seen in the past few election cycles, some far-right Republicans have managed to reopen the discussion on goddamn birth control. We've been arguing about that shit since the 30s, I think most people thought it was settled in the 70s, and certainly a past generation's problem by the 90s. And now we're finding out that no, there are apparently enough people around who are unsold on the whole non-procreative-sex thing, or at least are willing to say that with a straight face, to make a viable wedge issue out of it.
posted by Kadin2048 at 7:41 AM on March 18, 2013 [11 favorites]


Postroad: "I find it very odd that social issues get mentioned in so many comments here but the economic issues are ignored. After all, the GOP really would love to privatize all the programs that were developed by FDR and the Dems, and those programs are essential to folks not doing well in our economy and they too are programs needed by a middle class that yearly takes a greater beating with the pay gap."

Downsizing the government and cutting excessive spending polls extremely well with members of both parties.

Cutting any one specific program polls catastrophically bad. Pollsters are routinely unable to find a single program that a plurality of Americans are in favor of cutting.

Vague noncommittal rhetoric about "trimming the fat" and unrealistic budget proposals are fantastic PR for the Republicans, especially when they can blame the Democrats for "forcing" them to adopt a budget that actually funds the things that (their own) constituents depend on.

Paul Ryan's budget proposal has exactly 0% chance of being adopted, and even if it did, it would be quickly reversed by the next congress, as the changes would be deeply unpopular with virtually every American. However, because the plan is completely insane (and thus unviable) the Republicans get credit for proposing a lean budget.
posted by schmod at 7:42 AM on March 18, 2013 [11 favorites]


Charlie Crist. But he was no longer governor of Florida by then.

Hurray, we've found one. It would nice if the party that wraps itself up in the flag could show a bit more backbone.

On the other hand, there's a theory that the GOP's voter suppression tactics so pissed off minorities that they backfired.

Yep. At this point, pretty much every black kid grows up being taught how badly the GOP has fucked over the people. I personally have 40 years of those stories, backed up by seeing and living through the actual antics of the party. The chances of minorities becoming a huge bloc for the current Republican party are small.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:43 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


My Google-fu is failing me, but has the (black) host of that CPAC panel on racism actually denounced the white-supremacist heckler in the audience yet?

Thinkprogress:

K. Carl Smith, the panelist from Fredrick Douglass Republicans, released a statement following the media storm related to the racist outburst in his panel. Astonishingly, he reserves the brunt of his criticism for the female reporter who raised objections to the comments being made in the room:

I was invited by the Tea Party Patriots to conduct a breakout session entitled: “Trump The Race Card” and share the Frederick Douglass Republican Message. In the middle of my delivery, while discussing the 1848 “Women’s Rights Convention,” I was rudely interrupted by a woman working for the Voice of Russia. She abruptly asked me: “How many black women were there?” This question was intentionally disruptive and coercive with no way of creating a positive dialogue.

In addition, a young man who wasn’t a Tea Party Patriot, made some racially insensitive comments, he said: “Blacks should be happy that the slave master gave them shelter, clothing, and food.” At the conclusion of the breakout session, I further explained to him the Frederick Douglass Republican Message which he embraced, bought a book, and we left as friends.

posted by Comrade_robot at 7:45 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


One conservative figure who actually does seem interested in reaching out across the aisle is Chris Christie. Who was not invited to this weekend's Conservative Political Action Conference for not being conservative enough.

My never-gonna-happen fever dream is for someone like this to get so totally fed up with the GOP that they pull a Nader and run a third-party campaign in which they decry the complete insanity of the modern GOP. If nothing else it would guarantee a place in the history books...
posted by showbiz_liz at 7:46 AM on March 18, 2013 [5 favorites]


Republicans are the current further-right/conservative party in America. And so, by default, they are the party of angry scared white people. They have been the party of angry scared white people since Lyndon Johnson called the play on the South for the next generation with better accuracy than Babe Ruth. They don't want black people and Latinos to vote, and when the efforts in 2010 to use redistricting to make black people voting less effective didn't kick the Democrat out of the White House they moved to just blatantly working to say black people and Latinos shouldn't vote at all.

And meanwhile, on the other side that isn't just blaming black people for having the audacity to not just up and leave after their grandparents were brought over in shackles, The further-right party remains the party of letting business do whatever it wants... but that includes using quasi-slave labor coming across the border. They want cheap labor, cheaply-made products and huge savings on eliminating pesky things like living wages and safety regulations. Except those people are staying, and creating families, and they are voting Democratic. Because they're being paid nothing, and mistreated, and racially profiled and want to get health care and education and safer apartments and guess what, it's the Democrats claiming they'll take care of that.

The minority outreach issue is the screaming death rattles of the Republican Party strategy that has, literally, endured for a generation. They're running out of ways to maintain the play. If the polls for Hillary Clinton are even close to accurate, we are facing a situation where Texas could be in play for Democrats in 2016. If that happens, it's over. Democrats win for the rest of our lifetimes.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 7:46 AM on March 18, 2013 [5 favorites]


One conservative figure who actually does seem interested in reaching out across the aisle is Christ Christie.

They certainly do seem set on martyring him.
posted by COBRA! at 7:47 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


Downsizing the government and cutting excessive spending polls extremely well with members of both parties.

Cutting any one specific program polls catastrophically bad. Pollsters are routinely unable to find a single program that a plurality of Americans are in favor of cutting.


Still true after 40 years: Voters prefer cuts in theory, spending in practice

Yep. At this point, pretty much every black kid grows up being taught how badly the GOP has fucked over the people. I personally have 40 years of those stories, backed up by seeing and living through the actual antics of the party. The chances of minorities becoming a huge bloc for the current Republican party are small.

Which may not matter since the Justices' responses to the oral arguments on repealing Section 5 of the Voting Rights Act basically break down to "5 of us missed half of the stories during the election because we totes believe the GOP won't engage in shenanigans."
posted by zombieflanders at 7:47 AM on March 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


there's nothing in the Republican Party that you can't get from the Democrats, as both parties' politics outside of what we called "lifestyle issues" back in the nineties are more or less rightwing in both economical and foreign policy: devoted to the free market and maintaining America's military standing

If you're using such a broad definition of "devoted to the free market" as to be useless, sure. I can promise you there is plenty of daylight between the GOP and the Democrats on economic issues if you live here and are actually affected by government economic policy.

To some Europeans, I'm sure all American economics looks like Robber Barons squabling, but to if you listen to some Americans, Europeans economics is Communism, full stop. Both are lazy over-simplications.
posted by spaltavian at 7:50 AM on March 18, 2013 [5 favorites]


If the polls for Hillary Clinton are even close to accurate, we are facing a situation where Texas could be in play for Democrats in 2016. If that happens, it's over. Democrats win for the rest of our lifetimes.

People were saying the same thing about her husband back in 92 and Obama in 08, and look what 94 and 10 brought us.

I'll believe it when I see it.
posted by zombieflanders at 7:50 AM on March 18, 2013 [8 favorites]


What happens when CPAC puts on a panel called How Not to Sound Racist?

The National Review publishes a piece called "Putting the Shine on CPAC" about how wonderful it is that a (black) man who lost his retirement pension following an airline default can still provide a good old fashioned shoe shine to CPAC's "image-conscious group," complete with picture of said man polishing the shoes of another (white) man.

I mean, really? You're just fucking with me now, aren't you?
posted by octobersurprise at 7:51 AM on March 18, 2013 [55 favorites]


If the polls for Hillary Clinton are even close to accurate, we are facing a situation where Texas could be in play for Democrats in 2016. If that happens, it's over. Democrats win for the rest of our lifetimes.

Polls this far out are useless. Texas may be in the mix a few cycles from now, but not in 2016. However, the trends pusing the upper-Midwest towards the GOP are only a little slower than the trends pushing the Southwest to the Democrats. We'll probably only see a cycle or two of Democratic domination, then the coalition will start to fray.
posted by spaltavian at 7:52 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


If the polls for Hillary Clinton are even close to accurate

I think they probably aren't. DH and I are lifelong Dem. voters and neither one of us would vote for her.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 7:53 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


CTRL+F "rape"

0 results found.


Republicans Reach Out to Women with New "No Punch Pretty Lady" Bill
posted by Apropos of Something at 7:55 AM on March 18, 2013 [5 favorites]


Brandon Blatcher: " Hurray, we've found one. It would nice if the party that wraps itself up in the flag could show a bit more backbone."

Agreed.

I used to think the American people were better served with two parties butting heads. But for 25+ years now, the GOP has done its damndest to steal elections outright between their gerrymandering tactics and voter suppression. Trying to reverse court decisions and elections they disagree with. Attempts to outright go against the will of the voting electorate through legislation. Their ongoing machinations to fight civil rights for women and gays and minorities and screw over the poor. Fuck 'em. The GOP has become a menace to democracy.

Yep. At this point, pretty much every black kid grows up being taught how badly the GOP has fucked over the people. I personally have 40 years of those stories, backed up by seeing and living through the actual antics of the party. The chances of minorities becoming a huge bloc for the current Republican party are small."

Good.
posted by zarq at 7:57 AM on March 18, 2013 [6 favorites]


If the polls for Hillary Clinton are even close to accurate, we are facing a situation where Texas could be in play for Democrats in 2016. If that happens, it's over. Democrats win for the rest of our lifetimes.

I've seen those polls and I think a big chunk of them can be attributed to the fact that 1. everyone knows who she is, and not everyone knows the people she's being polled against and 2. people have nostalgia for the Bill Clinton presidency, so if they haven't really given it a ton of thought and are asked if Hillary Clinton should be the next president they'll be like "sure! Why not?" There's no way those polls reflect what would actually happen in the general election.

I do think that if she so much as says she's running in the primary, she has a 70% chance of being the next president, though.
posted by showbiz_liz at 8:01 AM on March 18, 2013


Thinking about it some more and the idea of listening to the GOP and attempting to have a productive conversation, I've come to a conclusion: why bother? Don't need'em and they've been jerks for decades.

If anything, I'd prefer to bring a chair and a bucket of popcorn and enjoy the show of watching the current GOP die.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:08 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


So Much For Those Antiwar Youth
[W]hen asked if it was a “mistake” for the United States to send troops to fight in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Vietnam, 18-29 year-olds were the most hawkish of the major age cohorts on all three wars, and over-65s the most dovish. The most stunning gap is over Vietnam, where under-30s think it was “not a mistake” for the U.S. to send troops by a 53-41 margin, while over-65s think it was a mistake by a 70-23 margin. The only gap that rivals that one in the survey is between Republicans and Democrats on Iraq, where the former say sending troops was not a mistake by a 66-30 margin, and the latter say it was a mistake by a 73-22 margin.

Gallup doesn’t give us cross-tabs by party and age, but it does make you wonder if young Republicans may be super-hawks rather than libertarian non-interventionists. And I personally have to wonder what kind of history instruction under-30s have received when it comes to Vietnam.
posted by zombieflanders at 8:10 AM on March 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


Did somebody mention Hillary Clinton?

Hillary Clinton announces her support for gay marriage

posted by chavenet at 8:11 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Hillary Clinton announces her support for gay marriage

Neither Clinton used the word "sorry" for DOMA. Meh.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 8:12 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Hilary Clinton makes the conservative argument for gay marriage. Where does that leave moderate Republicans? Stay with the bigots or agree with Hilary Clinton?

Well played.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 8:15 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Astonishingly, he reserves the brunt of his criticism for the female reporter who raised objections to the comments being made in the room

I am strangely not astonished - he didn't get where he is today by not know what is and isn't a safe target to pick on.
posted by Artw at 8:16 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


I still don't understand why Republicans won't take legalized marijuana as a central tenant of the party. It would garner the same bi-partisan support as Rand Paul doing his dog and pony show over domestic drones and it would be a way that you could pretend to have new and exciting ideas while still sticking to your big business focus.

It also gives you a states rights angle to attack the Obama administration, since his DOJ has stated multiple times that the legalization referendums passed at the state level were unenforceable and against federal law.

You can talk about the drug war as a massive federal spending boondoggle. Point out how many billions of dollars we spend each year policing something that's probably less dangerous than alcohol, and furthermore, could be turned in to a source of revenue which will provide a way to fix up the debt that your party has made its career out of constantly crying about.

If your base is so concerned with its freedoms and rights, then why not get them asking the reason that they can't consume a relatively harmless drug in the privacy of their own homes? It makes so much sense!

If you want the youth vote, then doing this one thing can guarantee you a certain portion of that for a very, very long time. Instead of having your potential young voters pull a meaningless lever for Ron Paul every four years, you could actually have them voting for you.

Of course, I'm more than happy to watch the GOP flounder (although I'm not getting too optimistic due to the huge advantage that they have in congressional elections thanks to gerrymandering), but to my mind the drug war is such a pernicious element of life in America, that any move forward, even if it's taken by the C. Montgomery Burnses of the political world, is a step in the right direction.

But, of course, they'll probably just double down on race baiting and voter suppression.
posted by codacorolla at 8:22 AM on March 18, 2013 [10 favorites]


The problem the GOP has it that it wants to appeal to women, minorities and many other small and not so small groups without actually having to create policies that appeal to them.

To some degree, this makes sense: it has convinced poor, non-coastal white voters that it has their interests at heart, both economically and socially. In theory, there is a powerful case study for how the same tactics could win over other voters with bait and switch politics.

In practice, Obama is confounding them: by mixing up quite hawkish positions on issues like defence and security with relatively progressive ones on healthcare and equality he is keeping less hardline Republicans on a long enough leash that they don't feel disenfranchised enough to vote emotionally.

Republicans aren't ready yet for the hard conversation about a wholesale return to fiscal conservatism and proper small government that includes downscaling defense and security. In the meantime, I suspect they'll just continue the hunt for a charismatic Reagan character who can glide over the issues and sell the unsellable.
posted by MuffinMan at 8:23 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


On the other hand, there's a theory that the GOP's voter suppression tactics so pissed off minorities that they backfired.

Yep. At this point, pretty much every black kid grows up being taught how badly the GOP has fucked over the people. I personally have 40 years of those stories, backed up by seeing and living through the actual antics of the party. The chances of minorities becoming a huge bloc for the current Republican party are small.

Let's not assume that "minorities" is necessarily limited to Black people. But if "huge" means a large enough number to swing an election, yeah no.

If anything, I'd prefer to bring a chair and a bucket of popcorn and enjoy the show of watching the current GOP die.

Problem is, it's not going to die quietly or quickly enough, and it's going to pull a lot of innocent people down into the abyss with it.
posted by fuse theorem at 8:23 AM on March 18, 2013


roomthreeseventeen: "Maybe the era of being conservative on social issues is dead."

The fact that the winner of the CPAC straw poll just introduced a "personhood" bill last week would seem to contradict that idea.
posted by octothorpe at 8:23 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


Unlike domestic drones they'd actually be expected to deliver on something there. Also everyone knows the deal with Libertarians: you get the liberty bit last or never.
posted by Artw at 8:24 AM on March 18, 2013


still don't understand why Republicans won't take legalized marijuana as a central tenant of the party.

The GOP invented the War on Drugs.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 8:25 AM on March 18, 2013 [5 favorites]


How can he claim any legitimacy without denouncing the guy in the strongest terms imaginable?

I have to wonder if maybe he's more interested in right-wing talking head job security than legitimacy.
posted by Zed at 8:26 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Let's not assume that "minorities" is necessarily limited to Black people. But if "huge" means a large enough number to swing an election, yeah no.

No one assumed that or should assume that when it comes to the GOP. It's clear they'd love to attract the majority of the Hispanic, along with a few Asians and Blacks. But it's pretty clear that a sizable population of the current GOP doesn't want to do much work in attracting those votes.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:27 AM on March 18, 2013


Didn't they have a sizable Hispanic vote before they shat the bed on that?
posted by Artw at 8:28 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


The GOP invented the War on Drugs.

Oh, I understand the irony, but intellectual dishonest has never stopped them before. Also, the late 70s and early 80s are literally a lifetime ago for some voters.
posted by codacorolla at 8:34 AM on March 18, 2013


Maybe the era of being conservative on social issues is dead.

Tides roll in.
Tides roll out.
Tides roll in.
Tides roll out.
posted by Thorzdad at 8:34 AM on March 18, 2013 [4 favorites]


Artw: "Didn't they have a sizable Hispanic vote before they shat the bed on that?"

Yes, but it wasn't as if Republicans had a majority with that demographic. (And 'sizeable' is a relative term.) See: Hispanics in America: Politics.

Latinos tend to be more ideologically conservative than their voting records reflect. If Republicans could find a way to appeal to that community without sounding like idiots, they'd probably gain a bunch of undecided voters.

Also worth noting, re: Texas: The state has a large Latino population with low voter turnouts. The most likely way to turn Texas "Blue" is to galvanize and encourage them to vote in favor of their own interests. Neither the Dems nor Repubs have been able to do that yet.
posted by zarq at 8:37 AM on March 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


Oh, I understand the irony, but intellectual dishonest has never stopped them before. Also, the late 70s and early 80s are literally a lifetime ago for some voters.

Well, sure, absolutely. But what I meant was that a lot of Republicans stay in power because of the War on Drugs. Because people who use drugs are criminals, you see, they are the bad guys who need to be locked up, and the good Republican families deserve protection from them.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 8:39 AM on March 18, 2013


Didn't they have a sizable Hispanic vote before they shat the bed on that?

They did! Bush did pretty well by just being personable and speaking spanish. Today's GOP refuses to do either.
posted by Garm at 8:39 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Latins tend to be more ideologically conservative than their voting records reflect.

Huh? Latinos have been more liberal than Americans at large for some time now, except maybe on abortion, and even that may not be the case anymore.
posted by zombieflanders at 8:39 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


Didn't they have a sizable Hispanic vote before they shat the bed on that?

I may be mangling the names here, but this is how I understand it: Cuban-Americans tend to be more Republican. Mexican-Americans tend to be overwhelmingly Democratic. There's far more of the latter than the former in the US.

There's an idea that Hispanics are 'naturally Republican,' but it's a flawed idea.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:39 AM on March 18, 2013 [6 favorites]


Oh, I understand the irony, but intellectual dishonest has never stopped them before. Also, the late 70s and early 80s are literally a lifetime ago for some voters.

It's easy to say "the GOP should move left on drugs because it would convince some moderates to vote for them," but you might as well say "the GOP should just stop being the conservative party" at that point. The conservative argument has always been that drugs destroy peoples' heath, relationships, families and minds and lead directly to crime and rebellion and laziness and, basically, to the downfall of society itself. Expecting them to completely pivot on this issue is crazy.
posted by showbiz_liz at 8:43 AM on March 18, 2013


Didn't they have a sizable Hispanic vote before they shat the bed on that?

W, for whatever his faults, actually was right about them needing to reach out to Hispanics and courted them pretty aggressively (defining "aggressively" by modern Republican party standards where even daring to speak Spanish is daring and ballsy rather than bellowing WHY I HAVE TO PUSH 1 TO GET ENGLISH?! and not saying things about "self-deportation"). And yes, it's weird to think of W. as "progressive" in any sense, but, well, here we are.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 8:43 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


I still don't understand why Republicans won't take legalized marijuana...

Because they'd alienate a key voting block, the "values voters" who want to legislate morality. It's the same group, courted by Karl Rove for the abortion wars, that keeps them on the wrong side of the gay rights issue.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 8:45 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


I'm reasonably confident that HC won't run in 2016, unless the Democrats have a long-term strategy that requires them to field a one-term president.

However, her endorsement will carry a lot of weight. I'd (literally) bet money that the candidate that HC endorses will win the Democratic nomination.

If this prediction turns out to be false, the actual nominee is going to have a very difficult time in the General Election.
posted by schmod at 8:46 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


That Putting a Shine on CPAC article is just making pain in my head, I'm having a hard time believing we're not living in some dystopian tv show or I don't know what, I don't have words anymore.
posted by marxchivist at 8:49 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


the only thing they are actually introspective about is how they are perceived. it's not about whether their policies and ideals are screwed up; it's about doing everything they can not to change them while still attracting the voters their policies alienate.

what will be interesting is if the everyday folks of the party ever realize they've been basically corralled into being a target demographic for conservative marketing. there is no book or idea so crummy that they won't buy it. even the tea party, which was supposed to be all revolutionary and bold, made that so much worse.
posted by fallacy of the beard at 8:50 AM on March 18, 2013


Democrats win for the rest of our lifetimes.

Yeah, no. The US political system, at the Federal level, is carefully constructed so as not to be stable as a one-party system. Even if one of the major parties just vanished tomorrow, within a very short period you'd probably fracture the remaining party into two.

US politics rewards compromise, but it also rewards disagreement and gives disproportionate power to the minority party, and then it allows that power to be used to increase one's power until there's an equilibrium reached with the opposition. It's stable at two parties, but apparently not at any more than that (extra parties tend to collapse down into the two major ones when the going gets tough), and not at one.

If the Republican party disappeared tomorrow, then it would be necessary to reinvent them under another name; maybe the resulting fracture would be on slightly different ideological lines, but even that seems doubtful since the underlying electorate is still the same, and there would still be the same instinct to pander to the same desires by a slightly different bunch of avaricious would-be politicians. In the main, I suspect it wouldn't look all that different.
posted by Kadin2048 at 8:51 AM on March 18, 2013


It's easy to say "the GOP should move left on drugs because it would convince some moderates to vote for them," but you might as well say "the GOP should just stop being the conservative party" at that point. The conservative argument has always been that drugs destroy peoples' heath, relationships, families and minds and lead directly to crime and rebellion and laziness and, basically, to the downfall of society itself. Expecting them to completely pivot on this issue is crazy.

I'd say drug legalization is actually an easier pivot than most for the Republican party. It's an easy sell in terms of both "smaller government" and "state's rights," even if those alleged principles are often trumped on issues like drugs or abortion. There's also already some support on the right generally for legalization; Pat Robertson came out in favor of it last year and National Review has been backing it for years as far as I know.
posted by Bulgaroktonos at 8:55 AM on March 18, 2013


The simple fact of the matter is that the Republican governing coalition isn't big enough to win national elections based upon current and future demographics if they can't reduce Democratic voter turnout.

That's why they are pushing the envelope in terms of challenging voter registration because if they can make voting more difficult then people won't vote in the same numbers and reduced voter turnout almost always favors Republican candidates.

Republicans will continue to dominate down ticket races because so much money is flooding into state races and the Dems are definitely lagging behind in terms of growing local and state candidates in many states.

Republicans will try to use their dominance of the states and their current control over the SCOTUS to slow down any tide in favor of the Democrats long enough for them to rebrand themselves into a configuration that can win national elections. It's quite likely that they'll be partially successful but the next decade could be really interesting. If Hilary wins in 2016 (which seems quite likely) then it's a good chance that Democrats will be able to replace all the current liberal SCOTUS justices and at least 1 possibly 2 conservative justices which would basically be a major seachange in terms of how that body works.

If I was a Republican strategist though I'd be really concerned because the current base of frightened white older men aren't going to be around forever and it's increasing likely that the next generation won't be so incredibly intolerant.
posted by vuron at 8:55 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


I'm reasonably confident that HC won't run in 2016, unless the Democrats have a long-term strategy that requires them to field a one-term president.

However, her endorsement will carry a lot of weight. I'd (literally) bet money that the candidate that HC endorses will win the Democratic nomination.


I really doubt she would endorse before the primary is over (either literally or effectively). She has near-presidential stature, she's not going to spend that unwisely.

But she may very well run. The nomination will be hers if she wants it, (or at least it will seem that way in late 2014, early 2015 when she has to decide). Of course, her age and the likely Republican field will certainly factor heavily into that thought process. The likely Democratic field too; at this point it looks like Cuomo and O'Malley, but many candidates will catch fire, hit a wall, and rebound in the next 3 years.

The conservative argument has always been that drugs destroy peoples' heath, relationships, families and minds and lead directly to crime and rebellion and laziness and, basically, to the downfall of society itself.

This has been the liberal argument too. The perspective that younger votes have on drugs is decidedly libertarian.
posted by spaltavian at 9:00 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


The likely Democratic field too; at this point it looks like Cuomo and O'Malley, but many candidates will catch fire, hit a wall, and rebound in the next 3 years.


I would think Gillibrand and Warren will also be interested.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 9:02 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Warren is still too new and Gillibrand doesn't have enough national stature yet.

Age is the only major concern in regards to Hilary Clinton but honestly if she wants the nomination she'd get it pretty easily. There is no way an insurgent candidate would actually be able to defeat her next time since she'd basically inherit the OFA and suck all the establishment cash out of the system.

She's by no means a particularly liberal candidate but her numbers are incredible and she's owed so many favors by so many people that I don't see any other candidate being particularly viable in the primaries. I think the race would be to get on the ticket as her VP choice because that's a golden ticket to the white house for whoever gets it.

On the Republican side I think Jeb will probably get the nomination if he can get the stink of W off of him. His numbers with Latino voters are probably better than any of the other alternatives and he somehow manages to appear somewhat sane while still appealing to the right wing base.

I'm hoping that the Republicans field a whole bunch of egotistical assholes though because that really helped doom Romney this last time because he never was really able to reposition himself as a centrist until it was too late.
posted by vuron at 9:12 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


zombieflanders: " Huh? Latinos have been more liberal than Americans at large for some time now, except maybe on abortion, and even that may not be the case anymore."

Abortion, attitudes towards homosexuality and gay adoption. Pew. And yes, it is changing. But slowly. Of course, Latinos are much more progressive about gay marriage than FoxNews would like everyone to believe, though.
posted by zarq at 9:15 AM on March 18, 2013


Republicans taking over Twitter - hmmm... I somewhat doubt it, and if so is it going to help them more than domination of forwarded email in comic-sans?
posted by Artw at 9:22 AM on March 18, 2013


Isn't it clear they just aren't riling up the bigoted christian base enough? If they just only figure out how to say things bigoted enough without pissing off everyone else. I suggest they all waive bibles around at all times and pull out bigoted bible quotes in every speech so that they can please the ignorant bigots without everyone else being able to complain.  <snicker>
posted by jeffburdges at 9:22 AM on March 18, 2013


but honestly if she wants the nomination she'd get it pretty easily

I think it's next to impossible for her to get the nomination, but we'll see.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 9:23 AM on March 18, 2013


I think Latinos are more conservative on a whole number of social issues it's just that those social issues don't drive the decision-making process to the same level as they seem to drive some of the single issue value voters.

I mean there are some people that will simply be unable to vote for a pro-choice candidate even if they agree with that candidate on a whole host of other issues and voting for the Pro-Life candidate is direct in opposition to their economic self-interest.

I guess being constantly villified by a party for several decades has a tendency of driving you into the arms of the opposition...
posted by vuron at 9:25 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


Warren is still too new

You are aware this is exactly what everybody was saying about our current President when he was first elected to national office?
posted by zombieflanders at 9:27 AM on March 18, 2013 [6 favorites]


Hey, remember when Mitt Romney appeared before the NAACP and told them that repealing Obamacare was a top priority? That was a fuck you designed to appeal to the GOP base. People don't forget political moves like that. Quite the opposite, it's the manure that grows grudges.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 9:34 AM on March 18, 2013 [8 favorites]


I think Latinos are more conservative on a whole number of social issues it's just that those social issues don't drive the decision-making process to the same level as they seem to drive some of the single issue value voters.

That's my sense as well--speaking as a white guy living in a city that is 98% Mexican-American. Latinos here may be personally anti-abortion and anti-gay-marriage, but they don't feel the same compulsion to enforce their views through legislation that the evangelical right does. Economic issues are a larger driver of voting, and they tend very liberal there.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 9:34 AM on March 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


Obama was being pushed to the national spotlight in 2004. Obama also had a phenomenal team that really pushed a novel method for pursuing the nomination in 2008. If Clinton's organization hadn't been so slow to respond to the OFA strategy she would've been the nominee in 2008. I don't think there will be anywhere near as much room for an insurgent candidate in 2016 if HRC wants the nomination.

I don't love her as a candidate but I think she's got a ton of advantages that make her remarkably difficult to beat as a Democratic primary candidate (tons of fundraising prowess, favors owed, etc) and she's got a ton of advantages in a general election which make her a really appealing candidate for the establishment players in the Democratic party to gel around.

Her only really potentially disqualifying attribute is her age. But let's be honest that can be countered by going with a really dynamic VP choice.
posted by vuron at 9:38 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


Warren is still too new

You are aware this is exactly what everybody was saying about our current President when he was first elected to national office?


While true, this is apples to oranges. Obama won the nomination because he opposed the Iraq War from day one. It's not likely there will be another single issue that base so passionately sides on differently than the presumptive nominee. Had Hillary voted against the war in the Senate, I think we'd all be spitballing Vice President Obama's chances in 2016.

Also, no one is going to get such a dramatic and positive introduction to the country as Obama did at the 2004 convention.

A lot of exception skill from Obama and his team, and a lot of luck, lead to his capturing the nomination so early in his career. Not likely to happen again anytime soon. I like Warren, but she simply doesn't have the perfect moment like Obama did.
posted by spaltavian at 9:39 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


AUTOPSY REPORT

Subject name: The Republican Party

Time of death: The moment, in the 2008 campaign, when John McCain grabbed the mic from the woman at the town hall saying she was afraid that Obama was a terrorist.

Cause of Death: After Obama won, the GOP decided that their mistake was not in cultivating fear amongst voters, the mistake was snatching the microphone away from them. They've had control of the message ever since.
posted by dry white toast at 9:41 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


To be "fair", again, this has worked for quite some time for them with poor white people,

It has worked because the GOP has sold them on the idea that their lot in life is the fault of blacks, unions, bureacrats, feminists, taxes, immigrants and gays.

The phrase you see over and over again in these "How to fix the GOP" pieces is "reach out". The GOP doesn't know how to reach out, it only knows how to scare people. The problem is for those groups, the GOP is the bogeyman, and rightly so.
posted by dry white toast at 9:41 AM on March 18, 2013


Also, no one is going to get such a dramatic and positive introduction to the country as Obama did at the 2004 convention.

I would argue that Elizabeth Warren is already more popular than Obama was in 2004.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 9:41 AM on March 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


> You're right, in this bold new GOP era, you're allowed to have disgusting viewpoints on sexual assault and women's bodies, you're just not supposed to say anything while voting against things like the Violence Against Women Act (which a majority of the GOP did).

Canadian Conservatives are also being told to embrace a "don't say what you really think" strategy.
posted by The Card Cheat at 9:44 AM on March 18, 2013


And as personally great I think she may be, Warren's oratory skills are a lot more hit or miss than Obama's.

I think the nomination is H. Clinton's if she feels strong enough to run for it. Age really is the only issue. I could conceivably see Julian Castro as a VP pick. Might make the GOP have to work to defend TX
posted by edgeways at 9:44 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


edgeways: "Might make the GOP have to work to defend TX"

I can imagine nothing more thrilling than for my home state to be "in play." That would be a heck of a ballot to cast.
posted by fireoyster at 9:53 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


If a Republican muckety-muck concludes that a shorter primary is a priority to improve their image, then they haven't learned the "maybe our positions are fucked up" lesson. Airing the party's dirty laundry in public is probably their absolute smallest problem. (But proposing that they keep it in the family says a ton about their anti-democratic impulses.)
posted by Benny Andajetz at 9:58 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


fireoyster : I suspect it'll be a few more cycles, but think it is coming. A 'Native Son' on the ticket could hurry the process, or at least make it so it wasn't as a sure thing as now.
(the world in which TX, CA, IL and NY vote Dem in the election is a very hard one for the Reps to win the presidency)
posted by edgeways at 10:01 AM on March 18, 2013


I can imagine nothing more thrilling than for my home state to be "in play." That would be a heck of a ballot to cast.

As a Virginia voter, being "in play" is indeed a heady mix of "fighting for freedom" and "swimming in shit".
posted by Benny Andajetz at 10:01 AM on March 18, 2013 [10 favorites]


but honestly if she wants the nomination she'd get it pretty easily

I think it's next to impossible for her to get the nomination, but we'll see.


It's pretty hard to make that claim with someone who has 91% approval among Democrats.
posted by Drinky Die at 10:03 AM on March 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


If a Republican muckety-muck concludes that a shorter primary is a priority to improve their image, then they haven't learned

I think you kind of have cause and effect backwards here. The longer the GOP primary is, the further right the eventual nominee will have to move. Primaries are not soul-searching moments where policies are actually examined. The only way for the GOP to drift to the center is for more moderate candidates being allowed to sneak to the nomination by not having the crazies call them out. You need shorter, less hotly contested primaries for that.
posted by spaltavian at 10:04 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


As a Virginia voter, being "in play" is indeed a heady mix of "fighting for freedom" and "swimming in shit".

A few of my friends in Ohio had to turn off their TV sets for several weeks this fall.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 10:06 AM on March 18, 2013


I would argue that Elizabeth Warren is already more popular than Obama was in 2004.

Yeah, but can she implement a data-driven machine like Obama did to identify and mobilize the vote? Obama should not have been re-elected in 2012, but he was better organized than Romney, and had things sewn up even before the 47% remark.

Anyway, it's really strange to hear the Santorums and Palins and Trumps talk about how embracing "conservative values" rather than rejecting them because no one likes them is the key to winning the next election. Either these people have no idea how to win a presidential election, or...
posted by KokuRyu at 10:11 AM on March 18, 2013


I was sincerely hoping that it would include the line "inventing our own reality is pointless if we can't convince enough people to come live in it."
posted by Joey Michaels at 10:15 AM on March 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


I've listened to many radio podcasts about this "What's next for the GOP" subject and almost every time the Republican guest will mention that the problem they have is not with their ideas, but rather with their (and this is always the word they use) "branding".

Like if you call your parties crap-sandwich a "panini", all of those women you think shouldn't be allowed control over their bodies, all of those people and families you scream at using the pejorative "illegals"... they're all going to say
"Ooh, yummy... Republican Panini!"
posted by blueberry at 10:17 AM on March 18, 2013 [12 favorites]


Reince Priebus: "When Republicans lost in November, it was a wake-up call. ... Our message was weak."

Um, no. Your message was "loud and clear." Republicans keep saying that they have to find ways to get their message across. Improve their "marketing." No, folks ... many don't like the substance of your message: your policies, position and people who are running for office these days. It's not the ad that sucks, it's the product you're trying to sell.
posted by ericb at 10:21 AM on March 18, 2013 [14 favorites]


I would argue that Elizabeth Warren is already more popular than Obama was in 2004.

With certain voters, many of whom do not represent the majority opinions needed to get elected President.

More to the point: Obama picked the perfect time to run precisely because he was not as well known as others in the field. Obama's victory was actually because of, rather than in spite of, his qualities as an unknown, at least in the primary.
posted by OmieWise at 10:28 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


I wouldn't count the Republican Party out yet. They have a 50-year track record of successfully gluing together an incredibly disparate group of cranks, single-issue voters, and fuck you I got mine millionaires (and millionaire wanna-bes), producing just enough of a majority, if you also throw in some voter suppression, to plug them into office for just enough time to make sure that the money trickles upward toward the very wealthy.

There's a lot of lockstep nincompoops in office, some there because of the Repub's disastrous decision to financially throw their weight behind tea party candidates, not realizing that these were not fellow conservatives but bizarre anti-government nihilists and conspiracy theorists whose entire grasp of politics is to memorize one constitutional amendment and then try to burn everything else down. But democracy is self-correcting, in an insidious way -- the morons will be out of office for their spectacular idiocy, and some new, smart, and ruthlessly ambitious Republicans will enter the ring.

And there is always a new batch of cranks, single-issue voters, and wanna-be fuck you I got mine millionaires. They just haven't adjusted the formula right. They're not quite ready to give up what worked for them in the past. They still want to be able to bully their way into office by scaring us with the boogieman of gay marriage. But people don't hate the gays in a useful way anymore.

Trust me, the Republicans will track down the next boogie man. And if we don't want an endless repeat of their 50-year history of busting their way into office on the backs of fear and loathing for just enough time to fuck the economy, start a few wars, and make sure their cronies get rich, we would be wise to remember this is their strategy, it works, and they will get it to work again. We have to figure out tools for actually breaking up their ad hoc majorities, or they will keep refashioning them. Because if you don't think this nation's selfish and powerful are at this very moment investing millions to solve this problem, you underestimate their selfishness, their power, and their millions.
posted by Bunny Ultramod at 10:31 AM on March 18, 2013 [22 favorites]


I think a Jeb/Rubio ticket (or vice versa if Jeb can't sell himself as the non-W) is the GOP ticket to beat. They've been grooming Rubio for his ability to bring them a big cut of the Latino vote--even the most moderate GOPers (like Geoffrey Kabaservice, author of "Rule and Ruin: The Downfall of Moderation and the Destruction of the Republican Party, From Eisenhower to the Tea Party") seem to like him...which baffles me, since I think he comes across as a slick-snake-frat-boy, soul-less, talking-bot.
Hilary's a great option, but she does have more targets on her than Rubio and Jeb put together. The GOP hates her with a visceral passion (remember all the people she and Bill had murdered?!) that could rake in a lot of money for them from the small donors they don't usually get a lot of love from. With the "obama-economy, drones and guns oh my" platform, the GOP definitely can't be written off.
UPON RECENT POST(S) REVIEW, what Bunny said, except add Rubio's youth and Latino-ness (the non-old-white-guy) to the "formula" for better results.
posted by whatgorilla at 10:39 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Kadin2048: "Yeah, no. The US political system, at the Federal level, is carefully constructed so as not to be stable as a one-party system. Even if one of the major parties just vanished tomorrow, within a very short period you'd probably fracture the remaining party into two. "

In practice, we could maintain the two-party system on the surface if one or both of the two major parties fractured into a coalition of smaller parties who voted similarly on most national issues, but differed at a more "micro" level.

If these aggregate coalitions represented political interests at the Senate and Executive level, the constitution could theoretically support such a system at the state/local level, and in the House.

The problem would be getting the parties to agree on a Presidential candidate. If we ended up with a Tea Party nominee as well as a Republican nominee, one of the two candidates would realistically need to concede.

(Or an alternate scenario: If the "mainstream GOP" drifted back to the center, maintained its lock on the House, and captured enough moderate voters to ensure that the Democrats couldn't capture half of the electoral votes, the conservative voting bloc could short-circuit the entire electoral process and send the vote to the House, where the scales would tip in favor of one of the two conservative candidates. This seems far-fetched, but not completely implausible.)
posted by schmod at 10:46 AM on March 18, 2013


I always laugh my ass off when Republicans say Latino. It's like when you get a telemarketing call and the person egregiously mispronounces your name. Like, what the fuck is a Latino?
posted by hobo gitano de queretaro at 10:46 AM on March 18, 2013


Or when people are slightly uncomfortable saying Mexican in polite company, that lets you know it's because they've been using it as a slur all their life.
posted by hobo gitano de queretaro at 10:48 AM on March 18, 2013 [16 favorites]


whatgorilla: "I think a Jeb/Rubio ticket (or vice versa if Jeb can't sell himself as the non-W) is the GOP ticket to beat. They've been grooming Rubio for his ability to bring them a big cut of the Latino vote"

Current polling data suggests that this would be a disastrous assumption for the GOP to make. Hillary Clinton overwhelmingly polls better than either of the two.

Jeb/Rubio aren't even the overwhelming favorite Republicans among Hispanic voters. They poll roughly on par with Chris Christie, who has no real "Hispanic street cred" attached to his name (and may have the advantage of not being seen as a turncoat). Rubio's popularity among Hispanic voters appears to be the GOP's next big "gut feeling" that gets widespread attention, despite being completely unsupported by polling data.
posted by schmod at 10:53 AM on March 18, 2013 [4 favorites]



Or when people are slightly uncomfortable saying Mexican in polite company, that lets you know it's because they've been using it as a slur all their life.


Or as in my case, people I grew up with using it as a slur. Texas if you're interested.
posted by KaizenSoze at 10:54 AM on March 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


The Democrats would love to run against another Bush.
posted by Drinky Die at 10:56 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


(One term President, disastrous and hated by the end two term President, LET'S TRY AGAIN!)
posted by Drinky Die at 10:58 AM on March 18, 2013


If 2016 is Bush vs. Clinton, I'm out. LOL. Pick people with different last names.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 11:06 AM on March 18, 2013 [13 favorites]


Let's not get too cocky about running against another Bush.

GWB ran a great campaign in 2000. "Compassionate conservatism" made Bush stand out from the other Republicans in the crowd, and also made him seem more human than Gore (who seemed completely unprepared to be facing a credible opponent). In addition, voters got to see the"real George Bush" during the campaign, who was seemingly had much better ideas than the "George Bush surrounded by the worst advisers on the planet" that we got after he was elected.

If we continue assuming that Hillary is a safe bet, the Democrats are going to be very unprepared in 2016. Obama beat Hillary, McCain, and Romney by entering all three races as the (perceived) underdog, and worked to the top by running a meticulously-planned campaign.

The Republicans chose Romney as the "safe bet," did little to attract new constituencies, and ignored data that didn't fit their predetermined conclusions.

There are lessons to be learned in all of this, and I stand by my opinion that Hillary is a much riskier choice than anybody is willing to admit. HC needs to be highly visible in the campaign of whatever Democratic candidate gets chosen, but I don't think that it's a good idea for her to be the nominee.
posted by schmod at 11:09 AM on March 18, 2013 [4 favorites]


Nothing will satisfy me until members of the GOP kneeling, keening, and covered with ash, put themselves on the teevee and admit their strategies for the last sixty years have been predicated on bigotry.

I wonder what the GOP analogue of me is wishing. Confess your evil support for gay marriage and your belief that climate change is real?
posted by angrycat at 11:12 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


I think a Jeb/Rubio ticket (or vice versa if Jeb can't sell himself as the non-W) is the GOP ticket to beat.

I thought that they couldn't both be from the same state?
posted by octothorpe at 11:16 AM on March 18, 2013


I thought that they couldn't both be from the same state?

Shhhhh, let the GOP be the GOP

Bush/Rubio 2016!

posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:20 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


What about Rob Portman’s daughter? Why Republicans' new empathy on gays and immigration won't extend to reproductive rights
posted by homunculus at 11:21 AM on March 18, 2013


I thought that they couldn't both be from the same state?

That's a ridiculously easy obstruction to navigate (especially for a Bush) . Ask Bush Jr. and Cheney. 2015 Jeb moves to TX/ME/...
posted by edgeways at 11:22 AM on March 18, 2013


Well, they COULD be from the same state but...

So let me cast my support for Bush/Rubio 2016 and the 29 EVs of Florida being essentially out of play.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:22 AM on March 18, 2013


Rubio? Rubio?! Heh. Rubio has been a perfect exemplar of the New Republican mindset: appears Latino, thinks like angry old white man. Surface outreach only.

Between the autopsy report and CPAC I've really enjoyed this window into the soul of the Real Republican Party. The Republican Party, version 2012, is a lot like Sarah Palin herself-- amusing, flabbergasting, a tiny bit terrifying, and in no way shape or form palatable to most Americans. I truly believe that the Republicans have moved themselves so far to the right, they have created their own cliff and will soon be in free fall. Their only possibility of survival is to move back to towards the center.

Take the issue of birth control. It is mind boggling that they are arguing (and producing legislation) concerning the rights of American women in the 21st century to use birth control. ? ? ? That is literally jaw-dropping. American women overwhelmingly use birth control and anyone who tries to limit their access is going to feel their wrath. Yet I continue to see Republicans promoting legislation curbing the access to birth control.

If the Republican Party truly wanted to become popular with America without using tricks, without using empty rhetoric, they are going to have to dump the Christian Right vote. No more talk about abortions, gays, birth control, prayer in Schools, display of 10 Commandments, divorce, and school vouchers.

However, the Party is composed of individuals, without a strong leadership, and I don't expect they will change course. Good news for the Democrats, bad news for the country as a whole.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 11:24 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


I think Jeb is out and his Latino son George P. Bush is going to be the "savior" of the GOP.

Bush is the national co-chair of Maverick PAC, a national political action committee dedicated to engaging the next generation of Republican voters. Bush is also a co-founder and on the board of directors of Hispanic Republicans of Texas, a political action committee whose goal is to elect Republican political candidates of Hispanic heritage to office in Texas.

On March 12, 2013, Bush officially filed papers with the Texas Secretary of State to run for Texas Land Commissioner.

posted by elsietheeel at 11:26 AM on March 18, 2013


We have to blow the whistle at corporate malfeasance and attack corporate welfare.

Y'know, Republican, you have a majority in the House of Representatives right now. You could start doing that today ... Hello? .... hello?

Hunh, they hung up.
posted by benito.strauss at 11:27 AM on March 18, 2013 [8 favorites]


Jesus the thought of Clinton v. Bush just makes me sad. Is there a reason nobody is talking about Cory Booker?
posted by Uncle at 11:31 AM on March 18, 2013


codacorolla: I still don't understand why Republicans won't take legalized marijuana as a central tenant of the party. It would garner the same bi-partisan support as Rand Paul doing his dog and pony show over domestic drones and it would be a way that you could pretend to have new and exciting ideas while still sticking to your big business focus.

I've thought about this too, and aside from the moral issue, I think there is so much money currently being made in "Drug Stopping" technology (which is often dual-use in terms of Terror Stopping) that the monetary interests of controlling drugs far outweigh the monetary benefits of legalization. And when I say "interests and benefits," I mean to the Republican Party, not the nation as a whole - I think most here would agree that Republicans have no interest in seeing this country rebuild while a Democrat is holding the highest office in the land. If pot is legal, could the DEA justify spending money on drones to find grow operations, or would they become another toothless regulatory body like the FDA or EPA?

Second, remember that illegal drugs is still a big industry, and the legalization of drugs means less money for those who have already invested in the current drug growing and distribution system. I have little doubt that those who grow copious amounts of weed are probably already currently supporting Republicans, as efforts to stamp out drugs drive prices up, and increased legalization will only drive prices down and introduce the prospect of taxes, regulation, etc.
posted by antonymous at 11:36 AM on March 18, 2013


Is there a reason nobody is talking about Cory Booker?

Booker just launched his 2014 Senate campaign for NJ. If he's going to run for President in 2016, assuming he wins the seat, he'd have maybe two months as senator before starting to campaign.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 11:36 AM on March 18, 2013 [5 favorites]


Is there a reason nobody is talking about Cory Booker?

Going from popular mayor to President of the US is a big jump.
posted by Going To Maine at 11:41 AM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


The nomination will be [Hillary Clinton's] if she wants it

Yeah but people said that back in 2006-7 too; she was going to be the safe, establishment pick, having paid her dues throughout the G.W. Bush years. Hell, even I thought that was a fairly safe bet. But apparently she also managed to make a lot of enemies within her party, and failed to excite voters. One would hope she's managed to mend some fences in the interim, but those two things could still derail her. And as schmod points out, going with the safe bet was the Republicans' undoing in 2012 (insofar as they were in a position to win regardless of who they had run, which I'm not sure was the case).

They still want to be able to bully their way into office by scaring us with the boogieman of gay marriage. But people don't hate the gays in a useful way anymore. [...] Trust me, the Republicans will track down the next boogie man.

To be fair, they got a lot of mileage out of The Terrorists. In fact the only reason why they're not still flogging that particular equine is because the Democrats got too good at doing it too, so it ceased being much of a differentiator. For a while right before the '08 election it looked like they were going to cut a deal with Vladamir Putin's guys and have a mutual second go-around at the Cold War, but that didn't really take; perhaps it needs a few more years before railing against the Russkies doesn't seem comically retro...?

More seriously, it's always been my suspicion that some of the hardcore neocons, e.g. Rove, maybe Cheney, weren't and aren't as stupid when it comes to key Republican demographics as they appear or as Democrats sometimes like to imagine; they saw the writing on the wall with regard to their traditional bastions of cultural support among people-uncomfortable-with-blacks and people-uncomfortable-with-gays. And their solution to this was to foment (or at least capitalize on) a new existential struggle: between the forces of Western Civilization and Fundamentalist Islam. They'd get to play the vanguard of civilization, and anyone opposed to them would be not merely a race traitor or possible sodomite (which sums up much of the successful dog-whistle strategy), but an actual barbarian. Pretty clever, really. If it wasn't for the fact that we turned out to be pretty good at actually shutting down terrorist groups (or that there wasn't much there to shut down, but banish the thought) it might have actually worked.
posted by Kadin2048 at 11:41 AM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


Playing up external enemies certainly helped them win that second election without the kind of meltdown that comes from the GOP hunting internal enemies.
posted by Artw at 11:44 AM on March 18, 2013


Some People Say, “Republicans Don’t Care"
... other people were born naturally mute.
posted by Flunkie at 11:47 AM on March 18, 2013


The Republicans chose Romney as the "safe bet"

I wouldn't say that at all. They chose him because he was the best of many bad options, but no one was exactly excited about his candidacy until he won and they rallied around him.
posted by showbiz_liz at 11:49 AM on March 18, 2013


Gay marriage support hits new high in Post-ABC poll

I know it's only one poll and doesn't change actual policy, but it still seems like a dream to me (probably because 2004 feels like yesterday).
posted by MCMikeNamara at 11:49 AM on March 18, 2013


K. Carl Smith, the panelist from Fredrick Douglass Republicans, released a statement following the media storm related to the racist outburst in his panel. Astonishingly, he reserves the brunt of his criticism for the female reporter who raised objections to the comments being made in the room:

I was invited by the Tea Party Patriots to conduct a breakout session entitled: “Trump The Race Card” and share the Frederick Douglass Republican Message. In the middle of my delivery, while discussing the 1848 “Women’s Rights Convention,” I was rudely interrupted by a woman working for the Voice of Russia. She abruptly asked me: “How many black women were there?” This question was intentionally disruptive and coercive with no way of creating a positive dialogue.

In addition, a young man who wasn’t a Tea Party Patriot, made some racially insensitive comments, he said: “Blacks should be happy that the slave master gave them shelter, clothing, and food.” At the conclusion of the breakout session, I further explained to him the Frederick Douglass Republican Message which he embraced, bought a book, and we left as friends.


Republicans: we can get past racism by focusing on our agreement that assertive women are a bunch of nosy bitches.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:51 AM on March 18, 2013 [10 favorites]


Knope/Lemon Poehler/Fey 2016: Nosy Bitches Get Shit Done.
posted by zombieflanders at 11:54 AM on March 18, 2013 [10 favorites]


Jeb Bush CPAC Speech Says GOP Must Stop Being 'Anti Everything' Party, only gets polite applause.
posted by filthy light thief at 11:55 AM on March 18, 2013


How Three Top Republicans Are Already Blowing Up The RNC’s Minority Outreach Strategy.
posted by ericb at 12:03 PM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


Gay marriage support hits new high in Post-ABC poll

I know it's only one poll and doesn't change actual policy, but it still seems like a dream to me (probably because 2004 feels like yesterday).


In the NPR coverage of CPAC that I heard the other day, the summary of the views for those attending CPAC was that gay marriage was a concern held by the older generation(s), while the college attendees didn't really care about gay marriage, and within a decade it will become a complete non-item.

This isn't just one poll, it's another sign of the times. The NPR correspondent also pointed to the change in Obama's stance from 2005 to now as another point towards true and measurable progress. Policies are changing because personal views are changing.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:04 PM on March 18, 2013


MCMikeNamara:
Not to cut them any slack at all, but they are supposed to be the conservative party, so that, at least, kind of makes sense. Of course, this just means that they are out of step with most of the country, which isn't exactly news.
Except that "conservative" in the US political sense does not mean "resistant to change" (or else the conservatives would be embracing Obama at this point... or at least the neo-cons would!).
posted by IAmBroom at 12:07 PM on March 18, 2013


How Three Top Republicans Are Already Blowing Up The RNC’s Minority Outreach Strategy.

ThinkProgress should be told that "blowing up" can be either good or bad, depending on the context, and as such, is not a great phrase to use in a headline. In this case, it's a bad thing (unless you hope that the RNC will actually destroy itself). Suggested wording includes "undermining," "destroying," and "not at all understanding."
posted by filthy light thief at 12:08 PM on March 18, 2013


David Sirota: GOP: We’ve been lying all along
I never thought I’d write these words, but here goes: Thank you, John Boehner. Thank you, Mr. Speaker, for finally admitting on national television that all the fiscal cliffs, sequestrations and budget battles you’ve created are, indeed, artificially fabricated by ideologues and self-interested politicians and not the result of some imminent crisis that’s out of our control.

America owes this debt of gratitude to Boehner after he finally came clean on yesterday’s edition of ABC’s “This Week” and admitted that “we do not have an immediate debt crisis.” (His admission was followed up by Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, who quickly echoed much the same sentiment on CBS’ “Face the Nation”).

In offering up such a stunningly honest admission, the GOP leader has put himself on record as agreeing with President Obama, who has previously acknowledged that demonstrable reality. But the big news here isn’t just about the politics of a Republican House speaker tacitly admitting they agree with a Democratic president. It is also about a bigger admission revealing the fact that the GOP’s fiscal alarmism is not merely some natural reaction to reality, but a calculated means to other ideological ends.
posted by ericb at 12:08 PM on March 18, 2013 [9 favorites]



> Way to be democratic democrat, bros

posted by mmrtnt at 12:08 PM on March 18, 2013


CPAC, The Last Refuge For The Bigots.
posted by ericb at 12:12 PM on March 18, 2013


Attacks on Thomas Perez will do wonders for GOP Latino outreach
posted by zombieflanders at 12:15 PM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Hell, even I thought that was a fairly safe bet. But apparently [Hillary Clinton] also managed to make a lot of enemies within her party, and failed to excite voters. One would hope she's managed to mend some fences in the interim, but those two things could still derail her.

Not to belabor this point too much, but she (barely) lost the nomination becaue of the Iraq War. It's pretty rare for the presumptive nominee to be on the opposite side from the base on the most important issue in the primary. That's why she lost, not "making enemies", which really didn't happen until they started flailing in the primary. (And both Clintons have been forgiven by now.)

That said, she barely lost. She won New Hampshire. She tied on Super Tuesday. Basically, she lost a war of attrition. If she didn't have such poor advisors (like Mark Penn), or if Obama hadn't played almost error-free ball from 2004-2008, she probably could have still recovered.

A primary in 2016 would not have those pretty rare conditions.
posted by spaltavian at 12:24 PM on March 18, 2013 [5 favorites]


OMG, didn't know Dana Carvey was doing Sarah Palin impersonations at CPAC.
posted by octobersurprise at 12:25 PM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


but she (barely) lost the nomination becaue of the Iraq War.

You should read "Game Change." Your assertion simply isn't true.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:25 PM on March 18, 2013


Right blasts RNC 'autopsy' as power grab
posted by octothorpe at 12:26 PM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


The Hook Comes Behind the Jab
This is what the long march has been about, ever since respectable conservatism married itself to the angry flotsam of American apartheid. Just as the civil-rights marchers believed that it was important to move toward the ballot, because that would make all of their other goals achievable, their opponents have moved toward restricting the ballot in order to make those achievements merely temporary. The objective is not to let minority voters — or, increasingly, young voters — exercise the franchise. The primary argument brought by the proponents of the Arizona law is that it is "non-discriminatory," a laughable claim, but one that's likely to find a sympathetic audience among justices who already believe that voting is a "racial entitlement" (Scalia), or that white people in the South have suffered enough from the unkindness of federal law (Roberts)
[...]
And that's why the much-ballyhooed internal examination of itself that the national Republican party released today is pretty much all my balls.
"By the year 2050 we'll be a majority-minority country and in both 2008 and 2012 President Obama won a combined 80 percent of the votes of all minority groups," RNC chair Reince Priebus said in a press conference debuting the report. "The RNC cannot and will not write off any demographic or community or region of this country."
It can simply render them as voiceless as you can be in what purports to be a democracy.
posted by zombieflanders at 12:29 PM on March 18, 2013 [4 favorites]


In the NPR coverage of CPAC that I heard the other day, the summary of the views for those attending CPAC was that gay marriage was a concern held by the older generation(s), while the college attendees didn't really care about gay marriage, and within a decade it will become a complete non-item.

At CPAC, The Marriage Fight Is Over
Opponents of gay rights spoke to a nearly empty room, while supporters had a standing room–only crowd. “We cannot be at war with America on issues of fairness, on issues of equality,” conservative Washington Post blogger Jennifer Rubin says.
posted by ericb at 12:30 PM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Jennifer Rubin is an actual crazy person who somehow manages to hold onto a position at the Post for "balance." Current polling puts support for gay marriage in the GOP at roughly 25%. This isn't something that's going to be fixed in a decade because The Olds are dying off.
posted by zombieflanders at 12:34 PM on March 18, 2013


Right blasts RNC 'autopsy' as power grab
Tucked in near the end of the 97-page report, formally known as The Growth and Opportunity Project, are less than four pages that amount to a political bombshell: the five-member panel urges halving the number of presidential primary debates in 2016 from 2012, creating a regional primary cluster after the traditional early states and holding primaries rather than caucuses or conventions.
...
The recommendations are also a nod to the party’s donor class. Several donors bluntly told RNC Chair Reince Priebus at meetings right after the election that they wanted Iowa, with its more conservative base, to have less of a role in the process.
Let's make politics less about the political process, and more about who already has the money. You know, like the Founding Fathers wanted.
posted by filthy light thief at 12:34 PM on March 18, 2013 [4 favorites]


Right blasts RNC 'autopsy' as power grab

I love watching their intra-party rift.

Rove vs. Palin
GOP uberconsultant Karl Rove lashed out at former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) on Sunday, mocking her decision to leave office early. Rove's criticism was a response to comments Palin made at the Conservative Political Action Conference in which she suggested the poor performance of Rove-backed candidates in the 2012 elections indicates that Rove should get out of the political consulting business.
posted by ericb at 12:36 PM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


This isn't something that's going to be fixed in a decade because The Olds are dying off.

Support for marriage equality has gone from 47% in 2010 to 58% as of this morning. If DOMA and Prop 8 are struck down in June, expect that number to get another big bump. This is definitely something that is going to be long over by 2023.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 12:39 PM on March 18, 2013


Support for marriage equality has gone from 47% in 2010 to 58% as of this morning. If DOMA and Prop 8 are struck down in June, expect that number to get another big bump.

Those are some pretty big "ifs" and present no guarantee of that leap.

This is definitely something that is going to be long over by 2023.

Even if the was true, it won't be over by 2016 or probably even 2020, when the Census is redone and the Democrats once again fail to capitalize on state and local races, thereby ensuring continued GOP dominance at those levels and allowing them to control redistricting.
posted by zombieflanders at 12:43 PM on March 18, 2013


The good news is that 2020 is a presidential election year, unlike 2010. The Democrats are much better at getting out the vote when there's a national election.
posted by spaltavian at 12:51 PM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


Jennifer Rubin is an actual crazy person who somehow manages to hold onto a position at the Post for "balance." Current polling puts support for gay marriage in the GOP at roughly 25%. This isn't something that's going to be fixed in a decade because The Olds are dying off.

Support for civil unions is the majority view in the party though. I'm not sure the step from there to marriage is going to be as steep as it might seem.
posted by Drinky Die at 12:55 PM on March 18, 2013


fuse theorem: The chances of minorities becoming a huge bloc for the current Republican party are small.

Let's not assume that "minorities" is necessarily limited to Black people. But if "huge" means a large enough number to swing an election, yeah no.
I'll go further than that, and disagree with your last point. Latinos are "minorities" currently, but will probably be the majority race soon. They polled against the GOP and Romney this time, but it wasn't as overwhelming as gays and blacks, and there's no reason to believe that they won't become core support for the GOP.

Anti-abortion/anti-gay/anti-sexual-equality: these are actually tenets of the major religion of Latinos. They're GOP waiting to happen, as soon as the GOP can get over the assumption that they only show up at the convention to trim the hedges and bus the tables.
posted by IAmBroom at 12:58 PM on March 18, 2013


It took months for the GOP establishment to distance itself from Todd Akin, which speaks volumes about the rest of the party.

Did you not see in the last few weeks before the election, when it became clear that Akin was their only hope for winning the seat? They started putting money behind him again, just a little more covertly.
posted by benito.strauss at 1:11 PM on March 18, 2013


Kadin2048: Yeah, no. The US political system, at the Federal level, is carefully constructed so as not to be stable as a one-party system. Even if one of the major parties just vanished tomorrow, within a very short period you'd probably fracture the remaining party into two.

US politics rewards compromise, but it also rewards disagreement and gives disproportionate power to the minority party, and then it allows that power to be used to increase one's power until there's an equilibrium reached with the opposition. It's stable at two parties, but apparently not at any more than that (extra parties tend to collapse down into the two major ones when the going gets tough), and not at one.
There's a reason POTUS elections are decided with voter differences measured in tenth-percentage points, and not 5-20% differences. If there were so much as a whole goddamned percentage point of reliable difference between the parties' overall platforms, one of them would move with superhuman speed to absorb it.

I'm not saying every single platform issue is a 50/50 split, but overall the platforms as a whole clearly are. Let's not kid ourselves: this "massive failure" of the Republicans only missed putting Romney in office by a couple percent of the vote. The reality is: our society is "deeply polarized" over issues carefully, strategically balanced to capture half the vote.
posted by IAmBroom at 1:13 PM on March 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


Anti-abortion/anti-gay/anti-sexual-equality: these are actually tenets of the major religion of Latinos.

I'd be interested to see numbers for self-identifying Latino/Latina Catholics, broken into age demographics, because I would think there's a swing in the youth in those populations, too.
posted by filthy light thief at 1:13 PM on March 18, 2013


Let's not get too cocky about running against another Bush.

GWB ran a great campaign in 2000. "Compassionate conservatism" made Bush stand out from the other Republicans in the crowd, and also made him seem more human than Gore (who seemed completely unprepared to be facing a credible opponent). In addition, voters got to see the"real George Bush" during the campaign, who was seemingly had much better ideas than the "George Bush surrounded by the worst advisers on the planet" that we got after he was elected.

Yes, after he was elected and became known as one of the worst Presidents of all time. He would lose in a crushing landslide if he could run again even if he ran the best campaign in political history. Jeb would be a gift to Democrats who will still win easily if they can run against the Bush record. They shouldn't really be able to get away with running against Bush again after eight years of Obama, but Jeb would hand that to them on a platter. It's not happening, the Republican primary voters factor in electability in the general in their voting.
posted by Drinky Die at 1:18 PM on March 18, 2013


Ted Cruz opposes Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Week
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 1:24 PM on March 18, 2013


Current polling puts support for gay marriage in the GOP at roughly 25%.

A single poll doesn't tell you anything of value; what was it five years ago? Ten? I bet it was significantly lower, and these things tend to have a domino effect. Now's the time to get out in front of the issue if you want to be seen as having any credible leadership abilities in the next decade.
posted by Kadin2048 at 1:28 PM on March 18, 2013


The good news is that 2020 is a presidential election year, unlike 2010. The Democrats are much better at getting out the vote when there's a national election.

Tell me how well that went for Democrats in the last two national elections held around the Census. You know, the ones that gave us the 2nd Carter and 1st Gore administrations.

Support for civil unions is the majority view in the party though. I'm not sure the step from there to marriage is going to be as steep as it might seem.

Well, that's a double-edged sword, though, innit? I don't see any state GOP voting bloc seeing anything different between the two in terms of a law--and I think that any polling showing significant difference between the two should be viewed with no little suspicioun--and I don't think marriage advocates will want to "settle" for what they can rightfully say is a half-measure. This goes doubly (for both sides) if the courts strike down DOMA and/or rule against Prop 8 broadly (as opposed to the expected narrow ruling applying to CA only).

Anti-abortion/anti-gay/anti-sexual-equality: these are actually tenets of the major religion of Latinos.

Maybe they are for the heads of religion, but not so much American Catholics, who have been largely out of step with the Vatican for the better part of a century now. The breakdown of Latinos that object to these tenets is either in slimmer minorities than you think, or even outright pluralities or majorities. And as mentioned above, often ranks further down on their priorities than economic and/or non-reproductive social justice concerns.

They're GOP waiting to happen, as soon as the GOP can get over the assumption that they only show up at the convention to trim the hedges and bus the tables.

You're making the same fundamental mistake the GOP is making, in thinking that if only they appeal to the fetuses-and-gays anger, they've got this thing in the bag. This ignores the fact that they support government assistance for the elderly/poor/disabled in much higher numbers than they do abortion et al, and the decades of racism.
posted by zombieflanders at 1:29 PM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


A single poll doesn't tell you anything of value

That's not a single poll, that's from 538's poll of polls for the major polling and media orgs from the last year:
According to an average of seven recent surveys on same-sex marriage, as shown in the chart above, only 26 percent of Republicans support same-sex marriage rights as compared with 54 percent of independents and 66 percent of Democrats. Attitudes among Republican voters may shift on the issue by 2016, particularly if more respected conservatives like Mr. Portman announce their support for same-sex marriage, but it is less than clear that his position will reflect a broadly acceptable viewpoint among Republican primary and caucus voters by that time.
what was it five years ago? Ten? I bet it was significantly lower, and these things tend to have a domino effect.

From the same article (emphasis mine):
According to Pew Research polls conducted each year, support for same-sex marriage has increased to 62 percent from 43 percent among Democrats since 2001. Among independent voters, support has risen to 52 percent from 43 percent over the same period. However, only 25 percent of Republican voters supported same-sex marriage in Pew’s poll last year, barely changed from 21 percent in 2001.
Now's the time to get out in front of the issue if you want to be seen as having any credible leadership abilities in the next decade.

Rubio voted against VAWA because it extended protections to GLBT victims, something he doesn't seem to be getting blowback on, and indeed seems to be in the strongest position for 2016.
posted by zombieflanders at 1:36 PM on March 18, 2013


roomthreeseventeen: "Ted Cruz opposes Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Week"

o.O

*speechless*
posted by zarq at 1:38 PM on March 18, 2013


One rich guy could do a lot more to hurt the GOP right now than the Dems. If there is a third party insurgency that reaches the presidential ballot nationally from either the right or the center of the likely GOP nominee, it could peel off 10-20 percent of the wackiest or the least wacky. A moderate former-GOP independent who embraced gay marriage, reproductive choice, and marijuana legalization along with a bit of generational class conflict rhetoric against the domination of the republicans by senior interests -- I'm thinking a Chris Christie or a Charlie Crist or Michael Bloomberg -- would blow any hope the GOP has of capturing young voters. That candidate would eat into the Dem nominee too, in most scenarios, but not nearly as much. But the much more likely scenario is the GOP tacks moderate *enough* to piss off its crazies, who then mount an insurgent far right independent candidacy from, say Cruz or Paul. Either it goes evangelical or it goes libertarian, but either way it kicks a leg out of the 3-legged stool of the modern, tottering GOP.

Yes, it could go the other way -- a former-Dem insurgency that embraced either cultural conservatism (i.e., racism, homophobia, and patriarchy) from the right or radical economic populism from the left (especially if it took on marijuana, prison/sentencing reform, and possibly enough of the National Security apparatus to attract some libertarians from the right) could create an opening for a successful moderate Republican to break through. But it seems much less likely. The Democratic coalition, while messy and diverse, is much less divided. The DFH contingent is up in arms about drones and banker impunity, but they really don't amount to that many people and with the exception of midwestern college towns, they mostly live in places the Ds will win anyway going away.

I also just think there are more pissed off rich guys willing to take on a weak GOP than a relatively strong Dem party, and more of them to the far right. My thinking is that if Rand Paul comes to seem too dangerous to the mainstream GOP with his grandstanding, he might not have the patience his father did (and look where that got him) and he might strike out on his own in 2016. Bring. It. On. That's the nuclear scenario for the GOP.

A really strong and unifying candidate -- Secretary Clinton certainly, who would peel off a lot of blue collar midwestern voters and a whole lot of semi-Republican women in places where it might matter -- would wipe the floor with Marco Rubio or Paul Ryan if Rand Paul or Chris Cristie were running independent campaigns to the right or the center.

I really think the R's are a lot closer to coming apart at the seams than has yet been acknowledged. In fact, I think that is Pres. Obama's real long game here. My guess is he's got a real appetite for revenge by now.
posted by spitbull at 2:00 PM on March 18, 2013 [5 favorites]


Ted Cruz opposes Multiple Sclerosis Awareness Week

Christ. What an asshole!
posted by ericb at 2:07 PM on March 18, 2013


But the much more likely scenario is the GOP tacks moderate *enough* to piss off its crazies, who then mount an insurgent far right independent candidacy from, say Cruz or Paul.

I don't think that's the more likely scenario. The GOP wound up where it is today in the first place because tacking right on social issues got them a huge chunk of religious voters, and now that's their base. Far right types don't want to be insurgents- they want to control the party from inside, and they've been succeeding. Why mess with 'success' (if you take success to mean control of the party)?

It's the moderate Republicans who feel marginalized and ostracized. Seems like they'd be far more likely to mount a third party revolt.
posted by showbiz_liz at 2:14 PM on March 18, 2013


While I'd be glad to see pot laws go, I'd like to say that posters on this thread probably subscribe to that viewpoint more than the average bear. While I have only anecdata and that episode of Planet Money where they ran their fake candidate past a focus group (which is just focus group anecdata), I think that that issue is still rather far away from a tipping point. Assuming that a GOP candidate could pick up pot as an issue and create a major party schism seems unlikely.
posted by Going To Maine at 2:36 PM on March 18, 2013


showbiz_liz, I think it looks that way right now, but just as the RNC ultimately orchestrated the nominations of clueless Mitt and doddering McCain, they will need to put lipstick on the 2016 pig somehow. They can't get behind Rand Paul (not without a lot of polishing between now and then).

They're between a rock and a hard place, which (to mix metaphors) is a hell of a place to put an already wobbly three-legged stool. They cannot please all of their core constituencies. Anything they do is bound to piss off or alienate at least one of them, because they are no longer an organic party. The far-right hijacking has gone too far for many. I have been reading the comment threads at redstate lately. Reality is intruding on many of the intelligent voices even there, and then they are viciously shouted down and attacked by the "we must go right!" crowd.

But I think it's a long way from redstate to the RNC, and it passes through a donor class that is very much about business, not social issues. Karl Rove's sneering putdown of Sarah Palin yesterday ("If I did run for office, I'd probably finish my term" approximately) was a sign of a lot of ferment below the surface over in the land of dead elephants.

A struggle for the soul of that party must happen at some point, and the demographics suggest it's coming soon. We'll learn a lot in 2014, I'm sure. But I guess I see either disaffected faction as willing to walk the third party path even if it means a symbolic candidacy, about equally motivated. The centrists have more money and a better chance of possibly winning on their own (or demanding significant pro-business concessions from both D and R candidates).

Watch Chris Christie. Hard to miss him, really.
posted by spitbull at 2:51 PM on March 18, 2013


Worth a re-read: The Kung Fu Monkey Lunch Discussions #145: The Crazification Factor, which back in 2005 posited -- fairly convincingly, IMO -- a Republican base "crazification factor" of 27%:
Tyrone: [Consider] Obama vs. Alan Keyes. Keyes was from out of state, so you can eliminate any established political base; both candidates were black, so you can factor out racism; and Keyes was plainly, obviously, completely crazy. Batshit crazy. Head-trauma crazy. But 27% of the population of Illinois voted for him. They put party identification, personal prejudice, whatever ahead of rational judgement. Hell, even like 5% of Democrats voted for him. That's crazy behaviour. I think you have to assume a 27% Crazification Factor in any population.

John: Objectively crazy or crazy vis-a-vis my own inertial reference frame for rational behaviour? I mean, are you creating the Theory of Special Crazification or General Crazification?

Tyrone: Hadn't thought about it. Let's split the difference. Half just have worldviews which lead them to disagree with what you consider rationality even though they arrive at their positions through rational means, and the other half are the core of the Crazification -- either genuinely crazy; or so woefully misinformed about how the world works, the bases for their decision making is so flawed they may as well be crazy.
That was from 2005. Fast forward eight years and it's not like their base has become any less crazy since then. The GOP has a shit ton of work ahead of them to fix what's broken in their party, but I have no reason to believe they really want to fix their problems, especially since the statement and positions I see as most problematic their candidates seem to see as badges of honor and/or points of pride.

Fuck them.
posted by mosk at 2:52 PM on March 18, 2013 [4 favorites]


Legalizing marijuana has majority support but would have enough backlash among certain demographics that it might still be a loser for a candidate.

Medical Marijuana, on the other hand, is more popular than Mom and apple pie and polls very, very well among all age groups, demographics, and parties. There is no excuse for either party not to grab onto the issue and make it their own.
posted by Drinky Die at 2:54 PM on March 18, 2013


I'll go further than that, and disagree with your last point. Latinos are "minorities" currently, but will probably be the majority race soon. They polled against the GOP and Romney this time, but it wasn't as overwhelming as gays and blacks, and there's no reason to believe that they won't become core support for the GOP.

I live in a red state where Latinos/Hispanics were driven to fear for their very existence by simple virtue of "looking" like they might be in the US without official non-forged documentation, a look which is apparently easily recognized in the narrowed eyes of the certain willing.

IMO the GOP isn't going to recover from that kind of visceral and legislated bigotry any time soon and certainly not by the next presidential election. (Wild card: future Supreme Court rulings.) Plus, there's too much money involved in supporting it right now; that money will need to find a new bogeyman to chase.

In the meantime, in spite of being a minority on the verge of becoming a technical majority, Latinos/Hispanics are probably not the GOP's hope for the forseeable future. I imagine that their memories are as long as Black people's in terms of not forgetting how badly they've been mistreated in many if not most red states.
posted by fuse theorem at 2:58 PM on March 18, 2013 [3 favorites]


I know, man. I half think we should keep poking the GOP with red hot sticks. The more they react, the worse they look.

They haven't gotten any better. But there are fewer of them.

Of course, if the economy gets a head of steam up between now and 2010, or we get into a shooting war with Iran or North Korea, the context starts to look a little less predictable.
posted by spitbull at 3:02 PM on March 18, 2013


Under the Asian/Pacific Islander section:

The Republican Party is one of tolerance and respect, and we need to ensure that the tone of our message is always refective of these core principles. In the modern media environment, a poorly phrased argument or out-of-context statement can spiral out of control and refect poorly on the Party as a whole.

This seems to be a mealy mouthed way of saying stop running ads like this.
posted by Comrade_robot at 3:18 PM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


Most satisfying read of the year. I can't wait for the movie.
posted by murfed13 at 4:12 PM on March 18, 2013


...what's wrong with the Grand Old Party...

I would probably start the study with the question "why do we think we can study and focus-group our way out of being alienating?" and follow up with "we do all realize we're publicly debating which deeply-held beliefs we need to pretend not to have in public, right?"
posted by jason_steakums at 8:07 PM on March 18, 2013 [4 favorites]


Reason: Has The GOP Declared Nuclear War On Its Own Grassroots?
Priebus has been trying to rhetorically jump on the Randwagon since filibuster day, when very late in the day he called on all GOP Senators to Stand With Rand. Today Priebus told a National Press Club audience that "for the most part, the party was totally on board with what Rand Paul did" in the filibuster, though evaded a question about whether Rand Paul was, in fact, the future of the Republican Party.

Good thing he's not on record on that, because from Politico's account forces around Paul are peeved at this new report--as are those of the popular vote runner-up in 2012, Rick Santorum.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 8:10 PM on March 18, 2013


spitbull, can we not do the "He's fat! AMIRITE?" thing? It really needs to go in the same damn grave as the "Hillary is a she-bitch!" and "Obama is a nig... Kenyan!" bits.
posted by IAmBroom at 9:01 PM on March 18, 2013 [2 favorites]


zombieflanders and fuse theorem, I certainly hope you're right and I'm wrong about the number of Latinos ready to shift to the right.
posted by IAmBroom at 9:08 PM on March 18, 2013


Latinos are "minorities" currently, but will probably be the majority race soon.

Citation needed. Caucasians will stop being a majority (>50% of the total population) before 2050 based on the last census, but I haven't seen a prediction that Latinos will become a majority in the U.S. any time soon, if at all. I suspect the next category to gain greater than %50 of the population will be 'multi-racial.' I can't wait.

Pew Hispanic Center: U.S. Population Projections: 2005–2050 (PDF)
The Latino population, already the nation’s largest minority group, will triple in size and will account for most of the nation’s population growth from 2005 through 2050. Hispanics will make up 29% of the U.S. population in 2050, compared with 14% in 2005.

The non-Hispanic white population will increase more slowly than other racial and ethnic groups; whites will become a minority (47%) by 2050.
But it isn't just the "minority" vote, social conservatism could be a big problem for women voters as well.
posted by Golden Eternity at 9:21 PM on March 18, 2013


[Comment deleted; maybe we can skip the derail of whether being fat should disqualify someone from public office?]
posted by LobsterMitten at 9:29 PM on March 18, 2013


Marco Rubio seems especially silly as The Great Latino Hope. Maybe there's polling that suggests otherwise, I dunno, but I can't quite see why Mexican-Americans are going to leap with joy because the GOP nominated some white-ass Cuban who speaks weird Spanish and doesn't even know what a guey is.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 10:30 PM on March 18, 2013 [1 favorite]


"Anti-abortion/anti-gay/anti-sexual-equality: these are actually tenets of the major religion of Latinos. They're GOP waiting to happen, as soon as the GOP can get over the assumption that they only show up at the convention to trim the hedges and bus the tables."

Nah, they said the same thing about the Irish.

Latinos are our best group for moving from antipathy toward support for the freedom to marry.
posted by klangklangston at 10:51 PM on March 18, 2013


Fucking clowns.
posted by bardic at 10:54 PM on March 18, 2013


You know the conservative line on affirmative action? They say it leads to hiring and promoting unqualified minority candidates over more qualified white candidates. One of the few places where that is sort of true is in the Republican party. They so desperately need minority faces and have such a short supply that they aren't really ending up with the cream of the political crop. Herman Cain is a very accomplished, intelligent, likeable, and succesfull man and the Republicans did well to highlight him as an example of black conservatism but he is not a top tier national politician. Does anyone really think Bachmann and Palin are the most capable women out there?

The Democrats don't have to sift around to find minority candidates to promote, they are just welcoming to them in policy and rhetoric so they show up, and out of that huge group of willing and eager applicants emerged Barack Obama, one of the most impressive and gifted politicians in human history.

It's getting late and I'm sleepy so I have an excuse for a dumbass metaphor. In Philly the two most famous cheesesteak places are directly across from one another. One has a belligerent sign outside demanding everyone order in English because the owner is a wingnut. The other one doesn't. Who do you think is gonna get more latino customers and will it really matter if you can find a token latino to hire? Lose the damn sign and the attitude that comes with it.
posted by Drinky Die at 10:55 PM on March 18, 2013 [4 favorites]


"A moderate former-GOP independent who embraced gay marriage, reproductive choice, and marijuana legalization along with a bit of generational class conflict rhetoric against the domination of the republicans by senior interests -- I'm thinking a Chris Christie or a Charlie Crist or Michael Bloomberg..."

May I introduce Jon Huntsman?

Oh, wait.
posted by OHSnap at 12:33 AM on March 19, 2013


spitbull, can we not do the "He's fat! AMIRITE?" thing? It really needs to go in the same damn grave as the "Hillary is a she-bitch!" and "Obama is a nig... Kenyan!" bits.

The fat thing isn't good, but it's not the same grade as those other comments. I mean, heck, people made fun of Taft for being fat (including Taft himself, if the "I am the large party" story is true), but they also elected him president.
posted by Going To Maine at 6:13 AM on March 19, 2013


Is not stooping to their level something we should be complaining about or trying to defend, even a little bit? I don't think "the niCLANG" and "she-bitch" won them any voters.
posted by zombieflanders at 6:50 AM on March 19, 2013


No, I'm splitting hairs over things about which I generally agree: name calling in any form isn't good, so I suspect that the Daily Show is going to get cringe-worthy during the next cycle.

That said, it's an interesting sort of mental check on yourself to determine which of those three labels you empirically consider most offensive and which one you'd have the hardest time applying to some candidate.
posted by Going To Maine at 7:44 AM on March 19, 2013


we're searching our souls and we're wondering why,
we got beat so badly our rivals are gloating.
It’s obvious now where our campaign went wrong,
we should have prevented more people from voting.

Republican Soul-Searching
--Calvin Trillin
posted by Golden Eternity at 8:39 AM on March 19, 2013 [4 favorites]


Until Republicans ditch the Paul Ryan vision, nothing will change
posted by zombieflanders at 9:23 AM on March 19, 2013 [2 favorites]


zombieflanders The good news is that 2020 is a presidential election year, unlike 2010. The Democrats are much better at getting out the vote when there's a national election.

Tell me how well that went for Democrats in the last two national elections held around the Census. You know, the ones that gave us the 2nd Carter and 1st Gore administrations.


Uh dude, the 1980 and 2000 elections were were not run with the Census numbers from those years. The first election with 1980 census figures would have been the 1982 mid-terms, and the 2002 races for the 2000 census.

But my point wasn't that the Census would help the Democratic presidential nominee in 2020, just the opposite. It being a presidential year will help local Democrats in down-ticket races. Since state legislatures draw the districts, a presidential year is better for Democrats because more Democrats turn out to vote. It's those who get elected in the Census year that will do the redistricting.

Since the Republican electorate skews older, and tends to have fewer barries to voting access, you see a smaller proportial drop-off in their voters during the mid-terms.
posted by spaltavian at 11:46 AM on March 19, 2013 [1 favorite]


Uh dude, the 1980 and 2000 elections were were not run with the Census numbers from those years. The first election with 1980 census figures would have been the 1982 mid-terms, and the 2002 races for the 2000 census.

The point is that it's the elections in Census years that determine the drawing of the lines.

But my point wasn't that the Census would help the Democratic presidential nominee in 2020, just the opposite. It being a presidential year will help local Democrats in down-ticket races. Since state legislatures draw the districts, a presidential year is better for Democrats because more Democrats turn out to vote.

I don't think there's been a lot of evidence of that, but if you can show shifts towards the left in 2008 and 2012 (or more importantly, between 2008 and 2012 as to reflect the changes in 2010) in both the state legislatures and the governorships, go ahead.

It's those who get elected in the Census year that will do the redistricting.

Which is what I said.
posted by zombieflanders at 12:00 PM on March 19, 2013


Republican Party Will Not Change
How do I know this? Because, within the Republican caucus in the House Of Representatives, Paul Ryan, the zombie-eyed granny starver from Wisconsin and the first runner-up in the most recent vice-presidential pageant, is presently being cast as the worst kind of RINO by a guy who believes that everything they taught him in med school are lies from the pit of hell, a creationist nutball who's even money to be the next senator from the state of Georgia. And, I guarantee you, within weeks, you will hear that Paul Ryan — who wants to kill Medicare through slow starvation rather than immediate disembowelment — will represent the "moderate" Republican position, and that the Democrats should meet him halfway.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 12:16 PM on March 19, 2013 [1 favorite]


It's those who get elected in the Census year that will do the redistricting.

Which is what I said.


Wait, so your point was that the presidential nominee might lose in 2020, so it's not necessarily going to help them in the down ticket races?

Well, sure, they might lose any presidential election. But even in a losing presidential year, they'll get better turnout. And since the president has nothing to do with redistricting, the turnout machine is still going to help state Democrats.

Mid-term elections always skew older and whiter. This article has links to several different demogprahic breakdowns. In other words, turnout will be down across the board for midterms, but it hurts Democratic turnout disproportionately. Some mid-terms have powerful trends that can overcome this (like disgust towards Bush in 2006), but all things being equal, electorate is more Republican in mid-terms than it would otherwise be.

The point is that it's the elections in Census years that determine the drawing of the lines.

Yes, and Democrats show up to vote less in midterms. So when the Census falls on a midterm, I don't think it's a wild leap to the Democrats faring worse in the redistricting than they otherwise would.
posted by spaltavian at 1:29 PM on March 19, 2013


Golden Eternity: Latinos are "minorities" currently, but will probably be the majority race soon.

Citation needed.
Thanks for the correction; I was wrong about Latinos becoming the majority.
posted by IAmBroom at 2:36 PM on March 19, 2013


The GOP lives in an alternate reality
posted by Artw at 7:23 AM on March 20, 2013 [3 favorites]


Poll: Former Gov. Charlie Crist would crush Gov. Rick Scott in 2014 race
posted by Golden Eternity at 7:52 AM on March 20, 2013 [1 favorite]


Artw's link is great. Not only does it list a couple of humorous examples of the Republicans getting prominently Onioned by parodies, but it has this (emphasis mine):
[...] in 2004, a senior Republican source – widely assumed to be Karl Rove – told New York Times magazine of a lack of respect for the "reality-based community". The source explained: "We're an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality."

That attitude explains a lot about the disconnect between the extremes of the GOP and the world as experienced by most Americans. It is an attitude reinforced by a vast ecosystem of conservative media in the form of blogs, books and radio shows – and, of course Fox News – that allows the right-wing to create its own alternative world where outlandish opinions are common place.
The problem with that, to paraphrase Richard Feynman, is that reality must take precedence over public relations, for Nature cannot be fooled.
posted by JHarris at 10:16 AM on March 20, 2013 [1 favorite]


Oh hey, Hillary Clinton leads Bush 53/40 and Rubio 56/40 head to head, and also has a 54/41 advantage over Paul Ryan.
posted by showbiz_liz at 11:04 AM on March 21, 2013


As much as I'd love a President Clinton (Mrs.), polls this far out usually seem to measure how well-known someone is.
posted by benito.strauss at 11:35 AM on March 21, 2013


Oh crap I forgot to say that that's a poll of Florida, where presumably Bush and Rubio are pretty well-known. Oops!
posted by showbiz_liz at 11:53 AM on March 21, 2013


When I was looking at the Hillary polls the other day it seemed that she polls a lot higher when she isn't running for office. She dropped from very high approval when she ran for Senate and later President and rebounded when she wasn't running anymore.

I think she may have broken that cycle with her well regarded term as SoS, but there is reason to have cautious skepticism on the idea that she is as overwhelmingly strong as she may appear now.

I do personally think she would easily win the nomination and would win the Presidency if she ran again but it's way too early for those sorts of predictions.
posted by Drinky Die at 12:22 PM on March 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


She's Back!
posted by homunculus at 1:05 PM on March 21, 2013


NRO: The Republican 'Autopsy'
While the political climates of 1945 and 2013 are radically different in many ways, the fight between conservatives and moderates is remarkably similar. Robinson’s report provided the guiding philosophy of Dewey’s organization, the original “eastern establishment.” Conservative Republicans, who had not yet coined the term “RINO,” referred to Dewey’s faction as “me-too” Republicans for their tendency to parrot the Democrats’ policies. The conservatives rallied around Ohio senator Robert Taft, an outspoken anti–New Dealer, and resisted Dewey’s brand of moderate Republicanism.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 10:30 PM on March 21, 2013


Take it from this black conservative, the GOP's makeover plan is dead on arrival
posted by Artw at 12:05 AM on March 22, 2013


Senate Republicans Unanimously Support Repeal of Student Loan Reform Law
posted by homunculus at 12:55 PM on March 23, 2013


CPAC: GOP's Best!
posted by homunculus at 1:15 PM on March 23, 2013


Charles Blow: The G.O.P.’s Bachmann Problem -- "The current intramural squabbling on the right is just too delicious for words. At least for nice words."
posted by ericb at 1:44 PM on March 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


Donald Trump took to Twitter recently to call the conservative blogger Michelle Malkin a “dummy” who was “born stupid.” It’s hard to know whom to side with when two bullies battle.

I feel okay siding with Trump on that one.
posted by Drinky Die at 1:47 PM on March 23, 2013 [1 favorite]


NRO: Four Things The RNC Report Got Right: "Stop Preaching To The Choir, Kill Cannibalistic Primaries, The Need For Killer Apps, Strategy Over Logistics"
posted by the man of twists and turns at 5:30 PM on March 26, 2013


GOP plan includes stalking Democratic candidates for video gaffes
“Well funded conservative groups should seek to hire activists to track Democratic incumbents and candidates with video cameras constantly recording their every movement, utterance, and action,” the report urged.
posted by Golden Eternity at 7:27 AM on March 27, 2013


That worked so well with "you didn't build that" and is exactly the lesson they should learn from Mittens outing himself as a hater of the poor.
posted by Artw at 7:30 AM on March 27, 2013


I assumed trackers were already standard.
posted by Drinky Die at 8:15 AM on March 27, 2013 [1 favorite]


Gerson and Wehner at Commentary: How To Save The Republican Party
This is not just bad news for the Republican Party; it is bad news for the country. As much as at any time in recent history, America needs a strong, vibrant party on the right to speak for the civilizing ideal of limited government. Barack Obama has put in place an agenda of unreconstructed progressivism that is at war, not only with Reaganism, but also with Clintonism. He has exacerbated a massive fiscal imbalance, added a poorly designed entitlement that further destabilizes the health sector, and sounded an uncertain trumpet of global leadership. If Republicans urgently need to recalibrate, and they do, it is because the stakes are so high.
from Brad DeLong: Michael Gerson and Peter Wehner Eat a Lot of Paste: Thursday Combination Idiocy and Hoisted from the Archives Weblogging
I want you to pause and reread those last two sentences. Four days before the election Michael Barone got the popular vote edge wrong by 7% and got the electoral vote edge wrong by 218. And Gerson and Wehner use Barone as their "expert" to back up their claim that "Barack Obama should have lost the 2012 election",

You might say that Barone's fantasy-based meltdown was something new--that before 2012 he was a keen-eyed and reality-based observer of American politics. Not so! Here's Barone from eight years ago:
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:01 AM on March 28, 2013 [1 favorite]


"Don't fight a nonexistant left wing Obama" not on the agenda then...
posted by Artw at 9:06 AM on March 28, 2013 [1 favorite]


GOP Congressman Refuses To Apologize For Calling Latinos ‘Wetbacks’
posted by Artw at 6:35 AM on March 29, 2013 [2 favorites]


Don Young (R. - AK) has now released a (non-) apology.
“During a sit down interview with Ketchikan Public Radio this week, I used a term that was commonly used during my days growing up on a farm in Central California. I know that this term is not used in the same way nowadays and I meant no disrespect.

Migrant workers play an important role in America’s workforce, and earlier in the said interview, I discussed the compassion and understanding I have for these workers and the hurdles they face in obtaining citizenship.”
posted by ericb at 12:05 PM on March 29, 2013


And then we have GOP Ben Carson's comments on Tuesday:
"Well, my thoughts are that marriage is between a man and a woman. It's a well-established, fundamental pillar of society and no group, be they gays, be they NAMBLA, be they people who believe in bestiality. It doesn't matter what they are. They don't get to change the definition. So he, it's not something that is against gays, it's against anybody who wants to come along and change the fundamental definitions of pillars of society. It has significant ramifications."
And, Carson this afternoon:
"I think in terms of what was said on Sean Hannity’s show, that was taken completely out of context and completely misunderstood in terms of what I was trying to say. As a Christian, I have a duty to love all people and that includes people who have other sexual orientations, and I certainly do, and never had any intention of offending anyone… If anyone was offended, I apologize to you.

Marriage is a very sacred thing and we need to maintain it as a sacred thing. When I say we don’t want to change it or degrade it by calling everything marriage, that’s not aimed at any particular group. But the fact of the matter is, the Bible and God have set very specific standards. It’s very clear what’s being said. God doesn’t change, man changes. Our duty is to allow for that change and to still love them and in terms of what happens with them, that’s a decision that’s up to God, that’s not our decision.”
Ye' old 'out of context,' 'completely misunderstood, passive voice (''what was said') bullshit.

Hey, GOP: how's that re-branding and 'widening the tent stuff' going for 'ya? Withe friend like this.
posted by ericb at 12:15 PM on March 29, 2013 [1 favorite]


Oops ... source for the Don Young apology.
posted by ericb at 12:18 PM on March 29, 2013


"God doesn’t change, man changes."

Oh, so you still keep kosher and sell slaves?
posted by klangklangston at 1:15 PM on March 29, 2013 [2 favorites]


Where I Left Conservatives
Those were conservatives, braced against all that would conspire against them, even if it meant standing with obesity and diabetes. I want my conservatism with at least a side of compassion. As a red state native, I know the answer to that. Liberal activism isn’t compassion. It’s fake. It’s a tool to gain power and reelection. I know that explanation, but to these untrained eyes it looked like you’re hammering a guy who saw a problem and had an idea. You cannot be anti-people-with-ideas, even if you disagree with those ideas, and wonder why a nation doesn’t rally behind you.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:54 PM on April 2, 2013 [3 favorites]


Peter Beinart: Bill O’Reilly vs. Rush Limbaugh
O’Reilly is a conservative populist, which is to say, he only champions those conservative viewpoints that he believes enjoy mass appeal.
[...]
You can see the difference in the way the two men respond to people perceived as right-wing extremists. Limbaugh embraces them; O’Reilly disses them.
posted by Golden Eternity at 10:39 AM on April 3, 2013


Marriage is a very sacred thing and we need to maintain it as a sacred thing.
Whenever someone says this, I wish the interviewer would press them on divorce. Doesn't divorce sully the sacred bonds on marriage? Should it be prohibited then? Many of them probably do believe divorce should be prohibited and some of them might be willing to say so, but get them on record, at least.
posted by octobersurprise at 11:24 AM on April 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


If Mark "I Found My Mistress on the Appalachian Trail" Sanford wins his special election, I feel like SC's gay marriage ban should be struck down. If anybody complains, just remind them that they didn't respect the sanctity of "traditional" marriage either.
posted by zombieflanders at 11:41 AM on April 3, 2013 [1 favorite]


On the quest for a black anti-Obama.
posted by Artw at 8:30 AM on April 4, 2013


Artw: "On the quest for a black anti-Obama."

In a better world Ta-Nehisi Coates, would have a semi-weekly column in the NYT and not have to do guest op-ed columns.
posted by octothorpe at 9:39 AM on April 4, 2013


Louie Gohmert Opposes Gun Control Because Gay Marriage Leads to Bestiality
posted by homunculus at 11:35 AM on April 4, 2013


Hunger Games: Jon Stewart cuts to the Dickensian chase about the Republican agenda
posted by homunculus at 1:38 PM on April 10, 2013


Link is broken there homunculus.
posted by JHarris at 6:59 PM on April 10, 2013


Huh, it looks like they removed it. Here's the same clip on another site:

Jon Stewart Shreds Apart Red State Laws With Hilarious Game Of ‘Sodomy! Zygotes! Welfare!’
posted by homunculus at 7:10 PM on April 10, 2013 [1 favorite]


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