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Old 02-03-2013, 05:06 AM   #21
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scoundrel,

I realize it must sound preposterous to even think about the demise of the Republicans but, from watching their actions prior to and since the election, I'm beginning to think they may not be able to recover. Its interesting to see the correlations to the British Labour party and maybe the Republicans will turn things around. But they're showing no interest in paying anything other than lip service to their problems. Yes, a very, very few are saying they need to change but their actions belie their words. Just one example of how tone dead they are.

Only a couple of days after they were smacked down in the election, Ohio Republicans introduced a personhood amendment!

http://www.dispatch.com/content/stor...-abortion.html

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That's the challenge for the US Republicans now. Will they admit, even to themselves, that they misgoverned America so badly that the voters are actively afraid to allow them to govern again?
I think thats what Jindal was trying to say with his speech. But, from his efforts this last week I don't think he believes it himself. He proved to almost everybody, again, that he's a typical Republican trying to destroy the middle class and working poor by getting rid of the Louisiana State income tax and replacing it with a sales tax. Republicans know nothing about progressive taxation other than they don't like it. So Jindal and the Republicans, again, prove they are no friends of the working class.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/...uck-with-that/

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Or will they continue to offer the medicine as before and tell themselves that next time they must try harder to sell the same old neo-liberal economic policies allied to tax cuts for the rich and spurious foreign wars, paid for by borrowing which future generations will need to repay?
See above. I think its pretty obvious to just about everyone that the same old, same old tax cuts for the rich and bible thumping is their way forward. The only currently elected Republican that "seems" to be bucking that trend is Chris Christie. And who knows how long that will last.

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Will they continue to peddle social conservatism, guns, God, no abortion and knee-jerk reactionary little-America grand standing on issues such as immigration and citizenship?
I don't know if you get MSNBC over there but, if you do, try and check out Joe Scarborough in the early a.m. He's a prominent conservative who has been really unhappy with the current situation.

http://www.nbcnews.com/id/3036789/ns..._joe/#50663688

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The Republicans have lost touch with their own natural constituencies.
Precisely. Many latinos are pretty conservative and should be aligned with the Republicans but the Republicans now in charge are just like Romney and Ryan; they look down on just about everyone unless they're bank account is in the millions.

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One way to save the Republican movement (and actually I think US Democrats should want to save the Republican movement in the interests of plural democracy) would be to make it illegal for God botherers to run for office. Anyone who is a self-professed clergyman (eg the Reverend Pat Robertson) should be disqualified from public office, even as a dog catcher. Any church which donates to any political cause should lose its tax-exemption and be forced to render unto Caesar. These measures would weaken the sclerotic grip of God-botherers on the Republican movement and make it easier for electable candidates to get past the primaries. Romney and Ryan was an extremely socially conservative ticket and went down badly with the voters for precisely that reason; but Romney had a titanic struggle to get selected by Republican party members at grass roots level, who seriously contemplated selecting Rick Santorum. Until it reaches a stage where a candidate like Rick Santorum would be laughed at by the Republican grass roots, the Republican Party will struggle to reach out beyond its own grass roots and appeal to voters who have moderate conservative beliefs.
Great idea but isn't going to happen anytime soon. The "god botherers (like that term)" seem to own the primary process which is why we're seeing all of these incumbents retire and complete whacko's come into the general elections. They won a bit in 2010 but not as well last year. But they've gerrymandered the house districts so well that they should be able to keep the house until 2022 (if they don't totally go bananas).

So I guess the question is, can the Republicans survive if they can't win the Presidency and Senate? Only controlling in the House? Personally, I think they may be dead because they only have old white men and racists remaining. Not going to get far any longer with that constituency any longer.
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Old 02-03-2013, 12:11 PM   #22
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scoundrel,

I realize it must sound preposterous to even think about the demise of the Republicans but, from watching their actions prior to and since the election, I'm beginning to think they may not be able to recover.
It is not preposterous. The Republicans were originally created out of a massive schism in the former American Whig party over slavery. Slavery is a defunct issue today, but tension between conflicting regional interests is alive and well. The religious right are strongest in the South and South-West states, excluding California. But in places like Ohio, California, key swing states, the totemic God-botherer positions on abortion, contraception, treatment of sexually transmitted diseases, the classic banners of mean-spirited social repression, play badly, as Todd Akin discovered. Away from Florida and the heartland of anti-Castro expatriates, the US blockade of Cuba doesn't impress the voters. Anti-immigration stances are a very double edged sword, even in bedrock Republican voter groups and they don't help candidates tryingto appeal to the centre ground. What happened in the 1850s could happen again; a schism based on regional interests. At the moment, I don't see what the touchstone issue might be which would create the fracture.
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Old 02-03-2013, 05:43 PM   #23
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scoundrel,

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Slavery is a defunct issue today, but tension between conflicting regional interests is alive and well.
Sorry to say it but there are many people in the South (and other states such as Indiana) who wouldn't mind its return and don't think it was all that bad. Do a quick google search on "slavery a blessing in disguise" and you'll be amazed. Southern Republicans (not all but quite a few) would have no problem going back to pre 1865. Here's an example of a couple of them:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=03unoBg06G0

"In a 2009 self-published book, Representative Jon Hubbard of Jonesboro calls slavery a “blessing in disguise” for blacks, who otherwise would have still struggled as “African tribesmen” instead of becoming the citizens of “the greatest nation” on earth.

“The institution of slavery that the black race has long believed to be an abomination upon its people may actually have been a blessing in disguise,” Hubbard argues in Letters to the Editor: Confessions of a Frustrated Conservative. “The blacks who could endure those conditions and circumstances would someday be rewarded with citizenship in the greatest nation ever established upon the face of this Earth.”

http://newsfeed.time.com/2012/10/09/...aign-comments/

Those three are actually typical of many modern Republicans. And they're actually in some places you wouldn't expect. There was a time, only a few years ago, when the Ku Klux Klans largest membership was actually in Indiana! Not in a southern state.

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The religious right are strongest in the South and South-West states, excluding California. But in places like Ohio, California, key swing states, the totemic God-botherer positions on abortion, contraception, treatment of sexually transmitted diseases, the classic banners of mean-spirited social repression, play badly, as Todd Akin discovered.
It seems to me the only reason Akin and these other Republicans wind up losing is because they get caught and receive national attention. Please remember, Akin lost funding from the national Republican party for a while but, when the national party realized they still had a chance to win the seat they quietly restored his funding. So the Republicans really have few problems with racism if they think they can win a senate seat.

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What happened in the 1850s could happen again; a schism based on regional interests. At the moment, I don't see what the touchstone issue might be which would create the fracture.
As far as the Republican schism is concerned its the social conservatives (who have taken the party over) vs. the mainstream Republicans mainly concerned with fiscal issues and small government (who are now cowering somewhere in the dark). The social conservatives vote in the primaries and win at that level. But they get slaughtered in general elections. Mainstream Republicans realize that but don't seem to be willing to do anything about (at least for now). Its the "god botherers" that are your touchstone.
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Old 02-03-2013, 07:07 PM   #24
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The Republican party is far from dead. Just look at their control of Governorships, state legislatures, and local municipalities. I'm not saying that the party won't change. I could very well imagine a split between the religious elements, the conservative elements, and the moderate elements of the party. There are many Republicans that are fiscal and social conservatives but not very religious. I can't see things ending up as multi-party because the politics in the USA are really only set up for two big parties.
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Old 02-03-2013, 11:49 PM   #25
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blueballsdc,

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My friend, you forget that people have very short memories.
No, I haven't forgotten, I just wish you were wrong (even though you're not). So, to help people not forget, I guess we'll have to make sure we keep calling him Gov. Ultrasound. Kind of catchy, don't you think? It'll be harder to forget if the name sticks.

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His views were well known before the election (along with Ken Cuccinelli who is even worse) yet lots of women voted for him for governor. A lot of women supported him through the ultrasound nonsense and continue to support him now. If he spends the next couple of years campaigning, as I believe he will, people will forget (or ignore) what he has said and done before.
Again, Gov. Ultrasound cannot be forgotten. Women in Virginia may have supported him but I think his chances with the national womens vote will be more difficult. And I'm sure Rachel Maddow won't forget about him. She's invited him on her show many times but he's too much of a coward to show up.

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Of course, a lot will depend upon who else decides to run. I expect Rick Perry will throw his hat in the ring again (and probably miss) along with Paul Ryan. Marco Rubio is clearly being groomed for bigger and better things, although he may choose to wait a few years longer. I also have a sneaking suspicion that Ted Cruz may try his hand at a presidential campaign.
Its really early but there's only one Republican I think has a chance in a general election - Chris Christie. But I also don't think he has a chance in a primary as the religious right (who vote in the primaries) doesn't like him. And he doesn't seem to like them very much. So, getting a bit ahead of ourselves, but nationally, I really don't think Gov. Ultrasound has much of a chance. Too much of a "god-botherer".
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Old 02-04-2013, 01:02 AM   #26
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blueballsdc,

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The Republican party is far from dead. Just look at their control of Governorships, state legislatures, and local municipalities.
Agreed. They have all three houses in my state (Wisconsin) right now but I think they'll lose some of those in the next election as they've done some things people really don't like. Probably like that in other states as well.

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I'm not saying that the party won't change. I could very well imagine a split between the religious elements, the conservative elements, and the moderate elements of the party. There are many Republicans that are fiscal and social conservatives but not very religious.
There aren't a lot of Republicans where I live but I know a few outside of the area. Most are old school; fiscal conservatives who would prefer smaller government (something I understand and agree with). Most all of these people just don't understand what is happening with the party and they're becoming very uncomfortable. How long will they continue to support the party? Don't know. Stay tuned.

Seems to me they will have to change eventually. But I don't see them doing it right now. Just look at that vote for Sandy aid relief. An interesting article from the Palm Beach Post:

http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/ne...-hurric/nWCyk/

With a couple of quotes:

"A majority of Florida’s congressional delegation claimed to have voted against the Hurricane Sandy aid bill on fiscal principle. They are from the wrong state to cast such a vote on such a flimsy principle.

The $51 billion aid package, most of it for New York and New Jersey, cleared the Senate Monday by a vote of 62-36. All the no votes came from Republicans, including Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla. On Jan. 15, the legislation passed the House 241-180. Thirteen of Florida’s 16 House Republicans voted no. The exceptions were Reps. Mario Diaz-Balart and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen of Miami and Bill Young of St. Petersburg. All nine Democrats voted for the relief bill."

Maybe people would believe Republicans were fiscal conservatives except the Bush administration spent like raped apes and wouldn't put the cost of two wars on the books. Fiscal conservatives? Yeah right. When pigs fly.

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I can't see things ending up as multi-party because the politics in the USA are really only set up for two big parties.
Well, things can change. Maybe its best they do as the current Republicans seem to be in real trouble. The Brits seem to do OK with a multi-party system. We can probably do as well.
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Old 02-04-2013, 01:20 AM   #27
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I can't see things ending up as multi-party because the politics in the USA are really only set up for two big parties.
One of the advantages of the US "Two-Party" system is that it forces the parties to address all the issues and to at least attempt to appeal to the majority of the population. It keeps the one-issue extremists out of positions where they can force the shut-down of the government or a collapse of a "ruling coalition".
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Old 02-04-2013, 01:28 AM   #28
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One of the advantages of the US "Two-Party" system is that it forces the parties to address all the issues and to at least attempt to appeal to the majority of the population. It keeps the one-issue extremists out of positions where they can force the shut-down of the government or a collapse of a "ruling coalition".
You really believe what you have just written?
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Old 02-04-2013, 01:51 AM   #29
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Maybe people would believe Republicans were fiscal conservatives except the Bush administration spent like raped apes and wouldn't put the cost of two wars on the books. Fiscal conservatives? Yeah right. When pigs fly.



Well, things can change. Maybe its best they do as the current Republicans seem to be in real trouble. The Brits seem to do OK with a multi-party system. We can probably do as well.
Britain has a sort of two-and-a-bit party system. Our Liberal Democrat Party is really a "none of the above" box. That's why I vote for them. I was a bit disappointed when they got into government, though actually I think they've cramped the Tory style and that's a damn good thing. I dread the idea of Cameron in office without a coalition partner; he's bad enough when he's got a coalition partner.

I wonder if history will remember George W Bush as a Republican at all. He was more like a Whig. He saw himself as a moderniser, when in reality he was promoting an archaic economic model; the Reaganomics trickle down theory. His education policies were pietistic, promoting religious contamination of science, the so-called creationism, intelligent design, dogmas which were taught in Sunday school before Charles Darwin published; ignorance and bullshit taught to kids who deserve to be taught verifiable truth. This was some sick re-wind from Inherit the Wind. Eisenhower and Nixon would have stamped out this crap from their administration. It was Reagan who first sucked up to the religio-fascist right in the form of the Reverend Pat Robertson and the Moral Majority.

Fiscal conservatives in todays world should vote Democrat. In fact, most of them probably did.
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Old 02-04-2013, 03:58 AM   #30
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DTravel,

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It keeps the one-issue extremists out of positions where they can force the shut-down of the government or a collapse of a "ruling coalition".
Not sure what you mean here. Newt Gingrich and his ilk shut down the federal government back in, what was it, 1994? I don't think that did the Republicans much good as I think they lost pretty badly in the next election.

And I won't exactly be surprised to see another shutdown at the end of March as I think thats what the extreme right really wants. They have just enough members, and the threat to primary others, that they have just enough influence to pull that off it they want. Where it will lead them is probably to no good. Probably the same as Gingrich.
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