Why are Republicans Wrong about Everything?


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Nov 25, 2012 - 02:48pm PT
Probably the best (as in, most pathetic and delusional) wingnut article I came across predicting Obama's defeat

Pure Comedy Gold


"Obama senses it, but can't quite believe it. He seems confused by how easily Romney started punching over his weight class on October 3rd. He seems surprised that the last two debates didn't drop Governor Romney's numbers like a rock. He's frustrated that Romney is a happy warrior now, and it shows. He's visibly irritable because all the press hits and ads and field work ... and so, so much money ... haven't reduced Mitt Romney to dust."

"For months, according to Team Obama, there was no path for a Romney victory. The Blue Wall states were immutable, the swing states were susceptible to his women-and-seniors-and-immigrants-and-students mojo. Everything that worked in 2008 would work now. Everything in the hard-hitting Chicago political tool box would be deployed, and by the end Mitt Romney would want to be in the Witness Protection Program."

Hahahahaha, probably the most factually accurate part of the article...^^^^^

"But now, as the President's options have narrowed and as the weight of Obama's failures from the economy to the Libya fiasco come crashing down on his campaign, I'm feeling increasingly optimistic that we've passed an inflection point in the campaign where Obama's familiar tools can't help him pull off a miracle."

"The daily polling -- beyond just the head-to-head numbers -- shows GOP intensity solidifying, Romney's favorables growing, and the battleground states becoming smaller in number. There aren't any swing states showing significant movement away from Romney, but a number are moving to him. Yes, we still need to pick the electoral lock by driving wins in some combination of Ohio, Colorado, Wisconsin, New Hampshire, Nevada, and Virginia, but I'd rather be in our shoes than Obama's."

"What happened to the vaunted Obama ground game?"

"The presence of outside analysis from smart, credible folks who take the time to drill into the weighting, cross tabs, and sample composition have radically altered polling stories that would have once set GOP voters into a terminal funk."

"It won't stop Obama from trying...but it won't stop him from losing, either."


Repubs Have Failed.


Trad climber
Nov 25, 2012 - 03:32pm PT
Splitter -- A sneeze broke your concentration?

So would we or would we not want you to be the person diffusing a roadside bomb?

I think you failed the only objective real world question on the exam if something like a sneeze distracted you on a timed exam. Timing an exam that is full of critical thinking and reasoning is done to add pressure---you failed under pressure by being distracted.

Hope hot chicks/dudes aren't next to you while climbing if your that easily distracted you may drop your climber (unless they are the baby Jesus--of course).

Nov 26, 2012 - 09:28am PT
The GOP Faces Years in the Wilderness After 2012 Election Losses


So here is the Republican Party reinventing itself. The GOP majority in the Ohio legislature rushes to defund Planned Parenthood in its post-election session. The orange-tinted speaker of the House proposes to undo Obamacare through “oversight” in the name of “solving our debt and restoring prosperity.” Never mind that health-care reform doesn’t raise the deficit but reduces it. Or that “a new low,” 33 percent of Americans, the anti-Obama bitter-enders, still favor repealing the law. And a rising star in the GOP future, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, offers a dim view out of the pre-Darwinian past that maybe the Earth was created in seven days—and that since “theologians” disagree, we should teach “multiple theories.”

This doesn’t sound like rethinking, or thinking at all, but like the reflex and revanchism of a party that doesn’t comprehend or simply can’t respond to the dimensions of its 2012 defeat. There’s not just the delicious irony that maladroit Mitt Romney, the 47 percent man, will end up with 47 percent of the vote. Outside the South, President Obama defeated his opponent 55 to 45 percent, winning a landslide there as well as in the Electoral College.

The bottom line: Romney got elected president of the old confederacy.

The aggrieved and deluded suggest secession—a question that was definitively settled four score and seven years ago. The fantasist who founded UnSkewedPolls.com conjures up a new website, BarackOFraudo.com, “proving” that the president stole Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Florida. Sensible Republicans—perhaps even Boehner, who has to fear the Tea Party and a coup from Eric Cantor, his House majority leader—know this is self-defeating nonsense. So do smart GOP strategists, who for speaking truth to the loss of power were promptly denounced by the grand inquisitor Rush Limbaugh as heretics who want “to get rid of conservatism.”

That’s not what they’re saying, of course. They’re insisting that something must be done to renew the viability of a conservative party that seems out of touch, out of ideas, and without much hope for victory short of economic calamity under the Democrats. But beyond the ritual lashing of Romney, who fled the national stage with ugly recriminations about the “old playbook” of “gifts” that bribed voters, the reactions from Rubio to Rush point toward slapping a new façade on a fundamentally unchanged, increasingly self-marginalizing GOP.

One of Limbaugh’s targets, Steve Schmidt, a veteran of Bush 2004, who managed Arnold Schwarzenegger’s 2006 reelection and John McCain’s 2008 campaign, was at NYU’s post-election conference at Villa La Pietra in Florence. The Republicans and Democrats there, both analysts and leading actors in the Obama and Romney efforts, heard senior Romney adviser Kevin Madden, a convinced conservative, regret that his candidate had been pushed so far to the right during the primary season. Alex Castellanos, who worked for Romney four years ago, called for a “bottom up” conservatism relevant to middle-class voters, one that offered them clear and persuasive benefits. (He didn’t say “gifts.” He was focused on opportunity.)

Schmidt was blunt. The GOP had to abandon the ceaseless pursuit of the last white guy in Mississippi at the expense of alienating the mainstream. He argued a case in point: Republicans should be “a pro-life party,” but not “the anti-contraception” party, which is how Romney sometimes came across as he felt forced to match the über-purist Rick Santorum in the primaries. Castellanos mentioned that since Republicans believe in states’ rights, the answer on abortion might be to reverse Roe v. Wade but then leave the decision on the issue to each state.

That wouldn’t bring over those who care deeply about reproductive rights. And it would incite fierce resistance from those who believe life begins at fertilization. But at least such moves would provide the substance and not just the slogans of a party repositioning from the edge.

Obama pollster Joel Benenson responded that such shifts may require two or three more cycles of presidential loss. It took the Democrats that long in the wilderness in the 1970s and 1980s, when only one Democrat won the White House for only one term, and then only in reaction to the Watergate scandal. Democratic consultant Steve McMahon amplified the point: until Bill Clinton, Democrats kept hoping or clinging to the certainty that they were right and that all they had to do was find the right candidate.

That’s not where realistic Republican strategists want their party to be. But four overriding realities militate against a GOP return to the White House in 2016 and perhaps for several campaigns beyond.

First, the economy, the issue Romney ran on, the issue that in a time of distress can elect an otherwise unacceptably hard conservative candidate like Ronald Reagan, is now likely to turn decisively in the Democratic direction. At La Pietra, NYU professor Joshua Tucker cited models that show growth and jobs rising at a robust pace in the next four years. Tucker, a founder of The Monkey Cage blog, where political scientists grapple insightfully with politics, observed that 2012 was two presidential elections rolled into one. Whoever won this time, Romney or Obama, would get credit for the coming prosperity. A President Romney could have been all but unbeatable for reelection. Now the high cards on the economy will be held by Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, or whoever else is the Democratic nominee.

This scenario could be undermined or undone if the White House and Congress don’t come to an agreement on the fiscal cliff and the nation falls back into recession or, less damaging, experiences a period of declining or sluggish growth. But the standard rule may not apply that the president and his party are held primarily responsible for a downturn. A new Pew poll finds that by nearly 2-to-1, voters would blame congressional Republicans rather than Obama for a failure here.

Second, the nature of the Republican primary electorate hamstrings the party’s capacity to adapt. The religious right and the true believers who dominate the nominating process have their own explanations or rationalizations for 2012. Romney wasn’t conservative enough. Richard Viguerie, who invented GOP direct mail, announced: “Romney’s loss was the death rattle of the establishment GOP.” Franklin Graham, a pale carbon copy of Billy, bore false witness to the electoral facts: “The vast majority of evangelicals did not go to the polls.” But they did; they constituted the same proportion of the vote as in 2008, and more of them voted for Romney than McCain.

Schmidt recommended that Republicans dispense with the Iowa caucuses, where the litmus test is who’s most for Jesus, according to the narrow measures of right-wing fundamentalists. That change won’t happen, not yet; religious and movement forces on the far right won’t yield their hold on the primary process and their veto power over the nominee. In the last two elections, they sacrificed at least five Senate seats for the sake of ideological ultra-orthodoxy. So why won’t they demand their kind of presidential candidate—no doubts, no flip-flops, always there with them? And they believe the country will come around to them. Former Moral Majoritarian Ralph Reed smoothly explained how. Yes, there has to be change, to “combine core principles with outreach.”

But outreach to whom, if the core principles are reaction and intolerance?

That’s the potentially insuperable challenge for Republicans in the near and medium and maybe even the long term. As Biden adviser and Obama media-maker Mike Donilon said in Florence, the GOP is simply on the wrong side of the emerging majority in the country. In the exit polls, 59 percent of voters said abortion should be legal in all or most cases. By 49 to 46 percent, they supported gay marriage; the tide has swiftly turned on the question that carried George W. Bush to a narrow win in 2004 on a wave of evangelical turnout. And 65 percent in the exit polls favored immigration reform with a path to citizenship.

All this leaves Republicans out there on a demographic cliff with women, Hispanics, and young people. And for the most part, their own primary voters won’t let them retreat.

Post-election, Sean Hannity of Fox News did switch on immigration reform, presumably calculating that a conservative softening here will placate Hispanics. He was echoed by others in the Republican leadership and commentariat. This expedient is simplistic, desperate, and ahistorical.

Defining passages forge political identity. When they came to America, Jews were largely welcomed by the Democratic Party and disdained by the GOP. They have remained overwhelmingly Democratic as they have become more affluent, because they lived and believe in the party’s values of tolerance and diversity. African-Americans, hard as it now is to remember, used to vote Republican in substantial numbers. Dwight Eisenhower won 39 percent of them in 1956. Four years later, Martin Luther King Sr. was originally for Richard Nixon. He changed his mind after the Kennedy brothers spoke out when his son was in danger in a Georgia jail. Events from then until the Kennedy-Johnson civil rights legislation brought African-Americans to the Democratic fold, and they have never left. Indeed, disrespect for Obama and efforts this year at voter suppression have reinforced their partisan loyalty.

Hispanics have already heard their own share of disrespect from Republicans, the rank racism of anti-immigrant hardliners and the casual contempt of Romney, who told “illegals” to “self-deport.” They will hear even more of this as nativists in the party resist a change on immigration—which, even from Rubio, will be a watered-down version of reform.

The GOP used to take comfort in the cliché that Hispanics were cultural conservatives, Catholics who agree with them on social issues. Wrong again. In the exit polls, they are more progressive than the electorate as a whole on questions of marriage equality and the role of government. For Hispanics, the passage here has probably already been made with the politics of insult driving them toward the Democrats. And to add injury to that insult, Asian-Americans also are voting Democratic by a wide margin; the likely reason is that they too see the GOP as the party of an indivisible prejudice that demeans them too, even if it doesn’t explicitly target them.

Young people may be another lost cause. As Professor Tucker said at La Pietra, party ID tends to be set by age 30, and those under and approaching 30 are decisively Democratic. So are unmarried women, a growing segment of the population, alienated from the GOP on concerns ranging from reproductive rights to equal pay. Is it really conceivable, soon if ever, that Republicans in the presidential primaries would be willing to leave abortion rights to the states or to leave Planned Parenthood alone? And it’s inconceivable that this would be enough to convince women that the party is on their side.

Economic conservatives and wealthy Republicans have formed an unholy alliance with a religious right whose views they don’t share but whose votes they covet. Now they’re saddled with a base that could leave them with increasingly unelectable nominees—for president, for the Senate, and for the House, which this year was largely saved for the GOP by partisan redistricting.

But the economic conservatives have their own weakness, which is the third reality that now imprints and imprisons the Republican brand. Especially after the fights of the past two years, and the argument the president successfully prosecuted during the campaign, Americans perceive the GOP as the party that favors those at the top and not the middle class. As he refused to let the election be cast as a mere referendum, Obama returned to Democratic ground with the first full-throated populist appeal in half a century or more. In 1992, President Clinton’s centrism had a populist tinge as he promised to “put people first.” Al Gore has said he regrets the decision in 2000 to back off the dividing line of “the people, not the powerful.” Obama never backed off as he constantly pushed a central choice: who stands for the many and not just the few?

The president has laid a predicate for a generation of Democratic campaigns and left Republicans in what could be a permanently vulnerable position. Castellanos obviously realizes this; thus his argument in Florence for a conservatism that is “relevant” to the middle class. But what exactly is that, in light of the debate that’s now front and center? The GOP will only deepen its difficulties if congressional Republicans hold tax cuts for most Americans hostage to tax cuts for the rich.

Republican compromise here would represent some measure of change. But that too wouldn’t be enough. The fourth reality is a technological gap in voter mobilization; more accurately the gap is a chasm. Karl Rove now talks of imitating Howard Dean’s 50-state strategy, which widened the electoral landscape on which the Democratic Party competed. A breakthrough in its time, that strategy is now far behind what the Obama forces did with social media to track contact and get people to the polls—and to buy television time for much less than the Romney campaign paid. What they did was a quantum leap beyond their own success in 2008. This year, their combat with Romney, from micro-targeting to monitoring turnout, was like the Starship Enterprise battling a B1 bomber.

Can the GOP catch up? It’s not just a matter of technology. There is a “pressing and alarming deficit in human capital.” A sophisticated process doesn’t run itself. Thus the imperative of recruiting “a new generation” of Republican operatives; for example, from the “libertarian-minded minority in Silicon Valley.” But why would libertarian geeks flock to a party that argues for big government interference in the most private aspects of people’s lives, and that discriminates against the gay or lesbian techie who sits nearby in the same open-plan space?

The day after the election, the deputy GOP leader in the Senate, John Cornyn, predicted a “period of reflection and recalibration ahead.” But it’s hard to envision the party realigning itself to the new and real America.

Instead, in the throes of their self-proclaimed reexamination, many Republicans remind me of a scene in Theodore H. White’s classic The Making of the President 1960. JFK spoke in the Boston garden on the last night of the campaign, with politicians and ward heelers smoking cigars arranged in rows behind him. As the crowd cheered, White wrote, a look passed across their faces. You could see what the pols were thinking: Kennedy has a trick; if only I could figure it out, I could be president.

It was a false and easy conceit. And if what the GOP looks for now is a trick, what it will find is a way deeper into the wilderness.

Repubs Have Failed.

Riley Wyna

Trad climber
A crack near you
Nov 26, 2012 - 11:18am PT
What happened to cornhole chomper?
Not even he/she is deluded enough to fall for republican BS anymore?

Nov 26, 2012 - 12:12pm PT
There is a real tendency to think the election has solved our problems. Clearly, Obama does not
think this. Indeed he has started a new effort to gain input and strengthen the ability voters have
to get an inside view of how his administration is approaching the issues.

The following email is part of what is intended to be a continuing effort. Perhaps the best analog
might be what Abraham Lincoln called his “Public Opinion Baths” during the Civil War. If I
remember correctly he dedicated one afternoon each week to hearing what people coming in off
the street had to say. During that war he had an unfailing understanding of public sentiment still
marvelled at a century and a half later.

Right now, President Obama is working with leaders of both parties in Washington to reduce the
deficit in a balanced way so we can lay the foundation for long-term middle-class job growth
and prevent your taxes from going up.

Your voice and action helped re-elect President Obama, and hundreds of thousands of you have
already responded to our survey, which will help shape our next steps. Thanks to your feedback,
we're taking immediate action on one of your suggestions: keeping you informed about how the
President is fighting for you so you can continue to talk to your friends, family, and neighbors. So
here's the deal:



Mountain climber
Anchorage AK, Reno NV
Nov 26, 2012 - 01:22pm PT

Pulitzer prize winner beats down the Saudi-Australian FASCIST channel AKA faux snooze

The Warbler

the edge of America
Nov 26, 2012 - 01:27pm PT

He obviously is a little too fair and balanced for Fox News. Doubt we'll see him on their show again, hehehe!

Republicans are getting spanked and backpedaling everywhere you look these days. They got a long way to go, but it's a start.

Sport climber
mammoth lakes ca
Nov 26, 2012 - 01:55pm PT
A zinger right between the eyes of fox news...Haven't heard much about Benghazigate since the election..? Where is Fox's outrage NOW on the 4 people killed in the consulate attack....Guess it's too late for their phony outrage to sway the simple-minded swing voters...Weak...!

Trad climber
Fresno CA
Nov 26, 2012 - 02:07pm PT

That's a hopeful email. Do you know if the invitation was sent to people generally, or just to Obama supporters?


Nov 26, 2012 - 03:08pm PT
It's actually better not to call out FauxNews as being the propaganda wing of the repub party (which they obviously are).

Let the wingnuts continue to guzzle the FauxNews kool-aid right up until November 2020

And they'll be just as irrelevant nationally as they already are in the most populous, most prosperous state in the nation.

Nov 26, 2012 - 03:24pm PT
That's a hopeful email. Do you know if the invitation was sent to people generally, or just to Obama supporters?

As far as I can tell it was sent to me as a supporter, but I have no way of knowing.

When two forces are implacably locked in combat clearly the quickest resolution is to draw all affected parties into the discussion. Sometime ago I posted that Obama would be talking to us all, very frequently. I even mentioned "fireside chats." I think this is the start of just that and it will inevitably broaden. In the mean time people of low/no position, like myself, can distribute these communications as I did to ST, and you can do the same. John, if you will PM me your email addy I will try and forward to you the full email I received.

I. like yourself, am hopeful we are on the way to some resolutions.

If so, we all can expect we will have to do some hard work.

In that process I for one expect to find invaluable the assessments from people on both sides who are not entirely driven by self-interest. I'll be reading your stuff.

Trad climber
Portland, Oregon
Nov 26, 2012 - 04:09pm PT
healyje (back 200 or so posts): I personally think it's less about Israel this time around and more about forcing Arab states to more visibly support Hamas so they can unilaterally declare statehood and have the Arab world publicly support them in the U.N. where heretofore they have been unwilling to do so. Sort of a sh#t or get off the pot deal.

Palestinians release UN resolution

Good on them, it's about time to stop dicking around with a 'peace process' explicitly designed to go nowhere while US troops keep dying in the Mideast as a result.
Dr. F.

Ice climber
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 26, 2012 - 04:13pm PT
Credit: Dr. F.

Nov 26, 2012 - 04:24pm PT
“Behind the plotters are drug cartels that have penetrated the US government, former lobbyists who were moved into government during the Bush administration and now are suspected of being involved in a coup attempt.”

Seventy hours ago, at this writing, while on Air Force One, President Barack Obama issued a press release that has been utterly ignored by the Western Press.

The president has openly announced a move against violent plotters inside the US government and espionage agents. He does not use the terms “AIPAC” or “the Israel lobby” but it is highly unlikely he could be referring to anything else.

How can a President of the United States announce that the government is infiltrated with terrorists and spies and no newspaper, television network or other form of media notices?


Social climber
So Cal
Nov 26, 2012 - 04:30pm PT
Dr. F.

Ice climber
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 26, 2012 - 04:40pm PT
The most Important issue facing American Politics: Filibuster Reform
May be Filibustered by McConnell

Filibuster Reform Opposed By Mitch McConnell, Senate Minority Leader

Posted: 11/26/2012 5:09 pm EST Updated: 11/26/2012 5:23 pm EST

WASHINGTON -- Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) warned senators Monday to oppose the growing momentum for dramatic reform of the filibuster, saying, "It may be the most important thing you ever do."

Use of the filibuster to stall legislation -- when the minority party refuses to end debate on a bill unless 60 senators vote to do so -- has escalated in recent years, rising from a rarity to the norm. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has been signaling his readiness to curb the tactic, often noting that he has faced 385 filibusters during his leadership while Lyndon Johnson had to deal with only one when he ran the Senate.

A number of proposals are under consideration, including a bill sponsored by Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) and others that would essentially require an old-fashioned "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington"-style filibuster: Minority opponents of a measure would actually have to take the floor and hold forth for hours, rather than simply signal their intent to obstruct.

Making such a rule change in the Senate would normally require a 67-vote majority. But when the Senate comes back into session in January, Democrats could use a set of procedural rules often called the "nuclear option" and pass the changes with a simple 51-vote majority.

It is that possibility that McConnell targeted in his Senate floor speech, saying such a move would be a pure power grab that would only make partisanship worse in the upper chamber.

"The American people sent us here to be their voice. They understand that those voices can at times become loud and argumentative, but they also hope we can disagree without being disagreeable," McConnell said.

"What they do not expect is for one party, be it Republican or Democrat, to change the rules in the middle of the game so they can make all the decisions while the other party is told to sit down and keep quiet," he said. "The American people want less partisanship in this town, but everyone in this chamber knows that if the majority chooses to end the filibuster, if they choose to change the rules and put an end to democratic debate, then the fighting, the bitterness and the gridlock will only get worse."

None of the proposals for filibuster reform have actually called for ending the practice, and lawmakers from small states are especially wary of giving up the ability to check the majority.

Some reformers have suggested ending the filibuster for procedural actions like motions to start debate and motions to appoint senators to conference committees, which work out differences in legislation passed by the two chambers.

McConnell, while not specifically addressing whether the filibuster needs to be fixed, has said that any fix must be based on bipartisan discussion. Using the nuclear option, he said Monday, would be an attack on the entire country.

"Let's be clear: The rules change that's being proposed is not an affront to me or to the Republican Party. It's an affront to the American people," McConnell said. "It's an affront to the people who sent me and the other 46 Republicans here to represent them in the Senate, but whose voices would be shut out if the majority leader and this cohort of short-sighted Senate sophomores have their way and permanently change this body."

A Democratic Senate staffer whose boss backs a rule change argued that Republicans have already permanently altered the Senate by obstructing just about everything.

"It's frankly unbelievable after this historic abuse of Senate rules that Republicans would cry foul over attempts to make the Senate work," said the aide, who spoke anonymously because the boss is still negotiating details of a reform proposal. "Senator McConnell had the chance to work with Senator Reid to bring bills to the floor under the gentlemen's agreement of 2011, and he failed to do so."

The "gentlemen's agreement" refers to Reid's pledge to abide by normal Senate rules as long as McConnell stuck to a more traditional wielding of the filibuster.

McConnell and other Republicans have argued that they have to filibuster so much because Reid does not let the Senate take votes on their proposed amendments.

The minority leader argued Monday that the Democrats' efforts to get things moving again will only make matters worse.

"In the name of 'efficiency,' their plan is to use a heavy-handed tactic that would poison party relations even more," McConnell said. "In the name of 'efficiency,' they would prevent the very possibility of compromise and threaten to make the disputes of the past few years look like pillow fights."

McConnell pointed to Reid's past comments opposing the nuclear option, which Reid once described as "breaking the rules to change the rules."

However, that was before Reid had to deal with nearly 400 filibusters.

Nov 26, 2012 - 04:44pm PT
Wingnut Senator Tom Coburn from Oklahoma just said on Hardball that raising taxes on the rich "will stimulate the economy".

Is there literally any issue repubs actually believe in?

Nov 26, 2012 - 04:48pm PT
TGT, you're hilarious

Romney exporting hundreds os thousands of jobs to China = good economic policy

And how, exactly, did the Union shut Hostess down?

Social climber
Right outside of Delacroix
Nov 26, 2012 - 05:06pm PT
TGT, if you had a clue, you'd be dangerous.
Dr. F.

Ice climber
Topic Author's Reply - Nov 26, 2012 - 05:25pm PT

What happened to rong?

maybe he finally realized that the whole Benghazi affair was just made up Fox News Controversy

and he was 100% correct by repeating the right wing BS about the controversy,
and 100% wrong when it came to reality
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