Will the Republican Party ever “get it”?
Elections 2012 are over and the Republican Party has lost handily as the American Public rejected their platform of Hate, Fear and Exclusion.
If people are awaiting serious soul-searching from within the Party ranks, they may have to wait a while, the Party is still unable and unwilling to look at what may have caused their failure.
The Romney Campaign maintains that in spite of his fluent Spanish, Mitt had a “Communication Problem” with the Latino voters. The day after the elections, one senior party leader conceded that the Republican Party had a “Hispanic Problem“, but the sad fact is that the Republican party has many “Problems” AND it is in complete denial of every single one of them.
With 70% of its voters being White, the Reps are on a path to extinction unless they mend their ways and fast. If it stays with its current trends the Party will have to gain at least 60% of ALL White voters, in order to win the next election…an impossibility, based on facts we see today.
Even if they do win next time by some miracle (real or contrived), they are still on a path to extinction because by 2030, Latinos will be the largest minority in the US and 2050, Whites will be a minority in this country. Instead of seeking to address this issue, many in the Republican Party are talking about “The Demographic Bomb”. Instead of wooing Latinos, the Party is whipping up the fear of “The Demographic Bomb” and attacking the so-called illegal immigrants, but in actuality, attacking Latinos as well. I heard one Republican leader talk about how Republican values are in harmony with Latinos because Latinos are hard-working, enterprising people who also want to keep their money to themselves…missed that boat too! While it is true that Latinos are hard-working enterprising people, they have strong kinship values and strong community values and they want to share their good life with those around them and those they love. Thus, anti-immigrant policies and policies against national healthcare, national elder-care are contrary to values cherished by Hispanic people in general.
Then there is the “Black Problem“. Long seen as being more pro-Democratic Party, the Republican Party has seen fit to attack Blacks instead of looking to find ways to win them over; the few Blacks they do have, are those who have moved away from their general core values and into the Republican fold, not because of a move towards them by the Republican Party. Republican Party has instead, sought State measures to help discourage Black voters, which in turn, has only served to alienate more of the Black Electorate against the Republican Party. Instead of looing inwards, the Republican Party accuses Blacks of being racists because Blacks are not voting Republican.
The “Women Problem“. The attacks against women and women’s healthcare are made to be disguised as part of a “pro-life” effort. Republican Party has become so entrenched in their so-called “pro-life” stance that they oppose many birth-control methods as well, including ALL abortions…a stand where most women part company with the Republican Party. The Party’s attempts to soften their image around women’s issues is not helped by their own political leaders using words like “legitimate rape” and suggesting that women have the capacity to prevent pregnancy if they are really being raped against their will…therefore, no abortions or morning-after pills for women!
The “Gay Problem“. With homosexual demographics estimated at about 10% of the population, it is politically unprofitable for Republican Party to take strong stands on issues of concern to gay people. Thus, the Republican Party stand against Same-gender marriage with a thin pretense of “protecting” marriage as an institution is not going to gain them any significant percentage of this group either.
The “Muzlem Problem“. The Republican Party has become so deeply invested in its Hate-Islam position that it is almost impossible to move away form it. The Party has been actively whipping up hate towards Islam and Muslims, it has been cultivating fake “experts” on Islam who maintain that the best path towards a strong and secure America is to get rid of the greatest threat to the nation and to the West; The Muslims. Republican Party leaders have whipped up hysteria against proposed Mosque construction, against Muslim schools, against Muslims being able to solve their civil matters through Shariah process, just as do Jews and Catholics, in fact, the Republican Party has yet to see a Muslim issue that it is not staunchly against. Instead of talking to Muslims and understanding what Muslims stand for, the Republican Party has allowed ignorant bigots to create a narrative of hate and fear that sets Republicans against Muslims and in turn, Muslims against Republicans.
We could agree that some of the above “Problems” are fringe problems associated with the fringes…small numbers of voters…but in many crucial elections, it is the fringe that helps make or break a Campaign.
Ask Bush junior, who made it to his first Presidency in 2000 by the skin of his teeth…by winning a dubious 650-vote majority in Florida State.
All of the above are serious “problems” for the Republican Party…fatal problems, if the Party continues to deny them as they appear to be doing right now. Instead of looking to woo the minorities, the Republican Party appears to have chosen to woo the Christian and Jewish Right wings (mostly White people) and the very rich (also mostly White people). While such an exclusionary approach might serve some of their needs in the short term, the Party is doomed in the long term.
On the other hand, by watching the Republican Party go down, we may actually be witness to the beginnings of a true multi-party political arena.
That may not be such a bad thing…