GOP: Let’s Get Ready to Rumble


As pretty much everyone predicted, the Romney loss in Tuesday’s election has set off a civil war within the Republican party. A group of prominent conservatives held a press conference at the National Press Club in DC on Thursday, demanding that the entire GOP leadership resign:

“The failed Republican leadership should resign,” said Richard Viguerie, the head of Conservative HQ and the lead spokesman at a press conference held by disappointed conservative leaders at the National Press Club…

Viguerie was joined by L. Brent Bozell III, president of the Media Research Center; Marjorie Dannenfelser, president of Susan B. Anthony List; Jenny Beth Martin, the national coordinator of Tea Party Patriots; Alfred S. Regnery, president, The Paul Revere Project; and Jeff Bell of American Principles Project.

Each speaker denounced the failure of the GOP establishment and the Mitt Romney campaign to embrace conservative values with conviction.

The electoral defeat of Romney and the failure of Republicans to capture the United States Senate was decried as a “disaster.”

There are two sides to this battle: Those who are going to argue that the Republican party must return to its conservative roots — as if they ever left them — and those who are going to argue that the party most moderate its position on issues like immigration, gay rights and women’s rights if it has any hope of attracting younger and minority voters.

Sean Hannity, of all people, seems to be staking out a moderate position, at least on immigration:

“It’s simple to me to fix it,” Hannity said. “I think you control the border first. You create a pathway for those people that are here — you don’t say you’ve got to go home. And that is a position that I’ve evolved on. Because, you know what, it’s got to be resolved. The majority of people here, if some people have criminal records you can send them home, but if people are here, law-abiding, participating for years, their kids are born here, you know, first secure the border, pathway to citizenship, done.”

A few months ago — hell, a few weeks ago — he would have blasted that idea as liberal appeasement.

Comments

  1. says

    I think I’ll wait until more “blood” has been spilled before calling this a civil war. The people mentioned above are kind of fringe characters or they’re has-beens. And they’ve said something similar after every recent Republican loss.

    Not that I’m not rooting for full-on wingnut-on-wingnut warfare mind you. I’m just not breaking out the popcorn quite yet.

  2. erichoug says

    I’m really going to enjoy watching the Conservative logic that says that If only Gov. Romney had been even more radically conservative , those swing voters would have voted for him instead of the Democrat.

    If the Republicans aren’t looking for a way back to reality now then they are completely doomed.

  3. says

    Todd Akin and Richard “the dick” Murdock fully embraced (American) “conservative values,” as did Joe Walsh (not the former Eagle, the other one). And they lost, in races the village idiot of their respective states could easily have won. Oh, and also Alan West and a few others.

  4. jhendrix says

    The Conservatives are in a outright lose-lose position.

    If the GOP moderates, then their stances on all the social issues will be sacrificed and they lose.

    If the GOP goes more conservative, then they will lose even more seats, and the hard reality that the Conservatives refuse to face of the electorate rejecting those positions will eventually bite them in the ass.

    They’ve already lost, they just refuse to believe it. It’s a lot like the poll issue.

  5. Ben P says

    Immigration’s going to be a natural target because it’s the easiest to fix.

    The republican party certainly has its factions of xenophobes, the Tom Tancredo types. But the big business portion of the republican party has always been apathetic about immigration enforcement because they benefit from cheaper labor. The christian right segment is apathetic as well and would probably swing either way.

    There’s a strong part of the tea party crowd that will scream and cry about la raza and the mexican dominion, but ultimately they’re nowhere near as organized as the christian right. They’ll be the first to go under the bus.

    Then again they may not, and what will happen if they prove too strong will be that the Republicans will pick up a hispanic candidate. Marco Rubio is the obvious choice, George P Bush is another potential future candidate, not 2016, but 2020 maybe. Then they’ll play “tokenism” they say “you have to support us because we have a latino.” Fox will boggle at how anyone coudl think the republicans were anti-immigration when they have a latino.

  6. Michael Heath says

    Ed writes, my emphasis:

    There are two sides to this battle: Those who are going to argue that the Republican party must return to its conservative roots — as if they ever left them — and those who are going to argue that the party most moderate its position on issues like immigration, gay rights and women’s rights if it has any hope of attracting younger and minority voters.

    I’m not historically literate on the history of conservatism, but I’d be shocked to find the Republican party has conservative roots. It’s my understanding the party began to take on some fiscal conservatives in the late-19th century as they became the party of business. But that the mindset associated with conservative ideology, where that mindset is the paramount attribute of conservatism, didn’t take root until the last-half of the 20th century. It took post-WWI&II European immigrants who were very religious joining the party coupled with southern conservative Democrats immigrating to the party after LBJ led the fight for civil rights and Republican party leaders, coupled to conservative Christian leaders, starting to recruit those southerners in the mid-1960s. The intellectual effort began in the 1950s; but the migration didn’t seem to start for a substantial population move until Goldwater, Nixon, and Reagan.

    In fact I recently saw a video on YouTube of then-Speaker of the House Gerald R. Ford on Meet the Press defending his opposition to passing Medicare while claiming he was not a conservative. This would have been in the mid- to late-1960s. Then-Speaker Ford was framing the word conservative as a pejorative similar to how Newt Gingrich did with liberal in the 1990s.

    So while the party’s had some conservative components to its platform going back to the late-19th century, I wouldn’t claim it came from conservatism, but instead it became such a creature in the last-half of the 20the century where this infection began to dominate in the 1980s with the presidency of Ronald Reagan and the so-called moral majority becoming a grass roots force beginning in the late-1970s.

  7. dingojack says

    What hell. Susan B Anthony?!? What the hell did she do to deserve a drop-kick conservative group roping her in?
    Dingo

  8. Michael Heath says

    Ed writes:

    Sean Hannity, of all people, seems to be staking out a moderate position, at least on immigration . . .

    I think the motivation is both obvious and in no way moderate. I perceive the motivation to recruit Hispanics is to supplant the dying-out of white conservative Christians. They’re looking for a population that might be a loyal voting base as submissive to the plutocratic GOP interests as possible. However I doubt Hispanics will be as sheepishly delusional and obedient as conservative Christians since Hispanics don’t share a common mindset as we encounter in conservative Christianity, i.e., rightwing authoritarians and social dominators where this defect is turbo-charged by fundamentalism.

    Sean Hannity’s seeking a way for nothing to change except for losing one group to hate, that being Hispanics. He’s looking to win elections without having to participate in the development of a political ideology that can competently govern, face reality, not hate, consider what experts argue, and yield to a host of other repugnant traits. This isn’t surprising since he shares the same affliction his hero George W. Bush suffers from, which is intellectual laziness to the point he has a determined interest in avoiding any effort to improve.

  9. alanb says

    Immigration reform is not an answer because the Republican stance on immigration is only a symptom of the real problem, which is that whenever they talk about the need to secure the borders their reasons come out as covertly or even overtly racist. (They’re here to collect welfare, commit crimes and drop anchor babies.) People of color know that Republicans can’t be counted on to look after their interests and welfare reform won’t change that.

  10. gshelley says

    There seems to be two main schools of thought
    1) There is something wrong with the electorate – the takers vs the makers. If these people win out, nothing will change as they can’t accept there is anything wrong with the message
    2) There is something wrong with the Rebublicans
    2a) They are too conservative – the scare off the young, single women, ethnic minorites
    Anyone who actually looks at the demographics, or has spoken to people who weren’t strongly committed wither way but went Obama should realise this is the case (though the power of denial is very strong). So far, this seems the minority view
    2b) They weren’t conservative enough. This is also pretty common. It seems to split into those who think Romney was actually not conservative enough (ie the totally deluded who are basing their opinions on fantasy versions of the candidates, rather than what they actually proposed) and those who think he was either lying, or didn’t seem enthusiastic enough about opressing gays and denying women reproductive health care coverage

  11. Larry says

    The Susan B. Anthony List.
    The Tea Party Patriots.
    The Paul Revere Project.

    Sounds like a bunch of rock bands from the 60s.

  12. Jordan Genso says

    Sean Hannity’s “evolution” has to be based purely on strategy (no surprise there). He probably believes that the only thing keeping the Hispanic population from voting for the religious conservatives is the issue of immigration. So if the Republicans can make it so immigration is no longer an issue, then the Tea Party Republicans won’t have to change anything else and they’ll get more votes.

    But he knows that it’s a double-edged sword, so I think the message he is sending is for the Republicans to “let” the Democrats pass immigration reform. Then the Republicans will tell their base that it wasn’t their policy that passed, but the Democrats’ (so the base should be mad at the Democrats, not the GOP). And then the Republicans will court the Hispanic vote, hoping they ignore that it was the Democrats who pass a comprehensive immigration solution.

    If the immigration issue is resolved, Hannity thinks the rest of the Tea Party platform would appeal to Hispanics. I’d love to see the Republicans make that bet.

  13. Michael Heath says

    baal asks (rhetorically I’m sure):

    2016 – the Ryan & Rubio ticket? Surely the VP pick will be enough to win the Hispanic vote?

    You betcha! Consider how effective the appointment of Clarence Thomas to the SCOTUS has worked at attracting black people to the Republican party.

  14. raven says

    As pretty much everyone predicted, the Romney loss in Tuesday’s election has set off a civil war within the Republican party.

    It isn’t going to be much of a civil war.

    There aren’t enough moderates left to fill up a small FEMA prison camp.

    Besides we already have a moderate Republican party, called the Democratic party.

    That group in the OP aren’t conservatives, they are right wing extremist christofascists. If they really wanted to fix their party, they would report to the Tea Party FEMA concentration camp themselves.

    The Tea Party/Christofascist/GOP is too far down the rabbit hole to get out.

  15. raven says

    Hard to believe Romney was the best candidate they could find. The guy has all the appeal of a kleptomaniac rattlesnake.

    But he was. Satanorum wanted to be a New Dark Age Pope, Perry was too stupid, Bachmann seemed disoriented to person, place, and time, Gingrich looked on the verge of Very Sacred Marriage #4 and I need more money, etc..

    There is a huge amount of data now that fundie xianity causes severe cognitive impairment. Bachmann has two degrees, one law, passed the bar, and nowadays shouldn’t cross a street without her minder. Christofascist internet trolls etc..

  16. says

    Ed, if you want really over the top: Republicans (presumably) in Texas, New Jersey, New York, Montana, Colorado, Louisiana, Georgia, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Indiana, North Carolina, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, South Carolina, Oregon and Michigan have filed petitions with the White House’s “We the People” petition site demanding that the President address the residents’ desire to secede.

    Here is the Texas petition, which is the most detailed. Those for the other states are pretty much the same, clearly the work of one or two individuals who handed out marching orders.

  17. caseloweraz says

    Paraphrasing Holytape (#7): “How about a compromise? Let all republicans resign!”

    You win the Internets for today, my friend. I like your ironic use of the term “compromise.” I’ve always felt that the phrase “compromise with necessity” was irony — for when does necessity ever compromise?

    More seriously, this would only be poetic justice. Those who set the goal of making President Obama fail and did everything in their power to accomplish that should, when the tide turns against them, suffer the corresponding penalty.

    And I would number that windbag Limbaugh among the Republican leadership.

  18. raven says

    We the People” petition site demanding that the President address the residents’ desire to secede.

    I’ve been saying it for years, based on common observations.

    The christofascists really do hate the USA, the US government, and will destroy it if they can. They aren’t hiding anything, they say so themselves often.

  19. eric says

    Jordan Genso:

    I think the message he is sending is for the Republicans to “let” the Democrats pass immigration reform. Then the Republicans will tell their base that it wasn’t their policy that passed, but the Democrats’ (so the base should be mad at the Democrats, not the GOP). And then the Republicans will court the Hispanic vote, hoping they ignore that it was the Democrats who pass a comprehensive immigration solution.

    Interesting hypothesis, but I don’t think it’ll happen that way. Obama creating some very popular legislation would still be bad for them because they don’t want him to be a popular president when it comes to his endorsement of the next Democrat. I would think they would do the reverse: use their House majority to push through an immigration bill with just enough reform to please the minority voters they want to pick up, plus enough enforcement to please their current base. The Senate and President will almost have to support any such bill or be seen as treacherous to their base. Then the GOP can take full credit for ‘immigration reform.’

    (Were I them) I’d also expect them to make it happen (or let it happen if it comes from Democrats) very early in Obama’s second term. The strategy behind an early concession is that it eliminates the issue from the 2016 election but public memory is so bad that no candidate will get a ‘bump’ from it four years from now. They don’t have to worry about their base remembering that they supported reform and they don’t have to worry about the Democrats taking credit for a popular bill.

    Conversely, the best thing for the Dems to do would be to fashion a highly popular reform bill and put it on the schedule for consideration in August or so of 2014 or 2016.

  20. raven says

    I’d say let them go secede. Bunch of sore losers. We would be better off for sure.

    Except for one thing.

    Nuclear weapons which are cheap and easy to make, based on technology from 3 generations back.

    What would happen is obvious. 20 minutes after secession, New York, San Francisco, Seattle, Boston, Washington DC, and Chicago would disappear in nuclear fireballs.

    30 minutes after that, fundie-land would go the same way.

    500 years from then, another Columbus would rediscover America and find it populated by a race of intelligent cockroaches.

  21. eric says

    What would happen is obvious. 20 minutes after secession, New York, San Francisco, Seattle, Boston, Washington DC, and Chicago would disappear in nuclear fireballs.

    Seriously? You post some interesting information Raven, but if you sincerely think this, I suggest you put down the pipe and don’t operate any heavy machinery until the whackadoodle is out of your system.

  22. raven says

    Seriously? You post some interesting information Raven, but if you sincerely think this, I suggest you put down the pipe and don’t operate any heavy machinery until the whackadoodle is out of your system.

    Naw.

    You need to stop drinking all night and all morning yourself.

    BTW, I’m too busy and bored to exchange trivial insults with a troll. But feel free to derail the thread for the rest of the day.

  23. naturalcynic says

    @ Micael Heath:

    They’re looking for a population that might be a loyal voting base as submissive to the plutocratic GOP interests as possible. However I doubt Hispanics will be as sheepishly delusional and obedient as conservative Christians since Hispanics don’t share a common mindset as we encounter in conservative Christianity, i.e., rightwing authoritarians and social dominators where this defect is turbo-charged by fundamentalism.

    Maybe not. There is a strong strain of authoritarianism in both the Catholic Church and Latin American politics. Many of the immigrants have fled these institutions for political and religious reasons, but most have fled to America for purely economic reasons. The authoritarian structures in America – the Catholic Church and the Republican Party – are here and powerful enough to co-opt a substantial minority. Add to this, many Hispanics are converting to Evangelical/Fundamental Protestantism where they can become influenced by the Anglo versions. Many of these conservative Catholics and Protestants would be more likely to follow the social conservative streak as long as their economic interests are being given lip-service. Whether the R’s can gain a majority is doubtful IMO, but if the R’s van get 35-40%, they’re back in business.

  24. raven says

    Ignoring the pointless insult, I’m sure a war between the North and South is quite possible with secession.

    1. We’ve been there before. The civil war. It never ended. Politics is just war by other means. Santayana and the lessons of history.

    IIRC, the Confederate flag is still part of the flag of some states in the south or was until recently.

    2. The fundie xians are like the fundie Moslems. We just put ours in a box a few centuries ago, a fact they know and hate.

    3. Fundie xianity runs on hate, a fact known a century ago. It’s just tribalism. The bible is just hate written down. Genocide was invented by the Sky Monster in Chapter 1 Genesis. The rest is the Israelis genociding the Canaanites and getting overrun by the Assyrians, Babylonians, Persians, Greeks, and Romans.

    4. The fundies are End Timers whose best idea is to sit around in a daze hoping and praying that the Sky Monster shows up 2,000 years late and kills 7 billion people and destroys the earth in one Happy Day.

    What is the difference between 1860 and 2012? Not much. We just have more powerful weapons.

    So is a nuclear civil war possible? Sure. It may not be 100% certain but it is far above 0%.

  25. eric says

    So Raven, just to be clear: you think that in the hypothetical case where one or more southern states seceeded, there would be a reasonable (let’s say, above 1%) chance that they would nuke San Francisco, Chicago, Washington DC, etc.?

  26. frog says

    Huh, I tend to think that if the southern states seceded, they would have a problem with whatever nuclear materials they have, deteriorating and killing them.

    Because if the south seceded, the first thing that would happen would be the scientists, engineers, medical personnel and other tech-y sorts seeking asylum in the north. I guess the christofascist portion of the military might hang in there and some of them would have the right skills, but I’m betting on the smartest people getting out.

    We see exactly this sort of brain-drain with many other nations as they spiral down the totalitarian black hole. How much more likely would it be when the non-crazy country of refuge is right next door on the same landmass?

  27. eric says

    Huh, I tend to think that if the southern states seceded, they would have a problem with whatever nuclear materials they have, deteriorating and killing them.

    Well, Pantex is in Texas so they do have some nuclear material and good minds to manage it. Tx could probably also muster up some fighters or bombers to deliver it, even though (AFAIK) they would not have access to any of the three ‘official’ delivery systems in our current tripod. So let’s not argue about whether its physically possible, I’m more interested in knowing whether Raven really believes they would actually do it.

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