Saturday, September 23, 2017

Repellent Republicans Are Way More Repellent Than Repellent Democrats-- And There Are Plenty Of Repellent Democrats


Our Revolution is asking Democrats to cosponsor 8 specific bills that mae up the progressive legislative agenda. Their pitch is good: "Resisting the Trump administration and Republican Congressional agenda is only part of how we can move our country forward. Now is the time for Democrats to campaign on a bold agenda and fight to create an America that works for everyone. If Democrats want to win in 2018 and take our country back from the billionaire class and Republicans, they need to start by supporting legislation that speaks to the real concerns facing the American people. We're fighting for a Congress that will put people before profits to create an America where everyone, regardless of the age, race, gender or economic status has access to health care, free college tuition, a livable planet, and a job that pays a living wage. The Democratic Party Platform makes it clear that Democrats must fight for these issues as a party. We’re asking all House Democrats to commit to supporting our #PeoplesPlatform bills by signing on as a co-sponsor when Congress comes back in session in September."

Some of the worse excuses for Democrats from the Republican wing of the Democratic Party-- Blue Dogs like Josh Gottheimer (NJ), Stephanie Murphy (FL), Sanford Bishop (GA), Lou Correa (CA), Brad Schneider (IL), Vicente Gonzalez (TX) and New Dems like Ami Bera (CA), Jim Himes (CT), Ann Kuster (NH), Ron Kind (WI), as well as a few unaffiliated conservaDems Like Raul Ruiz (CA) and Jacky Rosen, have signed on to just one bill. But there are only 8 ultra-conservative fake Democrats-- generally the worst of the worst-- who have refused to sign on to any:
Kyrsten Sinema (Blue Dog-AZ)
Tom O'Halleran (Blue Dog-AZ)
Collin Peterson (Blue Dog-MN)
Dan Lipinski (Blue Dog-IL)
Henry Cuellar (Blue Dog-TX)
Jim Costa (Blue Dog-CA)
Kurt Schrader (Blue Dog-OR)
Stephen Lynch (MA)

They all have the worst ProgressivePunch scores and high rankings on the Trump adhesion scorecard. When Paul Ryan wants to be able to say one of his toxic, anti-humanity bills is "bipartisan," he calls Kevin McConnell and tells him to dig up Sinema or Peterson or "ex"-Republican O'Halleran or any of the crooked monkeys on that list and get them to cross the aisle. They do it all the time-- with impunity. They know Pelosi will never discipline them in any way-- and neither will the voters. This cycle only two-- Lipinski and Lynch-- have a primary opponent trying to hold them accountable. (You can help Lipinski's primary opponent, Marie Newman, here, at a special ActBlue page.)

That all said, as the headline indicates, the repellent Republicans are even more repellent. And yesterday Republican Party strategist Katie Packer, explained why in an OpEd for US News, A Repellent Brand of Republican. She focused on Bannon's Alabama Senate candidate, neo-fascist sociopath Roy Moore. "My impression of Moore," she wrote, "is that of a candidate who, based on his public statements, longs for the America we see on shows like Leave it to Beaver. That show depicts a time when men were the heads of the house, women knew their place and children didn't question, they just obeyed. A time when homosexuality was whispered about but never displayed publicly. A time when women didn't pursue careers but stayed home, kept the house clean and had dinner on the table for their man. All with perfect hair, high heels on her feet and a string of pearls around her neck. My impression is that the preacher dad of Ariel in the movie Footloose could have been based on Roy Moore. And I don't think I'm alone. I think a lot of younger voters and female voters will share that view when they get to know Mr. Moore."
This is a problem for the Republican Party. For the last 5 years, I have been sounding a warning bell for Republicans. That if we as a party don't do more to reach women, minorities and millennials then we will find it hard to win national elections. I don't believe that being the party of old, white, cranky, rich men is a long-term recipe for success.

...The Republican coalition is getting older and whiter just as the general electorate is getting a lot more vibrant and colorful. Many Republican voters, and even Democratic voters, were adamantly and angrily opposed to gay marriage 10 years ago. But today their views have softened. They may still oppose it or feel uncomfortable with it, but most of them have a family member or close friend who is openly gay, maybe even married to their partner. They might still vote for a candidate who opposes gay marriage but probably don't appreciate their friend or family member being disparaged or belittled in the public square. Sadly, this rhetoric about fake marriage was not disavowed by candidate Moore.

In fact, Moore seems to embrace a 1950s Baptist Sunday School view of America and demands that everyone subscribe to that vision or keep quiet. But this vision of America doesn't make room for minorities, career minded independent women, gay people or others who were outside of the 1950 mainstream. I know a lot of Republicans and even some independents who voted for Trump in 2016 because they believed he would "shake things up" and that he was "better than Hillary." And Trump did himself a favor in the general election by not engaging in a culture war with Clinton that might have forced those on the moderate to liberal side of abortion rights and gay rights to reject him as a candidate. A Republican Party that is already carrying significant baggage brought on by the president, cannot afford to reignite the culture wars with hateful, divisive rhetoric directed at those who disagree with them.

Moore may win the primary, in spite of the fact that even Trump has rejected his candidacy. And if he does, he will likely win the general election too. If so, he will become another face of the Republican Party that repels many voters nationally. Not insignificantly, this will embolden Steve Bannon and his Breitbart cronies who are willing to take on the president who gave them their power and their stage, and continue their takedown of the Republican Party. All of those things are bad for the GOP in the long term.

So, on behalf of those who still identify as Republicans, who care about the Grand Old Party and what it stands for, but aren't sure how much more they can take, I'm begging the Republican primary voters of Alabama to reject this brand of Republican.
Reading her piece, you might come to the conclusion that the only other Republican in the "brand" she's discussing is Bannon. Not a word about her party's former vice presidential nominee who was in Alabama this week-- along with Texas Congressman Louie Gohmert-- campaigning for Moore. And Moore's erstwhile primary opponent, Rep. Mo Brooks, who finished 3rd, has now endorsed Moore. Nor are they the only ones going in a Bannon direction instead of a McConnell/Trump direction. Perhaps Katie's discussion of the repellent brand could have mentioned that Republican members of Congress on the Moore bandwagon include Mark Meadows, chairman of the Freedom Caucus, and right-wing loons like Steve King (IA), Thomas Massie (KY), Ted Yoho (FL), Jim Jordan (OH) and Jody Hice (GA). On top of that, a whole constellation of Republican Party superstars have come out for Moore: Roger Stone, Richard Viguerie, Ann Coulter, Laura Ingraham, Brent Bozell, Erick Erickson, Sean Hannity, Mike Huckabee, James Dobson, Alan Keyes, Phil Robertson from Duck Dynasty, Chuck Norris, even Trump's own Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, Ben Carson, as well as nearly all the crackpot GOP outside groups, from the violently homophobic National Organization for Marriage, the Family Research Council, and the Senate Conservatives Fund to the radical Gun Owners of America. That's some brand! Meanwhile-- and worth noting and connecting the dots-- Germany votes tomorrow and there is little doubt that the Bundestag will have actual Nazi members again, perhaps has many as 50-- first time since the 1940s.

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At 7:05 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So why do Blue Dogs persist and the Republicans become even more repellent, yet nothing changes?


People forget that without a lot of corporate money, Hitler couldn't have come to power. His economic program essentially consisted of removing the restraints government imposed upon them (sound familiar?). Corporate interests -including many American companies- showered the NSDAP with a huge largesse. Some of these managed to make huge profits in Germany despite WWII raging.

Corporatism is what runs America right now. That is why (in part) Hillary thought the election was merely a formality. She had enough corporate money supporting her to spend twice as much as Trump, who was able to make up that difference with all of the free publicity the media gave him.

So to steal the title from HER! insipid screed, What Happened?

The voter happened. They made a bad choice, but they spoke for the installation of a non-corporate government while ignoring that Trump embodied all of the worst elements of corporatism as a person. The People don't like the way that business continues to thrive while they get left behind. The don't like the free ride businesses get, and at the same time everything which benefits them is gutted. Trump was able to borrow from Adolph the strategy of blaming the Untermeschen as the cause of all the troubles, and rascist Americans flocked to the Bannon - I mean, banner.

Hillary threw such people away early, because in her regal mind she didn't need them to win. There was no place for them in her world except to continue to work the fields and hand over the profits to their masters. Otherwise, considering how easily she tried to play the race card beck in 2008, she could still have beaten Trump.

Bernie Sanders frightened corporate money. That is why Hillary's foul novel was even released, to ensure that no one like him can rise to challenge the Rule of the Rich again. Considering how the Internet is now the subject of corporatist assault, that could indeed happen.


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