Following the 2012 election, the Republican National Committee commissioned a group of Republicans to study the results of that election and make recommendations as to how the GOP can do better in future cycles. The resulting report, which you can read here, has been roundly criticized by many conservatives, sometimes unfairly, in my view. I wrote about the report’s recommendations on immigration here. But as far as I know, no one has commented on one obvious and central question raised by the report. One of the report’s key premises is that there are two distinct Republican parties:
Comments: Not two parties, but two perceptions. Shall we accurately blame the national media´s image of the party?
Has everyone gone insane? The problem within the republican party is that they (elites or the "national" level) no longer represent conservatives. The candidates for President won´t even fight for it. In my opinion Obama is a pathetic transparent loser and anyone who can´t fight, with the overly abundant material on this jerk, is an idiot or a coward. For Pete´s sake, we have a guy with the intellect and maturity of a spoiled rotten second grader living in our White House, who happens to enjoy taking a wrecking ball to all that is good in this country. He works for people that hate us, not for us. And somehow "our party" is helpless to fight this.
I agree Poster. Republicans only want the media to love them. They are playing for the cameras and print media. Don´t be too hard on Obama because the media loves him. Seeming to ´fight fair´ means not telling the truth about Obama was how McCain and Romney played it. Palin tried to expose Obama and look what it got her: abuse from her own party, advisers, media and Dems. In my lifetime I have not see the like of what Republicans did and are still doing to the best articulatory of my values since Reagan. Many moderates blame Tea people and yet all we want is smaller taxes, smaller government and to stronger defense. But..that is not how moderates see it. They see a curtailment to their own perks, power and prestige in the Party. Go figure. I thought we were all trying to attain the Tea people goals. It caught me off guard when my own party was so hostile to my efforts. Now get it. And, can´t ever trust the Old Guard again. They are not interested in my type of voter.
I believe that if Romney had continued in the tactics he started in the first debate he would have won. However, there was a lot of fear within the Party that people would consider him too tough and be afraid of electing him and he tried to reassure by showing a more temperate side of hiumself.
The strength of that first debate carried him pretty far but subsequent unanticipated events threw the election Obama´s way.
#1 & 2, I agree with both of you. But at some point we have to face the fact that there are a LOT of stupid people in this country. If you combine them with the lazy and liberal sheep you´re at Romney´s 47% or, probably, more than 50%. I thought Romney ran a good campaign and would have made a very good president. But Obama was giving away "free stuff" of all kinds and ran a dirty, low campaign and was better than Romney at getting out their voters. I know the media has behaved despicably, but it´s more than that. Obama is still pretty good in the polls. Something really bad is going to have happen in America before things change.
#1, an honest question here... You stated that the Republican Party no longer represents conservatives. Well, is´t that the reason "our party" is helpless to fight this? Regardless of "our party" being helpless to fight this disaster of an administration, why would ANY conservative not support a solid and highly qualified candidate like Romney? I just don´t get it?? There is nobody more conservative than me on LCom, and I proudly voted for Romney. No matter how bad you think the Republicans are, they are still pro-American, free market capitalists, at least most of them. The problem is in your post. Many conservatives feel the Republican party no longer represents them, so they are staying home. That´s why we lost. I just don´t understand how staying home helps move the conservative agenda forward. The country would be on the road to recovery under Romney´s leadership. That´s not insane, just reality. What´s insane is allowing this loser another 4 years!
It always comes back around to the fact that the term "conservative" means different things to different people. When #1 says the Republican party no longer represents conservatives, I would ask at what point did the party do so, in that poster´s opinion? To some, "conservative" government embraces anti-abortion and the sanctity of marriage. To others, "conservative" represents the freedoms we are constitutionally guaranteed from a smaller government. The tea party movement was begun to shrink our government. Now, too many seem to think "tea party" means a whole bunch of other things. We may not agree on the definition of the word conservative, but we ought to be able to agree that Republicans are our better protection.
I do not know one person who did not vote for Romney in my large family, political group or church. Who did not vote? I know many did not but am not as certain as many posters that it was the Tea people. It puzzles me that anyone would not vote..ever..for the best possible candidate. That said..if Republicans continue to nominate moderates they will lose even though I will vote and vote ad nausium for their lame candidates...until the party platform is pro abortion, anti Christian and pro gay marriage. At that point I will have to leave.
#6, the republican establishment takes their conservative base for granted. they expect their base to vote republican no matter who the candidate is, what he/she says or believes in.
the establishment trashes Palin and treats the tea party like outcast. you did not see the tea party celebrated at the convention did you.
the establishment must now know that tea party votes must be earned.
the only power the tea party has within the republican party is to not vote for country club republicans like Mccain and Romney
the country would be better served if the tea party started it own party based upon federalism (limited federal government)with candidates who demonstrate courage, honor and conviction; attributes in short supply in the republican party
The Tea Party continues to mean different things to different people because it has never been officially defined. It has never issued a mission statement. It has no designated leaders, no solid organization running in the background. Why would anyone want to join an organization that means different things to different people, often depending solely on one´s physical location? Can we expect people to attend local tea party events if in fact they identify more with tea party functions being held thousands of miles away?
What the Republicans are forgetting is that more folks voted for Obama...because more people wanted him to be President. Usually the Republicans can count on many of those people staying home in elections...but that is not the same as saying that such people don´t exist! And this is part of the reasons that Republicans succeed more at the state level, because these same people do stay home in off-year elections or may not bother to cast votes in state races.
You can´t build a long-term successful coalition on the hope that the other side stays home.
The "conservative base" feels the Republican establishment is taking them for granted and, therefore, punishing said establishment by not voting for the likes of Romney. This will forever keep te Dems in power. Unbelievable. Can you tell me ONE candidate we would have ALL united behind??
#6, the ´conservatives stayed home´ explanation has been offered many times here but I have not seen any supportive evidence that this was the case. Every conservative I know personally voted for Romney for exactly the reasons you laid out. If a significant number of conservatives did not vote, it might have had something to do with the ´shut up and vote, we don´t want to hear your concerns´ attitude they got when they raised honest questions about Romney´s record in Massachusettes. (State mandated health care, taxes hidden as fees and regulations and 2nd amendment infringements were high on the list.)
While you´re correct that Romney would have been better than Obama in some areas, many of us feel that the country is so poised on the brink that anything less than a full stop and reverse is not going to help. Staying home didn´t/wouldn´t help the conservative cause, but neither does voting for less than we need. Some may very well have decided that keeping their integrity intact made more sense than voting for a slower jog over the cliff. Especially in the face of the nastiness proffered when they tried to bring these points up for discussion.
By the way, not all Republicans are pro-American (pro-Constitution is how I would define that), free market capitalists.
The elite permanent ruling class politicians in the Republican party think that in 2013, it is just "politics as usual", rather than a battle for the heart and soul of America. Are we going to be a "free" people, or are we going to be serfs on the Big Givernment plantation?
Yes, we are battling for "the hearts and soul of America", but the enemy is not Republican leaders/elite/establishment. The ones we are fighting should be the Democrats. Know the enemy and send your fire in that direction.
Every TEA party member I know not only voted, but most converted one or two other uncommitted voters to vote for Romney. We worked hard for Romney, we did NOT stay home. What we didn´t have were the Independents, the Paulistas and the Reagan democrats. Maybe we all need to go back and study how Reagan won over democrats. He was a positive figure, not ashamed of his belief in God, he was for smaller limited governemnt and lower taxes. He was passionate about this Country, and the People. He instilled a sense of PRIDE that is now sadly gone. All we have now is a race baiting, dividing negative piece of Marxism who apologizes for our greatness. Point the finger at the left, which has gone so far over that they are now communists. They use propaganda and our children to defeat us.
The voters that stayed home to teach the Republicans a lesson are beyond contempt. Those voters have enabled this idiot prez to pass laws and spend money beyond belief and I do so hope they are satisfied with their sitting home feeling virtuous. Serial posting does not enhance opinions either.
#6, I did vote for Romney, wild horses could not have kept me away. I would have voted for a tree before I´d see Obama have another term. He would have been a much better President than Hussein by several orders of magnitude.
I do not and will NEVER believe that millions of conservatives stayed home and didn´t vote for Romney. A choice for a conservative between Obama and almost any other candidate was not really a choice. Obama needed to go. There was massive voter fraud with the electronic machines and the early voting and all the other mechanisms that the democrats and RINO´s have in place
Having said that, Romney didn´t fight with all the ammo he had. This is not a game, our very lives may be at stake. Which is why we need a tough, no-nonsense candidate who would fight to win. Those back stabbing elites in the republican party are a large part of the problem. They are certainly not the solution.
I´ve done my part. I voted for Bushes, Dole, McCain and Romney. I have always voted Republican since I cast my first vote in the sixties. My hand won´t pull the lever for Republicans again as long as the elites own the party and want to act like democrat lites.
If I wanted to embraced every victimized group that comes down the pike I´d become a democrat. I don´t like the agenda of embracing illegal aliens, gays, black liberals, communist or whatever splinter group that´s out there.
I´m old and it´s finished. No Repulican will win from here on out unless voter fraud and voter ID is enacted. The left owns the voting machines in battleground states. It´s sad when a man with a record as bad as Obama´s can beat a good person like Romney with speeches of bilking the rich and you didn´t build that to free cell phones. The country is doomed and Hillary ´will´ be the next president.
I´ll wander the dark forest until a New Republican, Tea Party, Constitution Conservative or I´m Not That Guy Party is formed. I´m not voting Libertarian because I don´t think pot should be legalized so I will just stay home until I die.
Two parties? Perhaps. But certainly two antagonistic philosophies; the Jeffersonian ideal of small limited govt versus the big government mantra of the DC progressive R establishment. Hinderaker´s assertion that Obama´s uniqueness in ´08 made him largely unbeatable is malarkey. Reality is that the Bush disaster cast such a depressing pall over the electorate, that the D´s could have nominated Leon Trotsky and won; of course Bush´s fans won´t hear of it. These types continue to advance a discredited twofer ie. that Romney lost because conservatives stayed home, an unsupported and ignorant slander plus voter fraud, the latter despite the fact that virtually every battleground state, which Romney lost, is controlled by the GOP. Harsh reality is simple. Romney was a horrendous candidate who conjured up Bush w/the voters. Like his old man, George the Brainwashed, of Vietnam notoriety, he was viscerally hostile to principled conservatism and its values. He remains a Rockefeller R clone and governed MA accordingly, Romneycare being exhibit A. The GOP remains a House divided that won´t stand and good riddance. Conservatism is little more than a label of convenience for most R politicos who, like the iconic Cheshire Cat, define it to mean anything they wish. Yet the rank and file are not fooled. Conservative Republican politician has about the same authenticity as Catholic Muslim.
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