They never learn:
After Gilchrest lost his bid for re-nomination, I noted that the Club for Growth’s efforts to defeat the moderate Republican had probably helped ensure that the seat would be won in November by the Democrats, and it is now quite possible that the Democratic candidate will win there. Andy Harris may come back from his small deficit from absentee voting, but the idea of purging a reliably electable moderate in a closely-divided district during a very poor election cycle for Republicans was asking for trouble. On the whole, in recent elections the only thing that the Club for Growth seems to be very good at growing is the Democratic majority in Congress.
Pretty soon, they will have narrowed themselves down to the “real” conservatives and the true believers. Sadly, that will consist of a half dozen Red State authors, Joe the Plumber, and Sarah Palin.
I’ve got a former student who’ll fit in just fine with them. At least he had the good sense to take the picture down after I slapped him for it.
Your post illustrates something I’ve felt for a long time: it’s really the Republicans who are part of an overtly ideological party. For all of the talk of the Democrats pushing out people like Joe Lieberman, it seems like there are far more examples of the Republicans doing that to their moderate legislators. And honestly, there’s nothing particularly wrong with it. Primaries are designed for that purpose. It’s just extremely irritating to hear this criticism directed towards one side while the other side seems far more likely to do it.
On the whole, "they don’t get it" meme… I wrote this:
After 8 long years of our country being run into by President Bush, six years of which were with a Republican dominated Congress, our country can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Of course, there are still some GOP spinmeisters, politicians, "Conventional Wisdom" village media voices, and supporters who still don’t "get it".
In 2006, after 6 years of unfettered GOP control of our government, the people of America spoke during the midterms turning both the Senate and House over to the Democratic Party. For the next 2 years, the Republicans threatened to filibuster every move by the Democrats in the Senate to the point that a 60 vote standard was instituted. The results of the 2008 election are not finalized, but, to date, the Democratic Party has increased its majority in the Senate now to 54 Senate seats with 2 independents (who caucus with the Democrats). With the outstanding races in Georgia, Alaska and Minnesota, the Democratic Party could possibly gain up to 3 more Senate seats. There are still 6 Congressional races uncalled, but, the Democratic Party has already picked up 22 seats in the House giving them a clear majority with 257 House seats.
Senator Hutchinson from Texas understood what this election meant: "The people have spoken. We hear the people and now it’s time to come behind our president," Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas, told "The Early Show" on CBS on Wednesday. "The Senate is going to have to work things out in a bipartisan way, and I think the test is going to be right there."
The Republican Party, for 2 years, became the poster child for "obstructionist" politics. The American people spoke; we are tired of it and if you will not allow our government to function, you will be voted out if possible. There are those who just don’t get it, however, like Sen. DeMint of South Carolina: “Americans have again rejected the Democrat-lite strategy of higher spending and bigger government, and it’s time for Republicans to chart a new, more principled course,” DeMint said. “Democrats didn’t run on their true liberal agenda … They ran against President Bush and congressional Republicans whose image was tarnished by scandals and broken promises.” Sen. DeMint blamed Republicans for abandoning their principles, yet, they surely had no problem abandoning those principles when they held power.
Right. The GOP lost even more seats simply because the GOP just wasn’t radical enough! Electing a Democratic President, extending the Democratic majority in the Senate and the House even further, was simply because the Democrats lied to America about their "true" agenda. It’s not like there wasn’t 20 months of campaigning for the people to figure it out.
People seem to forget that the Supreme Court refused to block the redistricting that favored the GOP in Texas in 2004. The Supreme Court upheld the GOP redistricting in Pennsylvania in 2004. GOP operatives and partisan state officials worked vigorously to purge voter rolls in numerous states prior to the election. Yet, despite trying to "stack the deck", the overwhelming repudiation of the GOP governing tactics and policies rang through this election.
People seem to forget that the past 8 years were not a "divergence" from conservative principles; it was GOP principles and policies allowed unfettered access to government. In 2000, George Bush was installed as our President by the Supreme Court and for 6 years, the GOP ruled and got everything they wanted. Once given power, the true "conservative" agenda was unleashed; deregulation, corporations first, the rich get breaks while the middle class gets squeezed. The foreclosure and credit crisis, while decades in the making, finally came to pass once the GOP opened the flood gates with their policies.
As with the election in 2006, the American people have once again spoken, and once again, the Republican Party suffered the backlash for their obstructionist, hate-filled, screw the middle class attitude of running the government. Just as in 2006, the GOP has yet to learn the lesson. Rep. Boehner stated: “The American people want and deserve accountability from Washington Democrats, and Republicans will stand on principle to ensure they get it,” Boehner said Tuesday night, adding that the party would resort to its principles of “freedom, opportunity, security and individual liberty.”
The American people wanted the same level of accountability we deserved from Washington Republicans and never got it. When Monica Goodling admitted that she broke the law in hiring for the Department of Justice, there was no accountability. When Alberto Gonzales perjured himself in front of Congress, there was no accountability and he was allowed to slip out the door. When it was revealed that President Bush ordered the domestic wiretapping before 9/11 in violation of the law, there was no accountability. When it was shown that all justifications for invading Iraq, a soveriegn nation, were false, lies, or distortions of the truth, there was no accountability. When it was shown that Halliburton, KBR, and other federal contractors were raping our treasury and profiteering from the war, there was no accountability. But, now that the American people have spoken once again, taking away even more power from the GOP, now they believe that the American people deserve accountability? Sen. Stevens from Alaska is a convicted felon, yet, over 100,000 conservatives in Alaska voted to send him back to Congress. If, or when, Harry Reid fulfills his promise to have Sen. Stevens ousted from the Senate if he should win the election, how many conservatives will whine and cry about how unfair it is that he be held accountable for his actions? So much for the Party of "values" and the "rule of law".
This election saw the most vile, hate-filled campaigns coming from Republicans we have ever seen. Democratic politicians and supporters were called unpatriotic, un-American, terrorist sympathizers, socialists, Marxists, and Communists. When a conservative voice dared to speak up with the truth, such as Kathleen Parker, they had that same anger directed at them that they helped stoke against others. When the media dared to point out the lies coming out of the McCain campaign, Gov. Palin whined about how it was stifling her First Amendment rights, yet, the GOP had no problem trampling the rights of the American citizen whenever they could.
The GOP put up Gov. Palin as an "everyday hockey mom", then went into a frenzy when it came out that she went on a $150,000 shopping spree at upscale stores calling it "gotcha politics". The GOP put up "Joe the Plumber" as the average middle class conservative, then went into a frenzy when it came out that he hadn’t paid his taxes and wasn’t even a licensed plumber decrying the invasion of his privacy. Yet, it was the GOP and their smear agents who went after a child and his family, digging into their finances and what type of counter tops they owned because the child was helped by SCHIP and had the gall to state that in a national forum. But the GOP and their supporters don’t get it. This election did not just see Democratic supporters voting in record numbers, it saw independent voters supporting the Democratic agenda, and, it saw previously conservative voters voting Democratic in repudiation of the Party they once supported.
John O’Conner writes at The State newspaper in South Carolina that there is no pity party for Republicans, that conservatives in South Carolina were now looking forward to 2010 and 2012. In a time when our economy is the worst it has been since the 1929 crash, when people cannot afford health care, when families are not earning a decent wage to afford food, that anyone would be looking ahead to the next election instead of focusing on the problems we face now is astounding. The State newspaper, in one of the most Orwellian pieces I’ve ever read, actually tries to make the case that South Carolina helped Sen. Obama win the election simply because Democrats in South Carolina voted for Sen. Obama in the Democratic primary. Let’s forget, like most conservatives are want to do, the facts; South Carolina’s electoral votes went to Sen. McCain and The State newspaper endorsed Sen. McCain over Sen. Obama.
Mr. Warthan, the Editorial Page Editor and VP at The State newspaper, wrote that now is the time to put partisanship aside. He writes: "For 16 years, we have grown more and more divided and embittered, as first one huge chunk of the nation and then another refused even to acknowledge the legitimacy of the president. Clung to that anger and resentment for eight long years, and then took delight more in the other side’s loss than their side’s victory." The problem with this statement is that it conveniently overlooks the history and facts.
The GOP truly went after President Clinton with a witchhunt until they finally found something in which to prosecute him; lying under oath about an affair. Hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars were used to investigate everything from who had access to the Lincoln bedroom to his Christmas cards. Even after starting impeachment hearings, the GOP couldn’t bring itself to convict President Clinton in the Republican controlled Senate. As for the legitimacy of the Presidency, it is a fact that President Bush was not elected President in 2000, he was installed as President by the Supreme Court who ordered all recounts stopped in Florida. Because of that one decision by the Supreme Court, our nation has had to endure 8 long years until we ended up with a wrecked economy, our moral standing in the world in shatters due to the torture we inflicted on detainee’s, our snubbing of the Geneva Conventions, our invasion of Iraq based on lies and distortions, over 4200 dead American men and women in a war that never should have been fought in Iraq, and government agencies so politicized that the Department of Justice, FEMA, and other agencies that barely function.
The State newspaper endorsed Sen. McCain and South Carolina, as it has in the past, once again got left behind as the nation said "enough." But, the conservatives and the GOP just don’t get it. There are people in America who have seen beyond the lies and spin. There are people in America who remember the past and don’t wish our future to be the same. While there are many who still believe that the end is coming because Sen. Obama won the Presidency, there are many of us who know better. While Bill Clinton was not my favorite President, he did preside over a booming economy in which every year unemployment rates dropped and he left our government with a surplus. In 8 short years, the GOP under President Bush wrecked all of it. There is no reason to believe that President Obama, with a Democratic Congress, cannot restore the prosperity we once knew as a nation.
If the Republican Party and its supporters decide to fight that, to be shrill, vile, obstructionists, then they are making the conscious choice to keep every American in poverty, to keep food from your table, to keep you from being able to afford medical care for you and your children, and to watch more people become homeless. If that is the path the GOP decides upon, in 2010 the GOP will lose even more seats in the Senate and House. Two elections have past and the people have spoken; enough. We are tired of the hate, the vile smears, the obstructionist ways, the lack of accountability, the lack of action, and the "screw the poor" mentality. It is up to the GOP and its supporters whether or not they "get it" this time.
And if the new stories from Fox’s Carl Cameron hold up (see a recommended diary at the GOS), they’ll have to kick out Palin as being too much of a laughingstock.
And the thing about Lieberman is that the primary challenge wasn’t really about his voting record–his voting record on everything but Iraq has been fairly solid, certainly better than my waste of space Democratic Senator Bill Nelson. He got primaried because he refused to be a proud Democrat. He couldn’t pass up an opportunity to go on Fox News and bash his own party, and he topped it off this year with his tonguebath of McCain’s shriveled, gamy nutsack.
So the "Club for Growth" is shrinking?
If the GOP thinks this is an image problem, they should start a "Club for Fail", then people would be pleasantly surprised when Republicans deliver what they promised.
Here’s a red state poster responding to David Frum’s piece today saying that the GOP needs to move away from the wingnutty religious right.
This may be an obscure bit of trivia, but apparently Africa is a continent, not a country.
t jasper parnell
@Warren Terra: Brilliant clip.
OT, but Merkley is projected as winner in Oregon.
I, for one, welcome the Final Solution for the purification of the
AryanRepublican race. For, only when every Republican either toes the party line 100% of the time or FOAD, can Republicans again achieve their 1000 Year Reichpermanent majority.
Obama doesn’t need my money any longer; where can I give to the Club for
While it’s certainly fun to watch the continuing implosion of the GOP, I have to say I’m not thrilled with Obama and the Democrats either. It’s been almost 24 hours, and Sharia law has yet to be declared in the US, I haven’t received my share of the redistributed wealth, and no one came up to me on the street today to offer a free abortion. When are we going to get some change I can believe in, bitches?
Dennis - SGMM
I think that they should take Pam Jugs’ suggestion and go all John Galt on our asses. Imagine our sorrow and shock if they were to deprive us of their, um, talents for a couple of years.
Merkley, that’s great news. I had a chance to meet him at a ice cream fundraiser I hosted once. Great guy. We’re better off with him in the Senate.
that’ll show us, yessiree.
Oh well. They’re just throwing a tantrum, but just in case they are serious, I am sure we can always find some other village idiots to mock as needed.
I don’t know, maybe I missed something, but the only core values I saw coming from greater Wingnuttia the past 8 years has been, George Bush is the Greatest Prez evah. And you liberals and the rest of the pussafied world just did not recognize HIS Genius.
When dems handed them their asses in 2006, a few caveats began to appear, but the general meme of the cult of King George went on until the polls started screaming that the GOP was on the way to extinction. Now it’s George Fucking Who.
I think we’re finally reaching Peak Wingnut :–)
I would like to suggest that y’all go listen to today’s Fresh Air.
It’s fantastic. A former GOP congressman from OK talks about the thesis of his new book, Reclaiming Conservatism. He makes a surprising amount of sense. In fact I frequently found myself thinking, "Jesus, why did it take 8 years of Bush and two electoral spankings for one of you to finally say what we DFHs have been saying about the GOP all along?"
Srsly. If you or I had said this kind of stuff a few years ago, we would have been called "Defeatocrat" and far, far worse.
Bill Moyers is on the show too and he’s in fine form.
I highly, highly recommend you give it a listen.
I completely agree with this RedStater. Republicans should never compromise their principles for the crass motivation of, you know, getting elected to public office.
@r€nato: It’s worked so well for the Libertarian and Green parties, after all.
Something along these lines is EXACTLY what I plan on asking my right-wing (religious) mother, right-wing (pseudo-libertarian) brother, and right-wing (big business RULZ!) father over Thanksgiving.
That is going to be some awesome turkey n’ mashed potatoes, my friends. Also. You betcha!
Although I understand the importance of robust opposition parties in keeping a Democracy going, after the last several decades of mostly Republican rule, I have zero respect for the modern-day Republican party — and I believe they have zero respect for Democracy.
Walberg in the Michigan 7th is another Club for Growth clown who picked up his seat when they ran over the "moderate" Joe Schwarz. Schwarz was a long-time McCain backer who apparently wasn’t nutty enough for the CoG. They supported Walberg, who was an unknown former state representative. Great plan except that Walberg was too nutty even for his relatively conservative district. The Dems picked up the seat last night, one of two Republican seats in Michigant that flipped to the Dems.
You forgot two other individuals in your vignette of Real Americans. They would be Grover Norquist and Ted Haggard, 69ing in the background.
@r€nato: Dude, I’ll take your money. ;)
@Michael Gass: Sweetheart, I gotta say … TLDR.
Looks like another Club for Growth Republican is going down. Bill Sali from Idaho, a guy so crazy even other Republicans don’t like him, is losing by a few hundred votes.
Shh all of you – I want the repubs to continue to fellate Norquist as the Oracle of bathtub governance. It is a winner for them – really. Now can we all get secret Balloon Juice decoder rings to read these posts?
I’m reminded of an old Emo Phillips comedy bit:
It’s the same shit that Club for Growth pulled in RI in ’06. Lincoln Chafee was a reliably moderate GOP senator and they ran Laffey against him in a pretty nasty primary. This put Whitehouse in (not that I’m complaining).
Oh thank you! I’d heard that once long ago, and have been wondering were it came from and wanting to find a transcript ever since.
Nobody could have foreseen, etc. etc. etc.
I couldn’t agree more.