GOP’s Present and Future

I am loving this:

Aides to George W.Bush, former Reagan White House staff and friends of John McCain have all told The Sunday Telegraph that they not only expect to lose on November 4, but also believe that Mr Obama is poised to win a crushing mandate.

They believe he will be powerful enough to remake the American political landscape with even more ease than Ronald Reagan did in 1980.

Considering that Bush won by one or two percent in 2004 and called it a landslide, it’s fun to read that Bush’s minions are freaking out about a likely five percent or more win by Obama.

I know schaden freude doesn’t look good on my, but it’s damn fun!

The prospect of an electoral rout has unleashed a bitter bout of recriminations both within the McCain campaign and the wider conservative movement, over who is to blame and what should be done to salvage the party’s future.

My advice to the GOP is that if they want to be a viable party in the future, they need to dump the religous right and go back to being a party that supports smaller government, but stays away from social issues. No one wants the GOP in their bed rooms.

Snip.

“It’s hard to see a turnaround in the White House race,” he (former Bush speech writer David Frum) said. “This could look like an ideological as well as a party victory if we’re not careful. It could be 1980 in reverse.

“With this huge new role for federal government in the economy, the possibility for mischief making is very, very great. One man should not have a monopoly of political and financial power. That’s very dangerous.”

I agree with Frum on that one. I prefer an executive branch controlled by one party and the legislative branch controlled by another, but Bush and the GOP failed so badly, the Democrats deserve at least a couple of years of one-party rule.

In North Carolina, where Senator Elizabeth Dole seems set to loose, Republicans are running adverts that appear to take an Obama victory for granted, warning that the Democrat will have a “blank cheque” if her rival Kay Hagen wins. “These liberals want complete control of government in a time of crisis,” the narrator says. “All branches of Government. No checks and balances.”

Um. Didn’t we have six years of one party GOP rule recently? There were no checks and balances from 2001-2007. How did that work out for us? The Democrats will probably fuck up one party rule, but let’s let them try to deal with our nation’s problems. If they fuck it up, they’ll be out by 2011.

Snip.

But the real bile has been saved for those conservatives who have balked at the selection of Sarah Palin.

In addition to Mr Frum, who thinks her not ready to be president, Peggy Noonan, Ronald Reagan’s greatest speechwriter and a columnist with the Wall Street Journal, condemned Mr McCain’s running mate as a “symptom and expression of a new vulgarisation of American politics.” Conservative columnist David Brooks called her a “fatal cancer to the Republican Party”.

Snip.

Jim Nuzzo, a White House aide to the first President Bush, dismissed Mrs Palin’s critics as “cocktail party conservatives” who “give aid and comfort to the enemy”.

He told The Sunday Telegraph: “There’s going to be a bloodbath. A lot of people are going to be excommunicated. David Brooks and David Frum and Peggy Noonan are dead people in the Republican Party. The litmus test will be: where did you stand on Palin?”

Mr Frum thinks that Mrs Palin’s brand of cultural conservatism appeals only to a dwindling number of voters.

He said: “She emerges from this election as the probable frontrunner for the 2012 nomination. Her supporters vastly outnumber her critics. But it will be extremely difficult for her to win the presidency.”

Mr Nuzzo, who believes this election is not a re-run of the 1980 Reagan revolution but of 1976, when an ageing Gerald Ford lost a close contest and then ceded the leadership of the Republican Party to Mr Reagan.

He said: “Win or lose, there is a ready made conservative candidate waiting in the wings. Sarah Palin is not the new Iain Duncan Smith, she is the new Ronald Reagan.” On the accuracy of that judgment, perhaps, rests the future of the Republican Party.

Schadenfreude is a dish best served cold.

That being said, I am starting to think that Palin will be the GOP frontrunner in 2012 as the GOP rallies behind their socially conservative soulmate. By that time, I imagine that Obama will have had a relatively successful first term that will have the fundies up in arms over something.

Their two most viable candidates will be Palin and Romney. Huckabee may also play a role.

GOP voters will have to decide between a pro-business Romney and a pro-fundie Palin.

I have no idea which direction they will pick, but it will be a lot of fun to watch.

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