Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Killing The Republican Party

A comment piece (I'm not going to get the hackles up before the discussion starts by giving the name of the author) in The Washington Post talks about long term Republican prospects. It is not pretty.

To be more specific, the evangelical, right-wing, oogedy-boogedy branch of the GOP is what ails the erstwhile conservative party and will continue to afflict and marginalize its constituents if reckoning doesn't soon cometh.

Simply put: Armband religion is killing the Republican Party. And, the truth -- as long as we're setting ourselves free -- is that if one were to eavesdrop on private conversations among the party intelligentsia, one would hear precisely that.

The choir has become absurdly off-key, and many Republicans know it.

But they need those votes!

So it has been for the Grand Old Party since the 1980s or so, as it has become increasingly beholden to an element that used to be relegated to wooden crates on street corners.
Well that is incendiary. Or inartfully phrased as I would put it but, it is true.
Here's the deal, 'pubbies: Howard Dean was right.

It isn't that culture doesn't matter. It does. But preaching to the choir produces no converts. And shifting demographics suggest that the Republican Party -- and conservatism with it -- eventually will die out unless religion is returned to the privacy of one's heart where it belongs.

Religious conservatives become defensive at any suggestion that they've had something to do with the GOP's erosion. And, though the recent Democratic sweep can be attributed in large part to a referendum on Bush and the failing economy, three long-term trends identified by Emory University's Alan Abramowitz have been devastating to the Republican Party: increasing racial diversity, declining marriage rates and changes in religious beliefs.

Suffice it to say, the Republican Party is largely comprised of white, married Christians. Anyone watching the two conventions last summer can't have missed the stark differences: One party was brimming with energy, youth and diversity; the other felt like an annual Depends sales meeting.

With the exception of Miss Alaska, of course.
From LGF comes an excerpt from the above Washington Post piece that shows the hand writing on the wall: it or not, we are a diverse nation, no longer predominantly white and Christian. The change Barack Obama promised has already occurred, which is why he won.

Among Jewish voters, 78 percent went for Obama. Sixty-six percent of under-30 voters did likewise. Forty-five percent of voters ages 18-29 are Democrats compared to just 26 percent Republican; in 2000, party affiliation was split almost evenly.

The young will get older, of course. Most eventually will marry, and some will become their parents. But nonwhites won't get whiter. And the nonreligious won't get religion through external conversion. It doesn't work that way.

Given those facts, the future of the GOP looks dim and dimmer if it stays the present course. Either the Republican Party needs a new base -- or the nation may need a new party.
I keep telling my socon friends that Palin didn't even mention any of the issues dear to the hearts of social conservatives as Governor of Alaska and she is as socially conservative as they come. No one knew her position until she got the VP nod. Hence her 80% approval rating.

That is the way forward.

Let me add a couple of other points. Spending like fools. Corruption. And an inability to articulate sound economics or any thing else for that matter are killers as well. We need sound positions and some one who can give the message. And we need to distance ourselves as a party from issues that are cringe making among those not in the base. Because the base is shrinking. And even if it wasn't you can't win elections with the base alone.

I ♥ Sarah'cudda

Cross Posted at Classical Values


Robohobo said...

Parker is just trolling for a place at the table with the new kewl kidz. I quit reading her a long time ago.

M. Simon said...

The new kewl kidz voted for Obama how did that work out for you?

And what about the study Alan Abramowitz did? Did you read it?

The Republican base is shrinking.

So what do you think? Win elections or tell the kewl kidz to go elsewhere? If they get into the habit of voting for the Democrats it is difficult to bring them back.

I know - we don't allow their kind around here. The Democrats are welcome to them. They got no proper morals anyway.

Big D said...

Y'know, this "I hate Christians" attitude you're spouting here lately is really turning me off. I used to come here daily; now, I skim the site maybe once a week.

You're really projecting a boogeyman here--there are lots of Christians who are also libertarian, and uncertain about areas such as drug legalization (though often less so about abortion). Your bile in recent weeks is unkind, unhelpful, and counterproductive. If you want to really help the cause of small government, then start preaching the benefits of small government, not just whining about how awful religious folks are and how Obama's win is all their fault (especially when a number of libertarians vocally supported Obama *specifically* to "rub the public's nose in it[statism]".

M. Simon said...

I hate Christians?

Not here. In case you missed it in the body of the article:

I ♥ Sarah'cudda

Now what makes her different from the socon wing of the Republican Party? A servant's heart.

What is wrong with our "Moral Majority" Republicans is that they are nanny state folks with respect to culture.

And then we have the Socialist Democrats who are nanny state with respect to economics.

If the Republicans actually preached and practiced a "Leave Us Alone" philosophy I believe it might get a few more votes.

Let me remind you that socons helped get us the public schools, alcohol prohibition, and drug prohibition. Not exactly a sterling record of accomplishment - well they did help get that stuff enacted - so that is something.

M. Simon said...


I have been preaching nothing but small government.

Economically and culturally.

It is the second part that sticks in the craw of the nanny state Republicans.

A commenter a while back noted that the swing voters try the Rs for a while and when they do nanny state stuff (or even preach it) they go D for a while and when those guys disappoint it is back to the Rs.

I'd like the Republican Party to own those votes.

Edgar said...

The "new kewl kidz" may have voted Obama as you put it, but from all your posts to date, Simon, you've made it clear that the "Leave Us Alone" (LUA) crowd didn't show up because they're angry at social conservatives.

Basically, the LUA crowd threw a hissy fit, and either didn't show up, or worse, pulled the lever for Obama. Economic issues weren't all that important to them.

Social conservatives were dependable, because they knew the alternative to McCain was worse.

As a result, the LUA crowd didn't give one whit about fiscal issues this time around. They stained at a gnat (convictions held by social conservatives) and swallowed the camel (Obama). Way to go, champ!

Edgar said...

...and another thing.

It's fair to say that those born after 1980 have grown up in relative prosperity and material abundance. This generation has not known economic hardship - certainly not compared to those of prior generations.

Not to worry though, the "new kewl kidz" will get to experience REAL government intrusion very soon, especially when the two (2) largest tax cuts in U.S. history are allowed to expire (in a Dem-controlled Congress), and just as importantly, America's energy infrastructure will lay in shambles - barring some breakthrough in new generation technology.

As of today, Solar and Wind won't cut it for baseload generation. Nuclear and Coal are our only hope for abundant, reliable, and clean energy.

Of course, this is to be expected. For some people, they simply won't "change their ways" until trial, tribulation, and general hardship have finished their work.

It will take time, but once unemployment and inflation hit double-digit proportions, people will look back and opine the "good old days" of the last decade.