Sunday, May 18, 2008

The Elephant in the Room

Following yet another Democratic victory in a special House election in a seemingly safe GOP seat, the Republican Party seems to finally understand that simply complaining about liberals and flag pins can't change the cold hard facts of a public really pissed off after 8 years of Republican misgovernance. "It's pathetic," said GOP guru Frank Luntz. "I encourage all Republican candidates, whether incumbents or challengers, to take stock of their campaigns and position themselves for challenging campaigns this fall," National Republican Congressional Committee chair Tom Cole wrote in a statement.

But really, is this a shock? The GOP got their ass kicked in the 2006 elections, after which, things have only gotten worse in the country. And instead of taking that "thumpin'" to heart and dialing things back-- as the conventional wisdom predicted at the time-- they responded to that defeat by digging in their heels more... in terms of the war, in terms of conservative economic policy, in terms of defending Bush, etc.

Let's try and dissect this logic... Party A governs in an increasingly destructive and unpopular way for years. Voters punish Party A with staggering electoral loss. Party A gets pissy, continues to govern in same increasingly destructive and unpopular way. Voters prepare to punish Party A with further electoral losses. Party A rants about flag pins and angry preachers. Then... victory?

It's extremely puzzling that such a brilliant strategy (the political surge is working!) is failing to yield results.

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