Skip to comments.Romney 2012: Itís the End of the GOP as We Know It (megabarf alert!)
Posted on 07/08/2012 4:33:50 PM PDT by neverdem
Women and Latinos decisively reject the party, but that isnt the worst of Republicans problems.
In a speech to a group of Republicans last summer, Karl Rove called Colorado ground zero in the 2012 presidential election and said that as goes Colorado, so goes the nation.
If Rove was right about Colorado, Mitt Romney is in deep trouble. A poll taken last month showed President Obama with a seven-point lead in the state. That was down from a 13-point lead in April, primarily because Mitt Romney had gained some traction among unaffiliated voters. But Obama led among Latinos by 27 points. Among women, he led by 14 points.
The GOPs problems among those two voting blocs are well known. Republicans have performed poorly among women for some time. John Kerry beat George W. Bush by seven points among female voters in the 2004 election, and Obama had a 13-point advantage among women in 2008. The firestorm during the GOP primary season over reproductive rights did nothing to help the Republican brand, and if the preferences of Colorado voters are any indication, another double-digit victory for Obama among women is likely.
The GOP is in even bigger trouble among Latinos. A recent USA Today/Gallup poll showed that they favor Obama by a devastating 41 points (66 percent versus 25 percent), and there is little chance that the numbers will improve much for Romney. Trapped by a base that settles for nothing less than militantly anti-immigrant policies and rhetoric, hes left with little to offer Latinos.
Its nearly impossible to win national elections with those kinds of poll numbers. One might even be tempted to say that the GOPs only hope is to suppress the vote. Women make up 51 percent of the U.S. population, and Latinos make up about 16 percent.
But those voting blocs are barely the beginning of the GOPs problems.
The most startling revelation from the June poll in Colorado is that Romney leads Obama among senior citizens by 14 pointsbut loses among everyone else by 12 points. Voters under 30 prefer Obama by a margin of 30 percent. This means the elderly, particularly older white males, are the GOPs savior. The sole reason that Romney has any chance of winning this fall is that elderly vote in greater numbers than any other voting bloc. In the 2010 mid-term election, 61 percent of the population over the age of 64 votedcompared with just 37 percent of citizens between 25 and 44, and 21 percent of the voting-age population under 25. The GOP would be on the edge of oblivion if the percentage of young and middle-aged people who vote were equal to that of seniors.
The fact that the elderly are a pillar of the GOPs base poses a delicate problem. Seniors are, by definition, nearing the end of their lives. So the most important pillar of partys base is gradually disappearing.
New waves of middle-aged people move into the category of the elderly all the time, obviously. But the key question for the GOP is whether the elderly will vote so reliably Republican a few years down the road. Theres good reason to doubt itor, at least, theres reason to doubt whether they will continue to do so if the party doesnt fundamentally reform itself.
For several decades the GOP has been a strange marriage of two opposed political orientations: libertarianism and authoritarianism. The libertarian element believes in small government, low taxes, and as little government interference as possible in citizens private lives and in the workings of the economy. The authoritarian element believes in big government in certain sectors (especially the military and national-security spheres), and it favors the use of governments power to promote pro-moral behavior.
The two orientations share a hatred of government intervention in the economic realm, a hatred that has been strong enough to keep the GOPs marriage of libertarians and authoritarians together. Libertarians focus on what they like about Republicans free market economics. Authoritarians focus on the GOPs God and country orthodoxy and ignore the libertarian elements concern with civil liberties and its skepticism toward military adventures.
The GOPs divided heart accounts for the partys awful record of ballooning the national debt. Its base encourages Republicans to simultaneously love and hate government. So GOP leaders promote and pass huge and costly new initiatives (the Iraq war, Medicare Part D) while aggressively cutting taxes and decrying the evils of big government.
The great dilemma for the GOP is that theres no future in the kind of social conservatism that now appeals strongly to the elderly. The Silent generation that preceded Baby Boomers is far more likely than younger generations to favor restrictions on civil liberties and to oppose gay rights and drug legalization. Theyre also more likely to be religious and have a positive view of religions role in our national life. According to a Pew Research Center study released last year, 78 percent of people in the Silent generation believe that religion is key to the nations success. Just 46 percent of the Millennial generation (i.e., young people) agree with that idea.
It may be true that people grow more conservative and more religious with age, but the tide of opinion is moving in an irreversible direction on gay rights and drug legalization. Authoritarians are losing those battles. And the institutional religion that has been the heart of the religious rightand thus of the GOPs authoritarian wingis declining in relevance among Millennials.
As Sean Trende, of Real Clear Politics, has pointed out, political parties are continually in the process of shifting and reforming and putting together new coalitions, and the GOP will surely survive its imminent crisis in some fashion. But its reinvented form is likely to be more heavily libertarian than authoritarian, which means that we can expect a redoubling of the partys anti-tax and austerity obsessions in coming years. Republicans might also develop some interest in defending civil liberties, difficult as that is to imagine.
Meanwhile, the GOPs steep disadvantage among young people, women, African-Americans, and Latinos gives the party little margin for error. Its so heavily reliant on white, elderly voters that any factor that depresses their turnout, or increases the turnout of other voting blocs, threatens to give the election to the Democrats. In Colorado this fall, for example, there will be an initiative on the ballot asking whether the state should legalize the possession of small amounts of marijuana. Young people are expected to turn out in higher-than-usual numbers to vote in favor. Its yet another bad omen for Romney in Colorado.
Asked about the pot initiative recently, Romney naturally dodged the question. He is the perfect embodiment of the Republican Partys divided heart. Hes deeply religious, apparently, but cant or wont say how his religion has shaped his life and politics. He promises to increase military spending and make war more aggressivelywhile cutting taxes and reducing the debt. He believes in freedom, except when it applies to people and practices he dislikes.
Libertarian? Authoritarian? Opportunistic? Yes, hes all that and more.
I could write a dozen reasons why the above is true.
If 0 goes in and promises every free new houses ...
My bet is that Colorado Cowboys will never vote for Obama.
Fortunately, most people don’t care what Karl Rove says. He’s probably going to say the same thing in every state. I seriously doubt that Colorado is setting the tone for the nation.
Someone doesn’t know what “authoritarian” means. But what do you expect form Cultural Marxists too lazy to read Gramsci, that they can only bowdlerize Adorno.
Rasmussen Colorado: Obama 45%, Romney 45%
This article seems bogus.
There is no “ground zero”. Colorado is important but so is Florida, Ohio and many others.
I don’t have a problem with the headline, the nomination and possible election of Romney is the end of the GOP.
Why is there a barf alert in the headline. It’s entirely possible that Romney will destroy the GOP, which is more like the old Social Librul Whig party that the GOP spun off from.
I agree. The GOP is dead. It needs to be replaced with a real conservative party. There is no resurrecting the brand. They believe everything and they believe nothing.
John Roberts, Mitt Romney, John McCain, Megan McCain, Bob Dole, Ann Coulter, and the Log Cabins are the face and the future of the GOP.
I hope they die quickly, but it’s in the interests of the aristocracy to keep up the pretense that we have 2 parties when we don’t.
The Democrats are about to see their Party shattered as well.
The most populated counties have huge mormon populations, and currently they are voting in lock step at 94%.
I concur, see my post that states what you are saying.
We both posted about the same thing at the same time. It’s a little known thing in freeper lore known as a “dam tie”, or better yet, a “scarmabled dam tie”.
posts 13 and 14
“Republicans have performed poorly among women for some time.”
The above sentence may be true, but it would be equally true to say that Democrats have performed poorly among men for some time. How come nobody ever points that out?
Republicans have performed poorly among women for some time.
Not so. Ask my wife.
This guy is just putting his fondest hopes into words. A Yale Ph. D. in history could not be considered an objective source of information or analysis.
Yep same propaganda as last time...
Obama’s already won, no need to go vote
This elder citizen absolutely refuses to vote for abortionist/homosexual statists!! For the duration, if the GOP wants my vote, they’ll have to run pro-life, pro-family conservatives. Otherwise, to hell with them. A statist Republican is no better than a statist Democrap.
Vote straight conservative!! Gain the majority and impeach/expel the corrupt statist bastards!!
I don’t trust the GOP any more than I trust the treasonous democrats..
How can you explain the inventor of Romney-care running against the inventor of Obama-care.?...
Something is screwed up in River City..
Both parties are manipulated by some one.. some cabal.. or cabals...
I sensed the fix was in with GW Bush and for sure with Hillary being defeated by some nothing from Chicago...
There is a shadow goverment much deeper and embedded than I can diagnose..
The Myth Romney story is all the proof I need.. following the Juan Mclaim story..
The GOP is a tool, merely a tool... hard to know what to actually believe..
Obama owns the FBI, Secret Service , CIA , NSA and most if not all of the military National Security infra-structure..
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.