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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Shooting the messenger

The verdict is in: The Republican Party would have won the 2012 election if only it had a better candidate.

A 100-page report commissioned by Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus refused to acknowledge them, ahem, elephant in the room when it painted the failings as largely the fault of Willard M. Romney:
“There’s no one reason we lost. Our message was weak; our ground game was insufficient; we weren’t inclusive; we were behind in both data and digital; our primary and debate process needed improvement."
Notably, Priebus gave a pass to the message, a mean-spirited attack on immigrants, gay and lesbians and the "47 percent."
“I think our policies are sound. “But I think in many ways the way we communicate can be a real problem.”
But Romney's defeat was born of a primary process that communicated intolerance toward broad section of the American public, segments that the census show are gaining numbers and strength.

And Priebus himself acknowledges:
Focus groups described our party as ‘narrow-minded,’ ‘out of touch,’ and ‘stuffy old men. The perception that we’re the party of the rich continues to grow.”
The leading stuffy old man would have none of this clothes-rending reflection:
Rush Limbaugh, the radio talk show host, accused Republicans of being “totally bamboozled” and lacking in confidence. 
And the legions followed suit:
“Americans and those in the Tea Party movement don’t need an ‘autopsy’ report from R.N.C. to know they failed to promote our principles, and lost because of it,” Jenny Beth Martin, a co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots, said in a statement.
But the party did promote Tea Party values, the dream of returning to the 1950s when taxes were lower, jobs were more plentiful, immigrants were from Europe and gays and lesbians remained deep in their closets.

They even nominated Ward Cleaver to top the ticket and Eddie Haskell as his running mate.

That head in the sand philosophy was reinforced by a primary season in which bad candidates competed in lurching right.

Fewer primaries and a shorter convention will not help a party that does not represent American realities and values of the 21st Century.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Their message was crystal clear. The problem was not their messaging. It was their character, and their principles. Voters heard it and it cost them the Senate, seats in the House, and the White House.

March 19, 2013 5:14 PM  

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