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The Next Wave of Conservatives

A Young Republican Looks Forward

via david-frum on 11/13/12

Bill O’Reilly commented not so eloquently that the election shows that the white establishment has been displaced by a rainbow coalition they hardly recognize and are not dealing all that well with. He was clumsy in his description, but I would submit he isn’t wrong.

The newest round of Medicare beneficiaries was born in 1947. If you were born in ’47 in Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama, or any state in the deep south, for that matter, consider how much change you have seen over the course of your lifetime. The Supreme Court did not strike down separate but equal until you were eight years old.

The bottom line here is that in a Republican party which is old, white, southern, and male, it should not be altogether surprising that its base seems scared, confused, and stuck in the past.

If you were a 65 year olds who grew up in a mostly white, mostly male dominated, still religious, and almost universally homophobic society, you might be confused too—today, a smart, cool, likable Harvard educated black dude is President. We just elected an openly gay Senator, and gay marriage is rapidly becoming the law of the land. Hispanics are the largest growing population group in the United States, and people are talking about how the jobs these old white people held in in their not so clean factories are quite literally destroying the world.

So yeah, the pace of change could be a bit overwhelming.

I am 24 years old. I grew up in Houston, which recently surpassed New York and Los Angeles as the most diverse city in the United States of America. I realize pollution is bad, and while I am very proud of being a Texan, I take no pride in my state’s one time membership in the Confederacy. I was taught to believe in God…but I was also taught, unequivocally, that evolution is a scientific fact of life and that faith in Science carries over to the environment and other areas. My time has been defined in large part by debates about what rights non citizens have. The 65 plus crowd dealt with the far less pleasant topic of what rights our own citizens have here in America.

Over the past week, I have been told over and over that my party is full of irresponsible, hateful lunatics hellbent on preserving a world order that simply does not exist anymore. I have been instructed that conservative causes are dead and that Barack Obama won an astonishing mandate. I have been told that the conservative political movement has no future in these United States of America.

All of this is only temporarily true. I and others like me will become the face of a very different conservative movement. It will defend the rights of women, of gays, of blacks. Our movement will adopt a Hamiltonian posture in the way we discuss government. We will ensure that the instruments of government are used not to give but rather to encourage. We will move government away from handing out carrots and instead use the carrots to encourage people to improve their own lives. Out with Solyndra, in with cap and trade. Pro pay for performance, anti-“take whatever you want” healthcare. In with government funded service at private convenient care clinics, out with government funded ER care except in exception circumstances. In with pay for performance in teaching, out with tenure. In with charter schools and vouchers, out with failure factories. More OIRA discretion, less EPA discretion. And so on.

The conflict between collectivism and individualism has always been overstated. Our country has always valued both. The question has always been of how to strike the balance between the two values. If left unchecked, the Democratic Party will push country towards the collectivist side of the spectrum in ways that will, and perhaps already do, make many Americans uncomfortable. For those young people out there who consider themselves “socially liberal and fiscally conservive,” our time is rapidly approaching. William F. Buckley rebuilt conservatism in the 1980s into a modern movement. In 2008, David Frum launched a movement to build a conservatism that can win again. Do not abandon the movement yet. Our time is coming, and we are better prepared to apply our conservative principles to the new world than the generation which seems to be lost at sea.

Jeb is a law student at the University of Texas at Austin. Follow him on Twitter @JGolinkin. He’ll be appearing on Huffington Post Live at 1 pm EST tomorrow to discuss the GOP’s relationship, present and future, with young voters.


the best of the internets

There are a lot of ways to parse a loss like the one the GOP suffered on Tuesday, but what ought to be increasingly clear to smart Republicans is that there’s something fundamentally problematic in how they’ve gone about assembling their electoral coalitions. Conservatives are complaining a lot in the last couple of days that Obama ran a “divisive” campaign, I guess because he once called rich people “fat cats” or something, but the truth is that Republicans have been experts at division for a long time. Much of their appeal, at one level or another, has been “We don’t like those kind of people.” Sometimes it’s welfare recipients, sometimes it’s undocumented immigrants, sometimes it’s people who come from big cities or have too much education or enjoy a coffee drink made with espresso and steamed milk. They’ve been very good for a very long time at telling voters, “We’re…

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the best of the internets

Slate: Eighty-Eight Percent of Romney Voters Were White

White separatism was not enough to break up the actual Obama mandate. Obama’s support was so broad that if white people had simply split 50-50, rather than favoring their ethnic candidate, the president would have won 58 percent of the popular vote.

This was more than Bill O’Reilly could bear last night. Given exit polls and early returns pointing to Romney’s defeat, O’Reilly made the racist assumptions of the losing side explicit

The white establishment, undone by hordes of various-colored people who demand stuff. Even as he admitted the white bloc was too small to win, O’Reilly still saw the winning side as an undifferentiated counter-bloc, rather than a coalition of Americans.

Obama won the Latino vote, 71 to 27. He also won the Asian vote, 73 to 26. Those voters all look the same to the losers. That’s why they’re the losers.

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From the best of the internets blog (link on right)

the best of the internets

Simply put, you are unlikely to win an election in today’s United States if you are giving away 75% of the Latino vote, nearly all of the black vote, and substantial margins among women and young people. Neither are you likely to appeal to the moderate and independent voters you need if you have spent much of the previous two years showcasing the shrillest and most intemperate voices in your party.

These are not matters of ideology so much as identity, on the one hand, and temperament on the other. Large numbers of voters outside the GOP’s overwhelmingly white and male base simply could not imagine themselves voting for the party — not so much because of what it stands for as what it is: namely, Not Them. Many other voters might be inclined to vote Republican, were it not so evidently in the grip of a bunch of yahoos.

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Andrew Sullivan on Rove Partisanship

Our friends at the blog the best of the internets (link on right) sent this along:

(Photo: anti-gay evangelical pastor Rick Warren, giving the invocation at Barack Obama’s Inauguration.)

Do You Remember This?

Because I don’t:

He misread his Republican opponents from day one. If he had been large-spirited and conciliatory he would have effectively undercut them, and kept them from uniting. (If he’d been large-spirited with Mr. Romney, he would have undercut him, too.) Instead he was toughly partisan, he shut them out, and positions hardened.

Funny how the first group of non-pols that Obama sat down with were leading conservative writers, like Bill Kristol and Charles Krauthammer (the liberals came second); that he asked Rick Warren to give the invocation at his Inauguration; that his stimulus was a third tax cuts (the only big tax cuts Republicans have ever voted against in my memory); that his healthcare reform was not single-payer, but one modeled on Mitt Romney’s moderate version in Massachusetts; that he has given Israel more military and technological support than any previous president; that his foreign policy is now praised by his opponent; that he killed bin Laden; and gave a speech urging freedom in the Arab world in his first few months, and that popular democratic revolutions broke out in Iran, Egypt, Tunisia and Libya on his watch. Funny also how one of the first things Obama did was to extend the Bush tax cuts – such an obvious partisan move designed to shut Republican ideas out of his agenda.

Noonan is actually trying to turn president Obama into the hostile partisan who refused to adopt any Republican ideas from the get-go. Maybe she believes it.

Maybe she read the following summary of the early Obama days from the Washington Post at the time:

In the end, despite visiting Republicans in Congress Tuesday, stripping out two provisions the GOP objected to, and inviting several Republicans for drinks at the White House this evening, Obama did not get a single Republican to vote for the [stimulus] bill. Obama’s efforts did win him some compliments from Republicans who figure they can make deals with the Democratic president when the bill goes to the Senate next week. … “The president was clear that he was going to continue to reach out to us, continue to listen to our ideas and I think we have to remember we’re at the beginning of this process,” House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, told “Good Morning America” today. Those comments marked a softer tone from Tuesday morning, when Boehner and other Republican leaders tried to head off Obama’s lobbying efforts by calling on Republicans to oppose the stimulus plan even before the president had met with them.

My italics.

More to the point, the set of actions I have outlined above could quite easily have been George W. Bush’s agenda (or David Cameron’s, if he were on the right of his own party). There was plenty of compromise by Obama from the beginning, both symbolically and substantively. But a Republican decision was made that, even in the worst recession since the 1930s (whose impact on unemployment was devastating) not a single Republican House vote would go for the stimulus. It shocked me at the time, coming so soon after such a big election. I was naive enough to think that an emergency action that prevented a second Great Depression was something the opposition party might have supported, after losing an election badly to a newly elected president in the middle of the worst economic crisis since the 1930s. I naively believed that just as a group of Democrats had supported Ronald Reagan’s massive tax cut because they thought he had a mandate for one, a group of House Republicans might put country before party and give the man who ran on bipartisanship a chance.

Instead, they set out from Day One to destroy him, because they knew that if his moderation and modern cultural identity succeeded, their reactionary radicalism would be sidelined for good. And Rove’s method is always to see what your party’s own worst flaw is among the public and, with a straight face, accuse your opponent of it.

You know what we’re fighting in this election? That cumulative, snow-balling, post-modern, cynical faction of deceit and partisan amnesia. If we are to get past the Cold Civil War we are in, the defeat of the rigidly ideological and theiological GOP is vital.

The Tweets Have It

This from thebestoftheinternets (link on right):

Barry Buries Mittens

Barry Buries Mittens

The Town-Hall Debate: Tweet Reax

This picture is so important.

— Nick Moran (@nemoran3) October 17, 2012

It seems as if Obama has decided to fight.

— Jeffrey Goldberg (@JeffreyGoldberg) October 17, 2012

Obama’s killing it so far tonight, and Mitt’s getting pissy.

— Marc Lynch (@abuaardvark) October 17, 2012

RT @thegarance: Whoa. Aggressive move from Romney.

— Nick Confessore (@nickconfessore) October 17, 2012

Shorter Candy Crowley: “Don’t Jim Lehrer me.”

— Andrew Kaczynski (@BuzzFeedAndrew) October 17, 2012

Romney has a bad habit of pushing the alpha male bit one push too far. Did it against Perry, did it just now.

— Ross Douthat (@DouthatNYT) October 17, 2012


Now Romney is telling Candy Crowley what the rules are?

— davidfrum (@davidfrum) October 17, 2012

Now they are yelling at each other. This is a much more satisfying #debate.

— Amy Davidson (@tnyCloseRead) October 17, 2012

Starting to detect a theme here. Liar liar…

— Ben Smith (@BuzzFeedBen) October 17, 2012

Obama: Romney, as a businessman, wouldn’t invest in Romney, the candidate.#debate

— Amy Davidson (@tnyCloseRead) October 17, 2012

Angry that “Obama off the ropes” is already a cliched debate take, but it’s clearly what’s happening now

— daveweigel (@daveweigel) October 17, 2012

So much for the town hall. This is pretty great, and free form.

— Ben Smith (@BuzzFeedBen) October 17, 2012

That woman just forced Romney to specify his tax plan more than Obama did all last debate. Maybe because he can’t obfuscate as much w/ her?

— Alec MacGillis (@AlecMacGillis) October 17, 2012

“Of course they add up.” Yay Mitt Romney is lying to so many of our faces at once.

— Jon Lovett (@jonlovett) October 17, 2012


— Alex Pareene (@pareene) October 17, 2012

who owns

— Ryan Grim (@ryangrim) October 17, 2012

Is Mr. Romney advocating Affirmative Action?! Yes Yes Yes he is. #wow

— Melissa Harris-Perry (@MHarrisPerry) October 17, 2012

Romney came up through small business, really?

— Peter Beinart (@PeterBeinart) October 17, 2012

In his book, No Apology, Romney defended both the Bush stimulus and the Bush administration’s passage of TARP.

— Peter Suderman (@petersuderman) October 17, 2012

Still have no idea what Obama does in the second term.

— daveweigel (@daveweigel) October 17, 2012

We welcome all immigrants into my binder.

— Romney’s Binder (@Romneys_Binder) October 17, 2012

“gang-bangers,” nobody drink

— Dan Amira (@DanAmira) October 17, 2012

“Self deportation means let people make there own choice” — that’s one way to put it

— Sam Stein (@samsteinhp) October 17, 2012

Romney flat out just deported recent Latina questioner #debates

— Onion Politics (@OnionPolitics) October 17, 2012

OH!POTUS: “I don’t look at my pensions as much as yours.Yours is much bigger so it takes longer.” #debate

— Paul Begala (@PaulBegala) October 17, 2012

No answer to the man’s question on Libya. There’s no good answer.

— daveweigel (@daveweigel) October 17, 2012

The most searing line from Obama in this campaign: I’m the one who greets the coffins when they come home.

— Michael Grunwald (@MikeGrunwald) October 17, 2012

Strong, passionate Obama defense of Susan Rice and his administration against these absurd attacks. Good for him, shame on Romney.

— Marc Lynch (@abuaardvark) October 17, 2012

Has anyone ever seen Obama so pissed on television?

— Jeffrey Goldberg (@JeffreyGoldberg) October 17, 2012

Mitt Romney called out for lying, and the audience applauds. Wow.

— Jon Lovett (@jonlovett) October 17, 2012

Bit of a train wreck for Romney there.

— Ryan Lizza (@RyanLizza) October 17, 2012

all of sudden candy crowley is the fact checker

— Peter Beinart (@PeterBeinart) October 17, 2012

Rose Garden transcript:

— Michael C Moynihan (@mcmoynihan) October 17, 2012

Working moms and single parents are responsible for gun violence???? Disastrous answer!!!!

— Hussein Ibish (@Ibishblog) October 17, 2012

Obama has done very little on guns. Sad. Romney would do less. Sadder.

— Jonathan Cohn (@CitizenCohn) October 17, 2012

LOL neither of you are going to crack down on China.

— attackerman (@attackerman) October 17, 2012

How about that: Unprompted, Romney evokes 47 percent and his religion.

— Alec MacGillis (@AlecMacGillis) October 17, 2012

RT: @kenvogelSo, biggest misperception about Romney is that he doesn’t care about children or believe in God?

— Jeffrey Goldberg (@JeffreyGoldberg) October 17, 2012

Well, there you go. Saving 47% for the end…

— Noam Scheiber (@noamscheiber) October 17, 2012

CNN undecided lines loved Obama’s answer until he brought up 47%. Then they all went down.

— Jonah Goldberg (@JonahNRO) October 17, 2012

Wow — not how it felt. RT @michaelscherer: RT @michaelhayes: Romney 40:50; Obama 44:04

— Nick Confessore (@nickconfessore) October 17, 2012

Did they even shake hands at all? Missed that.

— Jeffrey Goldberg (@JeffreyGoldberg) October 17, 2012

I watched from the debate hall, didn’t see how it looked, don’t know what others are saying. My early impression: Obama killed it.

— Marc Ambinder (@marcambinder) October 17, 2012

Maddow: “Best debate of Barack Obama’s career.”

— Anna Holmes (@AnnaHolmes) October 17, 2012

The prediction that Obama couldn’t attack with the crowd there (which I shared) was way off. He was able to invoke the room in his attacks.

— Alec MacGillis (@AlecMacGillis) October 17, 2012

Romney won the first debate by a larger margin than I expected. Obama won the second debate by a larger margin than I expected.

— Ezra Klein (@ezraklein) October 17, 2012

Romney did, again, come away looking like a guy who could be president, which is probably the most important thing.

— Ben Smith (@BuzzFeedBen) October 17, 2012

World to Romney: You don’t have to walk across those coals tonight. Romney: BUT I AM GOING TO WALK ACROSS THOSE COALS.

— Peter Suderman (@petersuderman) October 17, 2012

Clearest sign of an Obama victory: Fox news calling it a draw

— Charles-Eric (@CharlesEric) October 17, 2012

Fox calls it a tie + Andrew Sullivan didn’t kill himself = clear winner

— Col K (@ColK45) October 17, 2012


— Andrew Kaczynski (@BuzzFeedAndrew) October 17, 2012

! RT @mckaycoppins: Sununu in the spin room: “The president quite often is a liar.”

— Ben Smith (@BuzzFeedBen) October 17, 2012

Candy Crowley is absolutely being removed from Romney’s Binders tonight#Binders #Debate

— Romney Binders (@RomneyBinders) October 17, 2012

The real lesson of the first three debates: Men should not be allowed to moderate.

— Jesse Oxfeld (@joxfeld) October 17, 2012


Humor: The Borowitz Report

Romney’s Wife to Stand Next to Him at Debates

Posted by

NEW YORK (The Borowitz Report)—In a move that some political observers are calling unprecedented, the Romney campaign today officially requested that Ann Romney be permitted to stand next to her husband during his three scheduled debates with President Obama.

While the request drew immediate howls of protest from the Obama campaign, Mrs. Romney issued an official statement claiming that she was not trying to give her husband an unfair advantage.

“I want to stand next to Mitt for my benefit, not his,” Mrs. Romney’s statement read. “Mitt is so human and so warm, I can’t imagine being away from his warm humanity for as long as two hours. That’s how warm a human he is. Really warm and really human.”

But Mrs. Romney’s statement “doesn’t pass the smell test,” says University of Minnesota political science professor Davis Logsdon, who studied the Romneys’ Sunday appearance on NBC’s “Meet the Press” and noticed Mrs. Romney “emitting a series of barely detectable signals and cues.”

“When we slowed down the video, we noticed that Ann was squeezing Mitt’s right knee with what appears to be a vise-like grip,” Dr. Logsdon says. “From what we could decipher, one squeeze signified ‘agree,’ two squeezes were ‘disagree,’ and three were ‘shut up and let me answer that one.’”

Based on Mr. Romney’s performance, in which he at times disagreed with his running mate Paul Ryan and agreed with President Obama, Dr. Logsdon believes that Mrs. Romney’s presence by her husband’s side at the debates “would be of little use.”

“Ann Romney is clearly trying very hard, but she had more success training her dressage horse,” he says.

Get the Borowitz Report delivered to your inbox for free by clicking here.

Photograph by Aram Boghosian/Boston Globe/Getty Images.

Mario Piperni on Eddie Munster Ryan

Romney and Ryan As The New Munsters

August 11, 2012 By


When one of our readers (E.A.) suggested the idea of Paul Ryan as Eddie Munster, I immediately recognized it as a natural. With Ryan’s ridiculously low hairline, widows peak and brushy eyebrows, it didn’t take much work to transform Ryan into little Eddie. As for the Mitt/Herman transformation, a quick peek into Romney’s cold inner being was all the inspiration I needed.

Actually, anyone who remembers the ’60s series, The Munsters, knows that Herman was a decent, soft-spoken guy disconnected from reality. The Munster family (Herman, Lily, Grandpa and Eddie) were a ghoulish family composed of a Frankenstein dad, a vampire as his wife, her vampire father, Eddie the werewolf son and Marilyn, their normal looking niece, who was considered the ugly duckling of the family.

The show centered around the Munsters failed attempts to assimilate into normal society. Their tendency to view normal everyday folk as misfits was their downfall. Remind you of anyone you know?

If Mitt and Ann Romney have shown us anything, it’s that their privileged life of mansions, car elevators, dressage horses and Cayman Islands tax havens has left them unable to understand the struggles that middle class Americans face each and every day. Only a man completely out of touch with regular folk would find it amusing to mock people in $3 plastic raincoats (“I like those fancy raincoats you bought. Really sprung for the big bucks”) while boasting of his friendship with race car owners.

When Ann Romney said, “We’ve given all you people need to know and understand about our financial situation and how we live our life”, she wasn’t kidding. The Romneys view themselves as a part of society far removed from the riff-raff that clean their pools and sweep up Rafalca‘s droppings.

Herman never figured out why it was he who was the misfit and not the other way around. Don’t hold your breath hoping Mitt is ever going to figure it out either.


(The Romney and Ryan source photographs are Creative Commons licensed images from photographer Gage Skidmore.)

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