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Posts Tagged ‘Republican Party’

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“Without the emergence of the Christian-Right in the 1970s…”

Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat

Without the emergence of the Christian-Right in the 1970s and 1980s, there is no Reform Party USA today. Why, because what is the Reform Party and what’s the point of it? The Reform Party is what the Republican Party use to be and what they believed in. Before they recruited the Christian-Right and broader Far-Right out of the Democratic Party and into the GOP. They use to believe in fiscal responsibility, economic freedom, strong but limited national defense and foreign policy that’s not designed to police the world and they were tolerant or federalist on social issues. Not believing that the Federal Government or government in general, should be used to tell how Americans should live their own lives and make their personal decisions for them. That was the GOP of the 1960s that Dwight Eisenhower essentially created in the 1950s, that Tom Dewey tried to create in the 1940s. That also had a growing conservative-libertarian wing in it led by Barry Goldwater and others.

If Donald Trump takes down the Republican Party in November and they lose the House as well as the Senate and he decides to take his movement with him and perhaps launches a new third-party and perhaps some nationalist party, the Reform Party could become relevant for the first time since Ross Perot launched this movement in the early 1990s. Along with the Libertarians and this is how the Republican Party could become a national party again that can win the presidency, because it would have the members and voters, to compete for the presidency and not need gerrymandered House districts to hold a majority in the House. Or low turnout elections to win a majority in the Senate, because again they would have the voters to be able to compete with Democrats everywhere. Or perhaps the GOP dies and the Reform Party emerges as the new Center-Right party in America. And brings in Libertarians and Northeastern Conservative Republicans.

The Reform Party, to me at least represents the Republican Party when it wasn’t owned by the Christian-Right and broader Far-Right in America. A party where the Ku Klux Klan and other Far-Right European-American nationalist groups, didn’t feel at home in. Because it was a big-tent party that welcomed African-Americans, Latin-Americans, Jewish-Americans, women, Catholics, immigrants, etc. Where it was the party of Abraham Lincoln, Dwight Eisenhower, Ronald Reagan and yes even Barry Goldwater. Not Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, David Duke, Donald Trump, or the Tea Party. A party that could not only competed in the Northeast with moderate-conservative Republicans, but in the Midwest and the West with Conservative-Libertarians and even California, but in the South as well. And could win high turnout elections, because it had the members and voters to compete everywhere with the Democratic Party. That is no longer the case for the GOP today.

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Non-Voter

Non-Voter

Source: Meg Rifter: George Carlin: Maybe it’s Not The Politicians Who Suck?

I partially agree with George Carlin on this. Our politicians actually do suck in way too many cases. I think that is obvious when you have a Congress that can’t get its basic responsibilities taken care of. Like gee I don’t know, funding the government that they are part of. Or paying the bills that has been run up on the debt, which is what a debt ceiling extension actually is. Not an agreement to borrow more money, just to pay the interest on the current debt. And you could add other examples of how members of Congress in both parties treat each other. Like the majority not allowing the minority opportunities to offer amendments and other examples like that. But just in case people who aren’t insomniacs actually read this, I don’t want to put everyone else to sleep with what is called in Washington Congressional speak. Language that only the House and Senate uses.

I completely disagree with George Carlin on his notion that non-voters have every right to complain. Sure, according to the First Amendment they do, which is all that they need. But for people to be taken seriously, they have to sound credible. And if you’re not doing everything you can to improve government and the least you can do is to bother voting, you can’t credibly complain about politicians who are on office now, because you were too busy complaining, or sitting on your ass at home, or at a coffee-house, perhaps watching celebrity TV all day, getting drunk, masturbating, whatever it might be and not voting. Had Democrats bothered to turn out in 2010 and 2014 anywhere near the numbers they did in 2008 and 2012, what Tea Party revolution? Republicans rely on low voter turnout to get elected and reelected. There are still more Democrats than Republicans in America. What Republican gerrymandering if Democrats held onto all of those legislatures and governorships in 2010?

I realize I’m coming at this from a Democratic vantage point, but here’s a newsflash. I’m a Democrat and I’m not saying this to put Republicans down, but Democratic voters don’t have much to complain about when they don’t vote for Democrats. Especially when their reasoning is that they don’t like Center-Left establishment Democrats and that the candidate, or incumbent is not in love with government and doesn’t have a new tax or government program to take care of everyone’s problems for them. Or is not as Far-Left as the Green, or Democratic Socialist candidate. Democrats, won back Congress in huge numbers in 2006, because Republicans didn’t bother voting. This works both ways. If you don’t do the very least that you can do to improve government and get the best possible people to represent you, which is bothering to vote and the person you most not rather see wins that office, whose fault is that? All the opposition did was show up and win and beat a party that didn’t bother to vote.

If you don’t like the current field of candidates, run yourself, or encourage someone who you think would be a good candidate to run and then work for that person. Assuming that you caught them when they were drunk, or high, or had a gun pointed at their head (that wasn’t filled with water) and agreed to run for that office. But a big reason why we have politicians who suck is because we have voters who suck themselves and maybe we should require all voters to pass a sobriety test, or eye examination before voting. But other reasons why we have politicians who suck is because we have voters in name only. People who are registered to vote, but who don’t bother voting at all. And as a result we get politicians, because of a low voter turnout who would’ve lost badly had we just had a decent voter turnout for that election. Who represent a small faction of the country and wouldn’t have won any other way.

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Mondale-Ferraro

Source: This piece was originally posted at The New Democrat Plus

1984 was almost unfair to the Democrats because they had no one who can beat Ronald Reagan and they probably knew that going in. If you look at where the country was in 1980 and where it was in 1984, it certainly wasn’t good, but the country was feeling much better than it was in 1984 than in 1980. Imagine waking up with a head cold or the flu and then waking up the next morning with a cold. You aren’t feeling great, the next morning with the cold and perhaps a stuffed nose and cough. But at least the headache is gone and you’re no longer vomiting every hour were able to sleep the whole night. Well that is how the country felt in 1984 with Ron Reagan compared with 1980 with Jimmy Carter.

1984 was what the what the hell year for Democrats. “Hey I can’t win so I might as well run for president, because what do I have to lose”. Which I believe was one of Walter Mondale’s campaign themes that year. “Vote for me, what do you have to lose?” 1984 was for Democrats what 1964 and 96 was for Republicans. The country not feeling great, but much b
etter off than it did four years earlier. And when that is the case the party in power tends to get reelected. And if that party holds at least one chamber of Congress as well, they not only hold their majority in the House or Senate, but tend to add to it as well. Which is what Senate Republicans did in 84.

It is too bad for Democrats in 84 because they had at least two good candidates. And if Gary Hart was just able to communicate what he believed in 84, the Mondale line of “where’s the beef” doesn’t play as well or is even used. Because Democrats tended to like Gary Hart and did other Americans, but with Mondale they knew him and knew where he was on the issues. He was the safe choice especially considering they knew he wasn’t going to win anyway, but at least Fritz wasn’t going to embarrass them. Ron Reagan was something special as a politician and when things were going well under his leadership or at least perceived that way, he was almost impossible to beat. Which is what Democrats found out in 1984.

Mark Russell PBS: Mark Russell Looks Back at Campaign 84

 

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This post was originally posted at FRS Daily Times on Blogger

You might not be aware of this, but Richard Nixon is Jimmy Carter’s hero and best friend. President Carter sends President Nixon, literally one President to another a birthday and Christmas card very year. As well as pound cake every year, well at least up until 1994 when President Nixon died. Actually President Carter still sends President Nixon those gifts in heaven or hell, you know wherever President Nixon is currently residing. You’re probably wondering why in the name of Judas would a Liberal Democrat be sending a Republican these gifts.

Well I’ll tell you if you must really know. Without Richard Nixon throwing the next presidential election away to the Democratic Party back in 1973-74 or whenever President Nixon got involved in the Watergate Scandal, that Democrats would’ve thrown the 1976 presidential election back to President Ford. Like two bad quarterbacks opposing each other and throwing interceptions. Unless Jimmy Carter was the Democratic nominee, Jimmy Carter would’ve never been President of the United States. Or someone like him at least up until today, we would’ve never had a President that was just like the American people.

Which is what Jimmy Carter was in many ways, which would’ve been a very good thing. Because we have a lot of ignorant people in America and we need a President that’s much better than that in order to govern the country. This is America, it aint Haiti this is the major leagues of the world. And we probably could’ve avoided or handled a lot of the problems we faced as a country with someone better as President. I’m a Liberal Democrat, but looking back now and it should’ve been obvious back in 1975-76. The wrong guy won in 1976.

Gerry Ford was much more qualified, prepared and up to the job of being President of the United States than Jimmy Carter could’ve ever been.Aand is one reason why President Carter the incumbent President lost in a landslide to Ron Reagan in 1980. Again two reasons how Jimmy Carter was elected President of the United States in 1976. Watergate, the Republican Party holding the White House for eight years. And a lot of the problems we were facing as a country happening under their watch. Whether it was Nixon-Ford’s fault or not and some of them were.

A sitting President who has been on the federal payroll since 1947. Serving as a US. Rep., House Minority Leader, Vice President of the United States and of course President of the United States, is another way of saying sitting duck when it comes to politics. But of course you have the Democratic Party that did almost everything they could to throw the election. Again like a bad QB, hopefully unintentionally, but who knows. Like their presidential nominee giving away details to Playboy Magazine of all publications, like how he felt about women to use as an example. That no one in their right mind would say while they are sober. His daughter saying some strange things as well.

Jimmy Carter won the Democratic nomination basically by default because of his lack of competition, like with Hubert Humphrey. Where the term filibuster was created for who had a speech off the top of his head about anything. The man could spend an hour straight greeting someone, who seem to have an interest in everything. Including things that he never heard of. George Wallace, of course not electable nationally. Jimmy Carter was basically the right candidate at the right time and won by default. Because America was looking for an outsider someone as good or as mediocre as them to be their President.
Electoral Map

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img_0424Source: This piece was originally posted at FRS Daily Times

1987 a year that I was eleven years old for the most of it, there you have it my age, now see if you can add 24 years to that and come up with the right answer on your own. I finished fifth grade in 1987 and started 6th grade. But enough about me, this blog is not my autobiography, not enough time and I would like you to read the whole blog before you fall asleep.

1987 was a fascinating year politically and I actually remember some of those stories as a eleven year old. Democrats took over the Senate, I don’t remember hearing about that, but I knew we had a Republican President and a Democratic Congress that year. Which was a very common arrangement in the 1970s and 80s, like an unhappy marriage. That stayed together for the sake of the kids.

I remember hearing about Iran Contra and even having some idea about what that was. I remember hearing the names Col. Oliver North, Admiral John Poindexter, Bud Macfarline who was President Reagan’s Director of National Security. I remember even seeing parts of the Iran Contra hearings that were held I believe both in the House and Senate on TV. I remember hearing that Vice President George Bush was going to run for President.

I remember hearing names like Dick Gephardt, Al Gore, Joe Biden, Gary Hart, Paul Simon all Democratic members of Congress who were going to run for President. I remember hearing the name Bob Dole and knew he was the Senate Minority Leader. And what that job was and knew he was going to run for President as well. I obviously wasn’t a political junky yet, but my parents were and got to here these stories.

1987 wasn’t a fascinating year because of these things that were happening and the people who were involved. But what was going in these people and their lives. You have two major Democratic presidential candidates, both strong liberal voices in the party, having to drop out because of personal scandals. Gary Hart a former two-term Senator Who did not run for reelection in 1986 because he wanted to run for President full-time in 1988.

Gary Hart came close to winning the Democratic nomination in 1984 and was probably going to be the frontrunner in 1988. But then dares the media to follow him around. Because as he said he had nothing to hide. Well if he had nothing to hide, he must of had an open marriage. Because he was caught having an affair with Donna Rice who was a federal employee at one point. Their love affair could probably make a good porno movie on Cinemax, or well MSNBC.

You have Joe Biden a three-term Senator and Chairman of the Judiciary Committee who presided over the Bob Bork’ Supreme Court nomination, that’s a story by itself, have to quit his campaign because of a plagiarism scandal. No wonder Joe Biden talks so much, he has so much material to use from other people. Way to go Joe! I could get to the rest of 1987, but I already here some snoring so I’ll spare you for now. Perhaps in a future blog.

In 1987 you had great political stories inside and outside of Washington relating to the Federal Government. The Administration with Congress and of course presidential politics outside of Washington with Dick Gephardt doing well enough with his 1988 presidential campaign, that he gets elected Leader of the House for the next Congress, the 101st Congress.

And this is four years before 1992 with Bill Clinton, Ross Perot and the rest of the gang. Where you have a President go from a 90% approval rating to losing reelection in 1992 with just 37% of the Popular Vote. How time flies when your approval rating is dropping like an asteroid being dropped from a bridge. But that is American politics for you with our ups and downs. We love you until we don’t.

Mark Russell PBS: Mark Russell Special- 1987

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Washington Gridlock

Washington Gridlock


This post was originally posted at The New Democrat on Blogger

Crooks and Liars: Opinion: Heather Digby: Sunday’s Theme of The Week: Both Sides!

You want to know why a lot of Americans and if I had to guess hate politics and politicians and why our voter turnout is so low at least compared with the rest of the developed world, it is because yes both sides and I’m a Democrat, but both sides spend so much time and what I percentage of that I don’t know, no one does, but they spend so much time blaming the other side and raising money to defeat the other side. And very little time perhaps especially with a divided Congress and divided government, which I believe won’t change much after tomorrow, governing and presenting a positive message for the country.

That is what you saw if you bothered to watch the Sunday morning news programs yesterday. Commentators representing how the country feels about American politicians and politics. Which changes nothing because the partisans on both sides who have enough power to at least keep gridlock going will take that as “look the mainstream media blaming both sides equally again. Just means we need to hit the other side harder so we don’t look as bad”. The whole negative argument of “you may hate us, but you’ll hate the other side more if they come to power”.

Look I’m both a Liberal and a Democrat and proud of both labels. I’m not saying either side is equally at fault otherwise I wouldn’t be a Democrat and probably a Liberal Independent instead. Just saying that neither side is innocent here and that both party’s negatives are so high right now, that they feel they can’t win on just being positive or being very positive, that they have to make the other side look worst. So they don’t lose more political power especially coming after a big loss.
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Governor Nelson Rockefeller, R, New York

Source: This piece was originally posted at FRS Daily Times

If Nelson Rockefeller was alive today and still involved in public service in some way, whether it was in public office or working for non-profits, which he did both in his very long and distinguished career in public service. What party would he be affiliated with? I think it’s clear that maybe outside of the Northeast and of course he was from New York I believe GOV. Rockefeller would’ve had a very hard time getting elected as a Republican today. Especially in a Republican Party that’s now dominated by the Christian Right and to some extent Neoconservatives.

But neoconservatism has lost a lot if influence in the Republican Party, at least in the last two elections. Which I believe is a good thing, but the Religious-Right is still there and powerful there. And of course now with the Tea Party movement that’s now run by economic Conservatives and Religious Conservatives and with GOV. Rockefeller being fairly liberal at least to some extent on social issues except for crime and punishment, I don’t see how Nelson Rockefeller gets elected in the Republican Party today. He would probably be a better fit as a Democrat today with his liberal views on some social Issues. And his beliefs in public service and infrastructure investment, but probably like a Joe Lieberman.

Nelson Rockefeller was a social Liberal and somewhat progressive on economic policy. But more conservative on crime and punishment and foreign policy. I mean the Rockefeller Drug Laws aren’t called that for nothing, GOV. Rockefeller played a big role in advancing the War on Drugs in America. And also served as President Ford’s Vice President. Mr. Rockefeleller clearly had conservative leanings, but not enough of them for him to be successful in the Republican Party today. So where would Nelson Rockefeller go politically or maybe he would work on a third-party Movement instead.

I don’t see Nelson Rockefeller as a centrist, but an independent and they are different. A centrist is someone who’s pretty much middle of the road on most major political issues. But Rockefeller had clear political views, some conservative which is why he was a Republican. But also some liberal and progressive which is why I don’t believe he would be a Republican today. So maybe the Independence Party or a movement for that would’ve taken off with Rockefelller and George Wallace as their Leaders.

Nelson Rockefeller would be a prototypical Independent candidate and perfect for that type of political party as well. Someone who could help advance an Independence movement and would’ve been a great third-party candidate today. I don’t think he would’ve gotten elected President this way, but definitely been a factor as a presidential candidate. Sort of like George Wallace in 1968, Jack Anderson in 1980 and Ross Perot in 1992. And perhaps because of this we could’ve ended the two-party-system that under represents a lot of American voters and we could’ve had more choices in who to vote for.
History Comes To Life: Nelson Rockefeller Announces For The Presidency in 1968

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