Social Question

GoldieAV16's avatar

Does this help or hurt the GOP brand?

Asked by GoldieAV16 (5384 points ) January 28th, 2014

Following today’s State of the Union address by President Obama, the GOP will have four different taped responses:

Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) – the official
Mike Lee (R-UT) – the Tea Party
Rand Paul (R-KY) – Libertarian (?)
Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) – delivered in Spanish

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52 Answers

zenvelo's avatar

And who will decide which one is the official response?

Cruiser's avatar

I think it will help as these potentially different Points of View from the various factions of the Republican party will show they all share conservative values and goals but how they expect to achieve them will differ and also allow the American public to become more familiar with their similarities and differences.

2TFX's avatar

The split in the GOP will help the democrats this year. The tea party is determined to remove the candidates it considers “un pure” candidates. look at the censure of John McCain.

stanleybmanly's avatar

I think the GOP has about the same brand viability as thalidomide or Agent Orange. The only diversity apparent is that of wacko dysfunction and it’s all over the map. It’s the astonishing level of disunity that necessitates 4 separate responses from a party whose only apparent common attribute is a determined enthusiasm for wealth and privilege and an open contempt and hostility to all else.

hearkat's avatar

Will the Spanish-Language version simply be a translation of one of the other speeches, or will that person be writing an entirely separate speech?

bolwerk's avatar

Yes, women and Spanish speakers fall for it every time they do this. It doesn’t help, not anymore than any other P.R. blitz, or hurt.

The speaker list doesn’t at all represent cultural or intellectual diversity. All it represents is varying tolerance for capitulation to realpolitik and adherence to almost arbitrary factional groups. The Tea Party is maybe more ideologically rigid than the party “establishment,” but it is not ideologically very different.

The major difference is about power. The Tea Party represents the authoritarians who feel outside of power, and the “establishment” (I hate the word because the Tea Party pretty much is part of the established GOP power structure) represents the authoritarians who got theirs and can horse trade with the Democrats. That last part really humiliates the Tea Party, since they mostly aren’t in a position to negotiate unilaterally.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@stanleybmanly Disagreements in the party itself doesn’t translate to disloyal. I think you underestimate ‘family values’ and all that honestly. People are passionate about that kind of thing.

Pachy's avatar

Read this very interesting piece headlined Will the State of the Union response be another disaster for GOP?. In it, GOP strategist Mark McKinnon is cited as telling the New York Times: “There is no clear leadership in the Republican Party right now, no clear direction or message, and no way to enforce discipline.” His statement, I think, is why the GOP brand will be hurt.

DWW25921's avatar

I think at this point the Republicans could come up with a rock on a tree stump and people would vote for it. Personally, I’d still be independent, but I’m sure others would vote that way.

jerv's avatar

@KNOWITALL You underestimate the divide within the party. There are moderates and Jihadists both under the GOP banner, and quite a few in between. And nothing that traditional Republicans say will be radical enough for the batshit brigade, so it’s a guarantee that the Republicans will have at least 2 responses to everything.

Cruiser's avatar

@jerv You also underestimate the divide within the Republican Party and the passion and desires of the independent voters who last I checked are 46% of registered voters. At least the Republicans offer 2…even 3 distinct conservative voices and choices that at least one…maybe two will resonate with both conservative and independent voter and even some Liberals who have tired of the monotone voice of the Democratic tax and spend policies that have buried us and the next 3 generations under a debt they will not dig out from under any time soon.

jerv's avatar

@Cruiser I consider those to be Moderate “Republicans”; they reject the Democrats, but still want a voice in our two-party system, and thus are Republicans simply by opting against going third-party and throwing their votes away.

Darth_Algar's avatar

@KNOWITALL

He didn’t say disloyality, he said disunity. And yeah, the fact that the GOP is issuing 3 (or 4) different responses points to a pretty fractured party.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@KNOWITALL I wish there was some way to get a handle on exactly what is meant by “family values”. Cutting food stamps, blocking unemployment benefits, pimping voter suppression schemes? The party’s fondness for gay and Hispanic families is particularly noteworthy. Perhaps it’s Lilly white Partridge family values that is meant by “traditional” family values. I was listening to an interesting discussion on the radio about the red-blue divide increasingly being defined as blue cities vs. rural red regions, and speculation on the future of the GOP as rural America dwindles economically. The difficulty for Republicans would seem to be that the disparities among isolated regions results in quirky blocks unable to mount a unified front. The Democrats may indeed be a dull monotone as Cruiser states, but in politics, dull and unified always trumps disjointed and harsh. It’s disjointed and harsh that characterizes those “2..even distinct conservative voices”, and the distrust of Christie by rural reds is a clear illustration of the party’s plight.

jerv's avatar

@stanleybmanly WA state is like that. We’re a mostly red state geographically, but nearly half the state’s population lives in the Seattle metroplex which is undeniably blue. Most counties opposed many laws that wound up passing due to that.

Cruiser's avatar

—@jerv I do agree with you about the moderate Republican Independents, but it was the majority of progressive Independents that leaned Democratic that elected and re-elected Obama.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@jerv Many blue states are blue because they are captives of their major population centers, and when you come across blue islands in predominantly red states, they are invariably places with large college campuses or concentrations of industries requiring a high intellectual component.

bolwerk's avatar

@stanleybmanly: Democrats have never been unified, and can’t be. The point of the Democrats is to conserve power. Despite being the conservative party in the USA, they don’t care about ideology, they care about winning elections. Unfortunately, this actually hurts them and benefits Republikans, because it makes the party very prone to infighting as people with little in common fight for power.

It has always been this way, too. Already the antebellum urban Democratic machines and Southern Democratic pro-slavery tolerated each other but didn’t like each other. In the 1930s and 1940s, Marxists and Southern segregationists both voted for Roosevelt. In 2012 blue collar unions, urban blacks, and Hispanics – all some of the most conservative groups in the USA – voted with well-educated upper middle class whites for Obama.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@jerv @Darth_Algar @stanleybmanly

My point is that our basic core values don’t change for most of us, ie:
God, family, country
Worth ethic
Personal Responsiblity
Fiscal Conservatism
Pro-Military
Immigration reform

If you factor that fact in with Obama’s terms and your candidates history and votes, I’m not so sure we have anything to worry about.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@bolwerk Your analysis of democratic unity is entertaining but flawed beyond credibility. To begin with, it is truly ludicrous to equate the current democratic landscape with circa 1930s politics when the South was solidly yellow dog democrat. Segregationists and Marxists were allied in electing Roosevelt because both had the sense to recognize that the Republican party was principally a tool of plutocrats (a cognizance regrettably lacking in most of the dupes currently trailing the elephant) We agree on the UNITY of the Democratic party in 2008 and 2012. It was the Republican party’s failure to unite decisively behind Romney that allows Obama the privilege of puffing out state of the union addresses.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@KNOWITALL To which of those core values do you suppose Obama is opposed? Or are you stating that you believe we are in good hands with O in the White House?

KNOWITALL's avatar

@stanleybmanly I meant only that some can see positives and negatives in Obama’s job thus far, and without getting in depth, I feel that Republicans are in a good position right now.

bolwerk's avatar

@stanleybmanly: I wasn’t really equating anything. I was pointing out the Democrats have never been ideologically coherent. They weren’t then, and they aren’t now, despite having changed their composition markedly. None of the factions fit, then or now, in the Republikan Party for various reasons. Another funny feature of American nomenclature: Democrats are more “independent” than the so-called independents, because they actually don’t have much in common with each other or any obligation to be ideologically consistent, even for show.

This illusion of unity may come from the Democrats effectively not being very powerful right now, with the Republikans able to filibuster much Senate business and halt all POTUS legislative priorities in the House. But if the Democrats were to actually gain control of the House back, you can bet they’d go back to infighting, as they always do.

Darth_Algar's avatar

@KNOWITALL

Wow, that had absolutely nothing at all to do with what I said.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Darth_Algar Okay then, not up for a time-wasting argument with you again today.

Darth_Algar's avatar

@KNOWITALL

Your “family values” (whatever that’s suppose to mean) have nothing to do with the fracturing of the Republican party.

stanleybmanly's avatar

@bolwerk neither of the parties has been ideologically coherent since the Great depression.
What marks the difference between the parties is the fact that the elephant has managed to alienate so many disparate groups that have nothing in common ideologically, that they now form a solid and unified front based solely on an all but pathological abhorrence of anything Republican. Whatever possible excuse is there for an alliance of Blacks, Hispanics, Gays, the young, women, unions, intellectuals and on and on?

stanleybmanly's avatar

@KNOWITALL I would agree that Obama’s stock is down. But what foreseeable candidate can emerge from the Republican circus that the fractionalized regional kingdoms can unite behind. The party is in the unenviable position of having the necessity to siphon off a lot of big city votes, a Herculean task for an organization whose loudest and most raucous voices portray the group as one of fanatics with predilections to the right of Genghis Khan?

KNOWITALL's avatar

@stanleybmanly It’s hard to explain in depth to people who don’t understand the mind-set. Even birthers aren’t as offensive to some Reps as Dems on a few other controversial issues. :)

bolwerk's avatar

@stanleybmanly: well, except for that first sentence about neither party being coherent, that’s basically it. The Republikans are somewhat factional, but quite ideologically coherent. A bit oversimplification, but the Tea Party wants to take power from the old timers who have been in charge for a long time. They don’t disagree about much, except maybe how fucknuts to be.

The Democrats, on the other hand, are even more factional and practically atomized ideologically. Whatever message they put up to win, much or even most of the party will disagree with it. That’s why they immediately start fighting every time they actually come out ahead.

jerv's avatar

@KNOWITALL Even those who kill homosexuals on sight and bomb abortion clinics as if they were valid military targets are not as offensive to some Republicans as merely being a Democrat though, so I really can’t accept that argument.

The Republicans will always be in a bad position (and a danger to America and the world; look at what has happened to our international relations since these fanatics were allowed into power) until they put down the rabid dogs in their midst. Until then, anything that the Batshit Brigade says and does, I will assume that the majority of Conservatives agree because of their complicity.

They may be in a good position in your neck of the woods, but last time I checked, you were a small-town girl from the Midwest, and (I am guessing) have spent your life in pretty much nothing but Red states. I grew up in New England where even Republicans are often more liberal than your Democrats, and currently live in a state where all the rural small-town folk who were against us legalizing gay marriage and pot were defeated by a little thing called “popular vote”; us city-slickers cast ballots too. I’ve also been to the South and Midwest and, well, it makes me regret that us Yankees ever fought to keep them from leaving. It’s a different enough place that there is no way that we can be the same country. Korea was split into North and South Korea, and I think it’s time we considered doing the same simply to avoid Civil War II. Fortunately, the political divide in our nation runs largely along geographical lines, and those lines haven’t moved much since the 1860s so we know where to build the fences.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@jerv I may be a small town girl in the Midwest but your post is embarassing just to read. I even voted for Bill Clinton, dude, so if you decide to grow up and talk realistically, let me know.

jerv's avatar

@KNOWITALL Would you deny that Republicans appear to have a better chance to those that spend their entire lives surrounded by people who tend to vote Republican?

Would you deny that Missouri is largely a red state, as are most of the South and Midwest?

Would you deny that we have a serious ideological schism in this nation that is wide enough to take “united” out of United States?

Unless you answer Yes to all three of those, I’m not wrong, merely not tactful and articulate.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@jerv No, I won’t deny that.

Would you deny that there are plenty of Republicans who would never consider bombing an abortion clinic or killing a gay person?

jerv's avatar

@KNOWITALL I know for a fact that there are many reasonable Republicans. And reasonable Republicans are going to have to do a little house-cleaning within their ranks in order to avoid being dragged down by those that they allowed under their umbrella.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@jerv Do you allow these people under your umbrella or are they just there?
http://youtu.be/G880gxjj9dI

Or here? http://youtu.be/MWfGKt0aZLI

My point is that we can’t put an intelligence requirement on voters unfortunately, and this is what we end up with on both sides.

jerv's avatar

@KNOWITALL How many radical liberals get in high office on the Democrat ticket though? Most either go Independent/third-party, or fail to get nominated. Therein lies a major difference between the parties. Then again; it’s been widely accepted that the Democrats have never really been unified.

Hippies? Really? They tend to be third-party or apolitical. Most I’ve known despise both parties, and many see no difference between Obama and Palin.

Cruiser's avatar

@jerv Take a look under the hood of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and you will see it contains 81 “liberal” members of Congress and the sole purpose of the Congressional Progressive Caucus is to promote their socialist progressive agenda.

Darth_Algar's avatar

“Restore American Liberty”. Yep, I’m sure that site is credible, objective and unbiased.

jerv's avatar

@Cruiser Given that there are more than that many marching in lock-step with the Batshit Brigade, I remain unmoved. \

That said, I think the flaws of a two-party system are becoming more obvious every day. If we had a multi-party coalition government, things would probably be a bit better.

Cruiser's avatar

@jerv I could not agree more and evidenced by why the independents almost out number the Dems and Repubs combined. Being a staunch Conservative or a staunch Liberal is kyrptonite to people who care and have a clue as to what our Government is failing to accomplish.

Darth_Algar's avatar

If independents almost outnumber Democrats and Republicans combined then why is it that no other parties can gain even a small foothold in politics in this country? Are independents simply not voting? Or do many people just call themselves “independent” while continuing to vote for the two main parties?

stanleybmanly's avatar

@KNOWITALL . I must begin by congratulating you on fielding all of these balls. And I am taken aback at the realization that there are Republicans who are offended at the allegations of birthers. I would have thought those Republicans more embarrassed than offended. This is because of my unfortunate tendency to lump everything red in the same camp. Thanks for slapping me with some perspective.

jerv's avatar

@stanleybmanly I think that the Republicans would get a lot more respect if they realized that the enemy of their enemy is not their friend, took the hit of losing votes from the extremist element, and returned to their traditional values of smaller, less intrusive government, fiscal responsibility, opportunity for the every-man, and just plain returned to sanity. The reason I often get mistaken for a Democrat is that I embrace the ideology of Republicans from 50 years ago rather than the ideology they’ve embraced for the last ~35 years.

@Darth_Algar Money. Campaigns cost enough that the only candidate that ever made an impact without the backing of the two major parties and their corporate sponsors was Ross Perot; a billionaire.

Darth_Algar's avatar

@jerv

I don’t entirely buy that that’s the reason though. Especially today, with the internet and social media providing easily accessible platforms for candidates to reach out to voters looking for an alternative. Plus I’m not just talking about presidential elections.

bolwerk's avatar

The two party system in a winner-take-all system is pretty explainable by game theory. The optimal road to victory for a party is to make the other look worse, something Republikans have mastered at a very superficial level. The optimal way to leverage your vote is to select the least poison alternative.

It’s not unheard of for candidates in multi-candidate or multi-party systems to cross-endorse each other. A conservative would presumably prefer a liberal to a socialist, and a social democrat would probably prefer a capitalist green to an orthodox Leninist.

jerv's avatar

@Darth_Algar First off, money plays more of a role in national elections. Third-party candidates tend to fare better in smaller elections, though Bernie Sanders proves that Independents can win. Money isn’t the entire reason, but it’s a factor.

Second, social media is less effective with older people. Right now, it’s been around long enough for it to sway 20-somethings, but it’s reach diminishes as you get closer to 40, and is rather small by the time you get to older voters. The internet just isn’t a big thing for a lot of the over-50 crowd, so you have to employ more traditional (and expensive) means to get their votes. You can’t win an election solely on college-age votes, and those most swayed by social media can’t voteyet.

Cruiser's avatar

@Darth_Algar It is all about the money. Just look at any past Presidential candidates campaign donor list and you will see a long list of huge corporations and powerful unions backing the candidate they need to have win to further their interests. Independent voters are just that because they are smart enough and have taken the time to educate themselves as to what is really important to them, their families and their goals in life and see through the smoke and mirrors of the politics and self serving nature of either political party. These independents are who the Dems and Reps fight over to win the election. The Democrats and Republican parties survive because of the deep pockets of K street and corporate donors.

This Gallup Poll will show you over the last 10 years the shift in popularity of either main party. The ranks of independents is bigger now than in the past and the ranks of the Republicans is stronger than in the recent past. The Dems are in for the fight of their lives come November and I expect it to be a down and dirty fight…too dirty IMO.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@stanleybmanly Thanks, and to be honest, growing up with a family full of mostly Democrats has helped me gain a lot of perspective.

Here’s interesting Wiki facts about Missouri political voting.

Missouri is widely regarded as a bellwether in American politics, often making it a swing state. The state had a longer stretch of supporting the winning presidential candidate than any other state, having voted with the nation in every election since 1904 with three exceptions: in 1956 it voted for Democratic Governor Adlai Stevenson of neighboring Illinois over the winner, incumbent Republican President Dwight Eisenhower of neighboring Kansas, and in 2008 it voted for Republican Senator John McCain of Arizona over national winner Senator Barack Obama of neighboring Illinois. Missouri was still the closest state in the nation in both of these races, which were decided by extremely narrow margins of fewer than 4,000 votes each. However, in 2012, Missouri swung strongly Republican when it voted for former Governor Mitt Romney of Massachusetts over the winner, incumbent President Barack Obama, by a nearly 10-point margin. There are 4,190,936 registered voters (as of Oct 24, 2012).[65] At the state level, both Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill and Democratic Governor Jay Nixon were re-elected.

Darth_Algar's avatar

The point I’m making is that I don’t believe that independents truly almost outnumber Republicans and Democrats combined. I doubt that are many true independents out there. Certainly I’ve known plenty of people who claim to be independent, but who tow the major party line 95% of the time.

Cruiser's avatar

@Darth_Algar You probably are right as I am not a fan of polls particularly exit polls.

bolwerk's avatar

“Independent” is a weasel word anyway. It plays into paleo-con delusions about their own rugged individualism and intellectual clarify. They should be referred to as unaffiliated with a party, if they truly are unaffiliated. They’re usually unaffiliated Republikan partisans who break with the party on a few narrow issues, usually religious orthodoxy, abortion, or some Libertarian™ hangup.

People rarely refer to social democrats (if there are any in the USA?) or Marxists or Greens as independents, even though they are probably more different from either major party than self-identified independents ever could be.

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