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SecondHandStoke's avatar

If the political left's insistence that "the Republican party is dead" is true how is it that recent presidential elections have been so close?

Asked by SecondHandStoke (5096 points ) March 16th, 2014

Nobody wants to be associated with a loser, whether real or imagined.

Liberals believe that by using their media to convince the public that The Right are such they can convert what they believe to be it’s feeble minded to their side.

Election results suggest this isn’t working.

Thoughts?

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43 Answers

NanoNano's avatar

I think the general consensus, even among Republicans, is that the party is splintered between traditional and moderate conservatives, vs. the extremists who feel radicalism and fundamentalism is the only way to revive the party.

ragingloli's avatar

It is based on the assumption that the republican party has become so radically right wing, fascist and borderline theocratic, that no rational person could possibly continue to support them.
What people fail to realise that republican voters, through incessent propaganda, are becoming just as radical and insane as the party itself, and thus will continue to vote for them.

BeenThereSaidThat's avatar

As much as the left wants to believe the Republican party is dead they are under a false assumption.

SecondHandStoke's avatar

So we could say that the statement that the Party is dead is typically inaccurate and misleading.

Instead the Party is merely changing.

NanoNano's avatar

Changing? Perhaps. But not necessarily in a way where these changes will evolve into a cohesive whole that unites the party once again.

PhiNotPi's avatar

I agree that it is better to say that the party is “changing” rather than dying. The Republican party actually used to be pro- federal government a long time ago when Lincoln was elected. Both parties have changed dramatically since their inception, and there is reason to expect that they will both continue to change.

SecondHandStoke's avatar

^ Thank you.

whitenoise's avatar

Consistently choose to take a course to the right and you’ll likely end up going in circles. Same is true for the one to the left.

What is happening, I feel, is that nowadays there are not just two parties, but there are two different worlds. Due to partisan news channels and self confirming fora on the internet the average modern american can spend his days in a totally different world, from the ones with another political view. in the ‘old days’ people would hear news that was presented from another point of view as well. Nowadays, no matter how wacky your views are, you can surround yourself with spirits of a kind.

As a result there is lesser sympathy between left and right than ever. So both are ‘broken’ vrom the opossing viewpoint.

Cruiser's avatar

@ragingloli The same can be said in spades about the gullible spoon fed Democratic supporters. The difference is clearly between the “me me” crowd of the Dems and the ok..ok enough is enough…we can find middle ground crowd of the Republicans….why the Dems choose to not compromise is what is creating the log jam in congress.

whitenoise's avatar

@Cruiser
The “me me” crowd of the democrats?

Really?

LOL. This is the most laughable statement I read in years.

ragingloli's avatar

@Cruiser
Do you live in a bizarro universe?
It is the complete opposite.
The dems have been giving concessions to the reps from the beginning, before negotiations even started, and then they give up some more.
The reps official policy, openly stated, was to oppose everything Obama does, to make him, quote “a one term president”.
and do not get me started on the rep base’s “muh guns” and “muh taxes”

Cruiser's avatar

@ragingloli can you give me factual proof of even one concession given up by the Dems during Barry’s tenure?? Please give me one! Obama care is the train wreck that Republicans jumped out of the way of and let happen and how can any Dem justify that hot steaming mess???????????

jaytkay's avatar

Just a little tidbit for all to enjoy – Republicans have won ONE presidential vote in since 1989.

ragingloli's avatar

Oh let me see, the ACA?
Started as a giveaway to the insurance companies, and then the reps blocked it incessantly until the public option was removed (which would have introduced competition and more choice), so that it became an even greater present to the insurance corporations.

Cruiser's avatar

EXACTLY @ragingloli and you are safely over 2,000 miles away to not have to feel that financial pain we are waking up to. Somebody gave Barry a vigorous reach around to make that law happen.

ragingloli's avatar

Yep, I am enjoying my German socialised universal healthcare system, which is both cheaper and more effective than yours ever was.

Cruiser's avatar

@ragingloli I am jealous! ;)

SadieMartinPaul's avatar

There are so few moderate, centrist Republicans still remaining. Since the early-1980s, most of them have chosen to disassociate themselves from the crazy, extreme-right elements of the party. Many left-leaning Republicans have become Democrats or simply call themselves Independent.

Also, there’s been so much political suicide on the part of prominent Republicans. Bob McDonnell, recently the governor of Virginia, had been tapped as presidential material for the next election; instead, his personal and family greed will likely end in a criminal conviction. Then, there’s the ongoing saga of Chris Christie, also a former presidential hopeful.

NanoNano's avatar

True, they are dwindling… And at last count, the Tea Party consisted of 89 Republican senators I have heard, so they are a pretty broad voting block.

Extremism is just the GOP shooting itself in the foot though, so I have to think the tide will shift in the other direction at some point…

Cruiser's avatar

@SadieMartinPaul great observation…and you have the Pilosie’s and Harry Reid’s who will hang on for dear life no matter how how much the evidence and odds are stacked against them and have the Clinton’s one step behind them who just can’t take a hint that it is time to quit while you are ahead. Christie is a conservative example of the same political entitlement mentality possessed by these elitist narcissists.

bolwerk's avatar

I always love these questions that confuse basic political terminology. Which is it? Liberal or left? Democrats are almost uniformly right-wing too, so there is no reason to worry the American right is going to disappear even if the Republikans do. Liberals are themselves right, but very few Democrats are liberal and even fewer are remotely left.

Reality:

• Presidential elections: yes, there is a real possibility the Republikan Party may really be in the wilderness for a while with Presidential elections because of how electoral votes are currently deleted and the way states seem to be leaning in presidential elections. Probably it’s safe to say Democrats will be winning more presidential elections than Republikans for the foreseeable future (into the 2030s). Discrete elections may turn out in different ways depending on the candidates involved.

• Senate control: because of the class of senators that happen to be up for election this year (from the 2008 Democratic sweep), the Republikan Party has a plausible chance of reclaiming the Senate in 2014 because they have fewer seats to defend. If they do, they have good chance of losing it again in 2016 when the 2010 Tea Party wave is up.

• The House: barring a groundswell, I see no reason to think the House will stop being Republikan before 2022 – and whether that is so depends entirely on the partisan balance of power in the 50 states. Democrats tend to get more votes in House elections overall than Republikans, but Republikans have the House gerrymandered in their favor.

I have no idea who is supposedly claiming the Republikan Party is dead. It has long-term problems that largely go back to demography, yes, but that doesn’t make it dead.

kritiper's avatar

The Republican Party isn’t dead. But with the Tea Party in tow, it might as well be. I think the election vote gap will only widen from here on out unless somebody gets their shit in one sock.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

I heard one analyst explain why the elections are always close. 40% vote Republican and 40% vote Democrat, regardless of who is running, 10% are clueless, and the other 10% make up your swing voters.

Cruiser's avatar

Yep @Adirondackwannabe it is sadly that cut and dried. 5% of the voters decide who gets elected and why you see so much fan fare given to talking points weeks before the elections.

jerv's avatar

Which Republican Party are you talking about? Last I checked, there were multiple ones to choose from.

But @ragingloli is correct that as the politicians get more extreme, so do the voters that support them. The real question is how much longer can this continue before our nation explodes due o the widening rift between sanity and the extremists that give non-Democrats a bad name. With all of the press that people like Cruz and Palin get, it’s easy to forget that there are Conservatives that are actually rational people using sound logic and actual facts; people much like the Republicans of 30+ years ago rather than the people that think Reagan was too Liberal.

Cruiser's avatar

@jerv The same can be said for Reid and Pilosi…who wins when so few call the shots?? I thought it was all about we the people not a dictatorship of few. Whose side are you on? Them or us?

jerv's avatar

@Cruiser By assuming I am on one side or the other, you committed a grievous error. Lets just say that the enemy of my enemy is my “ally of convenience” so long as we have a two-party system.

Cruiser's avatar

@jerv Then you and I are on the same team…I despise the 2 party system…I loathe both sides

kritiper's avatar

It might be helpful to keep in mind that 66% of Republicans and 50% of Democrats are actually Moderates, whatever it’s worth.

bolwerk's avatar

“Moderate” is another completely meaningless term, even if you ignore that most Democrats are themselves right-wing.

Jaxk's avatar

Presidential elections are at best, a popularity contest. The game is to make yourself look good and the other guy look bad. Whoever does this best, wins. Issues of policy have little or nothing to do with it. We may as well be voting for Prom Queen and haggling over who wears too much make-up.

Cruiser's avatar

So what you are saying @Jaxk is that by me voting for the most qualified I am just throwing away my vote?

NanoNano's avatar

I think in large part Jaxk is right.

If you are the Jaxk from Askville, you know we seldom agreed on anything there…

But in my opinion, presidential elections now in the US just give us a fairly superficial view of the issues and ideology. That is, I don’t think the candidates ever really stick to their platform once elected.

I voted for Obama twice. And many of the big decisions he’s made in office are actually Republican in nature. He didn’t close Guantanamo, he supports unconstitutional NSA spying, he threatens Syria and now Russia on the Ukraine invasion, but will do nothing substantial to stop it, he has failed to pass immigration reform, gun control, raise the minimum wage nationally (all Republican views on these issues).

The leadership in this country is so gridlocked now that it seems like whoever you vote for, very little gets done any more. I read that in Obama’s first term, of the 40 legislative initiatives he pushed for, only one passed, and that was getting a temporary budget in place to keep the government from shutting down.

Congress is too polarized now for anything substantial to come out of it, regardless of which type of president we have in officed…

KNOWITALL's avatar

The Republican party is not dead at all, although I’m sure many wish it were. I’m a liberal Republican on some issues many social, and a conservative on others like finances and budget. I don’t see that changing anytime soon, especially since the Tea Partiers and Birthers were mainly anti-Obama, and I had nothing against O myself.

Jaxk's avatar

@Cruiser

Not necessarily, but you’re voting on different criteria than most Americans. There is an argument to be made that if Nixon had a better make-up artist he would have beat Kennedy in 1960.

Jaxk's avatar

@NanoNano

I am and I do. I think you are misguided in what you believe are Republican issues. Just because you don’t like what Obama does in some cases, doesn’t make them Republican in nature. Hell. I don’t like them either. BTW, you seem to forget Obamacare and Stimulus (et al). He got that passed in his first term. It’s just not something to brag about.

Cruiser's avatar

@Jaxk To further your point….when I asked my wife why she voted for Obama, she said because he was a nice guy. Yes we are still married.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Cruiser Hard to dismiss Hope and Change and idealism. I didn’t vote for him but I wished him the best and hoped he’d make it happen, I’m just not sure I believe actually has.

Jaxk's avatar

@Cruiser

I bet on a horse once because I liked it’s name, but that only cost me a few minutes of pain (dead last).

Jaxk's avatar

@KNOWITALL

So how’s that Hope and Change working out for you? The problem is, you need to know what he’s hoping for and what change he wants. Hell, even I would have liked to see him succeed but there was no chance with what he was proposing.

KNOWITALL's avatar

@Jaxk For me? You know I’m a Rep old boy! It has worked out for a few people I know in regards to healthcare, for now anyway.

BeenThereSaidThat's avatar

@Jaxk I’m “hopeful” that three years from now we will have that “change”. And I don’t mean a Hillary Clinton.

I don’t walk around wearing rose colored glasses, It was always obvious to me what candidate Obama had up his sleeve.

bolwerk's avatar

@Jaxk is right. It’s not just presidential elections. It happens in any two-player game.

Why? The game dynamics are such that you just need to do better than the other player. In an 2-man election, you gain a big edge by making the other guy look worse than you. Once multiple viable candidates are involved, you start seeing things like cross-endorsement and constructive debate because making more than one person look worse than you only makes you look like an asshole.

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