Republicans can't understand why they aren't doing better. It's because they are straying too far from what their most effective message would probably be.
Few people actually blame Obama for all of the economic mess- even those on the right and in the middle. So, by doing that, the GOP is being ignorant of what their best strategy might be if they want to attract middle-of-the-road voters and perhaps some disenchanted 2008 Obama voters.
I'm not trying to give them pointers- really, I like the direction the GOP is currently taking, since I'm a Democrat. And I'm a very proud Democrat who is 100% behind Obama and Biden (that was the greatest convention ever!) But if the GOP wanted to make some progress with the middle voters, they would have to say something like:
"Okay, Obama didn't create the entire mess, but he did add some to the debt and deficit. And yes, things are slightly better (at least in terms of job loss statistics and other economic indicators), than they were in January 2009, when he took office."In other words, their message probably should be: "Obama's not evil, he's just too slow at economic recovery, and we will be faster." ((But they just can't say that.))
"But we believe that a fiscally conservative direction on the economy that was led by a fiscally conservative president, such as our candidate would be, would have been able to bring the economy around much more quickly. Putting such a conservative method in place now would speed up our nation's recovery."
Once again, I am not in the business of writing the GOPs platform, nor do I want to be. I would still be 100% opposed to them if they said these things, because I believe they would be wrong: The Bush Tax cuts have been proven to be a failure. And that's not to mention the "social values" war they continue to wage against women, minorities and, well, everybody who isn't in the top 1/2/3 percent.
In Jan. 2001, when Clinton left office and George W. Bush took office, the US debt was at $5.7 trillion. But we had no deficit, which means we were owed more from other countries and businesses than we owed. This is not a technicality- most US business owners have debts, but a successful business is one that takes in more than it spends. Under Clinton, we were successful.
Do I wish our country was doing better? Yes. Do I think returning Republicans to the White House and control of Congress would do that? Hell no. The GOP got us into this dilemma- and there's no reason to expect that they are able, only four years later, to dig the country out of their mess.
When the GOP says that the Democratic Administration isn't building things back fast enough, they simply haven't earned the credibility to make that assertion.
The GOP is killing itself, but they can't seem to take a strategic approach to this economy and election, because too many of their hot-heads are in leadership positions and refuse to budge.
Once again- I don't mind that they are undergoing a schism... It's just sometimes painful to watch. (Well, wincingly enjoyable.)