It was a tough night for you folks, I understand. That bewildered and beaten sensation you are feeling right now is what many Liberals felt in November of 2004 when we thought for sure we were going to win and got the rug yanked out from under us. We really thought that given the absolute clusterf*ckery of the current incumbent, there was no way, and I mean NO WAY that the American people would re-elect him. And yet …
Now I in no way mean to compare the current President with his predecessor. They are nothing alike. That said it is impossible not to see some similarities in the election. We had an incumbent who, though popular with his base was deeply distrusted by the other side and wasn’t fairing well with independents. His opponent was not wildly popular with his party but was seen as being acceptable to independents and with a reasonable resume and gosh darn it, even if the guy does have the likability of a discarded shoe, he is generally inoffensive. This should be a cake walk right?
More below the commie squiggle.
What I really want to do is dispel three basic arguments for you right now. The first one of course would be that the evil Democrats and Obama’s Chi-town mafia mercilessly attacked Romney from the get-go with unfair accusations of him being a vulture capitalist, profoundly out of touch and a flip flopper of epic proportions. Alright, that isn’t entirely untrue. The problem with that argument is two-fold however. Firstly, the accusations are not unfair and I know this because they have the benefit of being true. I mean, you saw the guy right? You saw him change his positions over and over again with cameras rolling. You saw him say incredibly stupid things about trees being the right height, not knowing much about NASCAR but gosh he knows some NASCAR owners who are just swell and casually making ten thousand dollar bets on national TV right? And that is just the tip of the iceberg. Secondly, these were YOUR arguments. Gingrich, Bachmann, Cain and Santorum all leveled these arguments at Romney during your primaries. It was your guys saying it for Pete’s sake.
The second argument is that Obama has presided over wrecking the economy and downgrading the US Credit Rating. Okay this one is utter nonsense and you guys know it. When he took office the economy was losing jobs at a rate of 800,000 per month. It was going to take at least 6-12 months just to stop the bleeding never mind getting people back to work. Once his policies actually got a chance to start working they did create jobs. As a matter of fact if you take out the first 12 months of his Presidency, he created nearly 5 million of them and he did this in spite of the most obstructionist Congress I have ever seen. As to the Credit downgrade, well folks that one is all on you. It was Congress who picked that fight, apparently with the complete misunderstanding of what exactly a debt ceiling is. You see, the debt ceiling is basically an agreement to pay back money we have already borrowed and spent. It is not saying, “hey let’s go borrow this money later”. It is sort of like losing a hand of poker and then saying you aren’t really sure if you should pay the amount you wagered. People get testy when you do stuff like that.
Argument three is that Romney went to the center and didn’t convey a true Conservative message. Well I have some news for you. Remember Murdock and Akins and West and the myriad of other “true conservatives” you guys bullied the party into nominating? Well they all got beat pretty handily. Now as a Liberal I would love to see you guys proudly fly the “true conservative” flag and double down in every election as you are basically putting yourself out of business as a national party. And really that is the whole point. I know Conservatives love to tell each other that America is really a nation of center-right wingers who get duped now and then by those evil Liberals but the truth of the matter is that this is a load of bull. Most Americans like Social Security. They like Medicare and Medicaid. They feel sick when they watch people shout “let him die” during Republican debates about uninsured citizens. They are appalled when you boo American service men and women because they are gay. They are down right ashamed when you talk about making people walking down the street produce their “papers” because of the color of their skin or call women sluts and prostitutes because they want to know they can be insured for prescriptions. They shake their heads in dismay when your candidate talks about borrowing money from their parents to start up businesses when they know themselves they don’t have that kind of money to loan their kids. The truth is my Conservative friends that America is not a center-right country but a center-left country when actual policy is debated rationally and factually. If you insist on ignoring this you will continue to lose by larger and larger margins.
The reason you got thumped was that your message was not one that the American people agreed with and your nominee was one of the most duplicitous and unprincipled politician we have seen in recent memory. They do not want more tax cuts for obscenely wealth Americans. They don’t want to voucherize health care and social security. They certainly don’t want the private sector to take over our children’s education and reduced regulation for Wall Street raiders who almost took our entire economy down with their greed. They do not want to funnel hundreds of billions of dollars to defense contractors and more wars five thousand miles away. Lastly they absolutely do not want government to invade their bedrooms, reproductive organs or privacy.
America wants and needs vigorous discussion about the problems we face. We need well reasoned and though out solutions that can only be achieved through the exchange of different ideas and co-operation. The American people watched for four years as your party absolutely refused to budge on almost every issue we faced. They watched as you publicly stated that your legislative agenda for the entire first term of the President was to ensure that he did not get a second one. They saw you filibuster every attempt at meaningful change and you repudiate Health Care ideas that your own party espoused as a solution only a few years before and that your most recent nominee called a model for the nation to emulate when he put it in place in Massachusetts. They watched you cravenly sacrifice the good of the citizens who elected you in order to make the President look bad.
America watched as your nominee said one thing and then directly contradicted himself the next, then deny ever having had the opinion to begin with. They watched him flip flop on everything from the nature of blind trusts, the need for transparency in government, reproductive rights, immigration, health care, the auto bailout, Bin Laden, Afghanistan, climate change, tax policy, Medicare, social security and too many other topics to mention and then you were aghast when the American people deemed him untrustworthy. They watched him avoid giving any substantial details on any policy he offered and you were shocked when the American people deemed him secretive. Lastly they watched him talk to a room full of doners when he didn’t think there were any cameras present and throw almost half of the country under the bus and you were amazed when they didn’t like what they saw.
I am sorry Conservatives. I do truly feel your pain. Liberals had to do some serious soul searching following our 2004 loss and had to adjust to some harsh realities. The reality we had to deal with was an opposition party that would say and do just about anything to win an election and that you had to back up a campaign with not just message but a certain amount of spine. In other words, you taught Democrats that we had to learn how to throw an elbow. Now it’s your turn to learn that being able to throw an elbow matters, but if you have a bad message when the other guy throws one right back at you, you can’t win national elections. If you continue to ignore the realities of what the electorate wants simply because of the shrillest voices in your party, you will keep losing and there is no quick fix like simply adding a Hispanic to the next ticket. You have allowed the lunatics to run the asylum. You need to take it back.
Sincerely, The folks who just kicked your ass