Lots of commentators have been referencing a report from Democracy Corps about focus-group meetings with Republicans, and with good reason: Stanley Greenberg, the organization's co-founder, has basically provided a unified theory of the craziness that has enveloped American politics in the last few years.Good.
What the report makes clear is that the current Republican obsession with attacking programs that benefit Americans in need, ranging from food stamps to health care reform, isn't about some philosophical commitment to small government. It's about anxiety over a changing America - the multiracial, multicultural society we're becoming - and anger that Democrats are taking Their Money and giving it to Those People. In other words, it's still race after all these years.
One irony here is that at this point it's the liberals who believe in America, while the conservatives don't (my em). I believe in our ability to change while retaining our essential nature; I believe that today's immigrants will be incorporated into the fabric of our society, just as Italian and Jewish immigrants - once regarded as fundamentally incompatible with American ways - became "white" by the middle of the 20th century.
Another irony is that the great right-wing fear that social insurance programs will in effect buy minority votes for Democrats, leading to further change, is becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy. The G.O.P. could have tried to reach out to immigrants, moderated its stances on Obamacare, and staked out a position as the restrained, sensible party. Instead, it's alienating all the people it needs to win over, and quite possibly setting the stage for the very liberal dominance it fears.
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
GOP Still Worried About "Those People"
Posted by Gordon at 13:25