AP Article on Pennsylvania GOP

The AP has an article on the GOP, that I could best sum up as “Tax protesters, tea partiers and creationists, oh my!” Also with a healthy heaping of homophobia and xenophobia, just to round out the article. Pennsylvania has always politically divided more along urban, suburban and rural than by party, which isn’t something this article alludes to. The media will obviously do what they can to scare suburban voters by bringing forth the likes of Metcalfe and Bloom, and it will work. Corbett would be smart to distance himself from the GOPs far-right heading into his re-election campaign.

28 thoughts on “AP Article on Pennsylvania GOP”

  1. “The media will obviously do what they can to scare suburban voters by bringing forth the likes of Metcalfe and Bloom, and it will work.”

    And I would add, as well it should work. Like or not our mothers were right, and we are known by the company we keep — for good reason. What kept me from pulling the R lever (I didn’t pull the D lever either) in the last election was the R party’s blatant pandering to their Metcalfe/Bloom constituencies at the national level, further empowering them.

    We don’t have to do deep research into history to see that pandering to fascists and their fellow-traveling loons is what places fascists and loons in the position where they don’t need to be pandered to anymore. They call the shots. Have you watched Metcalfe’s ascendancy in power in the General Assembly over his fifteen years?

  2. “Corbett would be smart to distance himself from the GOPs far-right heading into his re-election campaign.”

    Because having your base stay home worked out so well for President Romney……

    1. And having suburban Philadelphia GOP voters stay home, or pull the lever for the Democrat will put the Democrat in power.

    2. I’d also point out that Romney didn’t really have a base problem. The social conservatives turned out for him. Who didn’t, surprisingly, were working class non-religious voters who were likely turned off to Romney by the Obama Campaign’s class warfare language. See RealClear politics analysis of the missing voters:

      Where things drop off are in the rural portions of Ohio, especially in the southeast. These represent areas still hard-hit by the recession. Unemployment is high there, and the area has seen almost no growth in recent years.

      My sense is these voters were unhappy with Obama. But his negative ad campaign relentlessly emphasizing Romney’s wealth and tenure at Bain Capital may have turned them off to the Republican nominee as well. The Romney campaign exacerbated this through the challenger’s failure to articulate a clear, positive agenda to address these voters’ fears, and self-inflicted wounds like the “47 percent” gaffe. Given a choice between two unpalatable options, these voters simply stayed home.

      There’s a strong tendency among Republicans, probably because talk radio hosts love to push this meme, that they lose because they aren’t conservative enough. Politics is never that straightforward. This is pretty good evidence that the soothing line echoed by talk radio hosts is wrong. While conservatives do better in the numbers game than liberals, especially on economic issues, you still need enough moderates to go along with you to win. And even that is way oversimplified, because moderates are a pretty poorly defined bunch.

      The reason Republicans are losing elections is because their coalition isn’t working as well as the Democrats. Why that’s the case I don’t think is as simple as “The GOP just isn’t conservative enough.” It’s important to understand the real problem if you want to crawl back to a winning coalition. I don’t like the implications of what the Ohio data, and some of the other data I’ve seen suggest about who is staying home. It means the GOP will have to embrace populism, rather than conservatism, to crawl back to power.

      1. I doubt that the social cons turned out in any way for Romney for several reasons; he’s a Mormon, he’s not conservative in any way shape or form, and he was the epitomy(sp?) of the GOP establishment. He was also untrustworthy on the firearms’ issue. My own church, which is as social con as you can get(AoG), was completely ambivalent on the election. We voted Constitutionalist, but it was hard not voting for the Obamination because of the lack of difference between him and Romney. While I work in the private sector for an engineering firm, I’ve done better financially with Obama than with any president since Reagan.
        Come 2016, if the choice is between, say Jeb Bush/Rubio/Christie and Hillary, I think most socons will find something else to do on election day.
        The GOP is not going to win any elections without the socons, and as a long standing member, I’m tired of being lied to by the GOP establishment. There is not one real point of difference between the two factions of the ruling party, the Repubs and the Dems. More and more of the people I talk with at church stayed home in 2012, and will probably do so in 2016.
        Maybe the GOP can’t win because of the socons, but none of the nominees for a long time have been socons. That includes Reagan, who as a divorced man was unfit to be president, IMNSHO.
        I think Fred Reed has been right, for a long time, on the lack of difference between the parties. Or try Bill Quick, who is an atheist I respect.

        1. I have challenged Sebastian, Andy B. and others here who are anti-SoCon to find an example of a conservative, pro-civil liberties, pro-gun, non-SoCon candidate the GOP who is worth voting for. So far no one seems to know of any at the state level. The closest at the federal level is Rand Paul. Something tells me that even he wouldn’t fit the bill for Sebastian. So I fail to see how this mystical candidate emerges when gun rights are a top voting issue above all.

          As soon as you find one candidate who can throw part of the base off the bus,
          Don’t be too surprised when he/she then throws gun owners off the bus, too. Look at Chris Christie.

          That being said, I do sympathize with what Sebastian says as far as tone and substance of the PA GOP goes. I’ve mentioned that the GOP should err on economic populism as a way to win in PA. Railing against public schools is not the way to win. If they continue ragging on public schools they can expect to lose the suburban areas in the mid state that value public education.

          1. “a conservative, pro-civil liberties, pro-gun, non-SoCon candidate the GOP who is worth voting for…”

            FWIW, I voted for Gary Johnson, who had died early in the Republican primaries. And it wasn’t because I could find nothing about him to quibble about, from a “[classical] libertarian purist” perspective. I was willing to settle for him, and my vote for him was a statement of that. Even though he was weeded out early in the primary process, I maintain that had he been the Republican candidate, he would have fared better than Romney.

            I’ll state flatly — I will not support Rand Paul in any way. He’s a member of the Christian Mafia, first, and therefore I don’t trust a single thing other than his SoCo issues that he claims to stand for. I’ve had too much experience with the Bear False Witness for Christ crowd, who will say anything they believe is doing God’s Work — which first and foremost always consists of putting themselves in power.

      2. And it shows that on the flip side, when the GOP does nominate someone “moderate”, see your Romney example, they don’t actually win over the moderate voters.

        The Democrat coalition also works better because much of it has a vested financial self interest in the aims of the party and overall much of the media pushes down wedge issues.

        We don’t see the media harping on base/moderate or elite/populist divergences of the Democrats as much as they do the Republicans.
        Again see Bain Capital et al. But that goes into self interest.

        1. So why hasn’t the smoke filled room at GOP HQ in Harrisburg run the numbers? A GOP candidate who could appeal to the most would be social con, but not as outspoken about that. They would be atrong in civil liberties and economically populist. Seems simple to me.

          1. Stupid Party is stupid?

            But seriously, I don’t know. The answer is probably the same reason every race doesn’t have the candidate of that stripe: IE base satisfying but moderate pleasing.

            Such a person may not be available. The larder could be empty of candidates like that.

            Or they figure “Screw the base” or “Screw the moderates” or so on.

            1. What we need is someone more shrewd. You appeal to the base, appeal to independents, but you are not public about wanting to screw over either of them. To me it makes sense and everyone goes home happy knowing they voted for the guy who “gets them” on Election Day. What a politician says and what they do are rarely the same, so the bar is already pretty low.

          2. Because all politics is local. Santorum was a splendid populist, and yet got his ass handed to him, overwhelmingly, but the underwhelming candidacy of Robert P. Casey Jr. All Casey had to be was a) his father, and b) not Santorum.

            I’m starting to wonder if the issue here is that the “libertarian” wing of the GOP, however loosely defined, and the “populist” wing, equally however loosely defined, isn’t sick of seeing the religious so-co component acting like they own the coalition. No, they don’t. I’m fairly understanding of the basic fact that libertarian leaning people need to coalition with other interests to win, and even I voted for Casey in 2006. Santorum had become too much.

            1. The so-cos own the positions of power, and the “populists” are willing to go along to get along and get their policy preferences enacted. The R-libs are in a bit of a bind, unless the so-cos transgress against the R-pops

            2. I would also add another camp… The “national security” Repub group. The ones that will support darn near anything if it is in the name of national security. They are the “law and order” types with no real clear moral/civil liberties stance. They just want to give it to the potential criminal and terrorist real good, which is their guiding philosophy. Think Rep. Pete King.

              1. I think that’s a big divide in the GOP nowadays. The “KILL EM TURRISTS” group and the more libertarian group are fighting it out. The KET group also is very establishment, where as the libertarian group isn’t. The establishment GOP is losing, and they are doing everything to keep in power.

        2. “when the GOP does nominate someone “moderate”, see your Romney example, they don’t actually win over the moderate voters. . .”

          I observed the other day that our moms were right, and we all become known by the company we keep. “Moderates” (I hate that word!) in the Republican Party always have their party “helping” them, and sometime during their campaign someone in the party will open their yaps and define — again — a stereotype for what the party stands for.

      3. Well, don’t forget that the Republican party gave the bum’s rush to the Ron Paul supporters, and there were alot of them, who mostly got POed at the whole thing and stayed home on election day to protest the treatment their candidate got.

        I know several who did just that. And I told them they were handing the election to Obummer, they didn’t care as long as Romney lost.

        That kind of thing doesn’t help the party at all…….

  3. “Because having your base stay home worked out so well for President Romney……”

    I would think political scientists, pollsters and statisticians would have answered this by now, but did a potential Romney base “stay home” so much as an anti-Romney base was turned out — by Romney’s base?

    See my comment above. I “stayed home” in the sense of not voting for Romney, though I certainly didn’t vote for Obama. But, it was the Romney and his Republican “base” that convinced me I couldn’t vote for him. I’d learned my lesson (again, and for the umpteenth time) when that base talked me into putting my hand on the hangman’s rope, and voting for Bush in 2000.

  4. If an R is pro RTKABA, then she/he has my vote. I will NEVER trust a dem again, and i was one once.. Their party showed their majority opinion on my gun this cycle. Republicans saved our ass. if we dont unite, even if we can get our way on every single thing, we WILL live to see a National Gun Registry, followed by confiscation. Voting REQUIRES being philosophical about some things. Rigidity results in loss that wont be recouped in our lifetime.

  5. Governor Christie is going out of his way to pander to the Religious Right, and going out of his way to piss of the RKBA folks. What that adds up to, damfino. IT adds up to a vote against him in the primaries from me for damn sure if he throws his hat in the ring, and quite possibly a protest vote for the Libertarian if he’s nominated. He’s a right-leaning statist law-enforcement enabling religious bigot, by public statements.

  6. Re: Presidency

    Except for the Presidency, the U.S. Senate and large city mayors, Republicans seem to do quite well, with solid majorities of elective offices representing a majority of the populace. And since the great sifting began in 1992, the vast majority of those Republicans are not moderates.

    If a moderate type candidate is supposed to do so much better, then why did such an extremist as Obama beat two moderate Republican presidential candidates in a row, and by a comfortable majority of the vote? Each one was a special case? So next time a new moderate Republican will still be the best candidate?

    Those prompting the moderate option have had two bites of the apple now (three counting Dole), and lost every time. Ever since Reagan, when conservatives ran (and the elder Bush trying his damndest to pretend to be conservative in 1988) the Republicans won the presidency.

    Re: purple states

    It will be fascinating to observe the backlash in Colorado. I suspect the triumphalist overreach of the Democrats there has spelled their doom. 2014 is coming.

    1. Post hoc, ergo propter hoc? To win the presidency, you have to be able to poll a 50%+1 majority in states adding up to 270 electoral votes (barring the oddball states that can split their EC votes). This is currently an advantage to the Democrats. Looking at either the pop vote or the county-by-county vote misleads.

  7. “why did such an extremist as Obama beat two moderate Republican presidential candidates in a row…?”

    The quick answer is they were dorks at the same time they were pandering to kookaboos and theocrats whenever they got the chance. “Moderation,” per se, had nothing to do with it, except of being placed in serious question. And, whether we like it or not, Obama didn’t look like an extremist to most voters, except for those standing at the far end of the spectrum from him. Most people hearing that “extremist” rhetoric made the twirling motion with their fingers at their temples, and walked away.

    I’m not saying I agreed with that — I had my own analyses — but as a realist I understood and acknowledged it. The Republican strategists clearly didn’t, and don’t.

    1. You say kookaboos… That’s a curious term. Would you mind defining that? Or are you echoing the sentiments of John McCain?

      I say he was appealing mostly to Wall Street and laissez faire types. And when he didn’t, he had a piss poor time identifying with most people/families who made under $100,000 a year.

      Whether or not he was is up to debate, but that’s the picture the Obama campaign painted, and successfully.
      That’s why he won a second term. Phony populism.

      1. Oh yeah. Let us not forget the brilliance of the 47% comment. That also resonated oh so well to the middle class.

      2. “Kookaboo” is pretty much the same animal as a “Wackadoodle.” I have been using the terms interchangeably pretty much ever since I got involved in political stuff, and met so many of them. And was accused of being one. And had them subvert so much that I had worked so hard to bring about.

        If McCain used either word, maybe he learned it from me, though I have never crossed paths with the guy, nor so much as laid eyes on him.

        1. I thought I’d take another moment to answer what you probably were really asking:

          Who is a “kookaboo” or “wackadoodle” is always going to be subjective (as is a great deal about actual mental illness) but the wise-ass answer is, if you have to ask you will probably never know.

          I’ll try to condense my Old Story quite a bit, but, for several years back in the late ’80s, early ’90s I was county Libertarian Party chairman. My faction’s first order of business was to shut up our wackadoodles or convince them to leave. (Yeah, suppress their freedom to speak — for the organization.) Within only a couple years the local daily paper was insisting I be included in “tripartisan” activities with the major party chairmen, and had actually endorsed one of our county-wide candidates. We achieved county-level “ballot status” for the LP for the first time in history.

          But in intra-party politics not unlike some Republican Party maneuvers around the country, our county committee was deposed by the state committee, in part for accurately communicating the party platform without sounding nutty. Within months the kookaboos were on the radio-ramparts again, and in another year the county party had ceased to exist, for all practical purposes.

          Was that a microcosm of the choices for the Republican Party, today? I don’t know, but I sure found it instructive.

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