Monday, November 10, 2008

Center Right Nation?

That's what the Republicans are calling the United States. They see that as there way back to power. In piece after piece after the Republican pasting on Tuesday is this refrain.

This from cry at the drop of the hat on the floor of the House Congressman John Boehner from Ohio:

America is still a center-right country. This election was neither a referendum in favor of the left's approach to key issues nor a mandate for big government.

This from Dov Zakheim a senior foreign policy adviser to the first Bush:

The United States remains a center-right nation, but it is not a bigoted or small-minded one. Ours is an inclusive, generous society. It may not want too much government, but it seeks responsible and efficient government. It eschews isolationism and admires the promise of cooperation in foreign affairs. It looks to its leaders to keep their promises, but it also wants them to win over those whose votes they did not receive.

This from Rich Lowry of the Nation:

It is indeed, as conservatives have been insisting in recent days, a center-right country. The question is how to appeal to the center again.

A couple of quick points come to mind. Just because the Republicans are saying the nation is center-right does not make it true.

The notion from Mr. Zakheim that the center-right nation he envisions exists is not bigoted well I think Mr. Zakheim needs to look at some of the people who attended McCain/Palin rallies. I think that would be an eye opener for Mr. Zakheim.

I'm not sure the country is a center-right country. I'm not sure it is a center-left country. I do know that it is moving further and further away from the center-right country it was when Bush was elected president.

Here is the problem I see for the Republicans. If this is indeed a center-right country I don't see how the Republicans appeal to people. The reason is they have become a far far far right party. There are essential few if any moderates left in the Republican Party. Most important of all they are a very very white party. All you need look at is the people who attended rallies. Or the people at the convention. They have been completely unable to broaden the Republican appeal to any minorities.

In the not too distant future minorities will be the majority. What does the Republican Party do then? How do they shed the image of grumpy, very old and very, very, very conservative white men?

1 comment:

Arthur Schenck said...

"…but it is not a bigoted or small-minded one." - Zev Zakheim

Hm, he may want to talk to the GLBT people of Florida, Arkansas, Arizona and California—especially California—and rethink that statement. There's plenty of bigotry and small-mindedness in the US, and in no small measure it's been nurtured by successive Republican campaigns.

And how DARE Republicans try and portray themselves as "center right"? By definition that means basically being moderate, with a tilt toward conservative principles, but not all the time, even. As you said, the Republicans have become an far far far right party—what part of them is "moderate" by any reasonable definition? They're insulting Americans who really are moderate.

Republicans' sheer chutzpah never ceases to amaze me.