The future of the Republican Party.

Glenn Beck weeping.

Cry it out, FOX News. Cry it out.

Ok, so we re-elected the lesser of two evils.  I’m happy about that.

I’m also happy that the Republicans took a pretty thorough thumping in the electoral college, the popular vote (where Romney lost by 3%, maybe more, even though that was supposed to be his saving grace), in the social issue ballots (gay marriage looks like it will win in all four states and recreational marijuana, not just medical marijuana, got legalized in two), and in most of the close senate races.

The narrative on FOX (whose tears today are so fair and balanced) is that the liberal media won the election for Obama.

Fox News and other media outlets have projected that President Obama has been reelected to a second term. If, in celebrating his victory Obama wanted to give credit where credit is due, he might want to think about calling some of America’s top journalists, since their favorable approach almost certainly made the difference between victory and defeat.

The “liberal” media were the ones calling this race close when all the statisticians were giving 90%+ odds to Obama, so that dog doesn’t hunt.  In their eyes, and in the eyes of their audience, it couldn’t have been because Americans liked Obama’s platform better.  It hasn’t occurred to them that the summary rejection of the GOP and its platform this election is a sign that the nation continues to move, as it always has, slowly in the progressive direction.

They have two choices: the first is to move toward the middle and give themselves a chance in the next election.  They could change with society, rather than being dragged along behind it kicking and screaming.

But they won’t do that, at least not immediately.  For many of them, warming up to marriage equality or the fact that marijuana is enjoyable would be tantamount to changing their mind about what their supposedly unchanging god wants, and they can’t have that.  They seem poised to go to their political graves white knuckling the will of an invisible god.  Already there’s talk that Mitt Romney just wasn’t conservative enough.  The Republican party can either return to its roots here or submit to the will of the Tea Party, but the balancing act isn’t working – and it especially won’t work if Michelle Bachmann, Rick Santorum, Sarah Palin (remember, Mitt was the best candidate among that group) decide to split the Republican vote by running independent.

I suspect they’re going to choose the wrong direction, at which point they will get drubbed again and, just like this time, god will be nowhere to save them.

About JT Eberhard

When not defending the planet from inevitable apocalypse at the rotting hands of the undead, JT is a writer and public speaker about atheism, gay rights, and more. He spent two and a half years with the Secular Student Alliance as their first high school organizer. During that time he built the SSA’s high school program and oversaw the development of groups nationwide. JT is also the co-founder of the popular Skepticon conference and served as the events lead organizer during its first three years.

  • William R. Dickson

    I concur. I don’t think the Republican Party is really going to understand until they actually nominate someone like Rick Santorum and receive a trouncing even they won’t even be able to deny.

    • Randomfactor

      Santorum/Perry ought to do it.

  • ResearchToBeDone

    So apparently we’re on the same wavelength this morning. They can move left or they can move right, and either way, they’ve already fucked themselves over. It’s just a question of when they realize it. I think they’ll have a few more elections viably, but I think their days are numbered.

    • machintelligence

      I have believed for some time that this election is the high point for the influence of the religious right.

      – and it especially won’t work if Michelle Bachmann, Rick Santorum, Sarah Palin (remember, Mitt was the best candidate among that group) decide to split the Repulican vote by runnin independent.

      It will fade even faster if this happens. We can always hope…

      • ResearchToBeDone

        I’ll also be curious to see how Obama’s opposition acts now that they can’t defeat him again. Hoping it softens the obstinate stupidity to a degree.

      • http://- GD

        I would say that the high point of influence for the religious right was 2004, when they managed to push through the re-election of the least popular president in modern history. 2008 and now 2012 are showing the weakening of their grip on society.

  • iknklast

    Yesterday was a red letter day for women. The country (or at least half the country) demonstrated that, in their opinion, rape is not OK. Now we just have to work on the rest, so they understand why rape is wrong, even if the woman dresses sexy.

    • Matt E

      My favorite headline I saw about this read – “There WAS a war on women. Women won.”

  • MM

    Okay, maybe you were being sarcastic or facetious or whatever, but can we stop with this “lesser of two evils” BS? The President may have his shortcomings and his policies may fall short of the left-er winged folk, but I find it somewhat ridiculous to state that he’s an “evil” choice or even a subpar choice. He’s probably the most progressive President ever elected to office which, given the US’s general conservatism, says a lot about how good of a candidate he really was when it came to moving the country forward ideologically, without alienating those sitting on the center-right. In the end, this ends up leaving the right-wing further and further behind and more and more isolated within the electorate.

    • ResearchToBeDone

      Seconded. I found this to be a good overview of the reasons I don’t think it’s a lesser-of-evils thing.

    • Bill Krueger

      I just read this and had the same reaction. Well and better said.


    • Buzz Saw

      My agreement (or not) with your comment depends on how you view “most progressive President ever elected.” Are we basing this on the culture at the time the president was elected or are we basing this on today’s standards. If it is the former, I think that may have been Jimmy Carter. If it is the later, then maybe. I can see places where Obama is more progressive than Carter was (women’s rights, for example), but Carter was certainly more concerned with the environment and other civil rights than Obama.

      • Buzz Saw

        Disclaimer: I should note that when looking for “most progressive President ever elected” when basing progressiveness on the culture of the time is difficult as it then requires an understanding of that culture as well as what the president did. I mentioned Carter mostly because he is recent enough in history that I can make such a judgement. For all I know, Franklin Roosevelt may have been quite progressive for his time (I have heard a lot of the “New Deal” ideas were not his own, but kudos to him for pushing them through).

    • unbound

      Most progressive president ever? Absolutely not.

      Obama would likely be a Republican candidate if we were still in the 1980s. I think many people don’t understand how extremist the Republicans have become in the past 3+ decades. You may want to check back on what things were actually done by presidents in the past…it is rather eye-opening.

    • Drew

      I consider the Obama Administration’s history on civil liberties issues to be enough to categorize him in the “Not quite desirable” group. Sure he’s on the right side of the gay marriage issue but his DOJ has stood in support of the bad side of a lot of civil liberties issues.

      I think this qualifies him as lesser of two evils.

  • dorcheat

    Hey JT,

    Maybe you can post some links of video of long and sad faces at Fox News after declaring Obama the winner.

    Check out the self posting of Nancy French’s long and sad face at the Patheos “French Connection”.

  • TychaBrahe

    Here is what I posted on my Facebook last night:

    “OK, one more thing. In this election, younger voters and first time voters were a LARGER percentage of voters than in 2008. And they overwhelmingly went for Obama: 60% to Romney’s 39%. This is a very important lesson for the Republicans.

    “I have said this many times, in a lot of ways I’m a Republican. I support a strong military. I support enforcing our borders. I support the use of eVerify. I support a conservative economic policy.

    “But I will be DAMNED if I will support the homophobic, misogynistic, bigoted, Christo-fascist policies of the core of the Republican party. I am a woman with gay friends, friends of other races, friends of many faiths and of no faith, and all of them are equal in my eyes. I will vote to raise my own taxes over voting to restrict marriage to heterosexuals or to put creationism in the science classroom or to limit women’s access to birth control or abortion.

    “And the thing is, the policies that disgust me disgust many people like me, people who won’t even consider your financial platforms because they can’t stomach your social policies. And our numbers are increasing, so you’d better figure out how you’re going to deal with us.”

    • baal

      “I will vote to raise my own taxes…”<–how much do you make? I'm generally willing to pay more taxes especially if that means an even more well off person will have to chip in that much more. The other reason I ask is that the (R) spend more federal than the (D) do. The deficit tends to go down under (D) presidents and up under the (R). This is mostly due to (R) tax cutting helping the rich disproportionally and the (R) spending on wars. Also, while the (R) may cut income tax or cap. gains, they really like 'user fees' for as much of government spending as possible. This is $$ out of my pocket to pay for a good from the government, aka a tax. They also do things like defund local government aid. This usually means city budgets are tightened so property taxes go up. This nets as a wealth transfer from the middle (but not poor) class to the wealthier folks (property taxation is less progressive than income tax generally)

      @ OP, I sincerely hope they run an even more conservative ticket next time. Maybe they could find a younger clone of Pat Robertson (Santorum?) and then have Bachmann as the running mate.

      • smrnda

        I’m willing to pay more in taxes since I have unfairly benefited from a system that was rigged in my favor from the day I was born, and because I think that everybody contributing proportional to their ability and then everybody getting access to services everybody needs is something any civilized nation should do, and everybody deserves to be treated like a human being.

        I’ve been a professional all my working life, and even besides money, there are so many ways that I’m treated like a human being while ordinary workers are treated like disposable commodities. I do not need permission to go to the bathroom. I can more or less choose my own work hours. Nobody is monitoring my every movement to make sure that I’m actively working the entire time (even if I’m just doing mindless busywork.) If I’m sick, nobody questions that I’m telling the truth.

        I’m not working behind a cash register where somebody might jam a gun in my face, all while making minimum wage but helping ‘the company’ turn a high profit. My body isn’t being destroyed by workplace hazards. Nobody tells me how to dress at work. I’m allowed to share in a portion of the profits rather than being told ‘no raises, and higher premiums’ even while the shareholders are making a killing.

        I did not get here through merit, but because of dumb luck. The least I could do is admit things are unfair in my favor. There’s no justification to the level of wealth disparity we see in the US.

        • Ken

          Agreed. Let give every man woman and child $250 a week. Thats $52,000 a year. That seem fair to you? First we need to take everyone’s money and stuff, then we can start passing it out.
          What you think?

          • Joolz

            Ah, Republican maths – it helps to explain a lot.

          • Drew

            What you think?

            I think it’s clear that math education in the US is a big problem.

          • RuQu

            To help you with that math, $250 per week for 52 weeks is $13,000 per year.

            To put that in context, the GDP Per Capita for the US is ~$48k.

            So while I wouldn’t suggest it, yes, you could set the tax rate to 100% and then give everyone $250 a week. In fact, at 100% redistribution, you could pay everyone $923.07

    • Ken

      Your right. Gay marriage should not only be legal it should encouraged and promoted . Then you wouldn’t need any birth control!

  • UsingReason

    From Karl Rove, “This is not a cage match, this is a light intellectual discussion.”

    Very, very light. Also this word ‘intellectual’, I do not think it means what you think it means..

    • invivoMark

      You’re parsing that wrong. He means the discussion is light on intellectual-ness.

  • Azkyroth


    Republicans don’t do “future.”

    • Zinc Avenger (Sarcasm Tags 3.0 Compliant)

      Hmm, trying to return the country to the 1950s didn’t work. Throw another bundle of peasants into the Republican Policy Time Machine reactor and lets see if we can bring back some attitudes from the 1920s!

  • Bix

    I don’t understand why they thought a more conservative candidate would have done better. Are there millions of extremely conservative voters sitting around who just didn’t vote? I could be wrong, but I think that’s a group that tends to be very politically engaged. The solid conservative states all went for Romney, and the swing states went for Obama. Being more conservative wouldn’t have helped.

    • Ibis3

      Maybe they think that they need a real theocratic candidate to get God’s endorsement. Romney was too moderate so God’s punishing them by letting Obama win.

      • Bix

        Well, God’s not very pragmatic then.

        • RuQu

          He’s in it for the long game.

      • Steve

        In the long term America would benefit from having a truly theocratic government for a few years. It would cure them of any notions that organized religion and politics do any good together. It certainly worked for Spain after they lived under Franco and the Catholic Church for decades.

  • Ken

    if the republicans cannot beat Obama after all of his dishonesty, fraud and treachery then the Republican Party does not deserve to exist. Lets just have the democratic party and they can do want ever they want!

    • Nate Frein

      You’re an idiot. And I’m gonna tell you why you’re an idiot here, instead of addressing all three posts.

      1. There’s a big bloody difference between saying that everyone should have the same amount of money and saying that there should be a point beneath which NO ONE should be allowed to fall.

      2. Gay marriage SHOULD be encouraged. You act as if there’s some sort of baby shortage, when what we have is a family shortage. All reliable studies have shown that stable, multi-parent households (regardless of the gender of the parents) are better environments for children. Ergo gay people should have just as much access to the benefits of civil marriage as straight people, and marriage between gay people should be encouraged just like we encourage marriage and commitment among straight people.

      3. If you actually had a single iota of reading comprehension, I think you’ll find that a lot of us are NOT HAPPY with a fair bit of the nonsense Obama has been responsible for during his term. But to try to say that the Democratic Party has been equal to the Republican Party in originating disgustingly blatant falsehoods, then you need to spend some quality time with a fact checker.

      Further, if the Republican party doesn’t survive (and I wouldn’t be surprised if they didn’t) we will see the rise of a new second party. That’s what will happen, though it may take a few cycles to solidify.

      And no, none of us want a single party system. You’d have to be an idiot to think otherwise. Which you seem to be.

    • Stogoe

      Ken, “What you’ve just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.”

  • Mark

    If Romney was more conservative, he might have secured my vote.

  • RuQu

    FL now officially went Obama. With Obama at 332, will Glenn Beck now congratulate him on his mandate, since he predicted a mandate for Romney at 321?

    • Stogoe

      Dick Morris already called Obama’s 332 a “squeaker”. They have their bubble, and they’re sticking to it. At least it still has some transparency to the outside world – they’re not disputing that the results “seem to” show Obama being re-elected.

      • RuQu

        On the radio this morning (Nov 9) here in the South, the morning talk show hosts were busy spreading rumors that the election was stolen. Talking about some watchdog groups reporting that they saw people in the ballot counting rooms changing the votes on military absentee ballots.

        The only real report of any such activity was that Republican in OR, but I guess facts have never been an important requirement before so why should they interfere now?