The End of the GOP?


According to an article at FiveThirtyEitht.com last week by Tom Schaller, author of Whistling Past Dixie: How Democrats Can Win Without the South, the Republican party is on its way out if it doesn’t make some serious changes.

The article titled “The Emerging Republican Minority” sounds a bit more like a Democratic wish list and than it does anything that will help Republicans in the future. For many on the left everything revolves around the leftist trinity of race, gender and class. So, naturally they are going to look at the Republican party through that prism and it just doesn’t work.

FiveThirtyEight:

The Center for American Politics’ Ruy Teixeira, one of the top political demographers in the country, has a new paper out in which he examines the two major party coalitions, with a focus on the current and future prospects of the Republican Party. For the GOP, says Teixeira, things look grim, in large part because the country is becoming less white and more educated. He provides specific data showing how college educated voters are growing, and non-college educated shrinking, as shares of the electorate; likewise for the growing non-white v. shrinking white populations.

“The Democratic Party will become even more dominated by the emerging constituencies that gave Barack Obama his historic 2008 victory, while the Republican Party will be forced to move toward the center to compete for these constituencies. As a result, modern conservatism is likely to lose its dominant place in the GOP,” he writes, adding that “the Republican Party as currently constituted is in need of serious and substantial changes in approach.”

Basically, the Republican party is a bunch of white and uneducated people, and since whites are a dying breed then Democrats automatically have an edge. I don’t know what else to get out of this article than that. This furthers the idea that people on the left only look at the world through their leftist trinity.

Teixeira has some recommendations to the Republicans:

Move to the center on social issues.

The culture wars may have worked for a while, but shifting demographics make them a loser for the party today and going forward. A more moderate approach would help with Millennials, where the party must close a yawning gap, and with white college graduates, who still lean Republican but just barely. The party also needs to make a breakthrough with Hispanics, and that won’t happen unless it shifts its image toward social tolerance, especially on immigration.

The breakthrough with Hispanics is more likely to come from cultural issues because Hispanics are overwhelmingly religious Catholics. But its hard for Conservatives to make a breakthrough with American Hispanics with lefties calling them “bigots” “racists” and “xenophobes.” Coupled with Democrats pretty much bribing Hispanic immigrants by selling them the lie that the American dream is given not earned. Its like their hanging a carrot in front of their faces, letting them get a bite that barley suffices and then pulling the carrot away after an election and giving the individual a bite again only after he once again votes for the guy or gal holding the stick.

Pay attention to whites with some college education and to young white working-class voters in general.

The GOP’s hold on the white working class is not secure, and if that slips, the party doesn’t have much to build on to form a successful new coalition. That probably also means offering these voters something more than culture war nostrums and antitax jeremiads.

Another demographic target should be white college graduates, especially those with a four-year degree only.

The party has to stop the bleeding in America’s large metropolitan areas, especially in dynamic, growing suburbs. Keeping and extending GOP support among this demographic is key to taking back the suburbs. White college graduates increasingly see the party as too extreme and out of touch.

The Republican party is too extreme and out of touch? Current polling would greatly go against this finding (here and here). Now I realize that Teixeira is focusing more on the future of the GOP, but I have to point out again that this is all predicated on the idea that non-white highly educated people are all going to swing in favor of the Democrats, and there’s no guarantee that this will happen. Current data would seem to put that point into question too! The Republican party is a party that is becoming more and more “diverse” (as the lefties like to call it). Now, do I really care about what race an individual is? No, not nearly as much as the left cares about the race of their candidates and those who represent their party. I care far more about what they believe and how they intend to do their job as a servant to the people.

But, for the record, lets look at how “diverse” the Republican party is today! Niki Hailey is a Republican and an Indian woman running for Governor in South Carolina. Marco Rubio is a Republican from Florida who’s parents who came to America from Cuba. Tim Scott is a Republican and a black South Carolinian Congressional candidate. Don’t forget about Bobby Jindal who is also Indian and is the Governor of the state of Louisiana. And since gender matters so much these days think of the women that were just elected in primary races in California, Carly Fiorina who is running for the Senate and Meg Whitman who is running for Governor.

In the long run the GOP has to have serious solutions of its own that go beyond cutting taxes. These solutions should use government to address problems but in ways that reflect conservative values and principles. Antigovernment populism is something the party is clearly comfortable with— witness its evolving line of attack on the Obama administration. But it’s likely not enough to just denounce the other side and what they have done or propose to do in populist terms.

I agree with Teixeira on this one, Republicans need to address problems and in ways that “reflect conservative values and principles.” But the irony of his statement is that all of the suggestions he lays out prior to this are not conservative and do not reflect conservative values. That’s because his suggestions are riddled with leftist cliches and pejoratives. “Anti-tax,” “social tolerance” and “anti-government” are all ways the left sees the right and not the way the right would prefer to be represented.

Schaller writes:

What’s interesting to me about most of Teixeira’s suggested changes is that the GOP is either not doing them, or doing something close to the opposite. If anything, the opposite is happening. Indeed, the single biggest storyline of the past year for conservatives and the Republican Party is the rise of the tea party protest movement.

On immigration, if anything the GOP has taken a turn toward anti-amnesty, fence-building xenophobia. The Republicans may have eased off the gas pedal somewhat on tax-cutting, but the conversational shift to deficit reduction and fears of growing government size still carries strong and familiar anti-government overtones.

This seems to be a bit perplexing to Schaller. They are not pushing left-wing positions and they are winning! Could it be that what the left says about Conservatism and Republicans and what they really are is not accurate? Could it be that the politics of the country is not quite as easy to sum up as those on the left think it is? And could it be that college educated non-whites will vote for Conservative candidates instead of leftist Democrats?

HT:  Memeorandum

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