Why the Republicans Lost

6 11 2012

Because they gave up their center to the folks on the far right called the Tea Party, who, though they are loud, represent an increasingly marginalized voice in America ~ disenfranchised white voters who cling to the myth of American exceptionalism out of sheer fear of losing their dominance in this country (and the world). The Republican wave has crested historically in this country as America continues to skew more to a black and brown-skinned populace, and by disenfranchising this group, the Republicans handed the election to the Democrats.

But there’s another reason they lost. Republicans gave away the farm regarding the Christian faith when they drunk Ralph Reed’s Moral Majority Kool-Aid two decades ago. The notion that America is a Christian country, that God is more concerned with individual morality than social ethics, that patriotism and faith run in parallel lines ~ none of these notions is in line with historical Christianity, and so they’ve managed to give their soul away, too. One of the great under-reported stories in this election are the 73% of Americans who call themselves Christians, and how many of them who form the mainline religious center did not vote for Romney for that reason. Most of the Christians I know — and I know more than a few — voted for Obama.

So what’s left of the Republican party at this point? Their cacophony, their hate, their vitriol, their blame, sure…. and if they choose to take that agenda to Congress thinking that it’s a mandate, they’ll suffer a worse fate in 2016. But there’s more to the Republican party than that, of course, and if they could just stop being obstructionists for a moment, we might actually get to see another, more salutary side. It’s time to get the monkey off your back called the Abrasive Right and take their place again in the political conversation. This country is not served by one super-dominant party. So get to work, Republicans. But remember, if you want your voice to be heard in this ever-changing country, you better find your soul first.

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