Nov 9, 2012
When I was visiting my daughter at the University of Michigan in the People’s Republic of Ann Arbor I was having a drink with an old friend who runs the restaurant, Mercy’s (his wife’s name) in the Bell Tower Hotel. When I gave my case for why I thought Romney would win he asked, “What will be your explanation if you are wrong.” (Mercy’s is highly recommended if you are in the area. Tell Steve Kasle I sent you.)
Well here it is.
My case assumed Obama was so strong with his core groups that he could only go down. I was wrong. I assumed that with far better financing and far more competence and with a far stronger VP selections that Mitt would improve the GOP turnout. I was wrong here as well.
Obama did a much better job of turning out his base and the GOP did a much poorer job. Perhaps it was the candidate or perhaps it was the destruction wreaked from the primary, or perhaps it was the Tea Party and their political ignorance when it comes to winning more than a primary. I did not expect an incredibly competent and experienced administrator to run such a poor ground game.
I also underestimated the influence of the idiot factor. Even if they were a distinct minority Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock only gave credibility to the claims from the opposition that the GOP really was waging a war on women. And GA GOP incumbent representative Paul Broun may have won but his comment that evolution is a concept from the pits of hell certainly drives away centrist voters and independents. (Broun ran unopposed but Charles Darwin got 4,000 write in votes.)
The GOP can no longer afford its coalition with evangelical creationist theocrats. It worked thirty years ago- it does not today. Those that believe strongly about gay rights and abortion should move that battle to the pulpit and away from the ballot box. Not every moral issue is best solved by the government. It is hard to argue for individual rights if you use the government to force your religious and social views on others.
The only hope for economic liberty is for the GOP to make radical changes. From what I hear from the conservative pundits they are more likely to deny this reality than to adjust to it.