Thursday, November 04, 2004

Those Oh So Reasonable Italians 

Giuseppe Abote writes:

I'm not suggesting any kind of overhaul. I think we did fine this election. There was no revolution. There was no '84 Reagan landslide. The red states stayed red and the blues stayed blue. It came down to a relatively small number of votes in Ohio. We're not "screwed." There's no reason to think we can't take back Congressional seats in '06 or win the White House in '08 as we are.

What I am talking about is not policy but campaign strategy, and small matters of emphasis that could deliver better results. If you look at how poorly Bush fared among, say, white college-educated males compared to the last election, it's pretty clear that many secular segments of the Republicans were very uncomfortable with this shit. In fact, I know personally of Republicans who, although rabidly pro-Bush just a few months ago, ended up voting Kerry or not voting at all. They can be reached.

When Kerry emphasized stem cell research, we were reaching those secular moderate Republicans. But we didn't harvest enough issues like that in advance to pick enough of them off.

How you talk about these issues also matters. In the second debate a woman asked an insane question about why Kerry couldn't "respect life" and curtail stem cell research, and Kerry's response began with a long preamble about how he respected the woman's faith and conviction. In retrospect, this didn't work. How many Christian nationalist votes do you think Kerry won with that preamble? We will never, ever, ever win single-issue Christian voters and shouldn't try. But perhaps Kerry could have addressed this issue in a way that spoke directly to these very uncomfortable secular moderates and lured them to us.

The whole point, I say again, is to see very very clearly that you do not try to nominate some unreconstructed cracker in '08 in order to pander to insane "values." That is what the media are urging us to do. What you must do is separate secular moderates (who may be nominally religious, which is fine) from wild-eyed religious Christian nationalists. To believe in God and attend church and guide ones actions accordingly IS worthy of respect. To advocate "creation science" and gay marriage bans and the banning of stem cell research is absolute insanity worthy of ridicule.

One more thing: Do you realize that the Christian television personality Jack Van Impe, who hosts a "news" program with his wife, Rexella, in which the day's events are explained in light of Biblical prophecy, was retained as an advisor to Condoleeza Rice? How insane is that? National security decisions were made based on the counsel of a man who literally wants to bring about Armaggedon! And yet this was not a campaign issue at all. No one ever brought it up, for fear of turning off the "values" voters we would never, never, ever, ever have won anyway.


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?