Andrew Kohut: Right to Blame for GOP Image Problems
Monday, 25 Mar 2013 11:28 AM
By Dan Weil
The Republican Party has moved itself so far to the right that it’s losing relevance with voters, says Andrew Kohut, former president of the Pew Research Center.
“In my decades of polling, I recall only one moment when a party had been driven as far from the center as the Republican Party has been today,” he writes in The Washington Post.
That was the late 1960s to early ’70s, when the Democrats were influenced by left-wing Sens. Gene McCarthy and George McGovern. Theirs was known as the party of “acid, abortion, and amnesty,” notes Kohut, who also was formerly the president of the Gallup Organization.
“While there are no catchy phrases for the Republicans of 2013, their image problems are readily apparent in national polls,” he says. “The GOP has come to be seen as the more extreme party, the side unwilling to compromise or negotiate seriously to tackle the economic turmoil that challenges the nation.”
The dominance of the right wing has clearly hurt the GOP’s popularity, Kohut notes. A Pew Research Center poll last month showed the party’s favorability ratings have dropped to a 20-year low.
Only 33 percent of Americans view Republicans favorably, while 58 percent view them unfavorably. As for the Democrats, 47 percent have a favorable view of the party and 46 an unfavorable view.
Really - Of course all republicans are not like that. But, when you look at the republican party platform and how the party behaves you see extremist views that are anything but inclusive. And that is why they are in the shape they're in. It's not just an opinion that the party is primarily white men and it's not a coincidence either. The party has been hijacked and I think that is a shame.
The more Republicans deny that this is a core problem in their party and refuse to listen to any intelligent discussion on it and start getting defensive and attacking whenever it is (REPEATEDLY point out to them) ... there will never be any middle ground able to be found within your OWN party. Teabaggers will continue to push more and more Reps to the 'other side' out of desperation and embarrassment.
Which is ok with me because it will keep Dems in the White House until the end of time.
But like a kid sticking his fingers in his ears going LALALALALA I can't hear you! It doesn't make a dent.
Well, even though Romney didn't win---- the actual live number of votes he got was pretty substantial. And the people that are in congress were voted there. There are still a large portion of people that feel that their ideas are better than the Democrats and that their idea of where the country should go makes more sense to them. I'm one of those people.
I don't like every Republican in office and agree that the tea party is troubling and doing a bit of damage--- but i really can't knock the conservative agenda that the Republicans have and have always had.
I guess that is some kind of meaningful statement that the party is primarily white men. People that I know that are Republican, my husband included, have worked hard their whole life, have overcome their own challenges, hold true to the values they believe in,etc. Are they Republican because they are white or because the values and ideals they hold are more in line with the Republican party than the Democratic party? What values, ideals, etc. do others have if you think this is a race situation?
Hey my company does events for Locks of Love all of the time! :)
GREAT organization (Wish I had hair they'd take too the hair designer here just cut all mine off but it was so bleach damaged it was worth zip. Now it's dyed dark so maybe someday it will be worth it).
Mercy Me! I guess we should have said again, for the umpteenth time that when we say republican, we are speaking about the party in washington, the political leaders as it were. And yes, they pretty much hate women, blacks, and most everything else. The only reason they agree with getting immigration done and coming around some on gays is because of votes. They know if they dont start doing for the way the world is now, they days are numbered. That is not meant to be argumentative or personal in any way to any one republican or conservative. That is simply what seems to be going on imo.
I'm sorry Teko, they don't hate women, black and most everything else. You aren't insulting me--- I'm just correcting you. :>)
I don't think the Republican parties days are numbered. But I'm fine with you feeling that way.
I agree with things the Republican party has as part of their platform. Not every single thing to the full extent but the things that are important to me, I'm much more conservative tha not. So, I just don't get that they aren't doing what things the way the world is now. Or whatever it is you said.
Some things need fine tuned within the party. But the basics are in line with how things feel. Unless we would like a socialist way of life. And while that ticks people off to hear that, that's how LOTS of Republicans feel.
Lots of misguided ones. Even the socialists laugh when people call obama a socialist. That is how ridiculous it is. Bottom line, we agree to disagree. Many non republicans share this same view. So we will see.
I don't know. To me, the general feel is that if you are at the top in terms of income, Democrats hate you and think you are greedy. No matter how hard you worked to get there. They have a problem with you and think you are wrong to not WANT to give those who did not make wise choices in their life (and I know MANY that this is the exact case). maybe it is the Democrats that are full of hate. Appears that way to me quite often.
To me, the general feel is that if you are at the top in terms of income, Democrats hate you and think you are greedy. No matter how hard you worked to get there. They have a problem with you and think you are wrong to not WANT to give those who did not make wise choices in their life (and I know MANY that this is the exact case).
That is a pretty strange statement, if you think about it.
1. Plenty of Democrats *are* " at the top in terms of income."
2. Democrats in general do not hate rich people (think you got Dems confused with communists)
3. " those who did not make wise choices " You mean the banks and corporations? You want to give your hard earned income to them?
4. The presumption that low income people are low in income because," did not make wise choices in their lives" is shocking.
Do you really blame people w/o a livable income for the state of the economy???
I will take this up with you tomorrow as I am too tired tonight to really dig into it, but here is your heads up ---News headline: Smart woman makes preposterous claims..."
Yes, we are just chatting. I have many level headed republicans in my family and also some redneck republicans that are just plain ticked cause they got a black man in the white house. Yes I admit, I have some of those in my own family. Overall most normal republicans are not of the extreme teaparty types at all. I work for wealthy people of all parties and frankly, most people have more in common than not regardless of party affiliation. I have one client who is a personal friend of Mitt Romney yet had no idea that obamacare is the same thing his friend instituted in penn until he researched it. No one has anything against people in the upper class at all, it is more the party of no wanting to give them everything even when they dont need or want it, all the while cut cut cut for the things average people depend on. That is where the rift lies. No jealosy of those who have made it, but anger at the politicians who want to cater to a certain group at the expense of everyone else. They are arrogant and out of touch, other than that, they are great! The politicians Im talking about.
"I have one client who is a personal friend of Mitt Romney yet had no idea that obamacare is the same thing his friend instituted in penn until he researched it." Mitt Romney was governor of MA, not PA.
"3. " those who did not make wise choices " You mean the banks and corporations? You want to give your hard earned income to them?" I could be wrong (SM correct me if I am), but I don't think she's referring to banks and corporations. I believe she's referring to people who did not make wise choices in their personal lives.
"4. The presumption that low income people are low in income because," did not make wise choices in their lives" is shocking." Why should that be so shocking? There really ARE people who are low income because of making unwise choices. Both of my children are prime examples.
My son (41 yrs old) had a relatively good job and could have saved money for a rainy day, but instead he chose to spend every dime he earned, just because he had it. Now, he has a lower paying job and is struggling to pay bills, buy groceries and cover his insulin costs. A new TV (or whatever) might have been more important than a few $ in the bank. Priorities!!
My daughter (38), too, had a good job as a vet tech and when her baby was born a couple years ago, she chose to give up her job and be a stay at home mom; nothing wrong with that if the family can afford it. Unfortunately, they can't. By giving up her job, she also gave up the family insurance. Her husband gave up his job at the same place, got another, but got injured on the job, spent time on Workman's Comp, made a settlement and they apparently, spent all the money already. His injury is mostly healed, but he doesn't work either, because he can now get unemployment. They, too, could have saved for a rainy day or put the settlement aside for expenses, but chose to spend all their money just because they had it and wanted "things" so they could keep up with their friends. Priorities......
These are what I refer to as "unwise choices"....... they did what they did; why should anyone give them something they didn't earn, but could have? Daughter gets upset with us, because we're retired and can do most things, within reason, that we want to, because we saved for it. Are we, who saved our money, expected to give it to those who made such unwise choices? This has nothing to do with those who are low income because they really fell on hard luck, like losing a job, through no fault of their own, and being unable to find another, getting ill and being unable to work, thus having to use up savings to pay the bills.
"Do you really blame people w/o a livable income for the state of the economy???" Politicians are mostly to blame, right along with the banks, Wall Street, etc. My son and daughter didn't cause the economy to be the way it is, but had they made wiser choices in their lives, they might not be in such bad shape, today.
Totally agree that the politicians are totally out of touch - IMO, that includes both parties.
This has nothing to do with those who are low income because they really fell on hard luck, like losing a job, through no fault of their own, and being unable to find another, getting ill and being unable to work, thus having to use up savings to pay the bills.
That is who I was referring to.
My son and daughter didn't cause the economy to be the way it is, but had they made wiser choices in their lives, they might not be in such bad shape, today.
True, I worded that poorly. If the economy were better (I blame that on the long war and Wall street games mostly) they would still have options.
Of course they(your kids) are responsible but it is going to be a very hard lesson for their generation and the one following them...There will not be enough income to save or invest. The world will be very different for them compared to how they were raised. We all must be very careful and frugal and work hard if able,* but *it does not absolve these corrupt politicians, bankers and corporations from doing their jobs and paying their due.
Of course, we don't blame those who have fallen on hard times through no fault of their own; that would be unfeeling and silly.
As far as my kids - my daughter does have options and chooses not to follow up on them - her choices aren't for you or I to have to support, yet we do, because the family is on unemployment, Medicaid, etc; I'm the first to admit that's not right. My son has never been without a job, just that the company he works for had to cut wages when the economy tanked, in order to keep as many people working, as possible. He's got type I diabetes so kind of has a "double whammy" having to buy insulin and test equipment, but he's been diabetic since age 10, so he knows he has these things to deal with. His company is talking about raising people back up to "pre-tank" levels, which will get him to a level he can live on and hopefully, will start putting something aside for both retirement and a rainy day.
Nothing absolves the corrupt politicians, bankers and corporations from doing their jobs and paying their due. I'm not arguing in favor of "no taxes", I'm arguing against taking what I earned to give to someone who made unwise choices.
I stand corrected,MA instead of PA. The point being that people have fallen for the rhetoric and no not the facts. Just the talking points of the day.
Yes, there are those who make bad choices in life, no one can argue that fact. Always has been and always will be. There are also those seniors who live on catfood in order to get their meds for the month. Some people are just victims of their own circumstances thru no fault of their own, this has always been as well.
I remember a time when investing in the stock market was considered gambling yet is now widely thought of as the responsible thing to do.
I remember a time when being a christian meant that you were a faithful compassionate individual who thought of their neighbor and didnt hesitate to reach out. Now not so much.
We can afford to give tax cuts to rich people but are so poor that we must cut things like ss and medicare? We can give billions to other countries but cut things like meals on wheels for seniors? We can give big oil tax subsidys that they dont need yet, we cut education?
Corporations and such are in never heard of profits, sitting on tons of money and yet, people screech about raising min wage?
No one. And I mean no one, not on here or anywhere can predict the future. Everyone of us is but one catastrophe away from having and needing. Maybe a husband or principal bread winner will die or end up with a terminal condition requiring major care, maybe our home will be swallowed up by a sinkhole or fall off a cliff in a landslide with a family member or two in it? A hurricane, earthquake, or any other natural disastor. Or maybe there will be a run on banks and our money shut off from us?
I know some of these things are silly, but the bottom line is, **** happens and altho you may be doing great today, you never know about tomorrow.
I said months ago that the states would start controlling things like doing away with a persons right to choose and was called silly. Well folks? Most people are not paying attention and if this continues to happen, we are all toast.
The gop party line preaches morality does it not? They will tell you abortion is wrong period. They will tell you that homosexuality is a sin, marriage is between a man and a woman. They pander to the evangelicals of our society. They tell us that a religious organization should not have to provide contraception to their employees. Yet, on the other hand, their actions pander to their true and only god, money!
They want tax cuts for wealthy and they want to take away the rights of free thinking individuals and try to make them bow to what they deem is good and right in their eyes and use the law to do it. They refuse to take away oil subsidys yet tell us how broke we are and how we have to cut this and that in order to maintain. They pander to lobbiest that can make it possible for them to have even more power and money and that is all they think about and their actions show it. Now to be fair both sides pander for sure, but since we are talking about the gop, I have lost much much respect for them since they let the teaparty run herd over them. You dont have to agree with me but that is how I see things from where I sit. We can give anyone money that they approve of but yet fight over help for hurricanes in the states and such. Its sickening.
What you wrote was beautifully stated and rings true from start to finish.
Thank you, thank you and thank you.
About the religious take, I hear you too. The religions that I am familiar with all say that the highest level of existence has to do with loving your neighbor. Not your stockbroker but your fellow human being who can give you absolutely nothing.
By the way, I really like this new Pope. He seems to be all about love. I may disagree with his interpretation of some things but he has won my heart with his seemingly simple and open heart.
Hostage? So making concessions, something the Republicans did is holding the country hostage? I don't understand that.... It was either Vance or EL who made the point that concessions were made and the Democrats fell short on their promises by trying to renegotiate a "done deal".
As far as hostage taking goes, making and taking a deal then dropping your half of the deal is a little more like hostage taking to me....
Bah.... It's the system that is holding everyone hostage. Things have been broken for a long time and we've simply thrown money we don't have at it and expected it to change. Republicans and democrats are guilty of it and that should be the end of the conversation.
Unfortunately it isn't though. People place blame on the other team and to me that is excusing all of the ineptness of their team, and there is plenty of that to go around too.
Major systematic changes or overhauls have been long in waiting. I don't think anyone really knows how dire the situation is, because no matter of who is in office, they seem to manage to print more money and throw it at everything that is broken. These things won't correct themselves.... and where are all of the professionals that have been hired/elected/appointed to correct this mess???? Why aren't they paying for this with their jobs?
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