In Defense of John Boehner
It becomes clearer every day that Grover Norquist, not Barack Obama, defeated Mitt Romney in the last election.
Never before has such an incompetent and clueless president prevailed against such a successful leader and businessman, but Republicans are seen as a party locked into never raising taxes on anyone ever, regardless of circumstances.
Every poll shows that most voters, even the mostly uninformed, believe that we have reached the point where taxes should increase on the wealthiest among us, not only to raise revenue, but as a matter of fairness. (I have already pointed out that the upper 1% earn 20 % of total income and pay less taxes than the next lower income group.)
It has also become very clear that President Obama does not want to make any concessions on spending cuts and entitlement overhauls, and that only a grand bargain might achieve needed cuts. That’s what Boehner was attempting when the Tea Party adherents undermined and undercut his efforts. They pulled the rug out from under their leader. I was one of the Tea Party founders, and I support their efforts to rein-in government, but they have forgotten three things: 1. they are on the wrong side of the tax question, 2. in a democracy compromise is necessary, and, 3. we lost the election.
Tea Party Republicans are being blinded by ideology and are not facing facts as Speaker Boehner is attempting to do for the good of the country and for the good of the party.
Republicans Deemed Too Pro-Rich, 57% in Poll Want Change
By John McCormick - Dec 12, 2012 Bloomberg (excerpt)
"A majority of Americans say the Republican Party needs a major overhaul after electoral losses revealed demographic, messaging and technological shortfalls compared with Democrats, a Bloomberg National Poll shows.
Even among Republicans, just 16 percent say their party is fine and doesn’t need to change. The survey also shows the party is viewed as too protective of the wealthy and that New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has a slight edge among high-profile Republicans who may lead the party.
The party is reassessing its positions and tactics after losing the presidential race, failing to make gains in the U.S. Senate and seeing their House majority shrink after the 2012 elections. The Republican National Committee this week created a study group to examine how it can improve the party’s performance ahead of the 2014 congressional elections and 2016 race for the White House.
“They need to take some time and listen to middle-class America,” said poll participant Lisa Lee, 43, an office manager from New Milford, Pennsylvania. “At one time, I would have said that I was proud to be a Republican. I’m not so much anymore.”
She isn’t alone. Republicans are assessing themselves less favorably than before the election. In this poll, 81 percent of them view their own party favorably, down from 89 percent in a Bloomberg poll in September.
Lee said she wants to see a “major overhaul” of the party, although she isn’t optimistic change can come in two or four years and reverse current electoral trends.
Exit polls of voters in the Nov. 6 election showed President Barack Obama dominated Republican challenger Mitt Romney among single women, Hispanics, blacks and younger voters as the president carried eight of nine states both camps viewed as the most competitive. Republicans have also acknowledged Obama’s campaign utilized superior technological tools for online fundraising and voter turnout.
“For the Republican Party to broaden its base, they will need to change either what they value, or how they talk about what they value,” said J. Ann Selzer, president of Des Moines, Iowa-based Selzer & Co., which conducted the Dec. 7-10 poll. “What they are doing now is not winning.”
Among all Americans, 57 percent say the Republican Party needs a major overhaul, while 30 percent say modest modifications are needed and eight percent say no changes are necessary. The survey of 1,000 adults has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points on the full sample.
Independents, a critical voting bloc in presidential elections, also see a need for significant renovation of the Republican Party, with six in 10 taking that view. Among Republicans, a third say the party needs major change and nearly half say modest changes are needed.
Six in 10 Americans say Republicans have placed too much emphasis on protecting the wealthy from tax rate increases at the expense of pursuing the interests of those of more modest means, the poll shows. More than half of independents -- 58 percent -- hold that view.
Obama stoked that perception during his campaign this year against Romney. He continues to use the line of attack against congressional Republicans as he negotiates an agreement to avoid automatic tax increases and spending cuts set to take effect in January, the so-called fiscal cliff.
Poll participant Roy Vap, 61, a Republican corn and soybean farmer from Red Cloud, Nebraska, said he’s become disillusioned with his party in part because of the fiscal debate.
“They are on the wrong path,” he said of Republicans. “The stonewalling on the budget is silly. There has to be some give and take.”
Vap said his party doesn’t seem to do as good a job communicating with voters compared with Democrats.
“It just appears the Republicans are out of touch,” he said. “Somehow voters have come away with the idea that the Republicans are the party of the rich. Maybe it is repacking the message or moderating their message a bit.”
More than three-quarters of Americas say outside groups, such as those that spent more than $600 million to try to influence this year’s election, should be required to disclose their donors and that Congress should change the law.
One area of concern for Republicans has been primary contests that result in candidates with more extreme views than the general public because the nomination process is dominated by the most zealous partisans."
Labels: Society in General