Thursday, January 26, 2012

Electoral Politics: Let the Games Begin

Last weekend, my Mom sent me an email. The subject line was “this and that,” and the content did not contradict her choice. Mostly, Mom talked about the family stuff that she, my sister, and I need to deal with in the coming months. And since this stuff doesn’t concern you, I won’t share the details.

But Mom’s closing sentence is something we all might be thinking about. “Newt Gingrich,” she wrote, “scares the hell out of me.”

I know where she’s coming from, and yet, I couldn’t relate to the severity of her fear. In my reply to Mom, I wrote, “I get what you’re saying about Newt, but personally, I don’t think there is ANYTHING more scary than what we went through from 2000-2008.”

And however scary that era was, the fact of the matter is this: situations give way to situations. Wherever we are right now is a direct response to where we have been.

The criminal travesty that was George W. Bush’s presidency is probably the reason our country was willing to elect its first black president.

We needed something different.

The idea was good. The idea was smart.

(And the embodiment of that idea – Barack Obama – happens also to be good and smart.)

And if it weren’t for the fact that racism still boils powerfully in the bowels of America, that swing of the pendulum might have worked.

But it hasn’t.

It is abundantly and painfully clear that our country cannot handle having a black president.

His blackness is the reason for the Tea Party.

His blackness is the reason that Congress is a disgustingly adversarial mess.

And now that our 2012 presidential election is truly underway, you’d think that the Republican party would be able to do something with this situation.

You’d think so…

But, so far, their capacity to launch an organized attack seems untenable.

Romney won the Iowa Caucus… No, wait! He didn’t!

… But, while he was winning the New Hampshire primary, we all believed that he had won in Iowa.

… Then, just two days before Gingrich won the South Carolina primary, we learned that Santorum had been certified for the Iowa win.

… In the meantime, Ron Paul won’t give up, and he’s bringing some new voters into the party as he speaks of policies and ideas that make me question whose side he’s really on.

Can you say “No Front Runner?”

I can, and so can former Florida governor, Jeb Bush.

Per my informants at NPR, Jeb Bush’s decision not to endorse a candidate for the upcoming primary in his state may stem from his plan to jump in at some last minute and become the GOP’s nominee.


a THIRD Bush?

Isn’t that why some people have issues with Gingrich?


Kittie Howard said...

I totally, 100% understand your mom's comment.

After WWII, President Eishenhower kept taxes at 70% to pay off the war debt. My parents thought it was their responsibility to pay this tax. My father had been on Iwo Jima - so many of his buddies were dead but he was alive.

The U.S. is the only country in recorded history to drain a treasury with a rebate, cut taxes, divert forces from one war and invade another country.

President Obama inherited a mess. I'm pleased with his accomplishments thus far.

Martha Mawson said...

I still believe that in order for the Republican Party to be more attractive to the electorate, they are going to have to jettison the Tea Party. Why, oh why does the GOP tolerate the extremism? The GOP of the olden days was right of centre, of course, but they weren't burying the damned needle.

I, too, believe that President Obama has done a remarkable job with what he faced when entering the Oval Office. I hope there will be second term for him. Think how much more he can accomplish if the Democrats can get Congress back. But then that means the electorate has to see the Republicans in Congress for what they are - a bunch of cry-babies if they don't get their way and bullies of the worst possible kind (not to mention bigots).

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

I think your mother is a smart woman. He scares the crap out of me, too. If that pontificating hate-spewing hypocritical boob were president, I think he'd make Bush look good by comparison.

BECKY said...

Oh, Katie...all the Republicans scare me..and most of the entire Senate and Congress..and yes I include Democrats. When it comes to politics, our country has become a joke. I don't know who can, or how it can get "fixed"...but I wish it with all my might. The Who and The What that rule our country are The Greedy who only care about themselves....BTW, I LOVE Susan Flett Swiderski's comment!

Andrea said...

I think Americans (troubled and broke and jobless as we are) are smart enough to see through Gingrich. Bush does look almost sane compared to him.

Sioux said...

The possibility of 4 more years of a Bush? Paralyzing...

cj Schlottman said...

Great read, Katie! Your mother is one of my new heroines! I'm waiting on the election like one waits for a root canal. I makes me shiver.


Deb Shucka said...

Your last statement made me choke! You are so amazing and twisted in ways I can only aspire to.

Hubby and I were talking about just this thing on Friday, and we hit almost all of your points.

I'm pretty sure I don't have another Bush in me. Retirement in Canada may end up being more than a fantasy.