Andy Marquis – Reporter for TheBAYNET.com and RACE22.com-- is our guest blogger of the day. He used to consider himself a Republican but not anymore. He changed his voter registration to Independent in 2011 and says that's how it will remain. Enjoy:
Congressman Todd Akin’s comments are the latest piece of evidence that the Republicans have gone so far to the right that they’ve completely detached themselves from reality. I’m beginning to wonder if they spend all day hanging out on Newt Gingrich’s moon colony.
Let me say that I used to be a registered Republican. I have voted for far more Republicans in my life than Democrats. In fact, Martin O’Malley (in 2006, not 2010) and Barack Obama (2008) are the only Democrats I have ever voted for. In 2010, I voted Republican all the way up and down the ballot. I oppose raising taxes on the wealthy. I oppose raising taxes on anybody, unless those tax increases are across the board.
41% of Americans are conservative and will always vote Republican. 20% of Americans are liberal and will always vote Democratic. This is why moderates and swing voters (people like me) are so important. But in the past, campaigns have been about the most important issues affecting Americans. In 2006, the Iraq war was front and center. In 2008 and 2010, it was all about the economy. These were all real issues that had a real impact, and it was moderate voters who decided those elections.
Right now, Mitt Romney is operating on the theory that he has to be a hardline
conservative on every single issue in order to win votes from his base. This theory has no basis in reality because hardcore conservatives will vote for him anyways, for no other reason than they want Barack Obama out of office and back in Chicago (or Kenya, where many conservatives seem to believe he was born despite the facts that prove otherwise).
The Republicans had a chance to put up a candidate who could win the votes of those disgruntled fragments of society who want another option. Instead, the Republican Primary contest turned in to a circus to see if everyone could find room to the right of each other.
In 2009, the “grassroots”, “Taxed Enough Already” (TEA) Party groups, with help of CNBC, FOX “News” Channel, David and Charles Koch and Dick Armey, rose up from nowhere. Of course, these groups are about as grassroots as the National Education Association.
Their main claims to fame: they were upset about Barack Obama bailing out Wall Street (on October 3, 2008 when George W. Bush was president), they were upset about Barack Obama raising their taxes (which he totally did not do) and they were upset about government spending (but had no problems with Medicare Part-D and the two wars Bush ordered). If you were uninformed and you went to these rallies, you would believe that the recession began on January 20, 2009 at High Noon, and you would believe there was no National Debt until the second Barack Obama took office.
In the summer of 2009, proposed reforming the broken health care system we have
in America. The Tea Party rose up in a way nobody anticipated. Fueled by comments
about “death panels” from Former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin and claims that
government was taking control of the healthcare system, senior citizens lined up by the thousands to demand the government keep the tentacles of government out of the socialist Medicare benefits they enjoy to this day.
The claims that Barack Obama was proposing a government takeover of healthcare were just not true. In fact, they weren’t even in the same galaxy as the truth. The truth was that, in 2010, the plan forces Americans to purchase health insurance, forcing “freeloaders” to pay in to the system. You would think Republicans would be on board with that. But they aren’t because their version of the truth is out in Tattoine.
Now, I can’t say I’m the biggest fan of “Obama Care”, but the positives far outweigh the negatives. However, no matter what facts were presented about there not actually
being “death panels”, it simply did not matter because the Tea Party followers have their own set of facts.
In 2010, the Tea Party began their rise to power, and the rise of the new Republican Party. Incumbents were swept out of office in primaries for egregious acts and atrocities such as: Supporting TARP, supporting the auto bailouts, co-sponsoring legislation with Democrats to provide benefits to military veterans, refusing to say Barack Obama hates America, refusing to say Barack Obama is a Muslim, and so on.
In October 2010, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said, "the single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president."
From there, historic and unprecedented obstruction began. Republicans made it clear that they had no intentions of working with Barack Obama. After all, if the economy continues to spiral downhill, they would easily win control of the Senate and The White House in 2012 – something that would create one-party rule for decades to come.
They almost managed to have the federal government shut down. They also took the
unprecedented step of holding the debt ceiling hostage. Those moves created mass
panic in the markets and even caused the United States’ credit rating to be downgraded. Of course, the debt ceiling does not give the government the authority to spend more money; it gives the government permission to pay its debt. If the debt ceiling had not been increased it would’ve created a financial disaster unseen in the United States and would’ve marked the end of the American dollar as a currency.
But, even before the 2010 mid-term elections, it became evident that the Culture Wars
were coming back. Candidates were steering away from talking about the economy and beginning to talk very radically about abortion, contraception, gay marriage and other social issues. And, while the focus was on union busting legislation in many states, states were signing laws to require women to have ultrasounds to get an abortion. In South Carolina, where gay marriage is already illegal, civil unions and domestic partnerships were stripped in the name of banning what was already banned. Nikki Haley vetoed legislation that continued funding rape victim crisis centers, a veto that the South Carolina General Assembly unanimously overrode.
I’m a Christian. Gay marriage does go against my beliefs. But my personal beliefs should not be law. Neither should anyone’s religious beliefs. This is how countries like Iran are built. Don’t like gay marriage; don’t marry someone of the same sex. Don’t like abortion; don’t get one. Don’t like contraception; don’t use it. This is the real “common sense” that is needed in government.
Then there’s the whole welfare thing, where it’s Barack Obama’s fault people are on
welfare, but it’s also black peoples’ fault that they’re on welfare. Barack Obama is the food stamp president who has put millions of Americans on welfare because there are no jobs, but those black people on welfare need to go find a job! Oh, and elect Mitt Romney because that’s the only way to fix the unemployment problem. It’s pandering of the most disgusting kind.
To this day, Romney has yet to say that Barack Obama is an American. Why won’t he say that? Because a large chunk of his base believes Barack Obama is a Socialist Communist Muslim who was born in Kenya. Oh, he’s also a fascist.
(FUN FACT: The primary religion in Kenya is Christianity)
That takes us to Congressman Todd Akin’s comments which were so far from reality
that they’re currently searching for his evidence of said statements on the Millennium
Falcon. Akin believes abortion should be illegal in cases of rape because, if a woman is a victim of a “legitimate rape”, the female body has some sort of automatic trigger that will automatically know the girl is raped which can prevent pregnancy. Um, what?
The sad part, Todd Akin sits on the House of Representatives’ Committee on Science.
Seriously, you can’t make this stuff up.
It has become increasingly clear that the Republican Party has been hijacked by the Tea Party and has lost all touch with reality. Personally, I think it is time for Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan and John Boehner to denounce the Tea Party, no matter what the risk. They are the leaders of their party, not Rush Limbaugh. They have an obligation to denounce the Tea Party, even if it means losing an election. A failure to do so will be the death of the Republican Party as a whole.