by Eric Margolis: Turkey
Totally Loses Its Cool Over Syria
The two titans
of American politics, President Barack Obama and Republican challenger
Mitt Romney, locked horns this week in the first televised debate
of the election season.
to show that he was still a viable candidate in spite of a barrage
of recent criticism and increasingly negative polls. Obama spoke
with his usual oratorical mastery and projected an air of deep thought
and calm. But to many, the president appeared rather tired and lacking
in his usual pep. Being president and campaigning at the same time
debate alleviated some of the gloom previously felt by Republicans
and slightly lifted Romneys poll standing. Yet neither candidate
generated much emotion, unlike the waves of hysterical adulation
for Obama in 2008. Instead of being the Expected One, Obama turned
out to be another typical politician mouthing platitudes and making
promises that are not kept.
Even so, the
underlying arithmetic of the election was still against the Republicans
known as the Grand Old Party, or GOP.
men are Romneys key supporters, along with Bible Belt Republicans,
farmers and ardent supporters of Israel. Say Republican
and up pops the image of an angry, overweight, 60-something male
golfer, shaking his putter in fury at the socialist
there are not enough angry overweight white men and religious fundamentalists
to give Romney a decisive victory. Evangelical Protestant fundamentalists
voted 78% for George Bush in 2004 and 74% for John McCain in 2008.
But many of
these born-again Christians, who make up 45% of Republican
voters, are leery of Romneys Mormon faith which is regarded
as weird and heretical by mainstream Christians. Many may simply
not vote for Romney.
particularly younger ones, are totally turned off by the wooden
Romney and his deer-slaughtering vice presidential running mate,
Paul Ryan. Polls show women 40 to 60 against Romney a potential
kiss of death in the race.
I suspect that
Romney reminds many American women of all the things they didnt
like about their fathers. Obama reminds them of the kind of fast-talking
cool cat that their fathers warned them against. The GOPs
jihad against abortion, public health care, and benefits for poor
blacks has further angered many women.
93% of black Americans will vote for Obama provided they
vote at all. Obama mania has cooled among blacks. Latinos, the most
important new voter group, back Obama by 68% to 26% for Romney.
will prove vital in key battleground states that determine
the election: Florida, Ohio, Colorado, Pennsylvania, and Arizona.
Many of these better-educated voters are turned off by Romneys
warlike bluster and by Obamas continuation of Bush policies.
rapidly turned brown and yellow. The days of white supremacy are
over. There are 2 million Muslims living in the great melting pot
of America. East Asians top all the educational surveys. Latinos
have the fastest growing families. For the first time, whites have
become a minority in California, the 11th biggest economy on earth.
is an unexpected revival, the Republican Party seems destined to
become a fringe party of the far right and religious fundamentalists.
GOP leaders loudly advocate war against all sorts of enemies, assassinations
around the globe, torture and indefinite jailing of suspected anti-Americans,
and the endless growth of military spending without raising
taxes. As the party shrinks, it will likely grow more extreme.
I have been
a card-carrying Republican all my life. A signed picture of President
Dwight Eisenhower hangs over my desk. Im a veteran of the
regular US army.
todays Republican party is no longer my Republican party.
Back in the day, the GOP was run by East Coast elite of well-educated,
sophisticated internationalists who exercised Americas great
power with restraint.
have been replaced by rural politicians from the deep south and
west with no knowledge of the outside world and no sense of history
or culture. Americas closet fascist neocons write the GOPs
Dr. Ron Paul
was the last chance for the GOP to reform, redefine and renew itself.
Paul was sidelined and ignored. As a result, Republicans may be
marching towards irrelevance and unimportance.
him mail] is the author of War
at the Top of the World and the new book, American
Raj: Liberation or Domination?: Resolving the Conflict Between the
West and the Muslim World. See his
© 2012 Eric Margolis
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