By Teresa Welsh |
Over the weekend, Bobby Jindal, the governor of Louisiana and a possible Republican candidate for president in 2016, took a shot at his own party when he told party leaders to "stop being the stupid party." But then he failed to take his own advice and said, "The Republican Party does not need to change our principles, but we might need to change just about everything else we are doing"
Let's take a look at some key Republican principles and track them against the opinions of the Americans who voted last November.
Principle 1: Tax Cuts for the Rich. Mitt Romney strongly defended the Bush tax cuts while Barack Obama promised to repeal them. The national Election Day exit poll shows that almost half (47 percent) of the voters wanted to repeal the tax cuts for people in households where the total income was $250,000 or more. Another group of voters (13 percent) wanted to increase taxes for everybody. Only a third of the electorate (35 percent) opposed increasing the tax on wealthy Americans. Strike one.
Principle 2: Deportation of Undocumented Immigrants. Only a quarter (25 percent) of the voters supported Mitt Romney's proposal to deport all 11 million or so undocumented immigrants. Two of every three voters (65 percent) said they wanted these immigrants to have legal status. The president and a bipartisan group of U.S. senators have agreed to a comprehensive proposal that includes a path to citizenship. House Republicans oppose immigration overhaul at their own political peril. Strike 2.
Principle 3: Repeal of the Affordable Care Act. The new healthcare reform law proved to voters that Obama cares. Many Republican congressional candidates said they would completely repeal Obamacare. But only a quarter (25 percent) of the voters agreed. Just as many voters (26 percent) wanted to expand the Affordable Healthcare Act. Strike 3 and the GOP is out (of the White House).
The GOP is like a bad play that has a test run in New Haven with bad reviews before it gets to Broadway. Instead of changing the actors or the script, the only thing that the producers do to fix the show before it opens in New York is to change the scenery.
But the ugly reality is that voters aren't buying what the Tea Party (formerly known as the Republican Party) is selling. Unless the GOP abandons its extremist right wing principles and the Tea Party, Republicans face many long hard winters.
About Brad Bannon President of Bannon Communications Research
Ford O'Connell Republican Strategist and Political Analyst
Jamie Chandler Political Scientist at Hunter College
Mercedes Schlapp Cofounder of Cove Strategies