Why the path to victory for Republicans is aLOT more complicated than "appeal to Latinos"

Discussion in 'Elections' started by superdave, Nov 8, 2012.

  1. superdave

    superdave Member+

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    The moderate pundits have spoken, and all the GOOPs have to do to start winning election is to start getting more Latino votes. Ahem. By the same token, the Dems would dominated politics if they just started getting those who are single issue voters against gun control to start voting Democratic. Nobody has ever been stupid enough to suggest that as a path to victory for Dems.

    Here's the thing...the current GOP coalition includes a hell of alot of white people whose economic interests are very poorly served by the GOP agenda. (In fact, that's arguably a majority of Republican voters in any election.) But those voters aren't voting economics. Now, some of them are voting abortion/anti-gay/etc. I'm not talking about those voters. I'm talking about the voters who vote out of (white) identity politics. The GOP can't win if those voters stop voting based on identity politics (just like they won't be able to win in 2020 if the Dems get 70% of the Latino vote.)

    It's funny seeing the dumbass pundits making their argument. It just reiterates their dumbassedness. Their argument is that GOP coalition + 10% more Latinos = victory. Anyway, I'm dying to hear how the GOPs could possibly get their share of the Latino vote up to a manageable 40% without alienating a key portion of their own voting coalition. I guess if, somehow, Latinos could get defined as an "in" group, much like the Irish got included in the late 19th century or the Catholics got included after WW II, etc, the GOPs will be alright. Otherwise, the GOPs are going to have to change their position on diversity in general and immigration in particular in order to start winning over Latino voters. And they're going to have to do so while retaining those voters who are on their side due to identity politics. Which strikes me as impossible.

    Thoughts?


  2. JohnR

    JohnR Member+

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    Agreed. If you're selling to white people that you're the party that doesn't chase ethnics, you're going to lose a lot of those white people if you do chase ethnics.

    Another way of putting the matter is you lose Latino votes by hugging Jan Brewer, and you lose white votes by not hugging her.
  3. That Phat Hat

    That Phat Hat Member+

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    Besides your overall point and sticking to pure numbers, winning over Latinos doesn't help in the Midwest, where MI, MN, WI and IA are reliably blue, or in the Non-Deep South (is "Shallow South" a thing?), where the gains in urban and suburban votes don't rely on Latinos.

    Plus, Florida is one place where the GOP reliably had the "Latino vote" (though when pundits say "Latino", they really mean "Mexican and Central American").

    "We have to get the Latino vote" is an easy way to get out of having a serious conversation about how effed up the platform is.
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  4. chaski

    chaski Moderator Staff Member

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    There are lots of Latinos in Northern Virginia.


  5. chaski

    chaski Moderator Staff Member

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    Rubio for VP. Duh! ;)
  6. cleansheetbsc

    cleansheetbsc Member+

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    But in the meantime they convince them that inside every poor white person is a 'job-creator' waiting to break out if only Gubmint got out of its way.
  7. MasterShake29

    MasterShake29 Member+

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    If you keep the current platform (not that I like that, but put that aside), but change your immigration stance to open borders or something close, does the gain in Latino single-issue voters outweigh the people so racist who would abandon the party based on that single issue?

    I bet it does.

    That's your winning coalition without having to change anything else.

    If only Republicans had an option to nominate an "open borders" candidate...
  8. That Phat Hat

    That Phat Hat Member+

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    I know, and there are plenty of immigrants in NC too. I'm just saying, as close as the votes were, I think the gains made in the college-educated whites was more important in both states.
  9. chaski

    chaski Moderator Staff Member

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    The GOP has to convince more of those college-educated whites to vote for their economic interests.;)
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  10. DoctorD

    DoctorD Member+

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    You have the cart before the horse. Those people really do think that Gubmint is the only thing standing in their way. They didn't need the Republican party to tell them.

    I call it "Pa Wilder syndrome" from Little House on the Prairie.

    I think a lot of us college-educated whites know how badly Bush Jr. screwed up the economy.
  11. That Phat Hat

    That Phat Hat Member+

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    If only it were that easy. Look, it's not like the Democratic coalition was created by simply saying, "Hey brown people. Hey you strange people with vaginas instead of penises. Vote for us." The GOP's Latino deficit is merely the microcosm, and not the totality, of the party's messaging failure.

    Just ask the guy at Slate with the Spanish last name:
    The GOP doesn’t have a problem with Latino voters per se. Rather, it has a problem with a broad spectrum of voters who simply don’t feel that it’s speaking to their economic concerns. The GOP has an economic agenda tilted strongly to the benefit of elites, and it has preserved support for that agenda—even though it disserves the majority of GOP voters—with implicit racial politics.
    And:
    Polling suggests that the Latino problem for the GOP is deeper than immigration. John McCain got a scant 31 percent of the Latino vote despite a long record of pro-immigration policies. The best evidence available on Hispanic public opinion, a big election even poll from Latino Decisions and ImpreMedia, makes it clear that this is just a fairly liberal voting block. Just 12 percent of Latinos support a cuts-only approach to deficit reduction, and only 25 percent want to repeal Obamacare. Only 31 percent of Hispanics say they’d be more likely to vote for a Republican who supports the DREAM Act.

    Your point might hold more water if Latinos were voting differently from other non-whites. They're not. They're voting like other Americans (with the exception of the older white male voting bloc) for whom immigration isn't an immediate issue.
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  12. JohnR

    JohnR Member+

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    Phat Hat gets at this one. 12% of Latino voters support cuts-only for fixing the deficit. 100% of Republicans have pledged cuts-only. It's always going to be a struggle to attract voters when they don't support your economic platform.
  13. MasterShake29

    MasterShake29 Member+

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    What percentage of Democrats support the exact breakdown Obama wants?
  14. Revolt

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    Romney did for the national GOP brand what Pete Wilson did for the California GOP 20 years.

    Except Wilson did get a win; he just alienated Latino voters from ever considering the GOP brand. Romney took such a hard right position in the primaries, tried to swerve back to the middle, but had to own some of those primary positions.

    The GOP is in a tough spot. Their appeal is to grumpy old white men, a declining demo. Pissing on minorities and poor people and women will not work anymore. I have severe doubt the GOP will figure this out in four years. I think they are more likely to nominate a Paul (the one from Kentucky) or Palin than Rubio or the Louisiana Governor. The coming GOP Civil War is going to be AWESOME!
  15. Revolt

    Revolt Member+

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  16. Dr. Wankler

    Dr. Wankler Member+

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    Just so they don't start one with the rest of the country instead.
  17. Ties5o11

    Ties5o11 Member

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    I think if the Republicans move to be the party of freedom- that is limited government in both economic and personal walks of life, the party will be fine. A majority of Americans do not support larger government, in fact, just the opposite. It is clear to me that economic Conservatism and social liberalism would be a winning ticket, from just about all the polls. Not to mention, examples around the world have shown that it is the best ideology to create prosperity. The first party to champion those values wins. IMO, there is no chance the Democrats get there, because big, invasive government, (that in my mind will be very, very bad for the economy) is a core belief of the left. A growing majority of the Republican party realizes that the issues of freedom should triumph a muddled message- and a message that gets muddled by the religious wing of the party.

    I know many people on this board like to pretend there is no heart of the right wing party, or that they are all religious zelots that like to shoot squirrels on their free time, but that is not the case. I have met thousands of Republicans in my life, and the vast majority are people who believe in the free market, individualism, private property, and limited government. That is the heart of my party, and that heart will prevail.

    We get another 4 years of this experiment. Once people start realizing the bill they have to pay for all this big government stuff, a well positioned Conservative party can thrive.
  18. Revolt

    Revolt Member+

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    The problem for the reeps is they do support big government - the military, TSA, corporate subsidies, and the like. And don't even get me started on the social conservatives.

    There already is a party of smaller government and social liberalization. They are the Libertarian Party and even had a former governor heading up their ticket. The LP barely beat Rosanne Barr. I am not convinced that is a winning proposition.
  19. ceezmad

    ceezmad Member+

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    You all underestimate the ability of the Democratic Party to auto destruct.



    If the country keeps chugging along and growing even if small growth the Democrats will be ok, but if the country fall back into recession, then regardless of the reason voters will blame the people in charge.

    The thing is, who is exactly in charge, The Republicans in the House or the Democrats in the white house or the senate?

    BTW thanks to the Republicans controlling most State governments after the census, they were able to set up the house to be republican leaning for a while.

    The next big battle will be the Democrats trying to win control of the state governments in purple states so that in 10 years when the new census happens they can be in better position to draw districts.
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  20. InTheSun

    InTheSun Member

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    I am a Latino voter. I hear the name Rubio thrown around a lot by pundits on TV. If the repubs think trotting this guy out is going to get the Latino vote, they got another thing coming. It's not that simple. Thing is, he is Cuban. Puerto Ricans don't err.. identify with Cubans and neither do a lot of other Latinos.

    Cubans have a different deal than other Latinos on account of their automatic political refugee status. No connection there with other Latinos who may have friends and family struggling to solve their status problem. They also vote republican in greater numbers on account of the history with Kennedy/Castro/Bay of Pigs.

    I'm just saying the message we hear will need to change and unlike a Hollywood movie casting director, we can tell the difference in who's delivering the message.

    I do also see some merit to the argument above that it is deeper than just the immigration issue but I think it is all part of the same lack of trust for the GOP.

    By the way, an astounding number I heard today was that 50,000 latinos turn 18 every month in America.
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  21. Val1

    Val1 Member+

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    I agree with both points. But most of all the second. Dems ain't getting control of the House anytime soon, and since the core value of the ReMs is no taxes and thus, a smaller budget, they will be poised to full players in the debate. Even if the demographics are working against them.
  22. ratdog

    ratdog Member+

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    This kind of childishly oversimplistic projection of your own pet belief system onto the "American people" is exactly what got the GOP in trouble in the first place. Of course, you aren't the first person on either side to make this mistake and you won't be the last. The progressive version of your error is "I think if the Democrats move to be the party of democracy - that is, a government focused on participation and social justice in both economic and political spheres, the party will be fine." Neither your version nor the progressive one takes into consideration that American society isn't as monolithic as you'd like to imagine it and people vote for all kinds of reasons, not just "freedom" (the Lib conceit) or "their economic interests" (the progressive conceit).

    As has been pointed out, if your assertion was true, Gary Johnson would have won the election. If the progressive version of your mistake were accurate, Jill Stein would have won.

    You don't know what "Americans" support so you project yourself onto them rather than actually doing your homework and seeing what the truth is.

    Your "Americans hate government" assertion is again far too simplistic for reality. Americans' beliefs about the role of democracy and government are far more complex and pragmatic than you give them credit for. Poll after poll finds that when asked about "government" in abstract, Americans are skeptical. But when asked about the functions government does, they overwhelmingly support it. Program after program gains acceptance, even when Americans are reminded of the cost in taxes. This should not surprise anyone. It's just like Congress. When asked about "Congress" in the abstract, people hate it and Congress's approval rating are only slightly above stockbrokers and advertising executives. But, of course, for most Americans, their Congressperson is just fine - it's all the other ones who are terrible.

    You see, unlike teabaggers most Americans don't obsess about the size of government but about the quality of government. They don't want "big" or "small" government as much as they want GOOD government, however they define it which is rarely by size. If they are dissatisfied with government, it is because they see it doing things they do not agree with - and they obviously don't all agree with each other on what those things are.

    On the one hand, when we stop thinking solely in the abstract, most (but not all) Americans are just smart enough to realize that the government is made up of our fellow Americans and is not some foreign occupying enemy force and we love to talk about what we think should be done. On the other hand, sadly, most of us also don't want to be involved with it. A sizable portion can't even be bothered to do the absolute rock bottom bare minimum of voting. We don't like being told what we can or cannot do and we grumble when we face limits put on us by our fellow citizens but we also know that laissez-faire anarchy won't work, will give us the opposite of "freedom" and will cause us even bigger headaches than an imperfect governing system made up of our fellow fallible human beings. We distrust concentrated government power, yes. We also distrust concentrated private power too even if we see ourselves, as John Steinbeck put it, "temporarily embarrassed millionaires".

    In short, I really hope that the GOP comes to the same conclusion you have because that unrealistic self-delusion based on a fantasy version of "the Americans" that denies the messy, often self-contradictory reality will ensure their minority status for the foreseeable future.
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  23. MasterShake29

    MasterShake29 Member+

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    A minor party doesn't have even a puncher's chance while the two parties at the top have the government enforce their duopoly.
  24. nicephoras

    nicephoras BigSoccer Supporter

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    This is very partisan wishful thinking. Already you had some figures with excellent conservative credentials take far more nuanced views on immigration - think of Rick Perry, for instance. Rubio will almost certainly be palatable to Latinos as well. Given that Latinos tend to be socially conservative, it's not at all inconceivable that they become more "in play" with a Republican party less opposed to immigration. This is not necessarily very easy, as the current Republican primary process eats their moderates, but a strong enough candidate can certainly overcome that; it's just that this year's crop was so weak that the sponge candidate was able to win by being malleable enough. Even Arbusto II did a lot better with Latinos than Romney did, not too long ago.

    One counterpoint you didn't make, of course, is that the next Democratic candidate is unlikely to be black, so won't produce the same visceral opposition in a certain part of the electorate. There's no reason that, say, Hillary Clinton, must do as badly with whites as Obama did this year.
  25. superdave

    superdave Member+

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    And Perry's stance on immigration was one of the two key reasons his candidacy blew up so badly. I think Perry proves my point more than it disproves it.

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