Grand Old Party Poopers?

The (left-leaning) mainstream media would have you believe that the Republican party is engaged in an ideological civil war.

So said The Weekly Standard recently in a Scrapbook entry headlined “A Dysfunctional GOP?”

Nut graf:

A supposed civil war in the Republican party has been a theme of mainstream coverage of the recent elections. Evidence on the ground is thin. As the Washington Examiner‘s Byron York noted:

After years of trailing far behind Democrats, Republicans have now surpassed Democrats as the public’s choice in the 2010 congressional elections. In response to the latest so-called “generic ballot” question from the Gallup organization–“If elections for Congress were being held today, which party’s candidate would you vote for in your congressional district?”–the new results are 48 percent for Republicans versus 44 percent for Democrats among registered voters, and 46 percent for Republicans versus 44 percent for Democrats among adults nationwide. It’s an extraordinary turnaround for the GOP. Last July, Democrats held a six-point lead. Last December, Democrats held a 15-point lead. At one point in 2007, Democrats held a 23-point lead, and for all of that year, 2007, Democrats held a double-digit lead.

Regardless of whether that’s an accurate reflection of the current state of political affairs, here comes the Sunday New York Times with a Page One report headlined “South Carolina Rift Highlights a G.O.P. Debate.”

When Senator Lindsey Graham joined forces last month with Senator John Kerry on a compromise to the climate change legislation known as cap and trade, it was the last straw for the Charleston County Republican Party.

The county party, which has traditionally been considered moderate, voted by a wide margin to censure Mr. Graham in harsh terms.

So – “supposed civil war”? Or “GOP Dysfunction”?

Discuss among yourselves.


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3 Responses to Grand Old Party Poopers?

  1. WS article is all wet. Generic preference for GOP over Dems reflects only general dissatisfaction with Dems, not a shift to a “unified” GOP. In-fighting between Palin faction of GOP and so-called “moderate” Republicans (i.e., those who support massive US military bombing of Iran, but not on a Sunday and only by heterosexual Air Force pilots) reflected by recent 23rd District election in NY, as well as the NYT item on Graham. Voters have not embraced the “all ‘no’, all the time” strategy of GOP legislators–witness public opinion support for public option in health care debate–but are displeased with Reid/Pelosi leadership and foot-dragging by White House. Mainstream media template for coverage of politics: “MOPE” [money, organization, polls, endorsements] not nuanced enough to get at public attitudes toward elected officials and party ideology.

  2. Curmudgeon says:

    Dysfunction is relatively common in a two-party political system.

    The Democrats need only to look at the dysfunction in their own party over the issue in the health care debate, cap-and-trade, Afghanistan, etc.

    They can also look to the internal dysfunction that cost them the Presidential elections in 2000 and 2004 when Gore and Kerry lost elections that were theirs to lose.

    It might also be useful for the Democrat to look at the dysfunction that cost them dearly in the congressional elections of 1994.

    They seemed to have recovered some of their footing, at least for now.

    But success in politics is often fleeting, and “progress”– however that may be defined — is slow.

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