Thursday, March 31, 2011

Base Chumps

Those of you who follow my Twitter feed (and if you're not, get on it, willya!) know that I've been having some fun over the last few weeks watching the various politicos on the Republican side of the aisle twist and maneuver themselves to look appealing to the increasingly-wacky GOP base, whose votes -- as I mentioned yesterday -- they'll need if they want to square off (and likely lose) against President Obama next year. I believe it was Lawrence O'Donnell who said at one point that people don't say they're going to run in an election unless they think they can win. Certainly, it tells you something that there still isn't a declared Republican candidate, and those potentials who voters could possibly get behind (Chris Christie, John Thune) have explicitly taken themselves out of the running for 2012. In other words, let Obama get re-elected, and we'll take our chances after he's gone.

So while the realities of electoral politics have virtually ensured that any Republicans with a sense of self-preservation rule themselves out, that also means the folks who are jockeying to get a seat at the big table represent the absolute cream of the crazy. Whether relative newbies like Herman Cain (who really dislikes Muslims), or "establishment"-types (and I use that term very loosely) like Michelle Bachmann, Newt Gingrich, and Sarah Palin (who just picked yet another fight with the "lamestream" media), or the half dozen others mulling a run, we're left with a motley assortment of ideologues, idiots, and dilettantes joined together by a common belief in regressive social policies, irresponsible fiscal policies, and scaring the crap out of you about President Obama. In other words: red meat for the base. But hey, don't take my word for it. Here's Jon Stewart from last night's Daily Show on the Republican "Base Race":

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Indecision 2012 - Base Race - Bachmann, Cain & Gingrich
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