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Republicans in South Carolina Ensure Obama’s Reelection

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White Republicans in South Carolina (a redundancy) voted in their January 21 primary in a manner which will ensure the reelection of Barack Obama as president of the United States of America. They voted for Newt Gingrich. It is widely believed, even by the Republican establishment, that Newt Gingrich cannot win in a general election because both his personal and professional past are filled with events many Americans disdain. He is viewed so unfavorably by so many Americans he would lose to President Barack Obama by a landslide in a general election.

Newt Gingrich’s campaign limped into South Carolina mortally wounded by the millions of dollars spent in Iowa pinning down his dark history. A loss here and he would have been a cooked goose on the splintered wooden table of a poor family from a Charles Dickens story, but Newt knew the caliber of the intellectual territory the campaign faced in South Carolina and how to manipulate it in his favor. He closed down his intellectual approach and made speeches that appealed to the raw emotions of his audiences. He spoke in racial codes, calling the president “The food stamp president” and sent out other similar dog whistles to a people so intellectually underdeveloped on the question of race that they fly the Confederate flag and are willing to refight the Civil War. Newt showed them the level of disrespect for Barack Obama he needed to, to emerge the winner of the South Carolina primary where many share in his disrespect for the president. This win gave Newt Gingrich renewed political life that may well propel him to the Republican nomination and a certain national defeat.

At the beginning of the South Carolina campaign, it appeared Mitt Romney had won two consecutive primaries, Iowa and New Hampshire. As it turned out Romney placed a close second in Iowa, but boosted by his victory in New Hampshire, his candidacy was still gaining an air of certain victory. He entered South Carolina leading in the polls. All of the nation’s political experts declared that Romney was the most electable of the candidates and he would go on to win the nomination if he won in South Carolina. Romney’s more moderate appeal gave him the better shot at defeating Barack Obama in a national election by convincing a sizable portion of the 75 percent of the electorate that are not solidly anti-Obama that he’d make a better president. The Republican base in South Carolina can’t stand President Obama. It would seem that they would do anything to defeat him, even vote for the candidate with the better chance of victory although his manner was too mild for their taste and he has, in their minds, the wrong religious affiliation. A large portion of the South Carolina Republication base is evangelicals with theological differences with Romney’s Mormon faith and, although Mormonism disavowed polygamy over a century ago, it is still considered a disqualifier by evangelical voters nationwide. Ironically, they voted against the candidate with the apparent strongest personal family values to vote for the candidate whose married life has been lived in a kind of decriminalized polygamist manner with multi divorces and infidelities. How did this happen? The anti-Obama people in South Carolina are either blinded with hatred for the president or they are the biggest hypocrites in the world.

I think they were seduced by Newt Gingrich’s bombastic political style tailored especially to their combative sensitivities invoked their passionate hatred of the president and they were blinded by the goal of defeating him; they didn’t just want to bloody his nose, they wanted to knock him out, to paraphrase Gingrich. “Never hate so passionately that it blinds you,” I’ll tell my grandchildren and recall this episode to illustrate the point. In wanting to see the president manhandled by a bomb thrower, South Carolina Republicans lost sight of reality and voted as if they were Obama’s Trojan horse loading failure into the Republican nomination process; failure which will only ensure Obama’s reelection. Just when the movement to defeat Obama was going so well, along comes this odd looking gift the voters of South Carolina handed the rest of the country, a win that will result in defeat. With a congressman who shouted “You lie” at the president of the United States of America, you just know at the grassroots, these people are not ready for this more sophisticated art of politics.

South Carolina Republican voters would also make bad chess players. Politics, like chess, is played best the more moves one can see down the road. The best chess players are dispassionate when it comes to which piece captures the opponent’s king. A checkmate by a cleverly moved pawn is as sweet as a checkmate by a powerful knight, but the player has to recognize and react to the true nature of reality on the board, you can’t force your knight to make the capture if it is not in the position to do so and you’re a loser when you don’t use the piece in the best position to make the win just to suit your whims. South Carolina has played its significant card in the 2012 presidential race: helping Obama by giving Gingrich a boost, knowing that its 7 electoral votes have been preempted in the Democratic electoral strategy.

The outcome in South Carolina has awakened the anxiety of the Republican Party’s big wigs. They fear that South Carolina has placed the entire party in peril. They fear that a Gingrich presidential candidacy would damage the party’s candidates up and down the line, so they are trying to undo the South Carolina results by speaking out against Gingrich. They are desperate to make the South Carolina outcome an aberration. They are speaking out to stop Gingrich in Florida; they want to slow his momentum and ultimately kill his candidacy. One can only look on in utter amazement as Republican pillars from Ann Coulter to Bob Dole warn against the nomination of Nuclear Newt. Even the former House majority leader and former exterminator of household pests and democracy (and soon to be jailbird), Tom DeLay has called Gingrich an erratic leader as speaker of the House. Wow! South Carolina’s conservatives are further out there in space then Ann (our blacks are better than their blacks) Coulter and Tom (roach-spray) DeLay!

It’s entirely possible that the rest of the Republican primary voters would ignore the pleas for sanity from the pragmatists in the Republication Party because they would rather see the president disrespected in the most degrading manner Gingrich can deliver to them. For them, that might be far more fulfilling than defeating this first Black president who is slowly straightening this mess out without any support from them or any help from their leaders in the government. This way they can continue to gripe as the great majority of them benefit from the policies the president so painstakingly put into place. Who knows a better way to eat and have your cake at the same time?

Another possibility is that Newt Gingrich may turn out to be more persuasive than polls measure; the country may be more resigned to the fact that although Obama is a good president, Republicans won’t cooperate in legislation to move the country ahead until there is a white president, any white president. But I don’t think this is what the voters of South Carolina were thinking when they selected Newt Gingrich.

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About Horace Mungin

  • Kevin Nichols

    Stopped reading when you began attacking the intelligence of South Carolinians for no reason. Your prejudice disgusts me.

  • jamminsue

    Horace, I agree, if Newt is the Republican choice to run as President, Obama will be re-elected. He has so much baggage.
    I don’t know if the people of South Carolina are dumb; everyone in America right now is scared, for their job if they have it, or how long their UI will hold out if not, of if their pension plan will keep its value if retired.
    Also, you are right, Newt speaks to the crowds, rubbing raw their wounds using the play book of Alinsky, who he keeps talking about.

  • http://www.whatthehellbook.com Jackson Baer

    I think Ron Paul will take a solid 3rd in Florida and force Santorum out of the race. Paul was fantastic at the last debate showing his comedic side and came off as really likable. Imagine if we actually practiced the Golden Rule :)

    RON PAUL 2012.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    What really gets me are all those Republicans who really, truly don’t see the part that racism plays in their party, particularly in the South. Do they really think that the racists and segregationists played no part in the 180-degree change the South made from (D) to (R) following the passage of the Civil Rights Act? Do they really think that such racism goes away after only one generation?

    Most racists have since learned how to speak in code, using ‘dog whistle’ language to proclaim their racism to those who understand the language, yet still avoid being accused of using strictly racist language. A good example is a doctor I saw a few years back Down South. He kept using simplified language in his explanations, and then he would apologize for using such simple language, saying, “It’s the demographics, you understand, mmm-hmm.” Anyone who grew up there as I did immediately would understand that he was referring to the majority-black population.

    But what the racists don’t really comprehend yet is that their racism is as transparent as Bart Simpson’s claim, “I didn’t do it, nobody saw me do it, you can’t prove I did it!” Not only that, but those who support these racists and make excuses for them using the same kind of Bart-Simpson logic are just as guilty.

    Fortunately, as I’ve pointed out before, the coming decade or so is really the Last Great Stand of American racists when it comes to political power. All one has to do is see the coded language, the dog whistles used by Gingrich, by Paul (who DID know about the racist language in his magazine, according to his then-associates), by their most powerful pundits such as Rush Limbaugh, by the GOP representative who referred to Obama a ‘tar baby’ and then claimed, “oh, I didn’t mean that in any racist way, honest!” The Republicans tell themselves that the Democrats are just as racist – that’s their perpetual claim – but all one has to do to see the falsity of such a claim is to see the almost total dearth of ‘coded language’, of ‘dog-whistling’ on the part of the Dems – for all know that any Democratic politician who would act thus would find himself looking for a different job in the very next election. That, and let’s not forget the almost completely lily-white (and usually older) nature of Republican events as compared to the quite interracial nature of Democratic events.

    The younger generation – thanks to the efforts not only of the giants of the Civil Rights movement, but also of Hollywood and the music industry – are much less racist, and grow more liberal every year. The Republicans know this, and they know down deep in their guts where it will lead, where it cannot help but lead…and as for any self-proclaimed historian (like Gingrich) who cannot see this march of history for what it is, not only here in America but worldwide, well, such an historian might have a wonderful grasp of what events happened in history, but they do not have a real understanding of history. Why? Because history shows (with starts and stops, advances and reverses) a largely irresistible and almost constant march towards an ever more liberal (and ever less-prejudiced against race/creed/color/religion/ethnicity) world.

    And we will all see where it will lead twenty, thirty years from now when the far-less-racist youth of today are coming into their own and see just how powerful – and how wrong – were the racists of their not-so-distant past.

  • Baronius

    Stupid article. Apparently the only two motivations of SC Republicans are devious bigotry and blinded bigotry. I imagine when they wake up in the morning they decide to be bigots who eat eggs or bigots who eat oatmeal (or bigots who skip breakfast entirely). Way to see the big picture, Horace.

  • http://demandedpolitics.blogspot.com/ Michael Alexander

    Actually I think the Republican Party itself has almost ensured Obama’s re election. They brought in idiots like Ron Paul, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum…it’s actually kind of sad that Mitt Romney is the closest thing to a REAL conservative the Republican Party has left! (not this social conservative crap that’s just “let’s all instill christian values in a supposedly religiously free country”)

    But seriously, how the hell does one state ensure the re election of Obama? That’s what people were saying about Iowa, the most politically insignificant state in the country, and now they’re saying SC has some magical power too? Ignorance at its best.

  • Baronius

    Let me make a better comment than #5. The question is whether Newt won because of racism or because he was supported over Romney. Now, Romney never polled well in SC. In fact, he was losing to HERMAN CAIN before the scandals broke. So if you want to argue that the SC vote was anti-Northerner or anti-Mormon, you can, but you can’t claim that they were anti-black. A more complete analysis would include the perception of an ABC News hit job on Newt, and the subsequent backlash.

  • http://takeitorleaveit.typepad.com/ roger nowosielski

    @7

    I tend to agree, except that Mr. Mungin is a longtime resident of that state and I’m in no position to dismiss his lifelong experiences offhand.

  • Glenn Contrarian

    Baronius –

    I would strongly agree with you that Romney’s loss in SC had mostly to do with anti-Mormonism…but we must not discount how racism certainly factored in. If racism weren’t significant there, Gingrich would have lost votes instead of gained after he used code and dog-whistling in order to get the racists to take a second look at him. But you are right that Romney’s Mormonism was the biggest single factor in his loss.

    P.S. I think that we should not be allowed to list our donations to Church as a ‘charity’ on our income tax forms. I don’t think I’ve done so for at least fifteen or twenty years, because I don’t think it’s right to force the American taxpayer to essentially subsidize offerings to any religion. But that’s just my viewpoint.

    P.P.S. Isn’t it funny how Newt has just been endorsed by Herman Cain? Now they’ve got the serial-adulterer vote all wrapped up in their quest to lead the “family values” party….

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/irene-athena/ Irene Athena

    I would agree with Baronius and Glenn that definitely anti-Mormonism and possibly racism (but Cain backing Newt?…anyway) factored in to the SC results.

    But when Newt received resounding applause for his “we KILL them!” response to Ron Paul’s “Golden Rule” foreign policy, maybe a lot of SC’s socially conservative “life-respecting” folk, who might have gone with Romney or Paul otherwise, hopped aboard the Newt train.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/irene-athena/ Irene Athena

    (To clarify. Baronius’ had at best lukewarm support for the idea that anti-Mormonism played a role and non-existent support for the idea that racism did.)

  • Baronius

    Glenn – You know that I think you suffer from tinnitus. You hear dog whistles of racism even when they’re not there, probably due to having heard them so loudly in your youth. But whatever the case, I really don’t think that the usual -isms can explain why support went from a black to a Catholic against a Mormon in South Carolina.

    Newt was attacked by the press within 48 hours of an election, and the people of SC didn’t like that. They respected his combative response to it. Remember, Southern Christians may not approve of adultery, but they don’t have a problem with remarriage, and they’re quick to forgive someone who says that he’s sorry. (You can argue about whether Newt ever *did* say he’s sorry, but my point is that they were willing to overlook mistakes that he claims to have put in his past.)

  • DeMenace

    You got to be kidding ROMNEY A CONSERVATIVE!
    ROMNEY IS A RINO! REPUBLICAN IN NAME ONLY!
    OBVIOUSLY SOME OF YOU PEOPLE HERE NEVER BEEN TO MASSACHUSETTS! BIGGEST WELFARE STATE IN THE COUNTRY!
    ROMNEY WAS AL GORE’S campaign manager when Gore ran for president and GORE was what A DEMOCRAT!

  • DeMenace

    Obama already predicted to win election in 2012, has nothing to do with the candidates!
    The DINOSAUR OUTDATED Electoral College elects the president, and they have been BRIBED! LOOK UP HISTORY OF ELECTORAL COLLEGE and how it has voted contrary to the way the people voted! Who would in their right minds re-elect the worst president in U.S. History, but already bragging he’s going to win!
    AMERICA BUSH did it and Obama is going to do it! If it was up to the popular vote Bush lost both elections! LOOK UP YOUR ELECTION HISTORY 2000 & 2004! NAZI AMERICA IS HERE!

  • DeMenace

    last comment: MY BAGS ARE PACKED – ARE YOURS?

  • Zingzing

    It was Rick perry who was was supposedly a campaign manager for gore. But perry wasn’t.

    And where do you plan on going?