03 October 2006

Foleygate is Great for the GOP

Back in July and August, it looked like the Dems had a chance, albeit a small one, to take back at least the House, and maybe even the Senate. I wasn't overly optimistic, as I've learned that the buffoons who head my party can screw up any election; however, I had an iota of hope.

Somehow(1), we survived the propaganda of "The Path to 9/11". The premature arrests in the UK didn't provide much of a bump in the polls. Bush's best campaign efforts seemed all for naught.

Then, Foleygate broke. That was good for one seat for the good guys, maybe two if there was a coverup and it got some press. It appears that Rep. Dennis Hastert knew and should have responded much, much sooner. Great. Denny's a dick. But this story is taking EVERY available slice of the news cycle. That's very, very bad for the Dems.

How do the flyovers(2) react when a scandal like this breaks? Let's see...

  • Blame Democrats for "dirty politics" as usual

  • Be happy your representative is a good, God-fearing Republican who wants to stamp out hom'sexyals

  • When's "American Idol" coming back?!?!?

When you get your news from Rush, you don't form intelligent opinions. In fact, you don't form opinions at all: they are implanted in your head, like Athena in reverse. You spend no time reading the paper, no time paying attention to anything beyond what Brangelina is up to today. When you hear "pedophile", you think "liberal".

If the Democrats don't want to lose seats in this election, they and their allies on the left should back off this story a bit. It's got legs of its own, and if the spin machine starts to redirect the message they can always jump in and talk about "Republican Congressman, Rep. Mark Foley (R)" to drive home the association. Denny Hastert needs to be smacked about (and possibly censured) and that's great...wait until November 8th.

People who vote, mostly vote locally.(3) What a child molester in Florida allegedly did is of little immedidate consequence. But for the ill-informed and cosmically stupid, the best bet to fight child molestation is to vote for the xtian Republican candidate. Pounding this story too hard (at the exclusion of so many other "great" things this administration and its cronies in Congress have done) is going to backfire come election day.

1 (= Sunday and Monday night NFL games)
2 I'm not going to be PC about this. I see stupid people and I'm going to shout from the rooftops that they're stupid. I'm sick of being told to pretend that they are anything but mouth-breathing, knuckle-dragging, bible- and wife-beating subhumans. That's right. I have no fucking respect for the stupid. You want to teach your children about the evils of sec'lar hum'nism? You want to teach your children that GAWD created the world in six days? Move to fucking Afghanistan.
3 I'm actually not convinced that this is true for everyone. I suspect that conservatives vote locally and liberals vote nationally, but have no evidence to back this up.


Earl said...

Nice boilerplate. When Richard Cohen is ready to retire from WaPo I'll be sure to put in a good word for you.

Again, I realize you're happy in your little kid-free world and you're not Catholic, but please won't you join us? Foley wasn't just sex-predatorizing in Florida, he was in Washington, where he had access to EVERYBODY's kids. How many more pages are going to come forward that their sponsor knew, but didn't help? When you've lost Nancy Grace, it's time to come home.

I don't know where you've been getting your news (Rush?)--I read a ton of junk online and I haven't seen ANY reaction from prominent Dems. Jesus, the story speaks for itself. There hasn't even been a complaint for copyright infringement on the unauthorized use of the circular firing-squad. Go ahead and echo the wingnut talking points that the Dems don't have a plan or message or values or whatever, but at least they're smart enough to stay the hell out of this mess. Next you'll tell me that Dems' silence is tacit approval/complicity. I haven't received a single beg from the DNC on this topic at all.

Their allies on the left? The so-called liberal media? Bloggers? Whatever. I know it's been a while, but this is almost what responsible reporting is supposed to look like.

As to conservatives voting locally? whatever. I don't see anybody trying to ban gay-marriage, but only in podunk, kentucky. Or building a wall around buttscratch, utah to keep the illegals out. Yes South Dakota tried to ban abortion, Kansas evolution--but I don't think the GOTV "values-voters" (remember? the folks that delivered Ohio in 2004?) give a damn about whether the honorable Mr. X will bring water to the valley and Mr. Y won't. You think the vaunted "security moms" are going for this? At the very least this will cause a lot of "values-voters" to stay home.

As to those "vote-for-me I'm more christian" candidates--it's far too late in the game. The coverup killed that tactic--it's like the earlier summer strategy where the Republicans were trying to position themselves as the "Party of Change" that they'd clean up Washington etc. Christ the last thing ANY republican candidate wants to talk about is this scandal.

The moralist right is finally collapsing under its own hypocrisy, the cognitive dissonance on this scandal is just too much to bear and so far the Dems have done a good job to stand out the way.

R.A. Porter said...

It's a little early to really see how this is going to shake out. We'll have more, and more significant, polling numbers late this week and early next. Plus, the only poll that really matters is still five weeks out. However, this Zogby poll data show no movement for the early days of the scandal. I don't think Zogby's the best source for accurate poll data, but it's available now.

You're sheltered in two relevant ways: you don't have to interact with a large number of right-wingers on a regular basis (of which I'm very jealous - I'm surrounded, here); and you're well-informed. You are still working under the assumption that voters are going to correctly identify Mark Foley's (and Denny Hastert's) party affiliation and that they're going to care in the way a reasonable person would.

H.L. Mencken said it best.

R.A. Porter said...

Oh, and I missed this. That's staying on message.

Note: I did not see the broadcast, and the single youtube link I found for it is a 20s loop of this image...I don't know if this is a doctored image or not, but wouldn't be shocked if it were true.

R.A. Porter said...

And...what the hell. I'm waiting to interview a candidate in a few minutes. I had five minutes to kill:
DNC website has
- The Tom Reynolds-Mark Foley Connection
- Why did GOP Leaders Sit on Foley Emails?
- GOP Implodes Over Foley Scandal.

Under "Democrats Making Headlines" on the DCCC's front page, there are links to WaPo and Times articles on Foley. (Neither story much touches on Dems, though.)

Josh is all-Foley, all-the-time now. Though I will grant that the other l-blogs are balanced.

Now, are the DNC and DCCC websites relevant? Not particularly, unless they start soliciting using Foleygate. Are l-blogs important? Meh. Is the MSM left-wing?

HAHAHAHA! That's funny! Sorry, I fell off my chair for a sec!

I'm sorry, but I don't see this disgusting and tragic abuse of power as benefitting the Dems. I see it blowing back up in our faces. Maybe that's just six years of trying to kick the damn ball and believing each time that Lucy's going to let me. Or maybe it's my complete lack of faith in the chewy center of the bell curve.

Brian B. said...

You Democrats are sooooo funny.

No one listens to Rush & etc. regularly except those that are already of that political bent (like me), so quit trying to imply that Rush has an effect on anyone else. He doesn't.

Further, the press is jumping on this most gleefully cuz it's a Republican that's a bad boy. If it was a Dem, they'd play it up too, but it wouldn't be such big "news" except for the jucier parts of the messages.

You have the might of the entire media machine behind you, with the exception of Fox and a few "right wing crazies" on the qaint old technology of radio, oh, and a few foaming at the mouth bloggers (who are obviously all lying of course).

I suspect that your party will make a comeback, but quit pointing fingers all around as you correctly acuse the Republicans of doing.