Republicans and the conservative movement took a setback in last night’s reelection of President Obama. As with any political moment of lasting consequence, right wing writers fled to their blogs to console, vent and do some soul-searching.
WaPo‘s Right Turn blogger Jennifer Rubin made the case for Republicans to give in on some social issues. “In fairness to Mitt Romney, he never once use gay marriage to stir up his base, evidence of his innate decency and, if one is more politically cynical, the lack of political mileage to be gained from the issue,” Rubin wrote. “In the future, Republicans for national office would do well to recognize reality. The American people have changed their minds on the issue and fighting this one is political flat-earthism. As with divorce, one need not favor it, but to run against it is folly, especially for national politicians who need to appeal to a diverse electorate.”
At RedState, Erick Erickson, also a CNN Contributor, said the exact opposite… “The usual hand wringing is occurring now about social conservatives causing the GOP to lose,” he said in a blog post early this morning. “Blame social conservatives if you must, but (A) you are lying to yourself and (B) if this is a fight you want to have, I’m happy to see you in the primaries in 2014. I like my chances.” Erick’s argument is that ill-worded remarks on rape and abortion by two GOP Senate candidates were the reason for the candidates’ failure to win their general elections– not their general pro-life positions.
Mark Tapscott at the Washington Examiner, in the style of Fox News’ Dick Morris, offered a mea culpa for his dead wrong election prediction. “Yes, I am eating crow. I predicted a 53-47 Romney win” Tapscott wrote. “I was wrong, chiefly because, I think, the pollsters were, contrary to my pre-election conviction, using the right turnout models. So President Obama eked out a narrow, but clear victory.” (The Examiner is apparently so disoriented by the outcome of last night’s election, Tapscott and his editors forgot to give his post an actual headline. The headline placeholder on his post is “Please Enter Headline Here!!”) Here’s one: “I f–ked up. Please Forgive.”
Republicans undoubtedly had reason to be depressed last night. But it was National Review’s Jonah Goldberg who wrote about the cure: “There is time to take a time out and have a drink (or 50),” he wrote. “It’s worth remembering that the cause is only lost if you leave it and choose to never find it again.” He did, however, caution conservatives against crawling in a hole and dying. “I hear lots of people saying they’re done with politics. I understand the impulse. But that way lies ruin. … Our problems are too great and our cause too just for that,” he wrote.
The Daily Caller‘s Matthew Lewis had no real words of advice, comfort or wisdom. His tip for the Republican Party: Reassess and maybe journal a little? He writes: “It’s time for the GOP to do some serious soul searching. … The good news is that the GOP has a strong bench for 2016. But winning will require more than just a good candidate. It will also take some fresh ideas.” (Just don’t go to Lewis for those “fresh ideas.” He’s fresh out at the moment.)
Brent Bozell, President of the Media Research Center, was, as ever, dissatisfied with the news media’s coverage of Republicans. He illustrates his point by quoting an article in the NYT:
“This passage from Peter Baker of The New York Times says it all about Obama’s press avoidance all the way to Election Day: ‘Nor has Mr. Obama faced many tough questions lately, like those about the response to the attack in Benghazi, Libya, since he generally does not take questions from the reporters who trail him everywhere. Instead, he sticks to generally friendlier broadcast interviews, sometimes giving seven minutes to a local television station or calling in to drive-time radio disc jockeys with nicknames like Road Kill.’
“How can you read that and not think journalism is road kill?”
Of course, citing the New York Times may not be the best way to prove the point that the mainstream media isn’t effectively doing its job.