I've been trying to understand why there is so much push-back from conservative Republicans in this election cycle. Whether legal or illegal, they're doing anything they can to roll back any progressive ideas to the era of robber barons in the early 1920s. Taken together, their tactics are alarming and seem conspiratorial. Let's see....
Voter suppression. The far-reaching attempts by Republicans to confuse the electorate--from attempting to purge voting rolls by Rick Scott in Florida, to calling voters with incorrect voting hours, or saying they can cast a ballot by phone, to last minute changes in voter ID laws, to restricting early voting hours to suppress the traditional "Souls to the Polls" vote after Sunday's morning service, to intimidating billboards that threaten prison time and a $10,000 fine for voter fraud, to forcing long, long lines for voters in minority districts, to redrawing congressional districts to weaken the Democratic vote, to calls saying that first-time voters need to bring their birth certificate with them to the polling place. There is systemic error and fraud in all elections, but the sheer scope of this is unprecedented, and indicates an active attempt to suppress the minority vote.
Attack on Women's Rights. The enormous number of state laws introduced to suppress abortion rights. State mandated vaginal-probe ultrasounds before an abortion. Missouri U.S. Republican Senator Todd Adkin saying that "legitimate rape" never results in pregnancy. Indiana Republican Senate candidate Richard Mourdock saying that he believes "God intends" any pregnancy, therefore abortion after a rape should be illegal. The Bork Amendment. Romney refusing to support equal pay for women. Romney promising to "get rid of" Planned Parenthood. His support for allowing employers decide if their insurance will cover contraceptive. His plans to make Social Security into a voucher program.
Money from Political Packs. The money pouring in from people like the Koch Brothers is staggering, and the ability of corporations to contribute vast amounts of money to political campaigns amounts to an attempt to buy the elections.
Does the Conservative Right really care about voter fraud, or abortion? Not really. They are desperate. The White Male voting block is now only 36% of the electorate. 2012 may be the last election in which the white male vote has any real say. By simple demographics, the country will soon no longer be white, and the Republican Party can no longer count on that constituency to maintain power. But rather than trying to appeal to the New America, the America of many colors and ethnicities, they are fighting a fight that cannot be won. Against demographics.
Mitt Romney leads among white men by 2-1. But the Conservative Right is not merely fighting for survival, they are fighting for identity. When they say they want to "Take Back America", they speak the truth. They want a white majority America, ruled by men. But that isn't going to happen.
America's role in the world has changed as well. A superpower is no longer needed or wanted. It is a world where diplomacy, not unilateral action is needed. The military, again the bastion of the white male, is less important.
These trends cannot be ignored or resisted. Just as demographic changes in Europe guarantee a Muslim majority within a few generations, so the U.S. will be a country of minorities.
The Republicans should have seen this coming, yet they are reacting as if taken by surprise. Now they see that within a few years, they will have much less political power. This was what the Tea Party was all about. It is what this decidedly racist Republican attempt to take the White House by any means is about. They are struggling, sputtering, gasping for their dying breath.
The make-up of the Nation has changed. The electorate has changed. If Obama is elected president, I predict it will be many, many years before we have another white male president. Or a Republican.