When Republican business owners start enthusiastically bear-hugging Obama, if you’re Romney, you know you have a problem… The more sane among the Republicans are beginning to jump ship, and team Romney, instead of trying to win them back, by offering real solutions to the serious problems that confront our nation, has decided to double down on the Tea Party gambit, denying the realities of climate change, coming out against health care, and calling into question Obama’s belief in god.
In the wake of the national nominating conventions, Obama has been steadily pulling away from Romney in the polls. According to political poll watcher extraordinaire Nate Silver, Obama has gained 16.8% on Romney since September 3rd, when it comes to the all-important metric of electoral votes. According to Silver’s most recent analysis, if the election were held today, Obama would take 310 electoral votes to Romney’s 228, putting him back in the White House for a second term. Silver also states that, as of right now, Obama has a 86% chance of winning the popular vote. Silver even shows Obama with a 3.5% lead in Ohio, which, not to long ago was thought to be dead even. It would seem that the rambling of Clint Eastwood didn’t pay off the way that Republican strategists had hoped. And it probably didn’t help that Bill Clinton came along and reminded everyone just how much better off they were before the Republicans began to implement their extremist, slash-and-burn agenda. So, it didn’t come as much of a surprise to me today, when I read that Romney, who had said initially that this election was going to be all about the economy, has begun to talk about Obama’s godlessness. It reeks of desperation, but, to be honest, I don’t know what else he’s got left, now that all of the other lies have been exposed. All he has, it would appear, is the promise of voter suppression, and the lunatics that now form the base of his party. And he’s trying to energize them with a jolt of insanity.
On Saturday, while campaigning with televangelist Pat Robertson in Virginia, Romney said that, if elected, he would not, “take God off our coins.” “And I will not take God out of my heart,” the candidate said. Later, he added, “I will not take God out of the public square.” The implication, of course, is clear — that his opponent would do all of those things. Obama spokeswoman Jennifer Psaki was quick to respond, and say that these statements were “absurd”, and that the President had no intention of removing “God” from our currency, but, as we’ve discussed here before, we’re living in a post-reality world right now, where refutations like this just don’t matter. Now that it’s been said, people will run with the idea. In another week, we’ll probably be discussing Obama’s nefarious plan to have George Washington removed from the quarter and replaced with Charles Darwin. Nothing should surprise us at this point… Hell, according to recent polling 17% of registered voters still believe that Obama is Muslim. And that’s not even the worst of it. A new poll came out today stating that 15% of Republicans in Ohio think that Romney, a private citizen with no foreign policy experience whatsoever, is “more responsible” for bin Laden’s death than Obama. 47% say they “aren’t sure” which of the men deserves more credit. (Maybe they think that, since the hit took place outside of the United States, Romney, who’s something of an expert when it comes to moving American jobs oversees, had a hand in it.)
The sad thing is, this playing of the God card wasn’t even the worst of it this weekend. Even worse, in my opinion, was Romney’s decision to double down on anti-environmentalism, in hopes, I guess, of appealing to Republican voters who don’t realize that they live on the planet Earth. (My guess is that represents between 15% and 17% of Republican voters.) Here’s his exact quote, as shared yesterday, on Meet the Press – “I’m not in this race to slow the rise of the oceans or to heal the planet.” So, basically, he’s saying that he doesn’t give a shit that we’re experiencing record droughts, and that our crops are dying in the fields, while the polar ice fields are melting, and our ocean levels are rising, wreaking havoc with our weather. No, he’s proud to say that he doesn’t care about any of that. All he cares about, if you listen to him, is drilling for more oil, and removing what few environmental regulations that we still have on the books, so that companies can experience even more exponential growth. And here’s the really fucked up part… That will probably earn him points with the base of the rapidly devolving Republican party, who are convinced that jobs would flourish if only the rich were asked to contribute less, and allowed to exploit more.
Oh, and if you really want a clear illustration of just how confused the Romney campaign is at the moment, just look at their statements this weekend on health care. On September 9, Romney, after stating that there were a number of things that he liked about Obamacare, like the fact that those folks with pre-existing conditions can get health coverage, said, “Well, I’m not getting rid of all health care reform.” The following morning, however, he clarified. What he’d apparently meant, when he said that he’d keep some components of Obamacare, was “Obamacare must be repealed in its entirety.” According to a Romney aide, however, those with pre-existing conditions would still be able to find coverage, because “in a competitive environment, the marketplace will make available plans that include coverage for what there is demand for.” The free market, in other words, would solve everything. (The aide didn’t explain why it was that, prior to Obamacare, insurance companies were refusing to cover those with expensive pre-conditions. If I had to guess, I’d say that it probably has to do with excessive regulation and frivolous lawsuits.)
I don’t think I’ve seen anything go off the rails this spectacularly since Christmas Story 2.