GOP, Integrity Lost

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The Republican Party has lost its integrity. All the money of the Koch Brothers and Sheldon Adelson, will not buy that integrity back. Integrity matters in democratic elections, and will make a difference in the November 2012 election.

Oxford dictionary defines Integrity as, "1) the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; 2) the state of being whole and undivided".

The Republican Party is no longer even trying to appear honest. Lying, unabashedly,  has become a primary tactic in their election processes. Here are just a few examples:

Republican favoring ads paint a picture of Obama cutting over $700 billion from Medicare benefits to beneficiaries. Fact is, this saving of $700 billion comes largely from cutting fraudulent payments and over payments to health care providers and pharmaceutical companies. Medicare recipients lose nothing in the way of Medicare benefits.

Republicans are publicly calling for Todd Akin to step down from Senate race in Missouri as if to distance themselves from his policy positions on contraception and abortion. In reality, Republicans have voted repeatedly in the House of Representatives to outlaw abortion including forcing rape and incest victims to carry the fetus to birth, regardless of the wishes of the rape or incest victim or family in the case of a minor. This includes Paul Ryan who has voted for these measures in the House. There is, in fact, no distance between the Republican Party in government and the policy positions of Todd Akin. The apparent distancing of the GOP from Akin is a lie.

Romney's supply side, trickle down economic proposal will improve the economy, jobs, and lower deficits. This is a blatant lie. Simple logic dictates that if consumer demand is not being met by a shortage of capital for producers, supply side tax policy and trickle down economics will improve the economy and grow jobs. The lie Romney's campaign is touting is the assumption that this is the case with the American economy, today. It isn't. In fact, the current economy is growing at about 1.5 to 2% because consumer demand has fallen off precipitously since the onset of the Recession in late 2008. In this economy, growth will occur when consumers, both domestic and foreign, are able and willing to go spend money again. Increased demand will cause employers to produce more goods and services to meet that demand.

The stock market is sitting near highs not seen since before the 2008 recession and banking crisis. Profits for corporations are high, and in some cases setting new records. Large companies are sitting on nearly 2 trillion dollars in cash they would love to invest in the growth of their sales and company, but, the demand simply isn't there to produce more goods and services, and grow their revenues and profits even more. The Romney plan to cut taxes on wealthy investors in these companies would result in companies hiring more workers and expanding their production.

There are two lies perpetrated here. The first is that this economy is suffering from companies not having access to cash to grow their business. This is simply not the case. The second is that the Romney plan would grow the economy. The Romney plan does little to nothing to put more money in the hands of consumers. His plan would curtail unemployment benefits, food stamps, fire more government workers increasing unemployment, and add nothing to worker retraining and education to better fit unemployed job skills to available jobs. His plan would reduce consumer demand, at least in first two years, and make the economy worse.

On this integrity issue, the GOP is engaged in a kind of civil war, brought on by the leadership's attempt to become a big tent party, similar to the Democratic Party. The result however, has become a disintegration of the Party. Within the Party are fighting factions between moderate social and fiscal Republicans and Tea Party Republicans, between Evangelical based social policy conservatives and more secular fiscal conservatives. This is the opposite of integrity for a political party. As the Civil War of the 19th century threatened the integrity of the United States, this civil war within the GOP has resulted in Republicans targeting Republican incumbents for removal from office. At some point, this has to lead to tactical and strategic gains for the Democratic Party, if they are shrewd enough to exploit the internal strife of the GOP.

The GOP has, according to polls, suffered losses in support from suburban white women on the abortion and contraception issue, the Latino community on the immigration issues, the Jewish community and independents who do not want to see vouchers without cost of living adjustments replace their Medicare and Social Security programs.

Integrity requires living up to your word. Republicans said they were going to run on jobs and the economy. They have abandoned that strategy, realizing it was not working for them, and shifted to the Medicare lies and misrepresentations. This too will likely not work for them. A large majority of Americans like the Social Security and Medicare programs as government assured programs, and the only reforms they want are the kinds of reforms that will insure the preservation of these programs for themselves and their children.

Ultimately, however, the Republican Party will not be able to escape the reality that it was largely Republican efforts from 1996 through 2008 that brought about the downturn in the American economy through deregulation and lack of oversight and accountability, and by failures to strengthen the finances of the consuming middle class, which did not have the capacity to spend the country out of this last recession, which was the case, in large part, in previous recessions before the turn of the century.

Republicans are intent on advocating for the same platform agenda that preceded the Great Recession, and expecting a different result. According to Einstein, that is insane. Though suggesting that Republicans have lost their minds is likely an overstatement, stating that they have lost their integrity is an understatement. And credibility with voters will be the next major loss experienced by this new disintegrated, Grand Old Party.

GOP operatives are not being honest with voters, and the Grand Old Party is no longer whole and undivided. By definition then, the GOP has lost its integrity. And integrity matters in free democratic elections. If Republicans gain seats in Congress and win the White House, it will mean our democratic election process is no longer free and functional. Let us hope that is not the case. 

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This page contains a single entry by David R. Remer published on August 23, 2012 12:09 AM.

Partisan is Extremist. was the previous entry in this blog.

Voters Unite! is the next entry in this blog.

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