Thursday, November 15, 2012

Republicans, Ignored (by Nevada's Republican Governor)

This week, the Republican Governors' Association has been meeting in Las Vegas. Oddly enough, Nevada's own Governor has been schmoozing with the political major leaguers in Washington, DC MIA. Any guesses as to why Brian Sandoval isn't meeting with his fellow Republican Governors in his own state?

Most likely, he did not want to be caught in the middle of this.

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-LA) strongly condemned Mitt Romney Wednesday night for remarks the former Republican nominee made blaming President Obama’s re-election on “big gifts” for minorities and women.

“That is absolutely wrong,” Jindal told reporters in Las Vegas at the Republican Governors Association meeting. “Two points on that. One, we have got to stop dividing American voters. We need to go after 100 percent of the votes, not 53 percent — we need to go after every single vote. And second, we need to continue to show that our policies help every voter out there achieve the American dream, which is to be in the middle class, which is to be able to give their children the opportunity to get a great education, which is for their children to have even better-paying jobs than their parents.” [...]

“If we’re going to continue to be a competitive party and win elections on the national stage and continue to fight for our conservative principles, we need two messages to get out loudly and clearly: One, we are fighting for 100 percent of the votes, and secondly, our policies benefit every American who wants to pursue the American dream, period,” he said. “No exceptions.”

Of course, Jindal was reacting to this.

"The Obama campaign was following the old playbook of giving a lot of stuff to groups that they hoped they could get to vote for them and be motivated to go out to the polls, specifically the African American community, the Hispanic community and young people," [Mitt] Romney told hundreds of donors during a telephone town hall Wednesday. "In each case they were very generous in what they gave to those groups." [...]

"With regards to African American voters, 'Obamacare' was a huge plus — and was highly motivational to African American voters. You can imagine for somebody making $25—, or $30—, or $35,000 a year, being told you're now going to get free healthcare — particularly if you don't have it, getting free healthcare worth, what, $10,000 a family, in perpetuity, I mean this is huge. Likewise with Hispanic voters, free healthcare was a big plus."

Pivoting to immigration, Romney said the Obama campaign's efforts to paint him as "anti-immigrant" had been effective and that the administration's promise to offer what he called "amnesty" to the children of undocumented immigrants had helped turn out Latino voters in record numbers.

"With regards to Hispanic voters, the amnesty for the children of illegals — the so-called Dream Act kids — was a huge plus for that voting group," he said. "On the negative side, of course, they always characterized us as being anti-immigrant, being tough on illegal immigration, and so forth, so that was very effective with that group."

"The president's campaign," he said, "focused on giving targeted groups a big gift — so he made a big effort on small things. Those small things, by the way, add up to trillions of dollars."

Once again, Mitt Romney and so many of his fellow Republicans refuse to acknowledge the new demographic reality of Nevada, and of the entire country. And way to piss off Latino voters, along with African-American and young voters, even after the election is over. Perhaps Mitt Romney is aiming for his picture to be entered into the dictionaries... Next to the definition of "sore loser".

And this is why Brian Sandoval is staying away from his fellow Republican Governors, even as they meet in Las Vegas. He would much rather hobnob with both Harry Reid and Dean Heller in DC. And most definitely, he would much rather receive prestigious awards (even if they are based on a myth) than sit around with grumpy Republicans complaining about what happened last week.

After all, Brian Sandoval is ambitious. And he may yet have a future. Mitt Romney, on the other hand, is quickly on his way to becoming a relic of the past. And the Republican Party is still struggling to figure out whether to adapt for the future or keep wishing for an idealized version of the past.

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