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Are we heading for a major political schism?

Discussion in 'Sports and News' started by Batman, Feb 9, 2008.

  1. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    Anybody else getting a sense we might end up with three, or even four, political parties by the 2012 elections?

    I listen to a lot of talk radio. Listening to a number of hosts and callers, it's obvious the hardcore right is not enthusiastic about McCain. They'll probably fall in behind him now that he's going to be the Republican nominee, but there's a sense on that side that a more "conservative" candidate is needed. If McCain is elected, and doesn't do things to make that side happy, could the right wing of the Republican party split off in 2012 and put up a candidate of their own? From the primary vote totals, it seems there's quite a bit of support there. The Republican totals were about half what the Democrat totals were, mostly to conservatives staying home.

    As for the Democrats, the feud between Clinton and Obama has turned quite nasty. It's not likely to get better over the next few months of primaries and the convention. The Michigan-Florida primary issue, if Hillary wins it (and likely, with it, the nomination), is going to piss off a lot of Obama supporters. And if Obama wins the nomination, can anybody really see Hillary and Bill quietly fading into the background?
    So it seems there could be a split on the Democrat side, too. It might not be as deep a philosophical split as on the Republican side -- the Dems seem to be bickering more over the Clinton muscle machine and the desire for a fresh face -- but it looks like Obama could carry some weight as a viable candidate. And, no matter her positions on issues, Hillary will always have enough support to be viable because of her gender and her last name.

    Sooooo...could we be heading for a major division amongst the two major parties? I think the Republicans would stay together as long as Hillary is in the race, and certainly through this election cycle. But if the Dems start to fracture a bit, will the folks on the right feel more freedom to go off on their own? And if one or the other Democatic candidates gets a controversial nomination, will they grudgingly form a ticket for the sake of the party? Or split off on their own?
  2. sportschick

    sportschick Active Member

    I'm not sure why anyone considers McCain "not conservative."
  3. Football_Bat

    Football_Bat Well-Known Member

    McCain will tap a hard-core Republican who can appeal to the security, fiscal, and evangelical factions as his veep. That will keep the GOP stapled together. (If he does not, all bets are off.)

    I think the Democrats are too eager to win in November to fall apart this year. The loser will put on a brave face and back the winner in the end. You won't see a Hillary-Obama ticket or vice versa, but you won't see a schism, either, with victory seemingly at hand.
  4. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    I agree on that, as far as this year goes. It's too late in the game for any major faction of either party to split off, and everybody on both sides is well aware that doing that will pretty much hand the presidency to the other. There's too much at stake for both parties to split off right now.
    But there are also bigger things happening within different factions of both parties. Not to mention a growing number of disillusioned people from both parties that are starting to see Democrats and Republicans as equally shitty, corrput and useless.
  5. crimsonace

    crimsonace Active Member

    His stance on immigration (he voted for amnesty).
    He voted against the tax cuts twice (although what some conservatives often leave out is that he did so for a conservative reason -- they didn't contain enough corresponding spending cuts).
    His stance on campaign finance reform (which conservatives see as a violation of the 1st Amendment).
    He was part of the Gang of 14 on judicial nominees, which many conservatives see as a compromise.
    He mocked the Christian right during the 2000 campaign, which offended them (and some haven't forgotten it ... witness the coalescing of support for the decidedly-not-conservative-on-anything-but-social-issues Huckabee).

    But looking at McCain's site, he comes across as a conservative, although he's a bit more pragmatic/realistic when it comes to politics.
  6. forever_town

    forever_town Well-Known Member

    Count me as one of the disillusioned. I see too many crooked people on both sides of the aisle to be enthusiastic about any of them. I've also seen too many good people on both sides of the aisle to demonize either party.
  7. zeke12

    zeke12 Guest

    When you unpack that list, though, Crimson, those are really offenses against Bush-con dogma, and not at all evidence of a less than conservative ideology.

    There is no direct conflict with conservative ideology and McCain's stance on immigration, at least that I can see.

    The Bush tax cuts thing is just a can of worms, because, as you said, he said at the time that he voted against them because the spending cuts didn't come along. Of course, the spending has only gone up, but now he supports making them permanent, making his position an offense against logic rather than ideology.

    Likewise, conservatives should be ideologically in favor of campaign finance reform in some form, I would think.

    The Gang of 14 could certainly be seen as a shot directly at the party orthodoxy, but, again, there really isn't any ideological trouble with it.

    In other words, the only thing not "conservative" about McCain is that he doesn't fall in line to GOP orthodoxy ALL the time. Now, one could make a fairly compelling argument that respect for hierarchy and falling in line are part of the conservative ideology, and I wouldn't necessarily disagree.

    But that's the real disagreement with McCain. That he opposed party orthodoxy, not that he doesn't represent the party ideologically. At least from where I sit.
  8. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    No major schism. The country has been much more divided in its history than we are right now and there have been times when people's wallets were much lighter than they are right now, which sometimes kicks up political dust. It's not even close.

    It's been Republicans and Democrats for more than century and a half, with only the most minor differences in the government you get from either party, despite people being so rabidly for or against one or the other, as if there is a difference. That isn't changing soon, let alone by 2012. In fact, the two parties are more entrenched than ever. Each will spend hundreds of millions of dollars to try to get someone elected president. You can't even play in the game without being able to raise that money. It dooms any attempt at serious third party--the people trying to buy access are not going to fund someone with little chance--and will doom attempts at third parties even more so in the future as the dollar figures behind getting elected to office continue to rise.
  9. writing irish

    writing irish Active Member

    Meanwhile, Orwell's ghost is busy penning revised definitions in the Newspeak dictionary for the words "amnesty" and "surrender." Getting very tired of people using "amnesty" to refer to something that isn't amnesty and "surrender" for something that isn't surrender.
  10. Ben_Hecht

    Ben_Hecht Active Member

    The rich, hard right regards campaign spending restrictiuons as a free speech issue, i. e. "You mean, I can't BUY the office? Who are you, little man?"

    There are exceptions (Romney, at least this go-round).

    But it can also be unnervingly easy (Jon Corzine, and the NJ governorship).

  11. All of those considerations are convincing if you're a hold-my-breff-until-I-turn-blue wingnut. You've already taken care of the tax cut. McCain's not for amnesty, by any reasonable definition of the term. He's just not for roun-em-up-and-build-a-wall Tancredoism. Buckley v. Valeo is a bad decision, but M/F has been so thoroughly swiss-cheesed it hardly counts as campaign finance "reform" any more. The Gang of 14 was a "compromise" in that the D's completely collapsed and promised never to filibuster as long as they still had a theoretical right to do so. (As witness what happened since 2006, the R's have no good faith on this issue at all.)
    I mean. lord, talk about making the perfect the enemy of the good.
  12. zeke12

    zeke12 Guest

    Right. And few mention that Ronald Reagan wouldn't pass a lot of those litmus tests, either.

    The GOP has some rather deep divisions among the Evangelicals (64 percent for Huck in Kansas!), the paid conservative wingnuts (viva Duncan Hunter!) and the rest of the party.
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