The Midterms: Exterminate Republicans

I was a devoted conservative Republican for 53 years. Today’s Republican party must be exterminated (electorally). It’s in thrall to a cruel monster of depravity, making war on truth, rule of law, human decency, and every principle and value America used to stand for.

The country is ruinously divided. Our president should try, at least, to unify us. Trump does the opposite. Cynically, evilly, intentionally stoking division. I just listened to a Massachusetts senate debate where the Republican banged on about “poisonous politics.” I thought, how dare you? This from a Trump lover and constant defender.

Fools will always be suckers for demagogues and con artists. Those cheering the poison Trump spews at his rallies are a disgusting spectacle. He’s encouraged them to beat up protesters — and flattered Nazi demonstrators in Charlottesville, where one of them killed a woman — yet he calls Democrats an “angry mob.” And “divisive.” Perhaps fortunately, caring not a fig for the rest of us, he makes no effort to gain broader support.

This is not “conservatism.” Conservatism is not blowing up the budget deficit and national debt. Not trade wars and protectionism that screw the many to benefit a few. Not betraying America to a Russian dictator. Not abandoning our hard-won global leadership. Not abandoning human rights and democracy. Not breaking up families. Not enflaming divisiveness. Not tolerating corruption. Conservatism is not denying reality (like about climate change). Dishonesty is not conservative. It’s not tearing down our law enforcement agencies with lies. Not degrading the nation with swinish behavior. Conservatism is not xenophobia and racism. It’s not misogyny. Conservatives don’t call Nazis “very fine people.”

The Republicans are the party backed by Russia, our enemy, which subverted our 2016 election to put them in power — because Putin knew how bad Trump would be for America.

Are Democrats perfect and without sin? Tell me about it, I opposed Democrats for half a century. And if I see things through a partisan lens, it’s still really one shaped by my decades of Republicanism. But it’s the lens of an open eye, not blinded by partisanship. Now, eyes open, I see no comparison between the parties.

And worse is yet to come, when Trump’s criminality is fully exposed by the Mueller investigation, sending into overdrive the Republican war on America’s civic soul.

So decent, responsible Americans must vote, everywhere, against Republicans (with few exceptions, like for New York governor). I used to think highly of local GOP Congress members Stefanik and Faso; I endorsed Faso in 2016. But Republican control of Congress must end.

With all the attention on that battle, the importance of the other 35 governors’ races may be overlooked. But they are indeed critical, because those governors will be in office during the next redistricting after the 2020 census. Last time around, in 2010, Republicans specially targeted state legislatures, and got control of most, enabling them to gerrymander the bejesus out of the electoral maps to perpetuate their power. Democrats have since been getting more votes than Republicans, yet Republicans snare more seats thanks to gerrymandering.

Republicans have also become masters of vote suppression, imposing ID requirements, reducing early voting, closing polling stations, and purging voter rolls, all cunningly targeted against non-white, elderly, and poorer voters likely to back Democrats. Stopping them from voting. For example, North Dakota has passed a law requiring a street address for voting. Indian reservations — guess what? — don’t have street addresses. This will probably mean defeat for Democratic Senator Heidi Heitkamp. Meantime, such vile voter disenfranchisement tactics may well have made the difference in three key states Trump narrowly won in 2016, giving him the presidency. (And they have the chutzpah to talk about “election fraud.”)

Democratic governors can veto Republican gerrymandering and vote suppression schemes. One noteworthy governor’s race is Georgia’s where Stacy Abrams, a black woman with a tremendous background of accomplishment, faces a cringeworthy Trump sycophant flaunting his almost sexual love for guns. He’s also the Georgia secretary of state overseeing the election (refusing to recuse himself) and trying to keep as many blacks from voting as possible. He’s canceled more than a million voter registrations, including 50,000 new ones — mostly by blacks. To steal the election.

“Disenfranchisement” was an overused buzzword some years back. But now it’s a huge reality, with the Supreme Court having eviscerated the 1965 Voting Rights Act; it even upheld North Dakota’s atrocity.

There’s yet another card Republicans are playing from the bottom of the deck. Exploiting their control of the federal government, they’re gaming the 2020 census, by underfunding it and adding a citizenship question to scare off Hispanic respondents (and lying about it), with the aim of undercounting areas where Democrats tend to concentrate. So there will be fewer legislative seats for those areas; and fewer electoral votes for those states.

And as election day nears, watch out for a blitzkrieg of disinformation, dirty tricks, lies, and smears, targeted against Democrats wherever they have a chance of winning, not only from Russia, but financed by tens or hundreds of millions in Republican dark money. There’s a great film detailing how it was done in one state, Montana.

In all these ways Republicans are destroying our democracy, destroying everything that made America great. They must be stopped and never allowed to have power again. That will probably be assured by demographic trends, should they lose in 2020. And if the country remains divided — with Republicans a permanent disgruntled minority — so be it. They’ve forefeited all legitimacy.

This blog post might sound hyperbolic. At one time, not long ago, I would have strongly condemned such extreme rhetoric. But so far has this country fallen that now I consider it accurate and necessary. I never imagined politics could become so black and white. I am heartsick.

I know I won’t persuade any Republicans. Tribal partisanship blinds them. My intent instead is to impress upon others what the stakes are.

If younger citizens vote in equal proportion to oldsters, Republicans would be annihilated. And the election’s results will affect younger people for a longer time. Yet most don’t vote. Why? Like everything about politics, it’s cultural. Young people are not being acculturated to voting. It’s so Twentieth Century; something their dowdy parents do, not their buddies. The effect is to drop out of our collective civic life. As though politics has nothing to do with them. They will find out too late how wrong that is.

Vote. Vote as if our future depends on it. Because it does.


6 Responses to “The Midterms: Exterminate Republicans”

  1. Mighty Moose Says:

    the author of this screed is not a Republican as he claims to be. He is a partisan, left-leaning Democrat.

  2. rationaloptimist Says:

    I have made it clear I left the Republican party. And I am the most right-leaning Democrat in existence.

  3. Mighty Moose Says:

    you may have been a Republican, but you are no longer. Your hatred for the party disqualifies you. If you think that the racial politics and socialism is good for our country, then you have betrayed you principles.

  4. rationaloptimist Says:

    And you DARE to talk about “racial politics!!”
    Yes, I now hate my former party with every moral fiber of my being.

  5. Mighty Moose Says:

    OK, you can have your victim groups: Blacks, Hispanics, Asians, transgenders, gays, women, and who knows what they’ll come up with next. You can have your hordes of freeloaders and jihadists swarming into our country. And don’t forget M13 and our cartel amigos. You can have Democratic Socialism and higher taxes. You can have them all. I’ll have something else. Wherever Trump leads us will be better than the nightmare that the Democrats have in store for us.

  6. Wolfgang Says:

    Wow! Great piece Frank. And it looks like a right wing white extremist has entered your list of followers. I love the phrase “You can have your hordes of freeloaders…etc.” As if they were something he could give away. As if these were not just people, trying to get by. Placing violent misnomers on the majority of these people is a typical right wing tactic and smells of Nazi-era scapegoat-ism. Like religious zealots, you will probably have little success trying to convert them. and like the people in Mexico Beach Florida who lost their homes, but still think that climate change is just a temporary anomaly – because their hero, Donald Trump says so. And we all know he’d never lie….

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