A prime example of the Republicans turning on their own media came on Morning Joe today where Joe Scarborough and Politico’s Jim VandeHei.
Here is the video:
Transcript via MSNBC:
Jim VandeHei: Let me throw in another name. We had Rand Paul did an interview with us, as well. And Rand Paul who is very close to Mitch McConnell who runs the Republican Party in the senate. he told us he’s going to start pushing for more lax marijuana laws, going to start pushing for a pathway to citizenship on illegal immigration. He said that this tea party conservatism that brought him power and some fame needs to recalibrate too and they need to use this libertarian strain to start to reach out to people in cities, in the Northeast, they can’t be a one-region party. again, it’s not just Bobby Jindal, it’s across the board where you have prominent, influential Republicans re-thinking what it means to a Republican. and that is, I think that is the one silver lining for the Republican Party from the results last week.
Joe Scarborough: By the way, Jim, that’s a big, big silver lining. a big silver lining. This is a party, this wasn’t a Goldwater type wipe out. It was a couple of percentage points in the popular vote. You have a president whose campaign team was brilliant and they outmaneuvered the Republicans tactically in nine states. no doubt, we were out of touch with voters on issues, but it was a huge tactical win for the White House, two percentage points. this wasn’t a landslide, and if we recalibrate and stop listening to the conservative media complex or whatever David Frum called it.
VandeHei and Scarborough, delivered no less than five Republican post election talking points. 1). Blame their own media. 2). Republicans just need to change a few positions in order to win. 3). The election was really close. 4). Obama didn’t win by much. 5). All the credit for Obama’s win belongs to his campaign, not the president.
This is all complete, total, and utter bullshit. The most fascinating point of the five is that Republicans seem willing to pin their comprehensive failures as a party on the same conservative media that they now depend on for their entire messaging. When Republicans blame their media for the loss, they are referring primarily to Rush Limbaugh and Fox News. Judging for his reporting, VandeHei spent the 2012 election cycle laboring under the delusion that Mitt Romney was going to be elected president, which explains why he spent so much time sucking up to Romney. For this reason it comes as no surprise that this utterly clueless gentleman can’t comprehend that what Rand Paul was suggesting was not a move to the middle, but a shift further right.
What is most telling in this whole blame Limbaugh and Fox spin is what Republicans aren’t saying. They aren’t saying they are going to change their belief system in order to be more welcoming to African-Americans, Latinos, young people, and women.
They think they can just make a few tweaks around the edges and win, but it is not going to work that way. After decades of telling members of their party that everyone on the media that isn’t on the right is part of the liberal bias conspiracy, do they really think that rank and file Republicans are going to just turn off Limbaugh and Fox News and stop listening?
Fox and the right wing media are out there spinning this election to viewers and listeners who want an easy excuse everyday. It is clear who has the power here, and it isn’t the Republican Party.
The idea that the GOP lost by a little bit is a total delusion. Democrats won 93% of the African-American vote, 71% of the Latino vote, and beat Republicans by 12 points with women. Obama also piled up 326 electoral college votes which was more than George W. Bush got in either of his two wins (271 in 2000 and 286 in 2004.)
Republicans are looking for an easy cop out when they blame the very media that they created for this defeat. There certainly are huge systemic issues in the GOP, but The reality is that it was the ideas of the Republican Party that soundly rejected by the American people not Fox News and Rush Limbaugh.