Monday, December 29, 2008

You call that 'hope?'

A prominent conservative activist in California says reports of the Republican Party's demise in his state have been greatly exaggerated.

Mike Spence, president of the California Republican Assembly, acknowledges that John McCain's 24-point loss to Barack Obama in the Golden State was not exactly a vote of confidence in the GOP.

Since 1900, the only Republican nominee for the White House to be trounced by a wider gap in California was Alf Landon, President Franklin D. Roosevelt's challenger in 1936.
And Spence admits that it's probably not a good sign that registered Republicans do not constitute a majority in a single California congressional or legislative district.

Already, many districts drawn specifically to protect solid Republican seats are no longer safe. Take the 44th Congressional District, which stretches from Riverside to San Clemente. Lawmakers carved it out as a conservative bastion, and Republicans have routinely won landslide victories there. Yet the Republican incumbent, Ken Calvert of Corona, squeaked to reelection last month by just two points, making him a ripe target for Democrats in 2010.
But Spence says it would be a mistake to underestimate the raw coalition-building power of today's California GOP. In fact, thanks to an explosion of fresh ideas, a new Republican majority is just over the horizon.

Conservatives can take heart, he said, in the strong support of Latinos and African Americans for Proposition 8, the November ballot measure that banned same-sex marriage.

"There's at least one issue we agree on," he said.

Spence, a former Mormon bishop who serves on the West Covina school board and advises the National Right to Life Committee, also sees Republican resistance to tax increases as attractive to many Californians.
Gay marriage and taxes! Of course! Why didn't the Republicans think of that before? Somebody get John Boehner on the phone!

Oh, hey, here's a thought! While you're trying to unite your state around freeloading and homophobia, why not throw in a little racial hatred for good measure?

Oh, right, because that's already cutting into all those huge gains from Prop H8, and then some.

And the party's hard line on illegal immigration has hurt its standing among Latinos, a group that grew from a 7% share of the electorate in 1992 to 18% last month.

"That's a very important issue to Latino voters," Baldassare said.
No, you think?

Really, the only thing sadder than the story itself is the headline:

    Conservative sees reasons for hope in season of gloom
I suppose that's one way of interpreting the facts as the story lays them out. Another would be:

    Conservative curls up into fetal position, pulls covers over head, and pretends his entire world isn't falling to pieces all around him
But I guess that would be mean.

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