Robert Reich: why Republicans don’t care what the nation thinks

Turns out, they really don’t need to care. Reich’s explanation, in part:

Public opinion is already running strongly in favor of President Obama and the Democrats, and against the GOP. In the latest CNN/ORC poll, 48 percent say they’ll blame Republicans if no deal is reached while 37 percent blame Obama. Confidence in congressional Republicans is hovering at about 30 percent; Obama is enjoying the confidence of 46 percent. And over half of all Americans think the GOP is too extreme.

Yet Republicans haven’t budged. The fact is, they may not care a hoot about the opinions of most Americans.

That’s because the national party is in disarray. Boehner isn’t worried about a challenge to his leadership; no challenger has emerged. The real issue is neither he nor anyone else is in charge of the GOP. Romney’s loss, along with the erosion of their majority in the House and Democratic gains in the Senate, has left a vacuum at the top.

House Republicans don’t run nationally. They run only in their own districts — which, because of gerrymandering, are growing even more purely Republican. Their major concern is being reelected in 2014, and their biggest potential obstacle in their way is a primary challenge from the right.

The combination of a weakened national party and more intense competition in primaries is making the Republican Party relatively impervious to national opinion.

This poses a large strategic problem for the Democrats. It could be an even bigger problem for the nation.

We can thank the conservative base-rube voters whose only concern in the voting booth is trying to control what’s happening in other people’s bedrooms and private lives through their personal Biblical interpretations and religious beliefs. NOTE: the one exception to government control over “private matters” is the hoarding of guns and ammo — that happens to be a sacred “right” to these voters.

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2 thoughts on “Robert Reich: why Republicans don’t care what the nation thinks

  1. We need to pass state laws in each state creating independent commissions to redraw districts so we can avoid these extreme, gerrymandered “safe” districts. That would go a long way towards fixing this gridlock.

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