And, naturally [at least in the convoluted mental universe of blogging], the most qualified people to give them advice are the people who want them defeated at all costs. The semi-pious, semi-gleeful pseudo-advice pieces penned under the rubric of What the GOP needs to do are about as entertaining as they are non-partisan.
So, of course the helpful liberal and progressive bloggers were more than willing to latch onto the racist commentary of Young Republican leader Audra Shay, with caustic observations that she proved that such thought among GOPers could not be dismissed as an individual case because--essentially--Michael Steele, Tucker Carlson, and Mike Castle--had not all jumped forward breathlessly to condemn her.
Perhaps--just perhaps--they were leaving the job to Ms. Shay's peers among the Young Republicans, like YR National Committeewoman Cassie Wallender, who wrote a lengthy piece regarding Shay and instigated a dialogue that has included other YR officials.
Quoth Wallender, in part:
I continue to hold that stating “You go get ‘em” and “LOL” to racist remarks are not acceptable for YRs. Her continued inappropriate responses to the situation and utter lack of an apology are quite disconcerting. I do not want to see infighting as we are all on the same team ultimately, but this is unacceptable especially from any of our elected officers. Even despite the red flags of spin pointed out above, and giving Audra the benefit of the doubt regarding racism, at the very best this was extremely poorly handled by turning it into a political attack on people completely uninvolved and by showing allegiance to those making racist statements while choosing to squarely turn her back on those speaking against racism.
Then there's Andrew Dorsey, VP of the Tampa Bay YR:
In the age of Facebook, Twitter, etc… everything we say will be judged for our entire lives, no matter what the age. I’m sure I’ve said things that disqualify me from public service, even when I was 16 years old on old BB and AIM conversations in the 90s. I advise everyone with interest in serving their country, live the standards to which you hold your leaders.
About this situation. It’s one thing for people to post racial comments on your Facebook page, it’s another thing entirely for Audra to brush over them as if they didn’t matter.
Truth in advertising forces me to admit that there is also this anonymous comment in the thread:
Congrats on perpetuating the myth that polititians cannot be trusted. You are a blowhard, opportunist attention whore. You have proven that even without a shred of proof, you will drop an association in a moments notice if it might make your day easier, or benefits you somehow. If I were to use your meter, you are quilty by association and must be racist for having followed your ex-friend’s page in the first place. Oh, and your claim that you ’saw something that was morally wrong, and as a conservative I took it upon myself as an individual to stand up, and I do not regret it at all’ ??? You didn’t ’stand up’, idiot. You typed something on a keyboard. Leave it to a budding polititian to think that saying or writing something is actually productive. You are counter-productive, to say the least. I on the other hand, am well aware that posting this message will benefit nobody. I just had some free time, and you were the first idiot that popped up on the news wire……
Curiously, however, very few of the viral blog responses from the usual suspects seem to have covered the actual internal pushback against Shay from her contemporaries.
Perhaps that's because they are not really interested in the success of rebuilding efforts in the GOP so much as they are in making such efforts virtually impossible.
Speaking not as a Republican but as a third-party advocated who knows he's not going to see a politically successful Libertarian Party come along any time soon, it's an interesting process to watch, which exposes pretty much everybody's modern-day fascination with dirt over policy and political expediency over actual investigation.
Thanks to its social conservative wing the GOP is flirting with a break-up that will make the Whig dissolution of the 1850s look minor. What's hold the OCBC Party together at this point is actually the electoral system that the Repubs and Dems rigged to share power between them to the exclusion of pretty much all other points of view. The Dems would be well advised (in the same spirit they offer gratuitous help to the GOP) not to be too successful in destroying their enemies, because the American people may well decide that the time for monolithic parties has come and gone.
[h/t Waldo, who is hardly responsible for the uses to which I put his links]