This is just sad. Though I have to say that I’m not surprised.
Joe Klein writes:
In the next segment–the debate between Romney and Mike Huckabee over Huckabee’s college scholarships for the deserving children of illegal immigrants–I noticed something really distressing: When Huckabee said, “After all, these are children of God,” the dials plummeted. And that happened time and again through the evening: Any time any candidate proposed doing anything nice for anyone poor, the dials plummeted (30s). These Republicans were hard.
It amazes me that some people can be so blinded by their bigotry that they’d get upset when someone refers to immigrants as children of God. What kind of Christian Conservatives do these Republicans believe they are? Do they believe that God only likes some people and not others? And more directly, if you’re a republican and you allegedly believe in personal responsibility, hard work, self reliance,etc then why would you oppose anybody…let alone children who had no role in their parents decision to come to the United States… getting access to a quality education?
And this isn’t a “oh we just oppose illegal immigration,etc,etc” stance. I was a strong opponent of leinet immigration policies throughout high school, and I still believe in a strongly regulated border system with an emphasis on security, but being anti illegal immigration on policies that would prevent people from coming over and being anti illegal immigrant on policies that want to screw them over after they’re here are two seperate issues.
But there was worse to come: When John McCain started talking about torture–specifically, about waterboarding–the dials plummeted again. Lower even than for the illegal Children of God. Down to the low 20s, which, given the natural averaging of a focus group, is about as low as you can go. Afterwards, Luntz asked the group why they seemed to be in favor of torture. “I don’t have any problem pouring water on the face of a man who killed 3000 Americans on 9/11,” said John Shevlin, a retired federal law enforcement officer. The group applauded, appallingly.
I love these caricture “Team America” republicans who shame even REAL republicans. If you want to believe in limited government, thats fine. We can respectfully disagree, but if you’re political beliefs are based in fear rhetoric, base emotional appeals, and an absolute lack of warrants then you’re an embarrassment to the political process. I hate this when democrats do it and I certainly hate it when republicans do it. YOUR FEELINGS ARE NOT WARRANTS.
So who won? Romney walked in with 8 members of the group leaning his way and left with 14. The group thought he looked and sounded like a leader. Fred Thompson went from 3 supporters to 7–and I noticed a clever trick he used: he started almost every answer with a joke and the dials would go up and stay up as he meandered through his nondescript answers.
See this is what pisses me off. That there are so many people, particularly republicans, who vote on “presence”. Oh Romney “looked strong” even though everything that came out of his mouth was pure shit. And it’s not even that I disagreed with him, his answers, or lack thereof, literally failed to pass the test of logic. Even if you hold conservative beliefs, which many of my friends do, Romney’s wavering, flip flopping, and lack of authenticity are shameful.