Strange Bedfellows: The GOP Helps Clinton, Fearing Obama Victory

Game on, folks: looks like the GOP has decided that McCain's only chance is against Hillary Clinton, and they are pulling out all the stops to garner more "support" -- in appearance only -- to help defeat any chance of a Barack Obama nomination.

This is classic tactic -- not only a GOP one, but also a Democratic one: remember gaming the system during their primaries to keep their players in the race longer? The Democratic interference was less likely to kill a viable candidate's chances -- the entire Republican field sucked; now it simply sucks with an army of one instead of many. But the Republican party has played this game to great effect before: remember the Lamont/Lieberman primary? ePluribus Media covered the GOP/Lieberman alliance at that time:

As long as we're aware of it, we can counter it and let our own voters decide. Let's not be faced with another Liebermanesque type of "victory" due to Republican manipulations.

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Via TruthOut, an article by Amanda Garrett of The Cleveland Plain Dealer details what Republicans refer to as "The Plot" -- as in, yet another Republican plot. (It's kind of like "the math" and a case of persistent Athlete's foot.)

It started a few weeks ago when conservative radio powerhouse Rush Limbaugh suggested that his Republican following cross over during the primary to vote for Clinton. Clinton, Limbaugh argued, would be easier for McCain to beat in November than Obama.

Soon, local morning radio show host Bob Frantz echoed Limbaugh on WTAM AM/1100, and the buzz began to grow.

Cuyahoga County Republican Chairman Rob Frost tried to tamp down the temptation. He contacted Republican voters and appeared on the Frantz show urging Republicans "not to heed the siren call of Rush Limbaugh and others."

"Elections are not something you should be playing games with," Frost said last week during a telephone interview.

Yet temptation was strong.

North Ridgeville Republican Hazel Sferry said she was kicking herself all day Tuesday after voting for McCain.

Don't get her wrong. Sferry supports McCain.

But after she voted, she ran into her niece who told her about "the plot."

Her niece, Republican Sherry Newell, crossed over Tuesday after hearing Limbaugh. Newell said she voted for Obama because she thought McCain had a better chance against him.

Regardless, Sferry said she thought it was a great idea to mess with the other party if it helped McCain win.

"I don't mind being deceptive to politicians," she said. "They are deceptive to us."

Now we see a whole bunch of interesting pieces about Bill Clinton appearing on the Rush Limbaugh show, and I run across people who are obviously Republican shills in thin guise as Hillary Clinton supporters trying to play out new sets of anti-Obama talking points.

It's not pretty.

One such shill started a thread over on DelphiForms entitled If Obama were white... -- obviously trying to effect more of the potential race-card outcry, and trying to sound like a voice of reason but only succeeding in coming off as sickeningly condescending:

If Obama were white, with the same tremendous talents and abilities, with the same resume of 1/2 of one term in the US Senate, with absolutly NO foreign policy experience as an adult or at the federal level, never having run a business, met a payroll, served in the military, acted in any kind of executive capacity and was 46 years old that white person would never be considered for president, possibly as a vice-presidential candidate but only possibly.

I know this is a very senseitve area but I believe it is debate worthy.

I like Obama and I am a Clinton supporter but I believe that this is what Ms. Ferraro is saying.

The reasoning made no sense. Military experience as a pre-requisite? Why -- because he's male? Or because he's not a white man?

My response:

And again, that's bullshit.

"with the same resume of 1/2 of one term in the US Senate, with absolutly NO foreign policy experience as an adult or at the federal level, never having run a business, met a payroll, served in the military"

Well, let's see -- we'll just check out our current "executive" qualifications: Bush had no Senate experience, no foreign policy experience as an adult or at the federal level, ran several businesses into the ground, wimped out of his military service. He served as a governor, but didn't do a very good job. ...simply holding positions that expose someone to certain levels of responsibility does not -- in any way -- equate to actually having viable experience in that role. Bush is a perfect example of that.

Face it -- very few Presidents, never mind Presidential candidates, had any foreign policy experience prior to taking office that could have prepared them for the job. Military service is not a prerequisite for the Presidency, nor should it be -- the Presidency is a civilian post.

...what the hell does meeting a payroll have to do with Presidential qualifications? Seriously -- he's not shooting for an accountancy.

The reason behind my use of Bush as an example was two-fold:

  1. He is a perfect example of why those conditional pre-requisites fail, and
  2. I suspected that this person was a Republican, and thought this would help reveal the true colors.

Sure enough, an idiotic response came back:

Bush was significantly older, had military experience in jet fighter flying, had executive experience both in politics and out and came form a poliyical savvy family. Your analogy is defeated and my contention stands.

Wow -- what inanity.

I also noticed the typical Republican-shill tactical equivalent of a foot-stamp, "Your analogy is defeated and my contention stands."

Here's the takedown. Note: I initially left out the military point and posted it later when I realized it, but I'm posting the whole thing together here.

Your analogy is bogus, and the more you try the more obvious it becomes.

Let's do it by the numbers, shall we?

  1. Assertion: Bush was significantly older

    Yeah, so was Reagan -- and he was technically incompetent due to the onset and progress of Alzheimer's Disease, but he remained President. Technically, Obama is old enough -- do you have any idea what the ages of the previous Presidents were? Let me clue you in about who some of the youngest were:

    AGE # Name
    42 26 Theodore Roosevelt
    43 35 John F. Kennedy
    46 18 Ulysses S. Grant
    46 42 Bill Clinton
    47 22 Grover Cleveland

    Mmmmm...judging by the list, I can see why you're so scared of Obama, tho. A Roosevelt, a Kennedy and a Clinton seem to stand right out there.

    Nice try, but don't leave your day job.

  2. Assertion: [Bush] had military experience in jet fighter flying

    Technically true, but Bush had no practical military experience being deployed anywhere of consequence, and his service overall was a joke -- the equivalent level of training required to learn to fly a private jet would be sufficient for anyone to run on base on that.

    Additionally, two important points:

    • There is no military-experience pre-requisite to qualify one for the office of the Presidency. It is a civilian role.

    • What kind of military experience does Hillary Clinton have? Since you seem to think that military experience matters, where's Clinton's?

    Case closed, pinhead. Try back later, when people are sleeping.

  3. Assertion: had executive experience both in politics and out

    Bush's executive experience proved that he was an incompetent executive -- he drove every business he ran into the ground financially, just like he's done to our nation today. His governorship screwed up the state of Texas and served as a model of the best we could have hoped for in terms of how little damage he might do to the nation, but he blew that model right out of the water and broke new grounds in incompetency.

    Is that the type of experience you prefer for a future President to have? It certainly doesn't seem like a very intelligent qualification from where I'm sitting.

  4. Assertion: came form a poliyical savvy family

    Political connections born of a family that has prospered from war profiteering and been involved in some of the most corrupt, illegal national scandals of our century are not positive contributing factors toward the consideration of a President. If anything, those "connections" and that "political savvy" simply promise more of the same in terms of corruption, and a lot less work for the people of the nation. Not much of a qualification. Try again.

There's another good analogy, too, that helps quell the idiotic "experience" meme:


How good Are experienced presidents, anyway? Suppose you had to choose between two Presidential candidates, one of whom had spent 20 years in Congress plus had considerable other relevant experience and the other of whom had about half a dozen years in the Illinois state legislature and 2 years in Congress. Which one do you think would make a better President? If you chose #1, congratulations, you picked James Buchanan over Abraham Lincoln. Your pick disagrees with that of most historians, who see Lincoln as the greatest President ever and Buchanan as the second worst ever, better only than Warren "Teapot Dome" Harding. Both served in what was probably the most difficult period in American history, where slavery and secession tore the nation asunder.

So, it's game time folks.

The Republicans are up to their usual tricks, and we have to step up our efforts to expose and mitigate them.

The interesting part here, tho, is that we've gotten much better and seeing through and taking down their rhetoric and propaganda -- they're running scared. A word to the wise -- a scared, cornered animal is dangerous...and I suspect these weasels are rabid.1



1. No offense meant to real, actual weasels.

No votes yet


on Democrats doing the same to Republicans by encouraging Democrats to vote for Romney in Michigan? And how does it work to take a stand against Republicans voting for Clinton when Obama has encouraged Republicans to be a "Democrat for a Day?"

"Where do you stand on Democrats doing the same to Republicans by encouraging Democrats to vote for Romney in Michigan?"

I thought it was stupid, petty and very Republican of them.

"And how does it work to take a stand against Republicans voting for Clinton when Obama has encouraged Republicans to be a "Democrat for a Day?""

I am not taking a stand against Republicans voting for Clinton vs. Republicans voting for Obama -- I support people voting ~genuinely~ for whoever they want to have for a candidate, not trying to manipulate the outcomes.

...I missed that Obama reference -- got a link to a good chunk of the context?

I'd like to both Clinton and Obama win over a lot of ~genuine~ Republican votes, from voters who'd rather see one or the other over McCain and will vote Democratic in the November election, regardless of the candidate.

I think Obama is more likely to draw crossover voters that way, but I think either candidate is a damn sight better than John "Bush III" McCain.

to keep people from gaming the system is to have closed primaries. It isn't a perfect solution but will make it more difficult. I have also heard this has happened in previous elections too but it is probably getting more attention this year because of the echo chamber and close primary.

There have been reports of websites and mailers encouraging crossovers for Obama for a couple of months. The first I heard about it was the mailer that went out in Nevada. This was denounced as an official campaign mailer and the Obama precinct captain who took credit for the mailer resigned. I have only heard about a similar situation happening in Texas and Florida and have not spent any time researching to see if it has been more widespread than these three states.

Here are a couple of links to posts on those I have read.

"Democrat[s] for A Day:" Obama's National Stratagem

Bush Latte: Obama "Democrat for a Day" scheme in Florida, not only in Nevada?

E-mail to send to Texas Republicans

There was also an article in the Houston Chronicle about Republicans voting in the Democratic primary - In Democratic primary, expect a GOP turnout: Perhaps fueled by Clinton dislike, many Republicans to vote for Obama

I guess it looks like a lot more of the same old politics to me, each side doing what they can to get their candidate elected. It is hard to say who is going to benefit or be hurt more by these tactics. I have read so many arguments about what is being done that it is turning me off of the political process more and more everyday. Maybe that might be the end result, more distrust and dislike of the system we have in place.

Anything that can help reduce the ability to game the system is good; anything that can help ensure reliability ultimately helps the people.

I think the Republican strategy is backfiring -- the piece I cited gave an example of Republicans voting for Clinton per Rush, and for Obama per some other anecdote, because some Republicans think that Clinton is easier to beat and want to keep Obama from becoming the nominee while others think that Obama is easier to beat and want to prevent Clinton from becoming the nominee.

Hopefully, it'll be a wash in the end.

In the meantime, though, the Republican operatives are definitely moving forward into various online forums and starting to push talking point rhetoric against whichever candidate they want to skewer...I see more examples against Obama using spurious logic, so I generally post rebuttals that are (hopefully) simple and clean; I've tried to get some folks to help gather the propaganda against both Clinton and Obama, along with the facts that settle the matters, but apparently nobody is interested in creating a useful repository against the rhetoric.

It's a tad frustrating, 'cuz if I find any kind of new swiftboating meme against any candidate, I try to sink it quickly with facts.

Heh -- I've been accused of being a Clinton-lover and an Obama-lover; whoever the apparent phantom du jour is.