Judging by his letter yesterday to House Republicans, Speaker John Boehner didn’t learn the lesson of this year’s elections. The GOP’s problem is not their lipstick. (More)
I’m not an expert on lipstick. Mrs. Squirrel doesn’t wear any because her lips – like most squirrels’ lips – look just lovely framed by whiskers and that adorable patch of white fur beneath her nose. But I digress. The topic of lipstick arose when our twins, Nancy and Michelle, watched an animated movie.
“Would you like a pet warthog, dad?” Nancy asked.
“No, sweetie,” I said. “Real warthogs aren’t like the one in that movie.”
“What if we put red lipstick on him?” Michelle suggested.
I chuckled. “No, sorry. I don’t want a warthog.”
“What if we put pink lipstick on him?” Nancy pressed.
Several minutes and lipstick shades later, Michelle’s whiskers twitched in understanding. “So the problem isn’t the lipstick, but the warthog?”
“Exactly,” I said. “Now you can explain politics to Speaker John Boehner.”
Mrs. Squirrel had another movie ready by then, so I didn’t have time to explain to the girls about Speaker Boehner’s letter to House Republicans yesterday, titled “The Value of a Majority.” You can probably estimate the Nuttitude Quotient just from the title, or you could if you had my NQ formula. Which you don’t, because I haven’t finished my thesis yet. But again, I digress.
The gist of Speaker Boehner’s missive is that House Republicans and Republican state governors are now the last line of defense upholding a “banner of freedom, economic opportunity and limited government.” He claims voters elected him and his Republican colleagues to force President Obama and Senate Democrats to lower tax rates and close loopholes, roll back regulations, chip away at Obamacare, and cut spending.
If that sounds a lot like Mitt Romney’s platform … it is. The only part of Romney’s plan the Speaker’s letter doesn’t mention is “entitlement reform,” which is GOP code for privatizing Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. In short, Speaker Boehner claims a mandate for a platform that lost by over 3.5 million popular votes and lost nine of the ten swing states in a 332-206 Electoral College landslide. Indeed more Americans votes for Democrats than Republicans in U.S. House races. Speaker Boehner held his House majority only because of his party’s gerrymandering after the 2010 Census.
Speaker Boehner is convinced Republicans can win in 2014, and in 2016, if they continue to obstruct President Obama and Senate Democrats while retooling Republicans’ election tactics and “reaching potential voters from all walks of life.” As an example, he cites the possibility of immigration reform …
… tacitly echoing the common GOP fantasy that most Hispanics are ‘really’ Republicans except for that issue. Just tweak the rest of the GOP message – put a better shade of lipstick on the warthog – and our nation’s growing Hispanic population would return to their ‘socially conservative’ roots, Republicans tell themselves. Yet poll after poll after poll shows Hispanics are more supportive of marriage equality than Americans overall. Data also show Hispanics are less conservative than Americans overall, want a larger government that provides more services, and – among second- and third-generation Hispanics – generally support women’s health care freedom.
The plain fact is that Republican policies appeal mostly to older, white men, or what Fox News commentator Bill O’Reilly called “traditional America.” He then launched into a rant against African Americans, Hispanics, and hardworking families, whom he lumps together into “the entitlement vote.”
And then there are women. O’Reilly says “Abortion is settled law in the USA but it should be discouraged because human DNA is present upon conception.”
Well, guess what, Bill. Human DNA is also present in hair follicles, and skin cells. Should we discourage tweezing eyebrows and shaving calluses? You can also find human DNA in teeth. Should we ban dentistry? While we’re on the topic, sperm is “essentially a blob of DNA with a tail,” but I haven’t heard Republicans push for laws against men masturbating. Just sayin’.
The radical right couldn’t even pass a so-called ‘personhood amendment’ in Mississippi. Fact is, I don’t think even most American men want to see women die of septicemia after being denied an abortion during a miscarriage … while a doctor callously says “This is a Catholic country.”
Yes, that happened, last month, in Ireland.
The Republicans’ problem is not their lipstick. It’s their warthog policies.
Admittedly, that’s unfair … but only to warthogs.
Good day and good nuts.