Wednesday, December 18, 2002

There may be hope for Andrew:
LOTT VERSUS THE GOP: This is beginning to remind me of the internal strife of the British Conservative Party. Trent Lott's voiced nostalgia for segregation is not even close to a forgivable mistake. It was morally wrong and politically suicidal. But if he refuses to leave, the damage could get even worse. Now there are signs that the paleo wing of the Republicans, characters who deep down believe that even a Republican with ties to the racist right is preferable to a Democrat, might rally to his defense. The Novaks and Buchanans and Weyrichs see an ally under threat. They will not accept Lott's departure easily. Nor will some Senators who view themselves as members of a club that rarely turns on its own. And the way in which some Democrats are gleefully using this to advance the notion that the GOP is synonymous with bigotry will only provoke the Republican Party's instinctual self-defense. And so the paleos could acquire partisan support and the split could deepen. Maybe this is all part of Sid Blumenthal's master-plan. If so, then Ann Coulter is dancing to Sid's tune perfectly.
He at least acknowledges that there is a "paleo wing" of the GOP that is at peace with racist appeals (if not closet racists themselves). But will he acknowledge that the "paleo wing" has been a significant component of the Republican party's electoral success over the last few decades? Wait and see. BTW, I am not, as Mr. Sullivan suggests, saying that "the GOP is synonymous with bigotry". No, I am saying that the GOP's policy of appealing to bigotted attitudes (the "Southern Strategy") inextricably ties the Republican party to that particular evil. It deliberately embraced the cockroaches in order to achieve political power. The fact that the resulting stain has become visible and that people are starting to point is not the fault of those who are doing the pointing. UPDATE: Mr. Sullivan suggests that Bush didn't call for Lott to step down because he didn't want to interfere with the perogatives of the Senate Republicans. Everyone who truly believes that please raise your hands. Is it outside the realm of reason for Andrew to consider that the reason Bush didn't call for Lott's to step down was because Bush didn't want to offend the cockroaches? Bush talks the good talk. I don't believe that he is personally racists (albeit within the context of my comments below to Avedon Carol). I also believe his denunciation of segregation was sincere. But Bush believes even more in political expediency and sees no problem with embracing the cockroaches if it will give him a few more votes. He said as much during the 2000 campaign when he steadfastly refused to show Pat Buchanan the door.

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