Andrew Coyne utterly demolishes the silly idea that Bush won his re-election campaign by unleashing an army of fundamentalist Christians across the red heartland. I mean, he really blows that theory to pieces. Read it.
Then he asks:
When a candidate draws increased numbers of votes from groups not traditionally identified with his party, we usually call that “broadening the base.” So why the fascination with zombie hordes of theo-cons?
That’s real easy. It’s emotionally satisfying. The crazies are taking over is a lot easier to swallow than we fucked up and lost.
The Republican Party has a nut-job wing. Pat Robertson is real. James Dobson is real. Michael Savage is real. These guys have fans, and they voted. There’s no denying it. But there’s also no denying that if John Kerry faced Pat Robertson in an election the Republican Party would have to dig itself out of a smouldering crater.
45 percent of the people who voted for Bush are self-described liberals or moderates. (Earth to Democrats: That’s why he beat you.) Only 55 percent of the people who voted for Bush are conservatives. (See Andrew’s piece for the details.) And, as most of us know, there are many different kinds of conservatives. There are neocons and paleocons, Wall Street conservatives and religious conservatives. Not to mention plain old run-of-the-mill conservatives. It’s a fractious group of people who have little in common but, oddly enough, happen to wear the same useless label.
Zeroing in on only one of those factions and blowing it all out proportion will get the Democrats nowhere. It makes as much sense as Ann Coulter accusing every leftie in the land of being pro-terrorist. It’s not only dumb but exceptionally counterproductive.
If Kerry won the election I wouldn’t say it was because of Michael Moore and his stupid-ass movie. If it went that way it would have done so despite him.
(Hat tip: “American in Europe” in the comments.)