No doubt you’ve heard that the Republican Party is dying or already is dead. That, of course, is a Democratic Party fairy tale. Let’s consider facts.
In the 2016 election, Republicans won 46.1 percent of the popular vote. In 2020, they won 46.9 percent, with significant gains among Black and Hispanic voters. Seventy-two percent of Biden’s 7 million popular vote margin over Trump came from five states, but mostly from California.
In 2020, Republicans won half of the states. They gained 13 House seats and left the Senate tied 50-50. Even that, though, is because independent Senators Angus King and Bernie Sanders collaborate with 48 Senate Democrats.
Republicans hold a majority of state legislatures and a majority of governorships, not too shabby for a supposedly moribund party.
Republicans are alive and no amount of pretending otherwise is going to make them otherwise. A better factual case is that the Democratic Party is the one that requires the heart-clappers. The midterm election and possibly the 2024 presidential election may well bear that out.
Historically, midterm election seat losses are 30-plus for a president’s party when the president’s approval rating is less than 50 percent. Biden’s present approval rating is 41 percent of U.S. adults, according to Reuters.com.
This time around, Republicans also enjoy a righteous culture-wind advantage at their backs.
That gift is from Democrats who have assiduously cultivated liberal ideology: critical race theory and political correctness and wokeness and socialism and culture-canceling, ad nauseam.
A body might think the canceling Democrats should focus on their public image, especially given their razor-thin House and Senate majorities. But they don’t. They fear alienating their own far-left elements that perpetuate such wackiness. Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, and U.S. Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib and Llhan Abdullah Omar come to mind.
Party tension has led Democrats to ignore particular societal problems. It has also spawned bizarre proposals for addressing substantive matters like immigration, inflation and crime.
Incredibly, Democrats promote nonsense like defunding police and penalty-free crime, all in the face of steadily rising crime rates. In 2020, the year George Floyd was shot, Democratic calls to defund the police were ubiquitous.
That year, according to FBI data, the U.S. experienced its greatest annual increase in murder on record. In 2021, homicides in major American cities increased another 5 percent over 2020, the Council on Criminal Justice reported.
Yet speaking of two 2022 police murders, Democrat New York Councilwoman Kristin Richardson says, their deaths haven’t made her question her belief that “the NYPD should one day be abolished and the money spent on social programs.” In January, New York City reported a 38.5 percent increase in crime for 2021.
In California, a new bright line separates felony from misdemeanor theft and embezzlement. That line was $400. Then, Democrats addressed their state’s thievery problem by raising the demarcation to $950. Thieves now brazenly enter stores with calculators, enabling them to stop stealing below the $950 felony threshold.
Studies show a positive correlation between increases in crime rates and increases in inflation. Inflation in the U.S. soared 7 percent in 2021, the biggest increase since 1982. It has now grown 1.7 percent faster than earnings. Inflated prices cost the average family an extra $3,000 yearly.
Initially, Democrats pretended inflation was “temporary.” By December 10, 2021, it had become too obvious to ignore. Biden acknowledged to CNN’s Kaitlan Collins that while he recognized inflation “is a real problem,” he thought “it’s at the peak of the crisis.” On Feb. 23, energy experts said rising gas prices are likely to push inflation to 10 percent.
But President Biden said his “Build Back Better” plan would decrease inflation “because it’s reducing costs for ordinary people.” Fortunately, adult Democrat Senator Joe Manchin blocked BBB, saying “big spending equals big inflation.”
Possibly, the most difficult issue for Democrats to defend during the midterms is their record on immigration. Democrats are well known as the party of open borders. Republicans will characterize them as the party that eschews the rule of law.
Protecting our borders from the illegal movement of weapons, drugs, contraband and people is essential to our security, prosperity and national sovereignty.
On March 12, 2021, Secretary of Department of Homeland Security Alejandro Nicholas Mayorkas appeared before the House Homeland Security Committee where he denied the existence of a Southwest border “crisis.”
According to PEW Research, in 2021, 1,659,206 illegal aliens crossed our Southwest border. It marked “the highest number of illegal crossings recorded since at least 1960.”
The American public is mercurial. It can turn its opinion around on a dime. And midterm elections are far away; but not that far away. Democrats must purge their crazies and clean up their image.
They need to “build back better.” And soon.
Michael Smith lives in Southern Pines.