Last week, Democrat Kathy Hochul won the most-conservative House district in New York by focusing on her Republican opponent's support of Paul Ryan's plan to gut Medicare. The resulting question became whether Republican leadership would recognize the problem their party faces, or bury their head in the sand, ignore the public, and double-down. Not shockingly, they chose the latter.
"I worship the ground that Paul Ryan walks on," said former vice president Dick Cheney, who left office with a 13% voter approval rating.
"Medicare will be part of any agreement to begin to reduce our long-term debt," swaggered Mitch McConnell, Republican leader in the Senate. What he importantly left out was the only thing that matters. "I'm not going to put a number on the overall package," he went on, aware that GOP proposals have been scaring off the public, though he did try to obfuscate the issue by adding, "but we all know what the driver of the debt is."
(Yes, we all do know what the driver of the debt is: waging two wars simultaneously, a $1.4 trillion defense budget, and the lowest tax rates in a half century. Not Medicare. But thanks for playing the game.)
Sen. McConnell (R-KY) didn't leave well-enough alone. He went on, "Frankly if it were up to me, we'd be discussing Social Security as well."
In case you had any doubt, there you have it. Despite their words before the 2010 election how the Republican Party was the biggest defender of Medicare, here you have the GOP's Senate leader and former vice president saying on the record that they are for cutting both Medicare and Social Security.
(Side note: in Conservative World, "cutting" Medicare and Social Security means privatizing them, which means eliminating them.)
Know, too, that if Republicans had succeeded in winning the Senate in 2008, rather than just the House, a bill would be on the president's desk right now to eliminate Medicare and Social Security. Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell ("if it were up to me") just told you.
In fact, imagine if Republicans also controlled the White House. It would be law now.
But then, why just imagine it? Republicans are so insistent that America is a conservative nation, maybe it's time to end gridlock and find out. At a certain point in life, sometimes you have to let people show you who they are. Only then can the public finally decide once and for all if that's the road they want to keep traveling.
So, I say, if you truly want to see what a conservative America would be, it's time now to consider voting Republican. Seriously consider giving Republicans in 2012 exactly what they want -- let the Republican Party win the House, win the Senate, win the White House. And let the Republican Party finally get to bring all the issues that are the core of their conservative beliefs into reality, and make them the law of the land. Let conservatives who "want My America back" have it. And finally the nation will get to see the reality of Ronald Reagan's "Shining City on the Hill ™."
Give the Republican Party everything it wants.
Everything. Absolutely, completely, totally everything. No hedging. No compromising. The whole package. A true, conservative, Republican vision.
This is that America.
Eliminate Social Security.
End unemployment insurance.
Make all abortion illegal.
Remove government oversight of Wall Street banks.
Remove government regulation of corporations.
Make collective bargaining by union employees illegal.
Cut benefit packages for schoolteachers, nurses and all public employees.
Stop government funding of social welfare programs, food stamps, and low-income public housing assistance.
Increase government subsidies to Big Oil companies.
Increase tax breaks for pharmaceutical company "direct-to-consumer" advertising.
Lower the tax rate for millionaires.
Eliminate taxes for corporations.
Allow corporations to stop providing health insurance for employees.
Remove government regulation of insurance companies.
Let cable companies set their own rates.
Let Internet providers block competitors.
Close the Department of Education.
Close the EPA and eliminate environment protection laws.
Get rid of FEMA, cut federal disaster aid.
End Affirmative Action.
Eliminate the requirement that suspects must be read their Miranda Rights.
Allow police to enter private homes without warrants.
Get rid of needing a court order for wiretaps.
Let anyone carry a gun and without registration.
Ban gay marriage.
Let police stop whoever looks illegal and require proof of citizenship.
No referring to the existence of homosexuals in schoolbooks.
Increase the defense budget.
Declare war against Iran and North Korea.
Continue fighting the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Increase our military presence around the world.
All of this.
All of it.
And so much more. That's just the first 100 days.
No cherry-picking only the issues you like. That's the conservative agenda. That's their Shining City on the Hill ™.
That's your America.
The Republican Party's American Dream.
This isn't about single issues. This is about who the Republican Party is.
The Republican Party has long been able to flimflam the American public to vote against its self-interest because Democrats have always blocked enough of the GOP's worst far-right instincts. But if you want to see who the Republican Party truly is, then give them all of this, give them everything they want. In four years, the nation will feel so demeaned, the GOP will cease to exist.
And if Republicans try to flim-flam you by saying the same about Democrats, remember the truth: when Franklin Roosevelt had everything his way, the American public elected him four times.
Be careful what you wish for, you might get it.