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Robert J. Elisberg

Robert J. Elisberg

Posted: February 27, 2007 01:30 PM

When a Party's Values Go AWOL


Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL) called for the assassination of Fidel Castro, saying "I welcome the opportunity of having anyone assassinate Fidel Castro and any leader who is oppressing the people." At first she had denied it, then acknowledged that it was indeed what she said. Adding, "It's an everyday situation for me." (Me, I floss.)

Pat Robertson, former GOP candidate for President, called for the assassination of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

Bill O'Reilly welcomed terrorist attacks on the city of San Francisco.

Ann Coulter called for the poisoning of Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens. And for the troops to frag Rep. John Murtha - military slang for soldiers to kill a superior officer. (These were both "jokes," she later said. Unlike most humorists, Ms. Coulter uses footnotes and must inform audiences after she has said something funny.)

Conservative radio host Hal Turner wrote on his website, "Any member of Congress who introduces, co-sponsors or votes in favor of any such amnesty will be declared a domestic enemy and will be considered a legitimate target for assassination."

Virgil Goode (R-VA) has proposed limiting people of the Muslim faith from entering the United States, so that they can't get elected to Congress.

Jerry Falwell said that the Katrina disaster killing 1,800 Americans was God's punishment on abortionists.

Newt Gingrich, rumored GOP candidate for President, recently called for new limitations on Free Speech in the First Amendment.

John McCain, leading Republican candidate for President, told a room of businessmen, "I want to keep health-care costs down until I get sick, and then I don't give a goddamn."

Ladies and gentlemen, meet Your Republican Party.

Meet Compassionate Conservatism.

Former Senator George Allen (R-VA) insulting a young man with a racial Macaccan slur.

Former Rep. Mark Foley (R-FL). White House religious adviser Pastor Ted Haggard, disgraced president of the National Association of Evangelicals. Former Rep. Duke Cunningham (R-CA) in jail. Former Rep. Bob Ney (R-OH) pleading guilty. Former Republican Majority Leader Tom Delay under indictment.

Vice President Dick Cheney shot a man in the face, and got off not only without reprimand, but the victim apologized to him.

George Bush, in the midst of 75% of Americans against the running of the Iraq War, has called for an increase of soldiers to go fight.

There's a pattern.

No outrage from Republicans.

There's a pattern.

No memorial after 9/11. Slow rebuilding after Katrina.

There's a pattern.

No minimum wage. Under-funding No Child Left Behind. Privatizing Social Security.

These don't happen in a vacuum. There's a pattern. To all these.

Not only no moral center, no moral edges.

Given that 75% of Americans are against the running of the Iraq War. Budget deficits have exploded, and big government has grown. And no social program. What does the Republican Party stand for?

Other than...see above.

There is a pattern.

If you are a Republican, is this what you want your party to stand for?

If you are an American, is this what you want your country to stand for?

If you are a human, is this what you stand for?

Because, right now, this is what the Republican Party is. These are not isolated faux pas. There is a pattern.

Imagine the outrage by Republicans if these statements were made by prominent Democrats. Now, imagine the outrage by Republicans after these statements were made by prominent Republicans - you have to imagine it, because it's non-existent.

Maybe there's no outrage spoken because there's no outrage felt.

There's a pattern to all this. And that pattern is the Republican Party today.

The G.O.P. says it has a target audience. But who realized they meant it had a crosshairs sighted on its back?

When Mel Gibson went on his pathetic rampage, it was noted everywhere that he was drunk at the time. Unfortunately for these people at the heart of the Republican Party, they don't have that excuse.

Assuming that there is a heart of the Republican Party.