The Republican Party Is Falling Apart As Conservatives Threaten to Stay Home and Not Vote

Image: Drew Angerer/Getty Images
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Image: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Guess what? The media was wrong again.

Yes, once again, they sold you a bill of goods about Democrats not showing up for the midterms — not just because Democrats don’t show up at midterms (a historical trend), but also because there was an alleged “enthusiasm gap” ailing Democrats. Cut to dire predictions about how President Obama sucks because he can’t force Republicans to grow up and now America is suffering so naturally Democrats hate Obama so they won’t vote. Or something.

Republicans have been counting on Democrats staying home, and so once again they felt comfortable entering another race without a real platform. They are running on hate and negativity, presuming that the entire country feels as they do.

But just as in 2012 when the media sold you the narrative that the Obama voters were going to stay home, the media is wrong again. It turns out that it is actually the Republican Party that may be suffering from enthusiasm gap.

Republican whisperer Robert Costa writing with Karen Tumulty at The Washington Post brought some insight into “Late-season surprises” that “shake GOP confidence in Senate elections”.

Republicans have also been counting on an “enthusiasm gap” to carry them over the finish line. Polls show their base is more excited about voting than Democrats are.

But in states where establishment Republicans toppled tea party insurgents in primaries, such as Kentucky, Kansas and Alaska, the GOP is struggling to rally activists who feel their favorites were wronged.

Conservative firebrand Chris McDaniel, a Mississippi state senator who was defeated by Sen. Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) in a June primary, said he expects many of his hard-right supporters from around the country to stay home in November in order to send a message to the national party.

“Conservatives feel betrayed by elements within the Republican Party,” said McDaniel, who is challenging Cochran’s victory in state courts. “It’s always regrettable when people decline to take part, but thousands of them will, and I understand their frustration.”

So not only are Republicans losing elections they thought were possible, but the “GOP wave” has officially failed to show up for duty. On top of that, the Republican base feels betrayed and want to stay home in order to punish the party leaders for ignoring their wishes. But it seems nothing will get through to the Republican Party at this point.

Republicans are getting scared and starting to question the long term strategy of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, wondering if perhaps it was a mistake to refuse to work with Senate Democrats.

It was obvious that things were turning days ago after polls showed Alison Lundergan Grimes in the lead in Kentucky as Republicans pulled out of the Michigan Senate race in order to defend previously done-deal seats. Days ago the media was shocked as Democrats pulled ahead in several key Senate races.

Republicans love to race blind, basing their campaigns on the same belief in sentiment and ideologically distorted versions of reality with which they govern. Fox News and several pollsters enable the party’s epistemic closure. The problem for Republicans is that the rest of the country is not in their bubble.

If Democrats are successful with their ground game, the midterms could be quite a surprise for the media and Republicans.

35 Replies to “The Republican Party Is Falling Apart As Conservatives Threaten to Stay Home and Not Vote”

  1. I don’t really believe this, this seems like a feelgood story Dems and liberal will tell themselves. Opens us up for complacency!!!!

    GO VOTE!!!!

  2. Of all places don’t forget South Dakota.For all intents and purposes this was a done deal for the teahadist then this happen
    What you need to know about EB-5 in South Dakota

    If and right now its a big if we win in SD and Kansas its over as far as the Senate is concern and with the Governors races trending DEMS I just might watch fox for turdblossom meltdown. It would be comedy gold

  3. It is not complacency. If you have listened to ANY of these conservative activists for the last two years, they are angry. There is nothing feel good about this story. It is the reality on the ground. Just because you are scared about the election does not mean that people are writing feel good stories.

    Guess what? The same dynamic happened in 2010 and 2012. Republicans were given golden chances to take back the Senate, and they blew it with bad candidate selection, bad campaigns, and a fractured base.

    The reason why Democrats lose these types of elections is because they are afraid of any good news. Warning against complacency all of the time discourages people from getting involved. Election stories are snapshots of events on a given day. What is true today might not be true next week, but when taken together the ebbs and flows of a campaign are visible.

  4. Early Voting Numbers For Iowa And Florida
    Notice the difference in the requested ballots for Florida compared to votes returned in 2010. D’s are up 2.3% while R’s are down 7%! No enthusiasm gap in here. But the Dems need to get more of those ballots returned.
    Something similar in Iowa where the D’s have requested 1% more than they cast in 2010, while the R’s have 3% less. The D’s are doing a better job in getting those ballots returned this year. This might be due to the increased GOTV effort.

  5. The funny part? The conservatives think they are voting for people who will lower their taxes and let them carry guns on the street. Smaller government doesnt happen. When you are in power you need more government to protect you, especially when you are crooked

  6. hahahahahahaha! because they have decided to stand for nothing, the gop have suppressed their own voter turnout!I love this! democrats are fired up and ready to vote, we will have a great night.
    again the gop have nobody to blame but themselves. the party has been spending there time and effort appeasing the extreme views of only 2-5% of their base, they ignored the other 95-98-% who are sane. come on november 4!

  7. 5, 2,1….the NRA ad’s are gearing up! Libs really need to run some pro gun ads to mix things up in the right place! :)

  8. I am waiting for early voting in TN. The first day of early voting my husband and I will be there. Everyone needs to do their part. Find out when early voting is in your state and what the requirements are that you need to bring and spread the word.

  9. Dunno. Old Republican rubes have been voting against their best interests for decades, why stop now?

  10. “if the dems are successful with their ground game.” of course the dems will be “-successful with their ground game. why shouldn’t they be? worry about the gop’s ground game, which is non existent. you need people on the ground to gotv. no wonder repubs cheat in order to win; their ground game is pitiful.

  11. Nice try.
    It’s the losing party that fails to go vote. Meaning the GOP will turn out, but the Dems won’t.
    Wishful thinking.

  12. Individual GOPTP fundraising is down, too, and this has been attributed to republicans feeling letdown by their politicians. Remember, these tools promised they’d repeal Obamacare and that Romney would win in 2012, two promises they did not keep. This is a fact and is NOT wishful thinking. The only reason the RNC and GOPTP have been able to raise millions is due to the contributions of a few very wealthy individuals, unlike the democrats whose major sources of funds are millions of individual small donors. Personally, I think it’s about time some republicans woke up and realized that they’ve been abused, manipulated, and used by these so-called Christian politicians and their wealthy benefactors who have lied to them repeatedly. Many promises have been made but never kept, and bait and switch has become a GOPTP feature, not a bug. A loss of faith in the party is hardly what GOPTP politicians were expecting in the 2014 midterms, but it looks like it’s what they’re dealing with.

  13. I just got my mail in vote in the mail yesterday,,,,,,I’m in Florida, and you bet your patutie we are voting this mid terms!

  14. I remember on Nov 7th 2012 watching Faux News when Karl Rove had his meltdown screaming “My Numbers.My Numbers”..he believed his own bs numbers
    Now thats a feelgood story

  15. The GOP began to rot when it let in the religious right.

    And they were even warned by Barry Goldwater, America’s last authentic conservative:

    “Mark my word, if and when these preachers get control of the [Republican] party, and they’re sure trying to do so, it’s going to be a terrible damn problem. Frankly, these people frighten me. Politics and governing demand compromise. But these Christians believe they are acting in the name of God, so they can’t and won’t compromise. I know, I’ve tried to deal with them.

    “The religious factions that are growing throughout our land are not using their religious clout with wisdom…. I’m frankly sick and tired of the political preachers across this country telling me as a citizen that if I want to be a moral person, I must believe in ‘A,’ ‘B,’ ‘C,’ and ‘D.’

    “Just who do they think they are? I will fight them every step of the way if they try to dictate their moral convictions to all Americans in the name of “conservatism…

  16. One ting all voters resent id being taken for granted, the most recent example being Eric Cantor’s defeat in the face of a supposed sure thing.
    Be prepared for some dramatic surprises come Election night.

  17. Yes, Mark, Barry Goldwater’s words have come to fruition, and I will remember in November to vote Blue.

  18. I have been predicting this for some time now. I am a Voter Protection Chair and a Consultant/Oppo Researcher and i have told them in meetings that this would start to backfire on the GOP since 2010. It has been in the makings and people do not forget when they are used and lied to all for the sake of money and power to continue to do what they did an election cycle before. UNINTENDENDED CONSEQUENCES are starting to happen with the GOP and the methods they are employing are beginning to hamper their own base and independents, but they are too bull headed to see past their corporate noses.

  19. Yes we all must vote, but since many of the repub base are RWNJs I can see how they are turned off by their own candidates. Now will the repubs be able to get them out with their same old same old candidates, is another story. In the past it seemed to be that the repub base would vote for whoever had an R after their name. The repub base today is not the same as in the past. They truly would rather lose if they can’t get a pure by their standards candidate. We on the left have so much to lose, especially women and the men who support them.

  20. True, but the current repub base wants to literally take over the repub party. They seem to know that the repubs have to lose big time for that to happen.

  21. I would love to believe this, that the republicans will stay home on Nov. 4, but I’m not counting on it. I vote in every election, regardless. Rain or shine, sick or healthy, busy or not. I make the time to vote. This year it seems to be extra crucial. If the republicans take the House AND the Senate, we’re totally fucked. Don’t take anything for granted. Vote like your life depends upon it.

  22. Do not trust them. They assume by saying they’re ticked off at the candidates the won/lost in primaries, or with the party in general, the left will say “well then, we have this wrapped up”, or “I’m sure plenty of others will go vote for our party” and not bother showing up. Never trust them. Go vote anyway.

  23. Nice try sally.
    It’s the losing party that fails to go vote. Meaning the GOP will not turn out, but the dems will and dems will wip gop butts and there be a big turn out of dems and early voting already shows higher voting among dems than gop let that be a sign to u.

  24. Any day the GOP is kept out of majority power in any branch of government is a good day indeed. When a senate candidate will not admit to voting for her own parties nominee for president how can one get excited as a Democrat?

  25. folks, you are gonna hear desperate republicans and conservatives claiming republicans will win the senate back in a lanslide all the way up till election day- no matter what any polls say. this is all part of their plan to intimidate and discourage democratic voters along with their voter id laws. turns out, however, the voter id laws in Wisconsin and texas have just been tabled for this election cycle. now all the righties have left is to try to demoralize, harass and de-motivate democrats. they know all too well the races will, in fact, be close and every dem vote would be extremely important. unlike many elections in the past, this time, this cycle, your midterm vote could mean the difference. your votes are very important. don’t let the rightwing distract you. dems will set turnout records and vote in droves and dems will keep the senate. I have no doubt!!!

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