The first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem and I have to hand it to the Republicans for actually making it that far. With more people believing in ghosts than identifying themselves as a Republican, the party knows they've got some serious work to do if they're ever going to win another election and thankfully, they've decided it's time for a re-branding effort. When I heard about this, I thought it was great news, the party realizes they're at risk of becoming a fringe, opposition party, it's time to get some fresh faces out there to revitalize the party!
And then of course, they showed who the fresh faces are: Newt Gingrich, John McCain, Jeb Bush, Eric Cantor, Mitt Romney, Bobby Jindal, Sarah Palin and Haley Barbour. There's only one clichéd internet meme that can properly sum this up:
And to make matters worse, they're calling this the National Council for a New America. Wait a minute, "New" America? What's wrong with the old America? Well, they did break it, but still... why do they hate America so much that they need a new one? I guess after that whole Real America thing didn't work out, they just feel they need to start all over.
In all seriousness, these are the people you thought would reconnect the Republican Party with the average voter? Really? I'm pretty sure when you're trying fix a failed brand, you don't go with the people who messed it up in the first place. If a plumber makes your leaky pipes worse, you probably shouldn't trust him to do something about your flooded basement. Let's take a look at our future New American leaders:
Newt Gingrich - Newty is pretty much the poster boy for what screwed up America, the prelude to Bush Era neoconservatism which reignited the culture wars. God & guns, fear & smear, etc. As noted earlier this month, Gingrich (an admitted adulterer) reemerged as a national figure to call Barack Obama "anti-religious." When I think of who would make a great leader for this new and refreshed Republican Party, I can't think of a better candidate than the ultra-polarizing, 65-year-old ex-Speaker of the House who's been in politics since 1974.
John McCain - Excellent strategy Republicans, when looking for someone to revitalize your party after a crushing defeat in an election just six months ago, go for the guy that lost the presidency. I'm sure no one will remember the vile, disgusting campaign where he and his constituents essentially called our current president an anti-American terrorist who will kill your baby. No, he's definitely the key to winning over hearts and minds.
Eric Cantor - Hey, we finally found someone under the age of 65, so that's a start. Unfortunately, that's also the end. Cantor's pretty much like a male version of Sarah Palin - empty suit, emptier head. I suppose we could call him John Boehner in training. Here's Cantor really hyping up the whole re-branding process.
Haley Barbour - The governor of Mississippi. Good thing the GOP has him to rebrand their party, because I bet Mississippi would've been up for grabs in the next presidential election! I know the Republicans have been having some trouble with such a progressive, liberal state like MS, so I'm sure a southern, career politician over the age of 60 will give them a huge helping hand.
Bobby Jindal - Oh Bobby, you're a never-ending source of entertainment. I can understand why the Republicans are pushing Jindal, they want to show that they also have a young, charismatic non-white guy... or they're just big fans of 30 Rock, but "the Republican Obama," this guy is not. In reality, Jindal is just another neocon, he supports a constitutional ban on flag burning and he believes that he actually performed an exorcism (and no, I will never get tired of that story). Although I wonder if the Republican base will constantly refer to Bobby by his real name "Piyush" and demand to see his birth certificate, much like they do with "Hussein Obama."
Sarah Palin - The biggest embarrassment in American political history and the Republicans want to trot her around again? I know I've been sarastically joking throughout this list, but for Sarah, I need to just come right out and say it to the GOP - you're supposed to be re-branding, you morons! You don't revitalize your party by bringing out Governor Avon Lady! Look, I know she's Neocon stroke material and she likes to shoot things, but she is possibly the most disgusting politician in America today and I will never apologize for saying that. Sarah Palin epitomizes exactly what's wrong with today's Republican Party and if they're using her to reconnect with voters, they'll be in the history books right next to the Whig Party very soon.
Jeb Bush - But as bad of a choice as Sarah Palin is to fix your tainted image, at least her name isn't Bush! Really Republicans, REALLY?! You're going to try to go to this well for a third time? You're going to try to use Jeb Bush as a figurehead of the new GOP while his brother just finished up the worst... presidency... ever? Dubya's been out of office for 101 days and his approval ratings are still dropping and you're going to enlist his brother?! I believe that is the very definition of "balls." Or "completely detached from reality," I'm not sure which. Considering how popular Meghan McCain is, I think you'd have better luck using Jenna Bush instead.
There you go folks, this is what the Republican Party came up with - old white men, career politicians, empty suits, relatives of the worst president in history, people who believe in exorcisms and the hockey mom pitbull with lipstick. This is literally the best they can do, go even further to the right and say "good riddance" to folks like Arlen Specter. They believe losing moderates will "purify" their party as they set up shop in the idealogical fringe section of America. The party of Lincoln is long gone, hell, this isn't even the party of Reagan anymore, this is the party of wingnuts.