Election showed national GOP must change its approach

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board Published: November 9, 2012
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Doing so doesn't require abandoning conservatism, but finding common ground instead of ostracizing an entire group.

In the U.S. House, Republicans held serve on Election Day, coming away with a majority similar to what they have held the past two years. But in the Senate the GOP failed to gain any ground despite Obama and his poor record being at the top of the ticket. Republicans failed to win two highly attainable Senate seats — in Missouri and Indiana — because the candidates proved to be incompetent on the stump, with remarks about rape that rightfully torpedoed any chance of winning.

Liberal columnist Leonard Pitts Jr. suggested the GOP has “chosen to double down on its shrinking base. Worse, it has chosen to appeal to that base with a platform of fear mongering, xenophobia, demagoguery and inchoate anger so extreme as to make Ronald Reagan seem almost a hippie by comparison.” Yet criticism of the party isn't coming solely from liberals.

Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, who heads the National Republican Senatorial Committee, said after Tuesday night that, “Clearly we have work to do in the weeks and months ahead.” And the Washington Post's George Will argued that “unless they (Republicans) respond to accelerating demographic changes ... the 58th presidential election may be like the 57th, only more so.”

Harsh, perhaps, but also true.

by The Oklahoman Editorial Board
The Oklahoman Editorial Board consists of Gary Pierson, President and CEO of The Oklahoma Publishing Company; Christopher P. Reen, president and publisher of The Oklahoman; Kelly Dyer Fry, editor and vice president of news; Christy Gaylord...
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