February 07, 2012

The Republican Religious Division in Action

re: tonight's Romney battering.

I think it's evidence of a deep Republican religious division for those in the party who are not the usual cynical quasi-libertarians.   A quiet division, but one going to get more prominent. It will be spoken of in dog-whistle terms, much like the race baiting. As the GOP has operated successfully by igniting bitter division for decades, they mistrust the value of other persuasive techniques and will continue - now amplified by hundreds of millions of  unrestricted dollars.

Santorum, as a rather dickish northern Catholic conservative - is a golden oldie, here.  Gingrich is epically dickish-  evangelical by proxy of his Southern-ness.  He is very popular with people who are just like him.  Romney, who is simply a dick, is with a really pretty small though successful religion with something of an unshakable creep factor.  He has not yet gotten 50% anywhere in his own party- and Santorum has.  Pity the actual Southern Baptist. Actually, don't pity him, because he's likely to be at home in November canning peaches for the Apocalypse instead of voting. 

So it's going to get worse for a while. Note that Romney is not simply a practitioner- if you're comparing the religious issue to Kennedy- but a former Mormon Bishop.  Politicized Mormonism and  Republican Christianism are not really reconcilable, and I don't mean on ideological terms, although that's true too, but in terms of people being willing to submit to one another's authority for the sake of political organization.  
Many people, particularly social Darwinist religious zealots, are not going to want to share power with apostates and infidels of comparable beliefs if mutually exclusive details, at least not at the highest levels.

If I'm right, the race is not likely to settle down soon. States will gravitate more towards their largest  religious orientation, clouding the process.  And  Romney was damaged tonight, badly, by failing to dominate when he was expected to do so- a severe failure in front of Republicans, who commonly harbor a tropism for top-dog power.

Finally, what are the Republicans going to say about the President they haven't already, even if it's backed with hundreds of millions of dollars?  I don't see a new line of attack that's likely to stick (the Obama is Hitler thing has fizzled out a bit for a very large number of obvious reasons), barring, of course, a standard mishandled major catastrophe of one flavor or another.


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