Friday, February 13, 2009

Former Republican to Obama: Drop the bipartisanship. We're not worthy.

This open letter to Obama from former religious rightwinger Frank Schaeffer is simply astounding. He takes every warning the left has made against bipartisan soul-selling and amplifies it - then hits it out of the park. He says:
  • The religious right and neocons who constitute the majority of the party are motivated by hatred and fear.
  • Both groups despise Obama and will do everything in their power to see him fail.
  • The show of civility in D.C. is just that - a show. "Rush Limbaugh and Ann Coulter are the norm not the exception," Schaeffer says.
  • There is no common ground with such people.
This passage is particularly illuminating:
The problem is that when you deal with the Republican Party you're talking to the polished characters in Washington. I wish you could see the hate e-mail's that I have received over the last two years because I supported you, letters calling for God to kill me, telling me that I hate God because I supported you and that I am "an abortionist" and worse a "fag lover" because I've written that I believe that you will be a great president.

What those senators and congressmen are telling you is not what their rabid core constituents are telling them. Their loyalty is to a fundamentalist Christian ideology on the one hand and American exceptionalism of perpetual warfare and hatred and fear of the "other" on the other hand. Between the neoconservatives and evangelical Religious Right Republicans you have no friends.
Schaeffer's prescription: Quit extending a hand and get in the GOP's face. Govern by winning battles. Most Americans are already behind Obama, and some of the rest will come around when they see the GOP exposed for what it is. "Americans are sick of Republicans," he says.
The Democratic Party won for a reason: the Republicans failed and have taken us all down with them! You're doing your presidency and America no favor by extending an open hand to the perpetually knotted fist of what has become the embittered lunatic fringe of our country. They would rather go down in flames than "compromise" their ideology.
He concludes:
As you showed us again at your press conference of Feb 9, you are a brilliant, articulate and decent man. Your Republican opponents are not decent people but ideologues bent on destroying you. To quote the biblical adage sir, don't cast your pearls before swine.
I hope Obama still reads Huffington Post.

No comments: