Sometimes, from the outside, it’s hard to understand if you’re misunderstanding what’s going on in the Republican party, and I have been in the middle of my own panic, so I may have missed this. But doesn’t it seem like we’re witnessing something very, very important just below the surface?
I start by saying two things that I have observed about Southerners–one, a lot of them are Southern Baptist, which means, when they don’t like how something’s going, they have no compunction about breaking off and doing something different while still considering themselves to be the true carriers of the proper torch and two, they don’t like to be played for fools.
So, whenever it was that I had CNN, I noticed that it seemed to be primarily the Southern Republicans who were on my screen hollering about the bailout and how they were insulted by it (props to Bob Corker, btw). And now McCain seems to think nothing of suggesting cancelling the first debate, which, of course, is in Mississippi.
From McCain’s end, I can see it. The benefits to him outweight the costs, because just like Democrats have grown complacent with the Black vote, the Republicans have come to expect that they will always have the white Southern vote (see, for instance, Bill Hobbs’s gleeful plans for Republican victory in Tennessee for election day). So, McCain can show his ass to Mississippi and cancel a debate they were expecting to host because what are they going to do about it? Right?
But I feel like I saw an inkling on CNN of what Southern Republicans are going to do about it and I’m just curious if I’m reading the landscape right. I think Southern Republicans are positioning themselves as the “true” Republicans, who stand in opposition both to the Democrats and to national Republicans who are out of touch with “regular” folks.
And because you know I can’t let this Palin stuff go, I also wonder how she’s playing with the majority of Southern Republican women, the longer she’s out there in public. Because I have observed that Southern women in general have been taught to play dumb very well, but that they have litte patience for actual dumb women. I think Palin looked very attractive to Southern women when it seemed as if she was just playing dumb in that way Southern women do, but the more it seems as if she may actually be out of her league? I’m just saying, at some point, the conventional wisdom among white Southern women is going to go from “Oh, Sarah Palin’s kind of like us but Alaskan” to “Oh, Sarah Palin, bless her heart.”
And I think we all know the Republican ticket is in trouble when it attracts a significant Bless Your Heart quotient.