2009 State of the Republican Party

I just got an email from the RNC asking that I fill out an online survey about the state of the Republican Party. Of course, it also asks that I contribute at the end of the survey.

Initially I thought it was good that they were soliciting input to improve. But after reading the wording on a few of the questions, I’m not sure that the survey isn’t just a political tool instead of an honest effort to solicit feedback and improve.

Some of the questions aren’t too bad, but most just seem to be written poisonously. I’ll probably send in a response and use some of the write in box to question some of this.

Not sure that there’s an actual debate here, but most political stuff ends up here or the Pit. If you want to Pit, please create a separate thread.

I agree with you. The questions in that survey make use of buzz words that I expect most hard-line Republicans would latch onto, thus answering the question in a very predictable way.
I’ll give some examples.

“If Barack Obama tries to gut the USA PATRIOT Act and other important laws that promote the safety and security of all Americans, should Republicans in Congress fight back?”
-Has the Patriot Act really made us safer? (I think this is called begging the question, right?)

“Which do you believe creates more jobs for the American economy: Government Programs and Spending or The American Free Enterprise System?”
-This is a perfect example of the “buzz words” I mentioned. There is absolutely no substance to this question. Government programs can certainly create jobs, but the phrase “government programs” is so vague as to be meaningless. Free-market capitalism can also create jobs, but “The American Free Enterprise System” is such a loose statement that no one can definitively say that it creates more jobs than government programs because none of these terms have been defined. I can’t help but think that the reader is supposed to read this question and then think “Government programs?! What is this, Socialist Russia? We don’t need no stinking government programs! American Free Enterprise System all the way! USA! USA! USA!”
“Do you agree that our top military priority should be fighting terrorists?”
-To the ignorant, the answer is probably an unqualified “yes.” However, this question says nothing about the way in which our military should be fighting terrorists. I think most people would agree that conventional warfare tactics are right out. That has become painfully obvious over the last several years. My personal opinion is that our military should be fighting terrorism, but not in the way it currently is. This question doesn’t pick up on any of these nuances the reader might have.
Ultimately, I think these questions, which are almost all Yes/No/Undecided have the following form. “Do you support [evil lefty idea] or [free market USA all the way] idea? Yes or No?”

Most of the questions presented (don’t know about the rest of the survey), especially in parts II and III, are pathetic, and of course they were written that way to ensure that the response percentages can be used in pro-Republican advertising. “Do you support the Republicans in opposing the Democrats’ plans to hold public kitten barbeques every weekend, or do you support Satan? And don’t tell me you’re actually undecided. Hey, look, 89% of respondents said they oppose the Satanic Democrats!”

I would refuse to respond to it.

The first six are legit questions, although three is kind of stupid. The rest are leading and not going to get them any helpful responses, if that’s the intent.

Republican Party: Grand Old Party, or the Grandest Old Party?

A coworker of mine showed me a similar survey he received from the RNC by mail this week, along with a “letter” from Michael Steele. The questions were different, posed as Agree/Disagree/No Opinion, but the tone was about the same. It struck me as barely serious. I almost felt bad for the R party for a minute. The I realized that half of America still gobbles that shit up, and I just felt bad in general.

The first two questions were about the economy, then it went straight for the kill with some immigration-scare questions, and downhill from there with completely poisoned leads like those in the OP. I recall: “Do you feel that congress should appoint all of Obama’s judicial nominees without question or deliberation?” wtf kind of question is that? Even Obama would disagree with that qualifier.

It asked questions in such a ridiculous way that they can’t possibly get any meaningful info from the answers. It was obviously meant as one-way communication. This is the state of the R party. Making motions as if to ask its people where to go, but really just telling them how it’s gonna be. And it’s gonna be the same. They might have saved ink and just sent one that said: “Do we hate the Democrat Party?! A) Yes B) Obama is the AntiChrist C) America! Fuck Yeah!”

Then Steele’s “letter”. It was like 25 campaign mailer cards thrown in a blender. It had all the formatting and flow of TimeCube. It wasn’t a prose letter that an adult would expect to receive from another adult, laying out an argument with logic and wit. It was gibberish. All the key points were there, but after seeing them presented intelligently on the SDMB so many times, I couldn’t believe this was the best the RNC could do. I was embarrassed for Steele for putting his name on it. But I figure, it isn’t the best the RNC could do … it’s the best they thought their audience could handle. Pathetic.

It’s not a real survey – it’s a fundraising request. It’s intended to get Republicans mad, so they’ll donate money. I get the same kind of thing, but with very different questions and responses, from the Democrats, since I’m a registered Democrat.


Since it’s a fundraising request, they’re pretty much asking the converted how to improve their party which isn’t really the group they should be asking. So the survey is meaningless aside from a tool to rile up the converted and make them think “American Free Enterprise System! Hellz yeah!” and chip in a few bucks.

If they asked everyone else what they should do, the answers would probably largely be “Be (to varying extents) more like the Democrats” which isn’t the answer the GOP wants to hear.

I especially like this one:

I guess they’re hoping we’ll think in terms of Universal Healthcare, rather than abortion rights?


Note of course the pro lifers keep voting Repub. The repubs were under complete power from, House,Prez,Senate and Supreme Court and did not deliver. Why not? Because they do not want to lose that voting bloc. If they outlawed abortion the pro life nuts would find new issues that might not have them voting repub.

You missed a bit off:

Part IV. Important Stuff

  1. If a President were black and uppity, would he have your full support?


  1. Do you think a Kenyan Muslim should be President?


  1. Do you agree with Republican policy that Americans must be allowed to worship God?


  1. Would you support a Democrat President taking all your guns and giving them to criminals and terrorists?


  1. Should we unite to stop the Democrats destroying America?


  1. Do you agree with President Obama’s secret plan to institute Sharia law in the US?

  2. Do you think Michelle Obama should have attacked the Queen of England?

  3. Are you as bothered by the gifts President Obama gives foreign leaders as we are?

  4. Does it bother you that President Obama cannot form a thought without a Teleprompter telling him what to say?

  5. Rush Limbaugh: living legend or miracle worker?

Man, writing these questions is easy!

Back in 1989 I have conducted a telephone survey for a conservative political party in the lead-up to an election. We were instructed to not load our questions and genuinely try to find out what the constituency were thinking. A survey likes this demonstrates that the GOP doesn’t want to know what electors are thinking. Divisive politics are a hard habit to kick.

What exactly is “The American Free Enterprise System” ? Is it written down somewhere in detail? How does it vary from free enterprise in other countries?

The survey deserves to be returned unanswered with a note attached saying “These questions might make you feel better but they’re not going to help your Party.”

It thinks it already knows, and that it’s simply having problems communicating its message. News flash: people got your message just fine from 1993 to 2005. You got it out just fine in those twelve years. What happened after that was not a change in your message’s penetration, but people realizing that you delivered only on the parts of your message that sucked, and no others. For example, if you want to claim to be fiscally conservative, you need to oppose spending on wasteful causes regardless of origin, not support every earmark under a Republican President and oppose all of them under a Democratic one (even though you insert millions of dollars in your own), unless of course they’re about the military, in which case you must always spend more money. And if you’re going to claim to be the party of family values, it would help if you had fewer anti-gay people being caught in gay relationships with prostitutes or boys. Actually, that last part is just generally true.

It’s not a real survey (at least, I hope it isn’t), it’s just a push-poll designed with fundraising in mind.

What does this question even mean? That you agree that the government should pass more socialism? Or that you agree that a recent national poll recently reported that nearly 25% of Americans want the government to pass more socialism?

This is clearly a poisonous fund raising attempt, but it is like they’re not even trying!

Can you even pass “socialism”? Don’t you pass “socialist policies”?

Sheesh, I am a democrat and I might even agree with this given the way it is written. Yes, I agree we should oppose policies that will crush future economic growth.

Really? Those are our only options?