If the Republicans loose in 2016, would that be the end of the party as we know it?

Let’s say that Jeb wins the nomination and looses to Clinton, with an electoral map similar to 2012. Let’s also assume that the Democrats retake the Senate. Could this lead to a formal split of the Republican Party going forward? Or is it more likely that we’ll get more of the same in 2020. With the changing demographics of the nation sand Republicans depending on the votes of the elderly, it seems like things would only get worse for them going forward. The last time one party won three presidential elections in a row, the Democrats had to move back to the center. I just can’t imagine the Republicans doing that and keeping their coalition together. Wouldn’t the Tea Partiers split off if the Republicans move to the center? And if instead the Republicans continue to move further to the right, they just further alienate the moderate voters that they need. Is it possible we might end up with a right wing Tea Party, a centrist Republican Party, and a left wing Democratic Party that looses some moderates to a more centrist Republican Party that has rid itself of the far right? Of course all this presumes the Republicans loose in 2016.

I remember the spate of similar threads back in 2008.

No, the Republican party is not going to splinter. People who hold conservative beliefs are not going to go away or change their mind. Pendulums will swing, strategies will evolve, and the two party system will carry on.

Not if it’s Jeb. The refrain from the right will be that a they lost because Jeb wasn’t conservative enough. The status quo on the right will be maintained until a genuine hard right winger gets the nomination and gets his ass handed to him. If and when that happens, the business wing of the party will tell the Tea wing to go pound sand. They’ll go back to being conservatives in the Dole image and the Tea wing will just have to suck it up, hold their noses, and keep voting R because they have no other option. No, the GOP will not splinter or collapse. They’ll just adapt.

Another question: what would happen if the Republicans tight in 2016?

I laughed.

Back a few years ago, there were collectible D+D miniatures with the tagline “Loose the dragons of war”, but I think that tagline was considered silly by some because they misread it the other way around.

That’s the part I truly wonder about. The far right just seems so hardcore that I can’t picture them holding their noses and voting for a moderate candidate indefinitely.

I know, but what else would they do? Split from the GOP and guarantee Democratic majorities everywhere?

That’s my hope.

Thank you, Mr. Shine. That particular misspelling drives me batty, as it always makes me picture someone launching some metaphorical concept from a bow of the absurd.

Oh God, me too.

How sick am I? The primary reason I entered the thread was because of the misspelling. Must be a slow news day. Heh.

But to parrot BobLibDem upthread, until the Republicans actually nominate one of their proud troglodytes, such as Cruz, and loses, it will continue its slide ever rightward.

I mean, the party acknowledged after the last presidential beat down that they need to appeal to Hispanics. So what are they doing? The exact opposite, and in fact everything they can to alienate Hispanics as vociferously as possible at every opportunity? My wife, who is Hispanic and a naturalized American citizen, is in equal parts appalled and entertained by the Republican party. Even if the party doesn’t wise up, she expects they will have to reach some critical mass at some point, but who the heck knows when that will be?

no, but the GOP will probably then do what the Dems did after 1988; find a few hot button issues and change their stances on them. The Dems with Clinton did it on welfare and crime. The GOP will probably do it on immigration and gay marriage/abortion. In each scenario, both parties views on those issues were far outside of popular opinion. In the 1980s and 1990s, non-liberals supported the death penalty and being tough on crime, as well as reforming welfare. Those stances cost Dukakis most notably, but also McGovern, Humphrey. Immigration is gonna cost this year’s GOP nominee because most people don’t support expelling all illegals per polls or changing the constitution. Most people also support the right to gay marriage, more than support abortion rights.

Think DLC, but in reverse.

Here’s Ted Cruz in 2012:

He’s changed his tune…

If, in the next couple of cycles, the GOP runs and loses badly with a true right-winger, I still don’t see them taking more than baby steps back towards the center. This is not the 1964 GOP, which had honest-to-God liberals in its ranks, and where Nelson Rockefeller came within an eyelash of being the nominee. And there was no Fox News, no Rush Limbaugh, no talk radio, no galaxy of direct-mail scare outfits (sure, there were some, but much more marginalized and much less influential).

Once they can choose a nominee of their liking, they will be able to keep doing so, even in the face of losses. They won’t need to split.

Even if the Democrats win both the presidency and the majority of the Senate, the Republican party would be very far from dead. Given the gerrymandering situation, it would still control the House, a majority of state legislatures and the majority of governorships. In addition, the party’s finances will be worlds better than the Democrats. Republican billionaire supporters probably control, what, 75% - 80% of US wealth?

If either major party is in danger of extinction, it’s the Democrats.

The Republicans will certainly have to change their stance on gays, but there’s no way in Hell that they change on abortion. The country is pretty well evenly divided on abortion, and there are a lot of people on both sides that make it their primary or only issue. That right there guarantees that whatever else the parties stand for, we’re going to have one of the two major parties on each side.

Yep, and one certainly got that sense from the first debate. Jeb was accused of having some indirect linkage to Planned Parenthood, and the implication was that he might be guilty of the unspeakable thought crime of maybe condoning abortion. It was a lot like being accused of harboring communist sympathies during a McCarthy-era witch hunt. Abortion is not a subject open for discussion among Republicans – it’s a thought crime to even consider it.

I thought that happened with Goldwater in 1964.

But it didn’t seem to result in an end to the Republican party. If anything, they became more racist, homophobic, etc.

I think people are blowing this out of proportion, personally.

Look at the last few presidents and you see this pattern: 12 years R, 8 years D, 8 years R, 8 years D. Another D win in 2016 would put the record of Presidential wins at 50% D/R for the last 40 years, and neither party can say that they’re losing. It would take a loss in 2020 to shake things up at all, because that’s the point where Dems would have more than 50%, and it would be the first 4-term streak in recent memory.

In the meantime (and recently), Republicans have a pretty good track record in winning Congressional seats, so it’s clear that hardline conservative are taking positions that still win local votes. If the last two Presidential cycles are a pattern of failure (which, again, I question) then the issue seems to be the difficulty in finding a candidate who appeals at a national level when voters are used to strategies that only win locally.

I would not discount this as a possibility. We need to remember the vast majority of political pundits know virtually nothing. They are hacks. Just because the death of the Republican Party has been predicted more often than the Democrats in recent years doesn’t make a Republican demise more likely than a Dem one.

The Left in Europe is on the defence. In many countries the Left is becoming splintered. Barely 3 months ago no-one would have predicted the break-up of the British Labour Party. Yet, a break-up (whilst still unlikely) is becoming a possiblity. Im not predicting a Democrat break-up, but its not an impossibile scenario either.

The Democrats lost three consecutive presidential elections in the 1980s, and those were by blowout margins that made the Republican defeats in 2008 and 2012 look mild by comparison. Yet how many people said, “The Democrats are done?”