Political Attack Dogs

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Hillary Clinton flounders while anti-Republican attack dogs go after the GOP presidential candidates. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Welcome to Middle Mayhem, a look at politics from the middle of the political compass.

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As to be expected, anti-Republican attack dogs are engaging in their foaming-at-the-mouth histrionics in response to the current GOP candidates. It never did matter who entered the GOP presidential race, because those attack dogs decided ahead of time that no Republican is good enough to be POTUS. In their minds, the Republican Party is the enemy, despite any GOP-favored beliefs that are shared by the majority of American voters.

Granted, the Zealots in the GOP have given reason for attacks especially aimed at them. For example, Mike Huckabee demonstrated his beyond-the-GOP extremism when, in October 2014, he threatened to leave the GOP if GOP leaders in Congress didn’t do enough to prevent same-sex marriage from becoming legal in the USA.

Here is an excerpt from a 10/09/14 story in the Washington Examiner:

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee isn’t too happy with the GOP — so unhappy that he just may leave his party.

“[I]f the Republicans wanna lose guys like me, and a whole bunch of still God-fearing Bible-believing people, go ahead and just abdicate on this issue, and go ahead and say abortion doesn’t matter either,” he said in an interview with the American Family Association’s radio show Tuesday morning.

The one-time presidential hopeful said he was “utterly exasperated” with Republicans for not standing up to the Supreme Court’s decision Monday that paved the way for new states to offer same-sex marriage.

“I’ll become an independent, I’ll start finding people that have guts to stand. I’m tired of this,” Huckabee threatened.

Thankfully, Ohio’s Governor John Kasich disagrees with Huckabee. The former expressed his view during the first prime-time GOP presidential debate of this election cycle. Here is an excerpt from a story published by TheHill.com.

The Hill - Kasich - Gay Weddings

As it turns out, Gov. Kasich’s mainstream view of same-sex marriage is shared by plenty of Democrats, whose view on same-sex marriage isn’t always acknowledged by left-wing extremists.

That isn’t the only mainstream view being ignored. Here is an excerpt from Democrat journalist Kirsten Power’s USA Today column “I’ve got news for Democrats. It’s a baby!

Guess who supports second trimester abortions, barring extreme extenuating circumstances? Almost nobody.

When Gallup asked in 2012 whether abortion should be legal in the second trimester, only 27 percent of respondents said yes. This percentage has been nearly unchanged since Gallup began asking this question in 1996. As Slate’s Will Saletan noted in a 2014 piece analyzing abortion polling, “Even the most pro-choice people aren’t sold on abortion rights beyond the first trimester.”

This was the general position even prior to the release of videos demonstrating the harsh reality of such abortions. Following the meeting with Dr. Ginde, the undercover video makers are taken to a Planned Parenthood pathology lab where a medical assistant called “Jess” picks at an aborted fetus. “I just want to see another leg, with a foot,” she says. Ginde chimes in: “Here’s the heart.” At one point Dr. Ginde inexplicably murmurs: “It’s a baby.”

Even the abortionist can see it’s a baby. So what’s wrong with the Democratic Party?

Democrat journalist Kirsten Powers doesn’t hesitate to spar with GOP-leaning pundits whenever they express a belief that she disagrees with. Yet, when it comes to the topic of abortion, she acknowledges the reality about abortion that is acknowledged by people on the political right. Powers can do so because she isn’t stuck in a left-wing echo chamber.

Sadly, plenty of political partisans relish being inside their echo chambers, whether those partisans be Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians or Green Party members. That is too bad, because no political party has a monopoly on good ideas, and no political party has a monopoly on bad ideas.

The advantage of being in the middle of the political compass is that one can evaluate all ideas without being encumbered by partisan prejudice. Is the Republican Party really the enemy? No, of course not. Neither is the Democratic Party. That is why the word “moderate” isn’t a synonym for “anti-Republican” or “anti-Democrat”, because political Moderates don’t accept the labels that extremists give their political opposites.

At the same time, being a political Moderate doesn’t meant that one can’t have a legitimate grievance against a political party. Moderate Democrats, for example, are correct to reject the anti-abortion extremism coming from members of the GOP. That extremism was on display during the aforementioned GOP debate when moderator Megyn Kelly specifically asked Wisconsin’s Governor Scott Walker the following question:

Abortion Question - Kelly to Walker

Gov. Walker didn’t answer Ms. Kelly’s specific question, a fact that she pointed out after the debate ended. What GOP leaders need to understand is that the “83 percent” statistic that Ms. Kelly cited includes people who are Republicans.

Democrats are also correct to complain when GOP pundits make wrongful accusations against public officials who are favored by Democrats, as illustrated by a case that took place in November of last year.

On the other hand, Democrats need to understand that moderate Republicans might actually have legitimate grievances against the Democratic Party. Kirsten Powers expresses one such grievance in her aforementioned USA Today column, and she is a Democrat.

Another such legitimate grievance is that the Democratic Party’s current presidential front-runner has baggage that makes her untrustworthy. That baggage grew when the FBI launched a criminal investigation into her private e-mail.

NYP Headline - Clinton Investigation

Just how bad is Sec. Clinton’s trust deficit? In a 07/28/15 column for Real Clear Politics, Debra Saunders writes, “Voters in Colorado, Iowa and Virginia think Hillary Clinton is not honest or trustworthy. According to the latest Quinnipiac poll, a mere 34 percent of Colorado voters think she can be trusted; 62 percent do not. In Iowa, those numbers are 33 percent to 59; in Virginia, Clinton is underwater on trust, too, 39 percent to 55 percent.”

Yes, there is a legitimate reason for anti-Democrat attack dogs to go after the Democratic Party’s front-runner. If anti-Republican attack dogs are going to go after GOP presidential candidates, then turn about is fair play.

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