The GOP: alienating the next generation

After the 2012 electoral loss to Obama, again, the GOP engaged in some soul searching which produced some tough self-assessments. I've ticked off a list of the groups the Republican party has alienated before.  This week, a NYT article also added to that list single mothers who vote overwhelmingly Democratic.

Yesterday, the next generation of GOP voters also weighed in with their own report about why the Grand Old Party is losing younger voters.  Politico sums up the report in bullet points this way (h/t Zach Cook):

Gay marriage: “On the ‘open-minded’ issue … [w]e will face serious difficulty so long as the issue of gay marriage remains on the table.”

Hispanics: “Latino voters … tend to think the GOP couldn’t care less about them.”

Perception of the party’s economic stance: “We’ve become the party that will pat you on your back when you make it, but won’t offer you a hand to help you get there.”

Big reason for the image problem: The “outrageous statements made by errant Republican voices.”

Words that up-for-grabs voters associate with the GOP: “The responses were brutal: closed-minded, racist, rigid, old-fashioned.”

Not much of this analysis is new, but the report especially noted that the GOP's policy of lowering taxes for small businesses just didn't resonate with young voters who felt like they first had to make it on their own before the party would back them. This week, Bob Dole bluntly said the GOP ought to hang out a sign saying "closed for repairs". But Reince Preibus, Chairman of the RNC quickly added that the GOP was in fact "open for repairs". Closed or open, "repairs" is the operative word.

Rather than wish them ill as a liberal, I wish the GOP well because their party's decay has led to Democratic complacency. Our democracy is more vibrant when there are two parties who actually give voters a choice and actively compete for voters instead of just holding on to captured constituiencies.