Cutthroat: The GOP Approach For 2020

It is the “inconvenient truth” for Democrats to admit, that their party regularly resorts to lying, cheating, and other scandalous tactics to win elections.

History reminds us of the chicanery of 1960 presidential election.

To begin with the area where he gives Nixon too little credit, he says that Kennedy won “by plurality—not a majority—of the popular vote.” Due to the bizarre events in Alabama, it is not at all obvious that Kennedy had more popular votes than Nixon. 

Even the staunchest Democrats supporter knows that Kennedy cheated. But Democrats don’t just cheat Republicans. As we previously reported, Democrats cheat their own. Just ask ‘Uncle’ Bernie of how Hillary Clinton won the 2016 Democrat nomination.

Democrats know there is no honor in these tactics, yet they openly use them. Leftist rag Vox recently whined:

Until now, there was no left-wing equivalent to the “Flight 93” essay, no rallying cry that urged Democrats and liberals to do whatever is necessary to win. But David Faris’s new book, It’s Time to Fight Dirty, is the closest anyone has come so far.

Faris, a political scientist at Roosevelt University, argues that the Democratic Party must recognize that Republicans aren’t engaged in a policy fight; instead, they’re waging a “procedural war.”

What he means is that Republicans have spent the past two decades exploiting the vagueness of the Constitution to create structural advantages for their side — passing discriminatory voter ID laws, using the census to gerrymander districts, blocking Democratic Supreme Court nominees, and so on.

In other words, Democrats conjure the ghost of the great Vince Lombardi to declare:

Winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing.

However, Faris’ ideas are not as much of a call-to-action as they are justification for amoral behavior. Victor Davis Hanson enlightens further in a “must-watch” interview with Mark Levin:

I think all of us felt that the national ticket was playing by the Marcus of Queensbury rules. We really hadn’t seen a rigorous push back. Remember Lee Atwater in the ’88 campaign? We kind of deplored his tactics post factum, but at the time he took apart the caucus, the contradiction.

And so we were losing with Bob Dole, and McCain and Romney 46, 47, 43, even that’s what we were doing well on the conservative side of the local. Thousand offices lost in the Obama administration. So, Trump seemed to be only one that was unconcerned with what the establishment – and by that I don’t want to be vague, what university professor said, “New York Times” said, PBS, NPR, Council on Foreign Relations. He just spoke to the people and he did in such a way that was refreshing and he sort of was psycho dramatic that this was an existential war and were losing it and we had to fight back and not be worried what people said.

And then the other thing was really – what’s strange about was he didn’t buy into the new demography. It may be true, but he said, “You know, you can win by losing California and New York and Illinois because there are six to eight million people, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania that either didn’t vote Republican, or they didn’t vote at all, and I can win them back with a nationalist strong jobs — I like the deplorable message. People thought that was crazy.

And so I thought he was just eccentric and I was a little bit dangerous, I thought, but I thought that he was, at this point, we’re at a point of no return and he was an anecdote.

So, what must Republicans do as America heads into the tumultuous 2020 election cycle?

Simple. The GOP must do what they failed to in 2018. “Be Prepared!” And Republicans can start by following the sage advice Sun Tzu gave 2,500 years ago:

If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.

Start by reviewing some of the Democrats tactics used in 2018, and some likely ones that might be employed in 2020.  Or:

To know your Enemy, you must become your Enemy.

A GOP Wake-up Call.

The old days of fair-play and handshaking afterwards is a myth!

George Washington bribed voters with barrels of booze. And what of the Election of 1800 which was wrought with slander and rumormongers.

The Election of 1828 is widely considered the ‘dirtiest’ campaign in American history. Below is an excerpt from an interesting article on the race:

Every four years, the media declares the current election to be the dirtiest in history. While it is true that negative campaigning wins elections, and every campaign does have its share of dirty tricks, no modern presidential campaign can really claim the banner of filthiest ever. Not yet anyway. Because that title belongs to an election none of us witnessed. The dishonor of dirtiest presidential campaign in history goes to the Andrew Jackson/John Quincy Adams contest of 1828.

The Election of 1888 ended with a ‘backroom deal’ to end Reconstruction in the South, and awarded Benjamin Harrison the presidency.

Does  the depravity of these past elections dwarf Florida 2000 or the recent 2016 campaign?

The Daily Beast warns:

Depending on how favorable a view one takes of “dirty tricks” involving paid advertising in American politics, it could also further undermine our already wavering confidence in our institutions, politics, government and social networks, which for many Americans have become as essential to their lives as their water company or electricity provider.

When you read campaign consultants quoted by the Times talking about how this kind of “research” occurring in the aftermath of 2016 could lead to a “race to the bottom” where everyone just engages in smoke-and-mirrors illusions using paid advertising and bots to win elections and literally nothing else even matters, that’s a very real concern—and one that amoral political consultants and strongly ethics-minded voters alike should fret about.

Of course, politics is full of dirty behavior. But there’s a big difference between lodging normal attacks and conjuring up, via foreign bots, an apparent army of Russians supporting a particular candidate in a hotly contested special election. That risks muddying the waters to the point where voters don’t know what’s real and what’s not and have no idea where the information is coming from.

So we create a situation in which Trumpers can more credibly claim that Russian meddling doesn’t matter because “Democrats do it, too,” and in which average Americans get more and more fed up thinking everything is “#fakenews” and having no confidence in our system or key players in it. And in addition, we create a situation where candidates’ records, statements, behavior and so on become invalidated, and campaigns are won and lost based on who activated the better or more effective “bot army.”

2016 surpassed any election as the worst cheating, and by far. And the question for Republicans is will they step up and match them?

Republicans learned in the mid-terms you can’t bring a knife to a gun fight. We kept the Senate, where we should have added at least 6 seats. We lost the House in obvious after-election voting and vote rigging.

While the GOP should not give into the temptation of adopting the Democrats’ win by any means necessary” mentality, Republicans must consider more Machiavellian tactics in dealing with Democrats.

They certainly have their chance for the first time in decades. If anybody can unify the party it’s Donald Trump. It’s already begun, as most of the anti-Trumpers have met with dire fates.

Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to victory. Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.

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