By Any Means Necessary - Republican Campaign Strategy
Are Republicans Going too Far?
In this election year, it is perfectly natural for supporters of both Mitt Romney and President Barack Obama to zealously advocate for their candidate. Presidential campaigns are supposed to be heated campaigns about the future of the country. No doubt, with the country so divided this year's presidential campaign will be filled with emotion.
But many Republicans this election cycle have taken the passion to another level. Many Republicans have taken a ends justify the means approach to this campaign. The worst part about this: it is accepted and promoted by the Republican establishment, including, but not limited to, the Republican Presidential Candidate. There is no better example than what Republicans in the State of Florida have been up to.
Florida, Florida, Florida
There is little doubt that this year's Presidential election may come down to the State of Florida like it did for the 2000 election. Republicans in Florida have most certainly taken notice of this fact. This is why Republicans in Florida have simply gone off the deep end.
Take for example the recent actions by Republican Governor Rick Scott. The Governor has sent a list of over two-thousand names to local election boards to determine whether the names represent citizens eligible to vote, or not. Sounds innocent enough right? Non-citizens should not vote. But, many of the local election boards have found the list suspect and are refusing to continue to voter purge. The Justice Department has stepped in. The Governor of Florida has sued the Justice Department and wants the voter purge to continue. Oh, a majority of the names of the list are of Hispanic origin. Do you think there may be political motives to purge the names of those most likely to vote for the President in November? Texas is now starting its own voter purge. How far have these Republicans gone when actual citizens, American Citizens, are denied the right to vote because their name sounds like a Democrat?
The "by any means" necessary tactics by Republicans also include completely disregarded their own stated ideals and values. Republicans allegedly stand for "States' Rights" and want State and Local government to make most decisions. This is, of course, unless a State makes a decision they don't agree with.
The State of Nevada has a box on the Presidential Ballot for "None of the Above." This means that Nevada voters don't have to choose for President Obama or Mitt Romney if they don't want to. The Republican Party has financed a lawsuit saying that this choice is unconstitutional. The Republicans want to force people in Nevada to vote for somebody because they believe those votes will go for Mitt Romney. So in one State they are trying to take away a Constitutional Right and in another trying to limit the choice in a Constitutional Right. Republicans disregarding their own values in this election cycle.
Not in My Backyard
Recently, Florida Republicans threw a tantrum because First Lady Michelle Obama was going to speak at Barbara Goleman Senior High in Miami Lakes. School Board member Carlos Curbelo stated, "Allowing the first lady of the United States to use one of our schools explicitly to benefit the president’s reelection campaign is inappropriate and sends the wrong message to our students, employees, and to taxpayers – even if the president’s campaign is willing to pay for all costs resulting from the event,” School Board Member Renier Diaz de la Portilla stated “The use of public schools whose only focus should be to educate our children for political gain is downright wrong. Don’t these liberals have boundaries? Our schools are places for learning, not places for politicking.”
While these Republicans were screaming about having political events at school, another Republican was holding a political event at a High School in Colorado. That Republican was Mitt Romney. Do these Florida Republicans object to Mitt Romney's use of schools for campaign events as well? Probably not. The message these Republicans are objecting against is any message that supports the President. And apparently they are willing to use the "protect our children" line to support their view. Apparently these Republicans are scared that Michelle Obama will tell children it is good to eat vegetables.
The Process Matters
Every American Citizen has the right to voice their opinion. Nobody is denying that. But Republicans, specifically in Florida, are doing more than simply voicing their opinion that President Obama should not win re-election. Florida Republicans are messing with the system. They are fighting to keep American Citizens from voting. They are fighting to limit where campaign events can occur, even if the President's campaign is paying the costs. They are simply fighting to win this election by any means possible. And the example is not limited to Florida as the Nevada example shows. There are more examples in Ohio, Pennsylvania and other States around the Country.
This is why they have gone off the deep end. The any means possible strategy is simply Un-American. In American, where the rule of law is supposed to matter, the means do not justify the ends. The process matters. The process of how we elect our leaders matters. The process that goes into how and where our leaders speak to us matters. Any attempt, by any party, to destroy the means never justifies the ends. No matter how much some may hate the President for whatever reason, committing acts that are Un-American and deny other Americans their rights is simply an affront to the rule of law. To celebrate these acts and encourage them means this is no longer a democracy. To win elections through intimidation, fear and unscrupulous acts is fascism? Is that the change Mitt Romney offers?