Taxes, Medicare and Abortion Trip Up GOP
The Republican Party is facing its own lions, and tigers and bears much like the in the Wizard of Oz. The only difference is there is no wizard of Oz to save them. First, the debate was about Mitt Romney’s refusal to be transparent and release more than one year of his tax returns. Many prominent Republicans insisted that Romney release more tax returns. But, Romney refused even the advice of those prominent in his own party.
Next came the announcement of Rep., Paul Ryan (R.WI) as Romney’s vice presidential running mate. Ryan is known for his conservative ideas to turn Medicare into nothing more than a voucher system for senior citizens. He is also known for calling Social Security a Ponzi scheme. Ryan’s ideas and plans would adversely affect not only seniors but everyone who lives to become a senior.
We next hear that abortion has tripped up the Republicans with Rep. Todd Akin’s comments about a woman cannot become pregnant from a “legitimate rape”. He apparently thinks a woman’s body has ways of avoiding pregnancy if they are raped. And that there are “legitimate” and illegitimate rapes. That sick comment even caused most Republicans to call for Akin to resign from the Senate race. Of course, Akin is hearing nothing about resigning.
Then there’s Isaac, the pending hurricane that is threatening to ruin their GOP party and convention. There’s even more bad news. Ron Paul has still not conceded to Mitt Romney. He won’t go away quietly. He’s taking a page out of Akin’s book, only worse. At least Akin agreed to refrain from attending the Republican convention. Akin realizes that he’s not wanted at the convention. But, Ron Paul is threatening to wreck the convention . Of 40 Minnesota Paul delegates, 32 are still committed to Ron Paul and plan to cast their votes for him at the GOP convention.
To say the least, the Republican party is fighting for its own survival. It doesn’t seem that anyone is leading the party. At least when George W. Bush was president. Republicans knew Karl Rove was in charge of the situation. He appears to be watching Romney and his followers self-destruct.
I know the GOP can do nothing about the weather and the possible hurricane. But one would think they could do something about their lack of a platform for women, seniors and the middle class. The Republican Party’s platform supports the Romney-Ryan plan to turn Medicare into a voucher plan and includes the Aiken amendment which forbids abortion even in cases of rape or incest. Of course, if you believe Rep. Akin, women don’t become pregnant from rape.
Democrats Court Women at DNC Convention
Meanwhile, Democrats are taking the opposite approach when it comes to women. Instead of assaulting, insulting, ignoring and devaluing women and women’s rights , the Democratic Party has done everything to be inclusive to women and women’s rights in its platform. Presently, women make up more than 50% of voters. So women hold the key for either party come November.
The Democratic National Committee has added a significant amount of women to speak at the convention in Charlotte beginning on September3. Those who have been announced to speak at the Democratic convention include, in no particular order:
• Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin
• Nancy Keenan, Pres. NARAL Pro choice
• Caroline Kennedy
• Senator Barbara Mikulski along with the women of the U.S. Senate
• Cecile Richards, Pres. Planned Parenthood Action Fund
• California Attorney General Kamala Harris
• Lily Ledbetter – the lead plaintiff in the employment discrimination case that caused Pres. Obama to sign as his first piece of legislation- the Lily Ledbetter Act which supports fair pay for women
• Massachusetts Sen. Candidate Elizabeth Warren
As Republicans are devaluing women, Democrats are realizing the value that women have and are bringing them front and center at the DNC convention. I will be attending the DNC convention to live blog about all the happenings and particularly those affecting women and minorities.
Washington, DC based Debbie Hines is a former prosecutor and founder of LegalSpeaks, a progressive blog on women and race in law and politics. As a legal and political commentator she has appeared in national and local media including the Michael Eric Dyson Show, NBC, ABC and CBS affiliates, RT TV, CBC- Canadian TV, NPR, XM Sirius radio, the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, USA Today, Black Enterprise among others. She also writes for the Huffington Post.