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Wednesday November 26th 2014

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Viewpoint: When All Else Fails, Try Bumper Stickers

By Farron Cousins

I remember driving through traffic in December 2008 and finding myself dumbstruck by a bumper sticker that read “2012–The End of an Error.” A full month before President-elect Barack Obama was even sworn into office, bitter Republicans had already begun their attacks. More bumper stickers followed–“10 out of 10 Terrorists Prefer Democrats” or “How’s That Hope And Change Working For You?”  Before he could enact a single policy, Republicans were attacking Obama.

After he was sworn in, some of the most insane attacks began. We heard that Obama was not a naturally born citizen, and therefore his entire presidency was null and void. Or that his healthcare law would establish “death panels” to determine when we should let your grandparents die by denying them care.

And who can forget my all time favorite attack–Obama was using FEMA to set up “re-education camps” for conservatives. Every single one of those attacks was reported on Fox News and in other conservative media outlets. None of them were even close to being factual.

But the Sore Loser party continued their attacks. And frankly, those attacks still don’t hold any water. Osama bin Laden is dead, along with more than two-thirds of the world’s top terrorists; we’ve seen almost two consecutive years of private sector job growth; those tax cuts that the Republicans love so much are still in place, helping the wealthy pocket a few extra hundred thousand dollars a year. So, why the attacks from the Right?

Republican candidates (and their followers) tell us that they want to “Take America Back.” Take it back from what, exactly? A man who’s accomplished more in three years than Bush was able to do in eight? Take it back from a man who is trying to help the middle class (which most people who read this belong to)?

Or is it simply that you want to take the presidency back from an opposing party? That’s the simplest explanation, and most likely the correct one.

The new dilemma for the Republicans is the polls consistently show that independent voters trust the Democrats over the GOP on pretty much every issue including handling the economy, terrorism and the environment. The GOP doesn’t have a leg to stand on, and that’s why their candidates are having such trouble crafting a genuine message for American voters.

Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum and the others aren’t trusted on any of the typical election-year issues, so now they have to talk about issues like birth control to get any traction with voters.

Not all Democrats are 100-percent happy with Obama and his decisions as president, but progress has been made. The nation and world are much better off than they were four years ago.

But facts don’t play well with Republicans and in November they will likely run the least nutty of their options. Fortunately all the hate-filled, racist bumper stickers in the world will not be enough to win the presidential election for them.