Time to reflect

The GOP must recognize that the electoral reality is different

Victory has many parents, just like there are many reasons for losing. We hope the post-election Republican analysis is done with a cool head instead of the heat of ideology.

Tuesday’s defeat must hit deep because of the vulnerabilities President Obama had—especially on the economy and unemployment—which the GOP’s formula was unable to capitalize on.

Everyone is blaming someone for the loss. Conservatives say Romney was never one of them; the religious claim they said a Mormon could never represent them; opponents of abortion say their candidate didn’t discuss the issue enough; and so on.

In reality, what must worry them is the fact that they lost, despite fulfilling the goals they established to get their voters to the polls. The problem is that the Democrats got out more followers than they did.

Some might say the problem was the message, since voters believed the one responsible for the bad economy was George W. Bush and not President Obama, as Romney’s campaign pointed out.

However, the main reason for the defeat was the party’s inability to recognize demographic changes in the electorate and adapt its message to them. If it doesn’t become aware of this situation, the Republican Party is condemned to representing a minority made up of white men who resent the present.

This would be a very poor result for the GOP and for Latinos. The former would lose its relevance, as is happening in California. As for Hispanics, it’s a disadvantage not to have active competition between political parties for their vote.

The GOP has many factions with extreme, intolerant proposals, like the Tea Party. But also, in the absence of moderates, there are pragmatists who once again see and suffer for the loss of Senate seats because of the extremism of candidates who emerge from state primaries.

The Republicans have work ahead to rebuild the party. We hope they understand how to become part of the changing times in order to be a real political option and leave behind the ideological blinders that isolate them from the majority of the electorate.