Mitt Romney appears dismayed in a 2012 debate with President Obama.
A conservative legend responsible for the election of countless Republicans to office is now blasting today’s GOP as “the Party of Stupid” for letting left-leaning media outlets control presidential debates.
“If the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over while expecting a different result, welcome to the nut house of the establishment media-sponsored Republican presidential debates,” says Richard Viguerie in his brand-new book, “Takeover.”
“What would you call a political party that hands the power to set the agenda during its presidential primaries to its sworn enemies in the liberal media, then doubles down to give the power to set the agenda in the waning days of the general election to a self-perpetuating ‘commission’ of Washington, D.C., progressive insiders? Some people might call that the national Republican Party – I call it the Party of Stupid.”
Viguerie, whose mission in “Takeover” is for true conservatives to take back control of the GOP from moderate and even-left leaning Republicans, says the way the national media outlets such as CNN or PBS handle debates puts Republicans at an immediate disadvantage.
“It isn’t by fabricating news or outright lying; it is by selecting questions that set the agenda on liberal terms and presuppose the outcome favored by liberals – or by editing out the conservative viewpoint or facts that tend to support the conservative viewpoint.
“The result in the general election debates is that Republican presidential candidates are always outnumbered two or three to one in a fight that pits them against a liberal debate moderator and their liberal Democratic opponent.”
Viguerie, who runs ConservativeHQ.com, explains in “Takeover” that after the first 2012 debate between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama, the moderator and PBS host, Jim Lehrer, was roundly criticized by his fellow liberals for not wading in and helping Obama.
“Still, he slipped several interesting ‘tells’ of his liberal bias, such as referring to Romney’s economic plans as “trickle-down” and breaking up Romney’s train of thought by calling time when he was prosecuting especially effective attacks on Obama, while letting Obama go well past his deadline to finish his thoughts.
But Viguerie explains these were “fairly minor things” compared to how Lehrer handled the 2000 debate between George W. Bush and Al Gore.
“In 2000, Lehrer moderated all three presidential debates. In the third one, as the Media Research Center pointed out, ‘a town hall debate, Lehrer approved mostly liberal questions from the ‘uncommitted’ audience. Eight questions came from the Left, only two could be counted as conservative, and five were requests for information without an ideological tone.’
“And that’s the key to how liberal bias at the debates, and in the media at large, works. It is not so much that reporters will lie or make up things to make conservatives look bad–it is the premises of the questions and even the questions themselves that accept an underlying belief in liberal policy choices.
“It is the old joke about asking a candidate, ‘When did you stop beating your spouse?’ turned into ‘Why do you want to starve poor people by sending food stamp programs back to the states?’
Jenny Beth Martin, co-founder and president of Tea Party Patriots, is helping promote “Takeover,” saying Viguerie’s plan is for constitutional conservatives to take over the GOP “so that we may restore the liberty and opportunity that the Founders intended and protect that great document, the United States Constitution.”
“The millions of Americans who are drawn to the tea-party movement understand that progressives in both the Democratic and Republican Parties have usurped power and overrun the Constitution. The Obama administration is the most extreme example of progressive rule, but the road to where we are today was built with the willing participation of establishment Republicans,” she writes in the book’s foreword.
“Time is running out,” says Martin, “and if we fail in this task, our children, grandchildren – our posterity – will never know the America for which millions have sacrificed their labor, capital, lives, and limbs. Unless the Republican Party fulfills its promise and becomes the constitutional alternative to the progressives, I fear the ‘American experiment’ is over.”