fresh voices from the front lines of change







Today the Republican National Committee released its "autopsy" of its 2012 electoral defeat, officially titled the "Growth and Opportunity Project."

On one hand, it's a serious attempt to assess how the Republican Party has become uncompetitive nationally, and suggests significant breaks with conservative orthodoxy in order to correct its course.

On the other hand, it's hilarious.

Here are the top 10 unintended hilarious lines from the report:

10. "our candidates and office holders need to do a better job talking in normal, people-oriented terms"

Here's a tip: Never say "people-oriented terms" ever again.

9. "Establish an RNC Celebrity Task Force of personalities in the entertainment industry ... as a way to attract younger voters."

Maybe avoid anyone who was in An American Carol:

Or any former Saturday Night Live cast member.

8. In the last two Republican presidential primary races, "there have been too many debates"

As the report mentioned, the Republican presidential candidates participated in 21 debates during the 2008 campaign, and 20 in the 2012 campaign.

But the report does not mention that the 2008 Democratic presidential primaries featured 26 debates.

So it's not the number of the debates. It's what gets said at the debates.

7. "RNC must rebuild a nationwide database of Hispanic leaders" and "The RNC should develop a nationwide database of African American leaders" and "APA [Asian and Pacific Islander] leaders."

In other words, the RNC doesn't have a database of African-American and Asian-American/Pacific Islander leaders, and its Hispanic database has been collecting dust for years.

6. "We should speak out when CEOs receive tens of millions of dollars
in retirement packages but middle-class workers have not had a meaningful raise in years."

Don't worry, we can keep staying quiet when anyone brings up raising the minimum wage (as this report does).

5. "Eight of the 10 states with the lowest unemployment in America have Republican governors."

This is part of the report's attempt to hold up Republican governors as the party's hope the future.

But what's funny here is that the report didn't mention:

* 7 of the 10 states with the highest unemployment in America also have Republican governors (GA, SC, MI, MS, NJ, NC and NV).

* Two of those governors, Georgia's Nathan Deal and New Jersey's Chris Christie, are singled out for praise right after that comment. Both of these states were not in the bottom 10 four years ago.

* 7 of the 10 states with the lowest unemployment were already in that position four years ago. Two of the three states that have broken into the top 10 (VT and HI) have Democratic governors.

4. " Instead of connecting with voters’ concerns, we too often sound like bookkeepers. We need to do a better job connecting people to our policies."

What's funny here is that four pages later, the report praises OH Gov. John Kasich for "clos[ing] an $8 billion shortfall without raising taxes." Yet the report didn't bother connecting people to the fact that the shortfall ended up being $6 billion because of higher than projected tax revenue and that about 25% of the spending cuts came out of education.

3. Republicans should "encourage governors to embrace diversity in hiring and appointments to the judiciary, boards and commissions."

It's called affirmative action. Welcome aboard! Now please tell your conservative lawyer friends to stop suing institutions that use it.

2. "Women need to hear what our motive is — why it is that we want to create a better future for our families and how our policies will affect the lives of their loved ones."

Yes, I think women would like to hear Republican motives for opposing reproductive freedom, insurance coverage for contraception, the Lily Ledbetter Act and the Violence Against Women.

1. "we can’t expect to address these demographic groups if we know nothing about them"

It's funny, because it's true.

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