In pretty much every election, there’s a theme — sometimes organic, sometimes overlaid by the media and popular perceptions (both of them feeding and feeding off each other). Sometimes the theme has a catchy title like “Hope” or “It’s the economy, stupid,” and other times it’s more of a general, hard-to-describe-exactly feeling.
I’m beginning to wonder if the theme for the upcoming presidential election might be that it’s a referendum not on the candidates, but on their supporters. Rather than people asking themselves and each other if they want to vote FOR a Republican or a Democrat, perhaps they’ll be asking if they want to vote WITH the GOP or the Dems.
I’m thinking of the recent GOP debates, in which the crowd itself has been a big part of the story every time. So far, Republican crowds have cheered for executions, booed a soldier (above), and yelled “let him die!” and “yes!” when asked if someone without health insurance should be refused medical treatment.
Is it too much to hope that voters might ask themselves not only “do I want to vote for Republicans,” but “do I want to vote WITH Republicans”?