It may have been the sight of my old AMC Rambler1, but it was the chance of a lifetime when Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney gave me an exclusive press pass to last weekend’s Republican National Committee strategy session. Here is how it went.
RNC Chairman Reince Priebus opened the meeting with a challenge. “We may have a problem with the presidential race,” he said. “There’s no doubt we chose the best, most electable Republican candidate in the field, and we have a shi*load of money from our dozen or so filthy rich donors. But hey, our guy wants to put roll-down windows on aircraft flying at nearly the speed of sound. We’re going to need some help. Any ideas?”
“How about blaming all the ills of society on the Democrats and promising to fix them?” suggested Co-Chairman Sharon Day.
“We always do that and they do the same to us,” replied Priebus. “I think it’s just not enough to do the trick. And by the way, you don’t look much like a co-chairman, Sharon. Perhaps you need a more manly wardrobe.”
“How about concentrating on emotional issues like abortion, illegal immigration and same-sex marriage that distract voters from real issues like food, housing and health?” offered Press Secretary Kirsten Kukowsky.
“We’re doing that, too,” lamented Priebus. “We’ve got to get creative.”
“Suppose we pledge to tax the rich, help people with their mortgages and cover their health while using government leverage to lower the costs of medical care and pharmaceuticals,” said Penin Diaz, Token Minority Representative. “Then we could bring the troops home, cut the defense budget, and end our billions of dollars to Israel each year.”
“Get out and don’t come back!” shouted the rest of the committee. “Whom do you think we represent?”
“Look, our best chance seems to be to prevent people from voting,” said Priebus after order was again restored. “We’re making some headway on requiring special ID. Any further thoughts on that?”
“What if that ID is more difficult to get?” suggested Fundraising Director Koch Adelson.
“You might be on to something,” replied Priebus with interest. “What do you have in mind?”
“I’m thinking about an ID that is issued according to real democratic principles like the ones our nation’s founders intended. We could start with the fact that nearly every state denies the right to vote to felons. If we can get them to also ban those who have been convicted of misdemeanors, it will yank a bunch of potential Obama voters. Furthermore, the cops are almost all on our side. I’m sure they can arrange a few more convictions. Lots of cases come down to the word of a cop against that of a citizen. We all know where that goes.
“Then there are the homeless. If you don’t have an address, in many places you can’t register to vote. If we can get the banks to increase the foreclosure rate, I’m sure we can create more homeless. Bankers love us anyway, and it fits their agenda.
“And what about registration deadlines? Can we get them moved back? We might be able to catch voters before they register.”
How about bringing back the poll tax? … Or literacy tests?
“Speaking of real democratic principles,” interjected Day, “there are some ideas from the past that might serve us well. How about bringing back the poll tax? It discourages the poor, most of whom are not Republican, anyway. Or literacy tests?”
“I’m not so sure the literacy tests will work in our favor, Sharon,” replied Adelson, “but if we can disenfranchise Washington, D.C., that’s three electoral votes that the Dems won’t get.”
“Nice thought, Koch,” interjected Priebus, “but that means reversing a constitutional amendment. Same thing with women’s suffrage. We’ll never get it done before this election. On the other hand, the states can re-institute property requirements. It used to be three acres in some states.”
“Yes, I know it would be nice to go back to our roots and limit the vote to white male Protestant landed gentry, declared Adelson. But some of this has to wait until we get into office. Besides, it was democracy that started this whole mess. Let’s do what we can to disenfranchise as many voters as we possible for now, and then give the whole place back to King George III. We know he was on our side.”
1Mitt Romney’s father, George, was president of American Motors before becoming governor of Michican.