PLEDGE NOW
The End Of America As We Know It?

Republican candidates on the stump are saying the America they love is on the line. Writer Jonathan Chait says they might be right.

A county-level breakdown of the 2008 presidential election. (Masebrock at the wikipedia project)

A county-level breakdown of the 2008 presidential election. (Masebrock at the wikipedia project)

Politicians often say its now or never, “do or die” time when they’re looking for votes.  “This is the most important vote of your lifetime!”  But this year that message is especially loud and dire on the Republican primary campaign trail.

Rick Santorum tells his crowds the America they love will be gone, finished, if the GOP doesn’t take the White House this fall.  Newt Gingrich warns of political end times.  Even Mitt Romney is talking “last chance”.  What’s going on?

This hour, On Point:  we’re exploring the “2012 or bust!” message of the GOP campaigns.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Jonathan Chait, a writer for New York magazine. You can read his article “2012 or Never” here.

Sean Trende, senior elections analyst for RealClearPolitics, and author of “The Lost Majority: Why the Future of Government Is Up for Grabs – and Who Will Take It.” Read his rebuttal to Chait’s piece here.

From Tom’s Reading List

New York “The GOP has reason to be scared. Obama’s election was the vindication of a prediction made several years before by journalist John Judis and political scientist Ruy Teixeira in their 2002 book, The Emerging Democratic Majority. Despite the fact that George W. Bush then occupied the White House, Judis and Teixeira argued that demographic and political trends were converging in such a way as to form a ­natural-majority coalition for Democrats. ”

Wall Street Journal “It’s now or never for Republicans, or at least for conservatives, claims the nasty liberal writer Jonathan Chait of New York magazine. “The modern GOP–the party of Nixon, Reagan, and both Bushes–is staring down its own demographic extinction,” Chait claims. Republicans, in his view, are right to worry “that conservative America will soon come to be dominated, in a semi-permanent fashion, by an ascendant Democratic coalition hostile to its outlook and interests.””

The Weekly Standard “The battlefield of political prognostication is littered with the remains of once-bold, but quickly forgotten, theories of partisan realignment. No sooner is a “permanent Republican majority” proposed than the predicted majority is overtaken by events, thereby laying the foundation for an “emerging Democratic majority.” The impregnable majority grows bloated and finds itself unable to reconcile its competing internal forces, thus providing the opposition party the means, motive, and opportunity to swipe one or more of the majority’s constituencies and cobble together its own governing coalition.”

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
May 4, 2016
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is joined by his wife Melania, right, and daughter Ivanka, left, as he arrives for a primary night news conference, Tuesday, May 3, 2016, in New York. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

Results from the 2016 Indiana primary. Does it cement two pathways to the nominations?

May 4, 2016
Leslie Stahl with her grandchild Jordan. (Courtesy: Leslie Stahl)

Trailblazing journalist Lesley Stahl on her new book Becoming Grandma, and the joys, the science, the struggles, the evolution of being a grandparent today.

RECENT
SHOWS
May 3, 2016
In this photo taken Thursday, Sept. 17, 2009, fifteen-year-old Amorette Castillo has her sensor checked before starting a series of physical activities at a University of Southern California lab in Alhambra, Calif. Scientists across the country are playing with miniature gadgets and fitting them on the overweight and obese to get an unbiased glimpse into their exercise and eating habits. The cell phone for gathering data is on her hip. (AP Photo/Kim Johnson Flodin)

Weight loss lessons from the TV show “The Biggest Loser”. A study of the show’s contestants reveals why it’s so hard to keep off the weight we lose.

 
May 3, 2016
Geri Taylor, camera in tow, at the Hoover Dam in 2014. Photography had been a sideline for 30 years, but now she could really devote time to it.
Courtesy, New York Times. MICHAEL KIRBY SMITH FOR THE NEW YORK TIMES.

We look at how one women prepares for the full onset of Alzheimer’s disease.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Devoured: We Are What (And How) We Eat
Tuesday, May 3, 2016

From chicken wings to kale smoothies, we look at what we eat, and how challenging it is to eat well in America.

More »
Comment
 
‘Embedded’: How Violent Gangs Are Terrorizing El Salvador
Thursday, Apr 14, 2016

NPR’s Kelly McEvers on her reporting in El Salvador for the podcast Embedded, and how gang killings brought San Salvador’s bus service to a halt.

More »
Comment
 
That Cheap Dress On Facebook? It Isn't Worth It
Monday, Apr 11, 2016

Know those shockingly cheap clothes you see advertised on Facebook? There’s a catch.

More »
Comment