Maryland Republicans Get a Morale Boost but Learn No Lessons from “Lincoln”

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Daniel Day-Lewis taking a break in character

Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln was serendipitously timed. Fresh off a wake-up call of an Election Day, Republicans across the nation were able to lick their wounds with a movie all about the party’s original and greatest success. And though the coalition of abolitionists and former Whigs depicted in the film bears little resemblance to the post-Southern Strategy, post-Tea Party GOP, it has been for some — perhaps especially in Maryland — a morale booster.

Maryland Reporter’s Len Lazarick quoted Housed of Delegates Republican leader Tony O’Donnell as leading off his speech at the Maryland Republican Convention with a plea to see the film, for just that reason.

(Of course, any practical prescriptions you could infer from Lincoln, modern Republicans are not likely to follow. Replace Ayn Randism with compassion? Get on the other side of civil rights issues? Yeah, right.)

Despite Maryland Republicans suffering along with the rest of them in November — their loss of a seat in the House of Representatives, as well as their failure to shut down the gerrymander responsible for it, being the most glaring setback — there wasn’t really much further for them fall. So they’re bouncing back fairly quickly.

And they’ve got a new focus: winning locally. At the convention, the party’s executive director David Ferguson defined the job of Maryland Republicans as to “take out every Democrat in the red counties.” Others spoke about the possibility of attaining the majority in the House of Delegates.

One thing that they’re apparently refusing to learn? That they may need to alter something besides simple strategy to gain power in the state, something like, say, their platform.

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