My Response to a Republican Who Attempted to Answer My 10 Questions

GohmertAs many people who follow me might know, I write a series every few weeks called 10 Questions Every Liberal Should Ask Every Republican.  It’s a pretty basic premise.  In each edition I write 10 different questions that I hope liberals take with them to present to Republicans.  The questions are usually pretty basic and most tend to revolve around current events.

An added benefit to this series is often I’ll get a Republican trying to answer these questions, which usually presents me with an opportunity to write a follow-up article such as this to showcase a little of what I deal with on a daily basis.  Plus I think it’s a good guide for those reading the follow-up article to see what nonsense Republicans might be spewing in response to each question.

Plus the article usually inspires a good debate amongst those who read it.

Well, let’s get to it. Here are the questions, along with a random reader’s responses who I will assume is a Republican, and my follow-up responses in bold. Their answers have not been edited at all.

1) How is it President Obama’s fault that all U.S. troops are out of Iraq, allowing ISIS to take control in many cities within the nation, when the SOFA agreement requiring that all American military forces had to be out of Iraq by the end of 2011 was signed by George W. Bush?

Their answer: I dont blame Obama for it, nor do I see the blame being sent his way by most republicans. But then again he has more than enough overseas mishaps than just the ISIS issue.

They don’t see the blame being sent his way by most Republicans?  I guess they don’t watch Fox News, listen to Rush Limbaugh or watch many clips from congressional Republicans talking about Iraq.  And I love the “overseas mishaps” comment.  We’ve started no wars, got Syria to get rid of their chemical weapons without firing a single shot, killed Osama bin Ladin and haven’t started a single war – I’d like to know what “mishaps” to which they’re referring.  

2) If guns make us safer, then why was one of the first things many law enforcement officials did in the 1800′s to curb violence in their towns (and most were successful) was to ban the carrying of firearms inside city limits?

Their answer: Why is it then that Switzerland has the most lax gun-control laws in the western world, with the least amount of gun violence. Better yet why are the three most stringent gun-control law city’s (Chicago, Los Angelos and NYC) always ranked in the top 5 cities for gun violence while more lax cities do not even break the top 10. Because we all know criminals abide the law.

Switzerland also mandates all males serve in the military.  Should we do that as well? And when looking at gun violence, cities are a poor way to look at it.  As you can tell by the three cities they listed, they’re going by numbers instead of per capita.  Of course the larger the city the more likelihood of gun violence.  To get a better picture of gun violence it’s better to look at whole states.  

In order, the states leading the country in gun homicides per 100,000 people are:

  1. Louisiana 
  2. Mississippi
  3. Alaska
  4. Wyoming 
  5. Oklahoma
  6. Montana
  7. Arkansas
  8. Alabama
  9. New Mexico
  10. South Carolina 

Every single one is a very pro-gun, strongly Republican state except for New Mexico.  

3) If a church wants to marry a gay couple, but state law prohibits gay marriage, how is that not a violation of their “religious freedoms”?

Their answer: This issue is difficult to address due to the multitude of religions and there beliefs. However I believe the localized government should be the determining factor as they are closer to their constituents then the federal government.

So, their solution is to let localized government determine Constitutional rights.  Meaning that if you happen to be a liberal living in a very conservative area of the United States, either move or adapt to the views they want to force on you.  This is the same kind of argument segregationists used in the 50’s and 60’s.

4) If Darrell Issa is so sure that there’s rampant corruption at the IRS, then why couldn’t he recently cite one specific piece of “smoking gun” evidence he’s found during his investigation?

Their answer: Why is it that the IRS has suddenly lost all e-mails from one of its most important individuals just before those e-mails are to be investigated. Furthermore why is it that they refuse to allow third-party expert data recovery specialists to fix this issue.

First, the IRS didn’t “suddenly lose” all of Lerner’s emails.  The hard drive crashed three years ago.  Also, notice how this person never actually answered the question.  

5) Unplanned pregnancies are the leading cause of abortions. Most unplanned pregnancies are the result of a lack of contraceptives being used during sexual activity. How does it make any sense to oppose access to contraceptives, while claiming to be anti-abortion?

Their answer: The issue behind the Hobby Lobby case was not 16 forms of contraception, where the mass majority are acceptable of, but the 4 forms of emergency “morning after pills” are used. In fact Hobby Lobby already supplied those 16 forms of preventative before Obamacare came into being.

So their “logic” is that a company should determine what method of contraceptives a woman is allowed to use?  

6) The United States has around 300-330 million guns (and growing) circulating within our neighborhoods, while gun violence continues to claim around 9,000 lives every year. How many guns will it take to decrease gun violence in America?

Their answer: See answer 2. And please stop repeating yourself to try and make it seem you are more informed then you are.

Again, doesn’t answer the question and their entire premise for their answer to #2 was false, therefore irrelevant.  

7) How many decades would you say it will take for trickle-down economics to finally start working? It’s been over 30 years now and all that’s happened is the rich have gotten richer, while the middle class falls further and further behind.

Their answer: The inverse is no better, as studies have shown. And if you to cut back on your spending, do you drop your cable and cell phone, or do fire the cleaning lady and gardener? People fire the gardener before they effect their own way of life. Which in turn creates more unemployed. Now to expand that large corporations.

Almost nothing they said here makes any sense in relation to my question.  And if you want to say the “inverse” was our economy prior to trickle-down economics (higher taxes, stronger unions) our economy was much stronger.  Eisenhower was a Republican and he managed to balance the budget, build our Interstate Highway system and preside over a strong economy despite tax rates being much higher than they are now.  

8) Do you really not think there’s a connection between the right-wing denial of climate change and the fact that the Republican party is heavily backed by big oil?

Their answer: The sample size is far to small to be of any statistical significance. 100 years in over 1 billion is not even remotely significant. If I told you that 1 in a million people believe Obama is the worst (Again example) you would rally that that is a small sample of the population. Same issue here.

97% of the scientists who devote their lives to studying climate science say that humans are accelerating climate change.  And it’s not 100 years out of 1 billion.  It’s the last 50-60 years over the last 150 where we’ve seen a direct relation to the human burning of fossil fuels and changes to our climate.

Also, a subjective opinion about Obama isn’t the same as scientific fact.  

Oh, and they never really answered this question either, pertaining to Republicans being backed by big oil and their opposition to climate change science.  

9) Explain to me how someone can enjoy their own personal “religious freedom” when they’re having to abide by laws and policies based on somebody else’s?

Their answer: This question is quite vague as my teacher told me, please be more specific if you wish for an intelligent answer.

The question isn’t vague at all, they just can’t answer it.  Therefore they respond with a question (usually the first sign they can’t answer a question without contradicting their beliefs) and a sarcastic remark to try to comfort themselves since they know they can’t answer the question.  

10) If John Boehner thinks President Obama should be sued for using his executive power to get something done on immigration, then what should happen to him considering he won’t let the House vote on a bipartisan immigration bill the Senate passed last year that the vast majority of Americans support?

Their answer: The President has certain powers afforded the office as decreed by the Constitution, but Executive decision has expanded it. However Executive decision is not suppose to supersede congressional debate and action. This president’s executive decisions are being issued in replace of laws already in existence. Something that inherently violates the seperation of powers clause.

Again, they never actually answer the question.  They just responded with a Fox News talking point while completely ignoring the fact that the Senate passed a bipartisan immigration bill last year that John Boehner refuses to let the House vote on.  

Well, there you have it folks.  Insight into the mind of a Republican and a little taste of what I deal with nearly every single day.


Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.

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  • Sometimes it’s just Nuts

    DEFLECT, APOLOGIZE, STAND NEUTRAL! The 3 steps of (LOL) those moderate “republicans”…..

  • Guest

    1.)Hyperbole
    2.)False Equivalency
    3.)Deflection
    4.)Hypocrisy
    5.) Persecution complex.

    6.) Righteous Indignation.
    THESE are the fundamental “values” of Right Wing Conservatism

    • Spaceman Spiff

      You forgot 7.) Ad Hominem.

    • Pro-ChoiceTexan

      You forgot Stupidity and Ignorance.

  • Melissa Briscoe

    #5 – the IUD is not a pill. This rep’s response is flawed in many ways.

    • Why5ks

      And if the response is correct, then why did the Supreme Court allow all 20 forms of birth control to be barred for religious reason. Plus, Hobby Lobby allowed the same types they argued against before the ACA was past. I’m wondering when they are going to sue to have Viaga and Cialis banned, since the main reason to use them is recreational sex of older men?

      • Pro-ChoiceTexan

        but…but…Viagra and Cialis treat “medical conditions.” Impotence is a “medical condition.” (smirk, snicker)

      • wendy

        That’s for men. No ban there

  • Meggie

    How is a Newsmax poll getting onto your website? It’s terrifying to see that name popping up on liberal websites. Can you please explain to your fans who, exactly, Newsmax is and what they do?

    • Nancy B

      The site has no control over the advertisements that appear. Most of us are thoughtful enough to read and research. Nothing terrifying about it.

    • owldoh

      The ads are based off of you personally… my ads are for Dawngate and Frank&Oak MANLY STYLE! Cus manly

  • Scott6113

    Switzerland does not have lax gun laws. Guns are not allowed in the home. The Swiss have found it is too dangerous.

    • Cathryn Sykes

      Plus, the fact that all the males must take military training also means that they learn military discipline…which includes self-control, obedience to lawful authority and learning how to handle a gun safely and properly. A stark contrast to our self-proclaimed Open Carry ammosexuals, who seem to specialize in shooting themselves or others “by accident.”

      • mryaboo

        haha, “ammosexuals.” I’ll have to steal that!

      • meatwad_SSuppet

        Tell the women in uniform about that self control discipline when they get locked up in cargo crates for being raped.

  • imbanyan

    Typical responses of a Faux news zombie

  • Brett Anderson

    What is your email address. I’d like to attempt to “answer as a Republican” would.

    • suburbancuurmudgeon

      THAT could be interesting…

    • wendy

      Would you answer as a republican this question: besides tax cuts which do not create jobs, what is the Reps. strategy to cut, cut, cut our way to prosperity and growth? I always thought we need to invest $$ to make $$. This isn’t sarcasm. I would like to know how to personally cut spending resulting in more income.

  • digitlburn

    Not to mention in the Republican “responses”, I found at least four grammatical errors.

    How can we expect them to make intelligent arguments when they can’t even use the correct form of “their”, “supposed to”, or can’t even use the correct verb tense?

    • I hate playing grammar police but I can’t help it. I noticed the typical, wingnut confusion between then and than—

    • karen_d

      To be fair, functional illiteracy is non-partisan.

  • Marsha Rupe

    I hate those “NewsMax” ads. It’s right wing tripe posing as journalism.

  • Singleweird

    Allen, you’re brilliant but you need an editor. The grammar.

    • Beverly Gjerdahl Lowry

      he said he “did not edit the answers”

  • Bob

    The IRS released some 22,000 documents to the investigative committee. BTW, not one PAC was denied 501c status.

  • Shinjo Dun

    2) The majority of guns used in Chicago crimes aren’t purchased in Chicago – they are from out of state. Additionally, the ones from in IL are mostly from the conservative areas of IL, so that’s a horrible example. FWIW, NYC is also a bad example as it had a Republican or Republican turned Independent as its Mayor from 1/1/1994-1/1/2014.

    7) No evidence to the contrary? LOLOLOLOLOL. Ok, to start, remember that while the social positions of the parties have changed dramatically over time, the economic positions of the parties have (in terms of support of workers rights, social programs, minimum wage, etc.) stayed constant for over 100 years. There’s a couple things to consider when staying there’s no evidence to the contrary. First, every president to have seen the unemployment rate increase (when comparing starting and ending results) for over 100 years has been a Republican. Cleveland was the last Democrat – other than Reagan, every Republican has since before the Great Depression. Second, the economy grows much faster under Democrats than Republicans (4.35% to 2.54%). Third, out of our last 10 recessions a) nine started under a Republican and b) the one under Carter was the shortest of those 10. Fourth, looking at the job growth and unemployment rates in Washington (highest state minimum wage) and the Bay Area in CA (largest cities that have been over $10/hr for extended periods of time), compared the the rest of the country.

    Meanwhile, we’ve had roughly 18 years that we could consider “Reaganomics” in effect, calendar years 1981-90 (ending with the Bush tax increase in minimum wage increase) and 2001-2008 (FWIW, this should be government fiscal years 1982-1991 and 2002-2009). During those years, we saw the largest increase in the budget deficit ever, the largest single budget deficit ever, the two highest unemployment rates since the Great Depression, the start of 4 of the 5 worst moments/periods in DJIA history.

    The only way you think Reaganomics worked is if you have your head in the sand. Just compare two time periods – the first had economic growth of 3.42%, 2.5 million jobs created per year, unemployment rate being when looking at the very beginning and very end (but lower in the middle). The second had average economic growth of 3.37%, 2.0 million jobs created per year, unemployment being higher at the beginning than end (but peaking more than 4.5% up part of the way through the time period). If I ask you to choose, which would it be? I’m assuming 99% of people reading would say the first.

    The first was Jimmy Carter. The second was Ronald Reagan. People buy in to two things – solutions and good feelings. Reaganomics is good feelings, and no solutions.

    And, while stagflation should have been included under Carter’s economic record, I left it out because of three reasons – the first is that it started prior to Carter’s term, the second is that the person credited with the way it was eliminated was Paul Volcker and he was appointed as the head of the Fed by Carter (and Reagan left him in place) and the last is that the plan that resulted in ending stagflation was put into place while Carter was president (which means any credit Reagan receives for this should actually be given to Carter).

    • Dennis Frisby

      and most of those Chicago gun laws were struck down by the courts.

      • Shinjo Dun

        Which has nothing to do with the fact that the majority of guns used in Chicago aren’t purchased in IL, and out of the ones purchased in IL, most are from outside Chicago.

        If anything, this indicates other states and areas in IL lax laws were making Chicago less safe.

  • jimcan

    While I am a not usually a grammar cop, in this context, the respondent’s sloppy thinking seems to result in consistently unclear, misspelled, and incomplete statements. As you point out, they think they have answered questions even though there is no meaningful response.

  • Peter Williams

    Looks like Louie has Koch-Suckers cramps again.

  • Jeff Johnson

    How can you believe that Lerner and 6 others just “happened” to lose their hard drives at the same time? This is something that all parties should be concerned about. I hope you have seen the emails that were released this week where she states that they need to be careful with what they put in their email. They targeted liberal groups too and the IRS is already too powerful.

    • suburbancuurmudgeon

      Ever have a computer? A very old computer? Or even a relatively new computer? Hard drives crash all the time. That is why online backup companies are making money.

      • Jeff Johnson

        If you would look at my response then you would see that i also pointed out that liberals were targeted. In addition, government agencies are required to keep copies of emails.

      • suburbancuurmudgeon

        So you think there is a conspiracy? Or is it just bureaucratic ineptitude? Frankly, I don’t worry about the IRS any more than usual, which is to say, not much.

      • Jeff Johnson

        They have no problem worrying about you so maybe you should. This was targeted by Lerner and her gang. She has also been found to have been trying to trick Grassley from Iowa into an audit by telling him that he could fly hous wife to DC on taxpayer money. He was smart enough to not fall for it. They lost the millions of dollars they were given to implement Obamacare but they go after us if we miss a dime on our tax forms. Hopefully this doesn’t lead to Obama but it should be fully investigated. You can support Obama if you want but please don’t do it blindly.

      • Jeff Johnson

        This was not just something that happened in Cincy so I guess keep telling yourself that. The IRS overstepped their boundaries and should be held responsible. Maybe since you feel differently then they’ll let you get away with some errors on your tax return.

  • Jeff Johnson

    Boehner is not suing Obama just because of his use of executive orders. He is suing him because he changed a law that couldn’t be changed without a vote by Congress. The same law that Obama kept telling the Republicans that they couldn’t change because it was law.

    • suburbancuurmudgeon

      Uh huh. Keep telling yourself that. Do you REALLY think it is going to do anything beside make Boehner look like even more of an idiot.

      • Dianne Hornick

        Is that possible?

      • Melania Gulley

        the whole Republican part can’t help but look more stupid. They are being paid by idiots with more money than God to in effect play God with everyone else’s lives.

  • artisanr

    Conservatives/teabaggers/GOP/etc. NEVER answer these questions. NEVER. you’ll not get one solitary meaningful conversation with them. They simply sling another nonsense talking point in your face and expect informed people to digest it.

    What they say about “nailing jello to a wall” is true. The only way to deal with abysmally deflective nonsense like this is to keep it far, far away from any lawmaking office in existence.

    OH and by the way, whenever I mention that these are all VERBATIM Fox “news” talking points, I invariably get the “I don’t watch Fox ‘News’ answer. Every single time.

    if they’re really desparate, they’ll cry “both parties are the same!” and walk out just like Darryl Issa.

  • suburbancuurmudgeon

    I love it when they try to say Lincoln was a Republican and the KKK was all Democrats. They seem to forget “Dixiecrats” were the forerunners of today’s Southern Republicans and their Southern ancestors hated Lincoln.

    These are the same people that think slaves were much better off because their masters took care of them

    • Jon Floate

      Also during the time when Grover Cleveland was in office they were often referred to as Bourbon Democrats, largely the uptight conservatives of their day. Much like today’s republican party. Back then the parties beliefs were largely reversed to what we see these days.

  • Stephanie Maltz

    Churches don’t perform marriages. They perform weddings. Marriage is only legal when a marriage certificate is filed at a city hall or other equivalent government office.

  • Stephanie Maltz

    I’d like to add that state laws which prohibit same-sex marriage are violating the civil rights of gay couples and should be declared unconstitutional. No gay person has tried to vote on the legality of “traditional” marriage. (Traditional marriage has been “arranged marriage” via family negotiations or polygamist for most of human history in various parts of the world during various time periods. Our modern age still has polygamy, arranged marriages, child-brides, coerced marriage, etc. as a respected form of “traditional marriage”). As far as I know, a church wedding is simply a religious celebration and cannot be prohibited in states that outlaw same-sex marriage. Am I wrong? Who knows what the exact laws are in the bible belt?

    • Jeff Johnson

      Maybe you should pay attention to the news. Same sex bans are being deemed unconstitutional all over the country as we speak.

  • Jeff Johnson

    To the writer, just because you have one point of view it doesn’t make the other view wrong. You want compromise and compassion when the Republicans are attacking and being irrational but you are guilty of the same.

  • Dennis Frisby

    So, if Local Government can make their own laws then if the choose to pass gun control, it’s their right? SNARK

  • Dorothy Dill

    Interesting and entertaining read. Thank you 🙂