The Cycle, 1/17/13, 7:00 PM ET

Krystal Ball's ideas for Republicans at the GOP retreat

Krystal Ball gives some advice to Republicans about what they should be doing, and what changes they should be making, during their three-day retreat in...

The GOP retreat (as in, retreat from reality)

Updated

Republican lawmakers have descended on Williamsburg, Virginia, for their annual retreat with what looks like some, uh, innovative ideas for turning their party around. They’ve bravely faced the realities of changing demographics and are ready to find new ways of desperately grasping for power for their diverse coalition of old white guys and middle-aged white guys!  Or not… This is the diverse panel of gentlemen assembled to how about winning over women. Yes, if you thought 2012-style voter suppression and Southern strategy was low, you ain’t seen nothing yet.

Take this new scheme for example. Think of it as voter suppression 2.0. Republican legislatures in swing states across the country are planning on essentially gaming the electoral college. Rather than winner take all, under their plan electoral votes would be awarded by congressional district. This may not sound so nefarious, but it basically means that the votes of urban voters would count for less than those of rural voters. In fact, if these measures had been in place in 2012, we would now be preparing for the inauguration of President Romney. RNC Chairman Reince Priebus has already blessed the plan, saying, “I think it’s something that a lot of states that have been consistently blue that are fully controlled red ought to be looking at.”

Reince, You’ve really started something big here with this whole making urban votes count for less thing. But rigging the electoral college is just the beginning!  This Williamsburg retreat is a great chance to explore some really game-changing ideas.

Let’s see, what could you do… I know! Ever since we gave women the right to vote it’s been nothing but nag nag nag. Todd Akin and Phil Gingrey could lead a panel called The Myth of the Legitimate Female Voter. Members can strategize on how to put the vote back in capable male hands where it belongs. I mean, really–with the way we’ve been voting, we’ve been asking for it.

But we don’t want the vote in just any male hands. Oh Oh! Mitt Romney and Jan Brewer Could Lead a Panel Called:  Ole! How to convince all Latino Voters to Self-Deport!  I bet Jan’s got some cutting edge techniques for making America so inhospitable to Latinos that all Latinos, not just those who are here without papers, would voluntarily leave.

We’ve still got to deal with all those young people though. Hmmm… maybe if we legalized pot they’d all be too stoned to go to the polls.  No, that’s an actual substantive policy change. Let’s not go crazy. I know! Paul Ryan and the Young Guns could lead a panel called: “40 is the new 18,” about how we could responsibly lift the voting age from 18 to 40.

As you can tell, I’ve got LOTS of great ideas and if you invited me to come I’d be delighted to share them with you. Seriously.  I would love to be there.

The sad thing is that while I am obviously joking (except for that last part about wanting to come because I really want to come, but I digress), they are totally serious. Rather than change their message and adjust to the changing demographics in the country, the Republican party has apparently decided their best bet is to rig the electoral game.

To paraphrase ‘The Gambler’ by Kenny Rogers, you got to know when to hold em, know when to fold em, know when to walk away, know when to run. And like all losers, they yell to deal the cards again. Let’s not let em.

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The GOP retreat (as in, retreat from reality)

Updated