Southern Rednecks Killing GOP: Parker

Is it any surprise that birthers are common down there?
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 5, 2009 7:48 AM CDT
Sen. George Voinovich, R-Ohio, listens during a news conference on Capitol Hill, Feb. 5, 2009.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
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(Newser) – Asked recently what was wrong with his party, Ohio Sen. George Voinovich didn’t hold back. “It’s the Southerners,” he said. “They get on TV and go ‘errrr, errrr.’ People hear them and say, ‘These people are Southerners.’” No one’s sure what “errrr, errrr” means, but his overall meaning’s clear: “Those ignorant, right-wing, Bible-thumping rednecks are ruining the party,” translates Kathleen Parker in the Washington Post, adding, “Alas, Voinovich was not entirely wrong.”

Of course, not all Southern Republicans are wing nuts, and not all ignorant racists are Republicans. But increasingly the GOP is “associated with the South’s worst ideas.” It’s down there, for example, that “birthers” are spreading like kudzu. A recent poll showed that only 47% of Southerners believe Obama was born in America—compared to 87% to 93% in every other region. “Southern Republicans, it seems, have seceded from sanity.”