Republicans Are People Too, Just Awful Ones Who Have No Decent Ideas and Cut Vital Health Funding To Prove It
Earnestly if surreally arguing they're not jerks wholly lacking in empathy but “regular folks interested in making the world a better place,” the GOP has launched its approximately 4,624th inept rebranding effort, which has been, like the preceding ones, swiftly and hilariously hijacked. Hard on the heels of the "Wedding Dress" outreach video to Youths of America comparing buying a wedding dress to voting for a candidate, and the five-point jobs plan Boehner tweeted but left blank, the Republicans Are People Too campaign features a cringe-inducing video with what turned out to be stock photos of people fervently assuring us that "Republicans recycle" and "Republicans assemble Ikea furniture." Because they evidently have no understanding of social media or their own cultural isolation, they invited others to post why #IAmARepublican. What followed was the likes of "#IAmARepublican because I am pro-life except for, you know, guns," "#IAmARepublican because I just gave birth to a new baby corporation and he already has the right to vote," "#IAmARepublican because I want to shrink government until it fits inside a woman's body, where it really belongs," and "#IAmARepublican because an armed white man is a patriot, but an armed black man is a thug. I'm just kidding! He doesn't have to be armed."
But health officials who have watched the Republican Party make repeated, devastating cuts in public health funding and who are now desperately scrambling to fight the Ebola outbreak remain unamused. They say a decade of GOP budget cuts, up to half of some programs' funding, are now having lethal repercussions. Dr. Francis Collins, head of the National Institutes of Health, is now on record saying the cuts - in the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control, the Hospital Preparedness Program - have stalled research that might have produced a vaccine by now, leaving just four U.S. hospitals at "a very high level of readiness" and the public health system in general woefully unprepared for a health emergency like Ebola. The charges have spawned a #TookMoneyFromEbolaResearch hashtag from various political persuasions. They've also led to a ferocious new attack ad from The Agenda Project whose title says it all: "Republican Cuts Kill."