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October 18, 2006

ANN ALTHOUSE:

I think aggressive characters like our "lefty blogger" think that uncovering gay Republicans will disgust social conservatives and change their voting behavior. They might also believe that they are demonstrating hypocrisy and that doing so will motivate Republicans to abandon social conservatism. I would like to see Republicans abandon social conservatism, and I'm not cheering on these slimy outings. But, honestly, I think these creepy, gleeful efforts at outing will only make social conservatives more conservative, and they will continue to look to the Republican party to serve their needs.

Yes, "creepy, gleeful efforts" don't win you many friends or converts. Of course, they're really just meant to demoralize Republican voters and keep them home on election day.

I suspect they'll have the opposite effect. The GOP leadership has managed to alienate much of its base, but this kind of slimy and obviously organized political effort is more likely to encourage GOP voters to ignore the bad stuff and vote Republican as a way of demonstrating their disgust with the creepiness.

UPDATE: Jonah Goldberg: "The sort of scorched earth attack liberals have mounted in the wake of Foley is creating precedents I guarantee will haunt them in unexpected ways in years to come."