Four Reasons To Be Very Afraid If The Republicans Take Control Of Congress

With a number of Senate races running too close to call, Republicans taking control of both houses of Congress isn’t entirely out of the question.

If you think a Romney presidency would be bad, imagine what a GOP Senate sweep would look like. Such a victory would be read as confirmation that the country really does want to take a sharp right turn.

It probably won’t be good news for House Speaker John Boehner, though: The GOP bigwigs who call the shots don’t really trust him, so the coreless wonder from Massachusetts would revert to an even more conservative persona to placate the base and win another term in office. As a result, pretty much anything the right wing in Congress wants, would go.

Here are just four examples:

Marriage equality. Kiss it goodbye. The GOP will mount a hardcore effort to stop marriage equality. They can start with a defense of DOMA, which the Obama administration has refused to undertake in the courts. They’ll ratchet it up from there, all the way to a constitutional amendment to define marriage as between one man and one woman. A constitutional amendment requires approval from two-thirds of Congress and three-fourths of the states, but even if Republicans can’t get those numbers, it’ll still be a long, bitter and expensive fight. The LGBT community would be forced to spend the next four years burning through money to protect the gains we’ve made instead of looking for ways to expand them.
Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. The military hasn’t been destroyed by the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, but don’t tell the GOP that. Remember the gay soldier booed at a debate during the Republican presidential primary? At least one leading Republican, Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio, has said he would like to repeal the repeal if his party wins both Houses on Tuesday. It might be hard to restore DADT, but it’s easy enough to add all kinds of restrictions to erode the repeal’s full effect—to say nothing of holding congressional hearings to illustrate the gay menace threatening our national security. Won’t that be fun?
Funding for HIV/AIDS research and treatment. The great thing about Paul Ryan’s budget, which Republicans in the House have lined up behind, is that as vague as it is, it’s pretty easy to understand what will happen: It would give tax breaks to the wealthy, increase defense spending and shred everything else. Among the programs hit hard would be those that support people living with HIV and AIDS. The Ryan budget would result in a minimum 22% cut in funding for HIV programs, and possibly higher than that.

In addition, because Congress would be more than happy to repeal as much of the Affordable Healthcare Act as possible, people with pre-existing conditions like HIV wouldn’t be able to afford or even get private health insurance.
The continued rise of the religious right. If Republicans sweep Congress, all the right-wing nutburgers will have a direct pipeline to the seat of government. This includes Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council, who has made attacking gay rights his life’s work. Even more frightening is the prospect of David Barton having more political power: Barton would like to institute Scripture as the law of the land and, while he’s not likely to get everything he wants, he’d probably get plenty of GOP legislators enamored (or scared) of him. Guess who’d be a likely target for that effort?


The odds are already on the GOP to hold onto control of the House. The good news is that the GOP has nominated such weak candidates for Senate that the Dems have a good chance of keeping control and maintaining the firewall against more outrageous House proposals.

Still, polls have been wrong before and just because the odds are low for a GOP Senate, it doesn’t mean it’s zero. So don’t breathe easily until Wednesday morning. In the meantime, keep your fingers crossed.

Photo: U.S. House of Representatives

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  • brent

    ;/.u7So we should ignore all other issues like the economy and just vote for democrats, with the hope they will do the right thing on gays. Seems like a weak argument.

  • kernelt

    @brent: And we should just vote Republican because of economic mean? Their plan is not proven to be a success for it is just talk right now. And I don’t accept the notion that freedom is less important than money and wealth. It is one of the few priceless thing in life, without it no money ever worth the while. And I’m sure that no one is rather living under enslavement by another or the torment of those whose evil soul try to terminate our every existence.

    It is a compelling argument to live in freedom, deserving all the right bestow by the constitution without the prejudge of whether you’re straight or gay or in between.

  • Myles.

    At a very minimum,Democrats won’t do any damage.
    The Republicans and the Tea Party nuts would destroy what we have already gained and would try to ensure we have no chance of equality EVER!Your choice!
    Brent;get it together and vote for yourself for once.
    The rest of you know what to do!Vote!Vote often!Vote again!
    Please vote!

  • Greg

    @brent: The economy is NOT a good argument to vote Republican. Is your memory so short that you don’t remember which party caused the havoc in the first place? Because Obama didn’t fix it fast enough (against a recalcitrant, tea party House), is that a reason to bring back the originators who trashed the economy? I don’t buy this “it’s the economy, so vote Repub” meme. Just the opposite is closer to the truth.

  • Mjl-428

    @brent: you forget that you have psychos on your side who’ve been using the bible and people’s faiths as a way to scare and threaten them into voting republican this year “or else they shall burn in hell for all eternity” right?

    if there was a credible economic plan released by Romney and Ryan that made sense and had credible reviewers saying that it was legit, alongside them keeping their mouths shut on social issues, rather than doubling down on their plan to undo everything that advances the Gay community, then MAYBE I would’ve considered them. but this is almost looking like Assassin’s Creed III and guess who are the Templars?

  • Wilberforce

    Republican economic policy has been the same for thirty years. And it’s a disaster.
    It’s massive deficit spending on the military, deregulation, and huge tax cuts for the rich. It causes giant deficits. And while spending is stimulative, military spending is a far second to infrastructure spending, which also improves living standards and makes industry more efficient. And massive spending and tax cuts cause uncontrolled debt, which harms the markets. Meanwhile, financial deregulation turns the financial markets into a casino, which causes regular crashes and bailouts.
    The jury came back on this madness years ago. If the Republicans are able to put through these policies again, it’ll turn the recession into a depression.

  • MikeE

    You know, in the 1930’s, another party also ran its campaign on “economy” and hatred for a minority. And that party was also not averse to doing whatever was within its power to gain political control (it actually DID do everything it could to usurp power and gain control). And again, people supported the party because of its “economic policies”, ignoring the xenophobia (which they actually downplayed before their actual rise to power).

    I’m not worried about RMoney.

    The ones that TRULY terrorize me are his backers, and his wing-man Paul Ryan.

  • LubbockGayMale

    re #1, Brent: For years I voted GOP, figuring I could protect my civil rights as long as I was able to make a decent living. Since Shrub2, only the very rich or very fortunate can make a decent living, and our civil rights are being eroded daily. ANY gay who votes GOP had better be rich already, plus have great health insurance that covers pre-existing conditions…. remember, in the ‘good old days’ homosexuality WAS a disease, and even tho the psychiatric community no longer considers it a valid diagnosis, many insurance companies will consider it an ‘exhorbitant risk’ when working their rates.

  • 646guy

    Actually not sure why this article is even up as the Senate has long since been ceded back to the Democrats. They would need to lose way too many seats for that to happen. This is hyperbole at its best.

  • jeff4justice

    And the Democrats will just help vote in the GOPs nominees to the Supreme Court again.

    The 2-party system = more war, poverty & erosion of civil liberties regardless of what one is in charge.

    LGBTS Voting Alternative Party Instead Of Obama

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