GOP’s Hostile Image

Not my headline. It’s from the CA this morning. It is the headline for a George Will piece that tackles the Eric Cantor defeat.

Anyone who has observed George Will knows he’s a model of probity. He’s not one to make outlandish remarks. He chooses his words carefully and, well, conservatively. The headline did not sound like the George Will most of us hear on Fox News or read in the newspaper.

After reading his article, hostile image seemed an entirely inappropriate summation of his thoughts. Many readers either don’t realize or forget that the headline is not written by the author. A copy editor slaps it on. Often the reporter gets furious with the copy editor about the headline; sometimes correctly, sometimes not.

In this case, the copy editor was projecting his liberal CA viewpoint instead of George Will’s point. The word hostile only appeared once in the piece. After explaining several reasons why voters dumped Cantor, Will writes, “If, however, Cantor’s defeat reinforces the perception that Republican are simply hostile regarding immigration and immigrants, ripples from it might swamp attempts to align Republican policy with the 51% of Republicans nationwide, who like 62% of Americans, favor for the 11 million a pathway to citizenship.”

Notice he says the perception – not the reality – of GOPers being hostile and he precedes it with a big “if.” That is not painting Republicans as hostile, is it?

Republicans weren’t hostile in South Carolina towards immigration. They voted for the immigration reform backing Lindsey Graham for reelection in the Senate. We nominated John McCain – a staunch immigration proponent – in 2008 and the immigration friendly Romney in 2012. Outreach to the Hispanic community has been a goal of RNC Chair Reince Priebus who has intensified efforts in the past two years.

Editors like to cast Republicans in the harshest light possible and not the true one. They want to influence people who are too shallow to think for themselves. They did it again today.

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