Voters see GOP as “scary" and "narrow minded," says RNC report

An "autopsy" report finds that Republicans have an image as “stuffy old men”

By Jillian Rayfield

Published March 18, 2013 1:00PM (EDT)

A report released by the Republican National Committee's Growth and Opportunity Project finds that most voters see the party as "out of touch" and "scary," and concludes that Republicans must focus on outreach to minorities.

The report, which analyzed the GOP's losses in the 2012 elections, said that many of those surveyed described the party as "narrow minded" and a party of "stuff old men."

"Young voters are increasingly rolling their eyes at what the Party represents, and many minorities wrongly think that Republicans do not like them or want them in the country," the report says. "When someone rolls their eyes at us, they are not likely to open their ears to us."

The report recommends that the GOP "stop talking to itself" and that "If we want ethnic minority voters to support Republicans, we have to engage them, and show our sincerity." On social issues, the RNC concludes that Republicans need to be more "inclusive and welcoming."

Despite the RNC's recommendations, as the New York Times points out, most congressional Republicans are essentially ignoring the results of the election, continuing to block the Obama Administration's agenda, and calling votes on things like repealing the Affordable Care Act. From the Times:

In Congress, Republicans are pushing an agenda that is almost identical to the one that their party lost with in November, with no regrets and few efforts to reframe it even rhetorically. The House will vote this week on the third iteration of Mr. Ryan’s budget, which would again try to turn Medicare into a subsidy for private insurance purchases, slash the top income tax rate and cut deeply into programs the president campaigned to protect.

“I think they are claiming too much of a mandate,” Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., told the Times. “Number one, it was a close presidential election. Number two, the Republicans won the House, and they can lay claim to the same mandate. So to me, that’s a wash.”

“I’m encouraged to have heard from the president today, but more encouraged that perhaps this is an indication he is willing to change course," said Rep. Lynn Jenkins, R-Kan., after a meeting with the President.

Jillian Rayfield

Jillian Rayfield is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on politics. Follow her on Twitter at @jillrayfield or email her at

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2012 Elections Barack Obama Reince Priebus Republicans Rnc