Frank Rich: The G.O.Plot Against the Tea Party


Frank Rich:

One dirty little secret of the 2010 election is that it won’t be a political tragedy for Democrats if a Tea Party icon like Sharron Angle or Joe Miller ends up in the United States Senate. [...] What’s not so secret is that some Republicans will be just as happy if some of these characters lose, and for the same reason.

...The Tea Party’s hopes for actually effecting change in Washington will start being dashed the morning after. The ordinary Americans in this movement lack the numbers and financial clout to muscle their way into the back rooms of Republican power no matter how well their candidates perform. [...] The main dining room remains reserved for Koch’s fellow oil barons, Lott’s clients, the corporate contributors (known and anonymous) to groups like Rove’s American Crossroads [...]

What the Tea Party ostensibly wants most — less government spending and smaller federal deficits — is not remotely happening on the country club G.O.P.’s watch. [...] For sure, the Republican elites found the Tea Party invaluable on the way to this Election Day. [...] What made the Tea Party most useful was that its loud populist message gave the G.O.P. just the cover it needed both to camouflage its corporate patrons and to rebrand itself as a party miraculously antithetical to the despised G.O.P. that gave us George W. Bush and record deficits only yesterday. [...]

[T]he Republican establishment’s panacea of tax cuts [will prove] ineffectual at creating jobs, saving homes and cutting deficits [...] The tempest, however, will not be contained within the tiny Tea Party but will instead overrun the Republican Party itself, where Palin, with Murdoch and Beck at her back, waits in the wings to “take back America” not just from Obama but from the G.O.P. country club elites now mocking her. By then — after another two years of political gridlock and economic sclerosis — the equally disillusioned right and left may have a showdown that makes this election year look as benign as Woodstock.

That is edited down drastically. Please read the whole thing here.

  • Absolutely correct. It the TP'ers, a distinct minority, were to elect idiots to office that believed firmly in the Party of No and introduced idiotic legislation it's a plus for Democrats in 2012, a minus for Repblicans all the way around and a negative for the nation. Have just one government shut down that lasted long enough for Social Security members to miss their monthly check, once if not twice, and the Republicans are done, stick a fork in them.

    The Nation loses if the half way responsible Republicans win, loses greatly if the TP'ers continue to exercise influence far in excess of their numbers and the Democrats, in a two year sense, win.

    Lets hope we don't lose the House or the Senate. The Senate is the more important chamber because, as we've seen, it's easy to obstruct legislation seen as dangerous to the country.

    This is a horrid strategy but realistic. Once again I advocate Practical Politics. If enough of the fringe make it into government it will make Boehner look like a liberal. What a sad statement.