Saturday, February 09, 2013

Suicidal Republicans

A post earlier this week noted that Karl Rove and other big money GOP donors are establishing a plan to defeat Tea Party and Christofascist backed candidates who, while the darlings of the delusional and deranged Christofascist/Tea Party crowd, are radioactive in general elections.  Not surprisingly, the Kool-Aid drinkers are NOT happy with Mr. Rove and his cohorts.  The spittle is flying and the indignation is ramping up off the charts.  All of which may be good news for rational, sentient voters who want practical, pragmatic, get the job done individuals elected to the House of Representatives and U. S. Senate.  A GOP civil war could well allow Democrats to sweep elections as the Christofascists and Tea Party lunatics drag the GOP downward.  A column in the New York Times looks at the reaction of the knuckle draggers to the Rove plan.  The coming intra-party fght should make for great spectator sport.  Here are column highlights:

Last week, the opening salvos were launched in a very public and very nasty civil war between establishment Republicans and Tea Party supporters when it was reported that Karl Rove was backing a new group, the Conservative Victory Project, to counter the Tea Party’s selection of loopy congressional candidates who lose in general elections. 

The Tea Party was having none of it. It sees Rove’s group as a brazen attack on the Tea Party movement, which it is. Rove sees winning as a practical matter. The Tea Party counts victory in layers of philosophical purity. 

Politico reported this week that an unnamed “senior Republican operative” said that one of the party’s biggest problems was “ ‘suicide conservatives, who would rather lose elections than win seats with moderates.’ ”  Democrats could be the ultimate beneficiaries of this tiff. Of the 33 Senate seats up for election in 2014, 20 are held by Democrats. Seven of those 20 are in states that President Obama lost in the last presidential election. Republicans would have to pick up only a handful of seats to take control of the chamber. 

But some in the Tea Party are threatening that if their candidate is defeated in the primaries by a candidate backed by Rove’s group, they might still run the Tea Party candidate in the general election. That would virtually guarantee a Democratic victory. 

Sal Russo, a Tea Party strategist, told Politico: “We discourage our people from supporting third-party candidates by saying ‘that’s a big mistake. We shouldn’t do that.’ ” He added: “But if the position [Rove’s allies] take is rule or ruin — well, two can play that game. And if we get pushed, we’re not going to be able to keep the lid on that.”

The skirmish speaks to a broader problem: a party that has lost its way and can’t rally around a unified, coherent vision of what it wants to be when it grows up.  The traditional Republican message doesn’t work. Rhetorically, the G.O.P. is the party of calamity. The sky is always falling. Everything is broken. Freedoms are eroding. Tomorrow is dimmer than today.   In Republicans’ world, we must tighten our belts until we crush our spines. We must take a road to prosperity that runs through the desert of austerity. We must cut to grow. Republicans are the last guardians against bad governance.  

But how can they sell this message to a public that has rejected it in the last two presidential elections?  Some say keep the terms but soften the tone. A raft of Republicans, many of them possible contenders in 2016, have been trying this approach. 

The Tea Party crowd did not seem pleased with that plan [on immigration reform]. Glenn Beck, the self-described “rodeo clown” of the right, said:  “You’ve got John McCain, Lindsey Graham, and now Marco Rubio joining them because Marco Rubio just has to win elections. I’m done. I’m done. Learn the Constitution. Somebody has to keep a remnant of the Constitution alive.” 

For Beck’s wing of the party, moderation is surrender, and surrender is death. It seems to want to go further out on a limb that’s getting ever more narrow. For that crowd, being a Tea Party supporter is more a religion than a political philosophy. They believe so deeply and fervently in it that they see no need for either message massage or actual compromise..  .  .  .  For this brand of Republican, there is victory in self-righteous defeat. 

Yes, it is a religion with these folks since a high proportion of the Tea Party are also Christofascists and white supremacists.  The want to keep America white and conservative Christian or go down trying.   Let's hope that they get their death wish.  The future of the nation depends upon killing this type of extremism and bigotry.

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