Why the GOP is Scared of their Tea Party Frankenstein


I’ve been saying all along that this wave of anti-establishment sentiment made no sense.

It’s something inherently ridiculous — elect me to go to Washington because I’m not from Washington so I’ll be different.  As if simply being new means that you’re better.  Or that just because you’re “part of the establishment” that your ideas, your plans, your policies are wrong.  There’s also the fact that the minute you get elected, you then are part of the establishment, the very group of people you were saying weren’t as good as you simply because they were in that group that you’re now a part of.  It makes no sense writing this and it makes no sense doing it.

It seems to be working, though, for Tea Party candidates much to the chagrin of the GOP elites, like Karl Rove himself:

“But we also can’t make progress if we have candidates who got serious character problems … [O’Donnell] attacked [Castle] by saying he had a homosexual relationship with a young aide with not a bit of evidence to prove it.”

Christine O’Donnell won the Republican primary for Senate in Delaware, beating out GOP incumbent Mike Castle.  And if you don’t know much about O’Donnell, well, she’s quite the character.  She’s what we call an ultra-conservative, which is saying something considering how far to the political right the current conservative movement has become. (I mean if you’re too conservative for Karl Rove, holy shit.)

Just take a look at the things O’Donnell stands for:

  • Opposes legal abortion, even in cases of rape and incest
  • Against women in the military
  • Believes gays can be “cured”

And here’s the best: Opposes masturbation, also believing it’s a form of adultery.

While her win was a huge upset, it’s important to note two things:

  1. She only won by a margin of 58,000 Republican votes
  2. She’s overwhelmingly favored to lose to Democratic candidate, Chris Coons

The main players within the GOP know that she’s far too radical to win the general election in a predominantly liberal state, which is why they rushed to support Castle, who has represented Delaware in the Senate since 1993.  It seems that the unilateral anti-incumbent mentality has backfired against the Republicans after all, which doesn’t shock me in the least. Because it’s not like Democrats are the only ones who have held office for a long time in the big boy’s club of D.C.  But the anti-establishment mentality is blind to party lines, apparently.

Most observers agree that O’Donnell has no chance of beating Democratic nominee Chris Coons in November, so for Republicans, an O’Donnell win means failing to gain a Senate seat, and thus likely losing any chance of taking control of the upper house.

The GOP has supported the Tea Party because it appealed to their base — angry, older, white, Christian voters.  But now that their own Frankenstein monster has turned against them, it seems that the political right has a bit of a civil war on their hands.  While the GOP has enjoyed the turning of the tide in their favor when it comes to polls, they’re showing that they’re worried that the exclusionary rhetoric of the Tea Party won’t win major elections — why else would they go to such lengths to bash O’Donnell despite having the backing of the political right god, Rush Limbaugh?

Perhaps the reality that having no real plans for healing the country has finally taken hold.  After all, you can only run campaigns on pointing fingers for so long before those fingers come pointing back at you.

One comment

  1. Excellent piece. Couldn’t agree more.

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