MAYBE THERE IS NO TEA PARTY OUTSIDE THE BELTWAY
I made a contrarian argument yesterday: that the GOP's bad polling on the debt fight probably matches up with what the crazy base wants, i.e., more intransigence rather than less, and even disapproval of the GOP position is probably a reflection of the belief in the base that Republican lawmakers aren't being sufficiently hardcore.
I was basing that on a story about a new CBS poll. Now I'm seeing the poll data and, well, even rank-and-file teabaggers seem far more reasonable than the members of Congress they elected:
Maybe I'm the only person who didn't grasp this a long time ago, but it looks as if the GOP/tea party crazy base cares only about cutting spending and a generalized sense of "small-government conservatism." The base doesn't care so much about absolute fealty to the Grover Norquist no-new-taxes-on-anyone-ever notion. I wish that meant the teabag base would vote against people who won't raise any taxes ever as part of a budget deal, but I think that's probably too much to ask.