Before I stumbled down a rabbit hole last night, I was going to write about this ridiculous Chris Cillizza post:
What if the tea party decides to walk away from the GOP in 2016? It could happen.Cillizza quotes by a Republican strategist named Reed Galen:
While parties typically have a hard-core, somewhat disaffected minority, they are usually swept along with the current of a larger movement.This is nonsense. The tea party has a "central organization" -- it's called Fox News. Fox, backed up by talk radio, will continue to stir up tea party anger, some of it against establishment Republicans. But as general election time approaches, the message will be, as usual, that evil Democrats are an existential threat to American civilization and must be destroyed. And the sheep will return to the fold, because destroying the liberal enemy trumps any of the supposedly inviolate tea party principles that the Galens and Cillizzas focus on so much.
However, in the case of the Tea Party, their lack of central organization and strict adherence to ideology over politics makes them a potent ingredient tossed into the evolutionary soup.
The GOP establishment may not give the tea party 100% of what it wants -- yes, these days the debt ceiling gets raised when it needs to be raised -- but now that Chamber of Commerce types know enough to fund establishment Republicans rather than the craziest of the crazies, by November there's only one candidate left in ever race who can smite the Democrat Antichrist, and that's the Republican, even if it's, say, Lindsey Graham.
Cillizza's Reed Galen quote continues:
That the Establishment wing of the party is either unwilling or unable to co-opt them for the larger goal of winning major elections shows just how exotic an addition to the mix the Tea Party is.That's silly -- whine about Benghazi a lot, block a few Obama appointees, and you've got them co-opted enough to win a general election. They don't require much.