If you have been watching the news lately, you may have heard about a split that is taking place in the Grand Old Party. Karl Rove is talking about no longer supporting the extreme right candidates, and as such he is basically cutting himself out of the Tea Party, or cutting the Tea Party out of his concerns. Governor Bobby Jindal recently spoke at a GOP event and stated that the Republican Party needs to stop being, “the stupid party.” John Boehner, the House Majority Leader, has abandoned his Majority of the Majority rule and begun striking deals that include Democratic votes, cutting out the unruly Tea Party caucus.
It seemed the Tea Party was waning, but in light of these recent events they are starting to puff their chests and are plotting a resurgence. Matt Kibbe, CEO of FreedomWorks, a right-wing, Tea Party organization, and other such leaders are making noises about raising more money and stumping more conventional Republicans in primaries in an effort to obtain more power.
I say bring it on, for several reasons. In order for the GOP to separate itself from the extreme fringe, they will have to put forward more moderate conservatives. While I am a Democrat, I enjoy having more reasoned choices. I have never voted Republican, but I cannot say that I would not, if one were moderate enough. Back in 2000 I gave the old Maverick John McCain serious consideration for a short period of time. Alas, he did not win the Republican nomination. He was to maverick for conservatives.
As the Tea Party tries to solidify itself and cut itself out of the GOP, they will only splinter the Republicans. Being the extreme right, they will never be a majority. The extreme of anything is always the smallest portion. But as they strengthen themselves, they will pull some conservatives out of the GOP, and the Republican Party will become a fraction smaller. This will prevent the GOP from holding a majority, as we have already seen with many Republican ideas being shot down by the extremists.
With a more independent Tea Party, and thus a smaller Republican Party, it will be necessary for the Republicans to become more centrist. More Democrats will win seats as Independents will shy away from the GOP which has become associated with the Tea Party, and will discount the Tea Party candidates outright.
So I say bring it on Mad Hatters. You will only help to ensure more Democrat legislation over time, and that’s sweet tea to me.