Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Politically-Speaking, Texas May Implode On Itself Like A Newtron Star

As Rachel's blog explains, the Tea Party-backed purge has claimed another victim, and this time in Texas. I think it's a sign of the times when Rick Perry's Lt. Governor loses because he's apparently not conservative enough for Texas Republicans.

But in a macro sense, it presents a problem the GOP has had sense the Frankenstonian Monster (this hybrid of the supposedly fiscally-conscientious, the can't-let-go birthers and the compromise-haters) known as the Tea Party formed: Republicans need them for votes, but not as electoral candidates. Other than Rand Paul (who had the added benefit of being Ron Paul's son) hardly any Tea Party candidate of note has won (GOP members who "converted" to save their asses don't count) and those who did seemed to mysteriously become cogs of the very machine they were sent to dismantle. Nevertheless, their presence during campaigns make it difficult for the establishment GOP in terms of attracting independent voters (although it's hard to think there are that many independents out there nowadays who need swaying). The craziness in the House of Representatives (i.e., the fact that they've voted on the ACA more than job creation) is just a symptom of the Old Guard trying to keep the Insurgents under wraps.

Texas may well become the bell-weather here: should Ted Cruz win the seat, more Tea Party members will be even more emboldened to run against "classic conservatives" who don't convert. Should Cruz lose, the Karl Rove types may use the result as a way to tamper down the more radical wing of their party (for fear of the Texas Democrats who'll smell blood in the water).

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