TEA Versus Watered-Down GOP Establishment – The Party Within the Party

The mainstream media is having a Grand Old Time with what they perceive as an internal struggle within the Grand Old Party, which they say is certain to bring about a GOP defeat at election time. The position of their liberal-leaning writers and talking heads is that in order for Republicans to succeed, they must act more like Democrats. Well, we’ve been there and done that. Didn’t work out so good, did it? Can you say, “Bob Dole,” or “John McCain,” or “Mitt Romney”? I suppose voter logic is that if all the GOP can offer are Democrat-lite candidates, they may as well vote for the real thing, and suffer the consequences. Well, they did, and we are!

We all know the old cliché about power corrupting. If it’s not corrupting, it is certainly comforting. It didn’t take long for our nationally elected “public servants” to determine that an income of upwards of $174,000 per year, for life, plus the many, many, other perks, is rather nice, and they don’t want to do anything to jeopardize it.

And it didn’t take long for the Establishment Republicans to realize that the Democrats have come up with a few very effective ways to stay in office; i e., raise the minimum wage, increase food stamp enrollments, give away Obamphones, expand government employment, extend unemployment benefits, offer amnesty to illegal immigrants, etc., etc., and they want a piece of it.

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The only time in recent memory that the Republicans have been successful on the national scene was in the 2010 mid-term elections, when Tea-Party inspired Republican candidates took control of the House of Representatives. But the newly elected Conservative Republicans, such as Ted Cruz, Mike Lee, Rand Paul, Trey Gowdy, and a few others, soon realized that the time-honored politics of re-election is financially devastating, and they set about to get the resulting runaway government back under control.

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So the much discussed GOP internal conflict is between the younger, more militant newcomers, and the older, more comfortable, inside-the-beltway Republicans, such as John McCain and his new bunk-buddy, Lindsay Graham.

The old-timers see their Democrat colleagues as less a threat to their security than are the Conservative insurgents. The Democrats can only prevent the Republican incumbents from gaining more political power, while the Republican newcomers can cost them their seats!    

In my home state of Tennessee, the inbred spirit of bi-partisanship has given us two Republican Senators, Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker, who voted in support of the Obama administration 52% and 49% of the time, respectively. They have voted for more Obama-inspired legislation than many of the Senate Democrats.

Tea-Party inspired newcomers resent the notion that there really isn’t much difference between the Democrats and Republicans. And while it obviously doesn’t seem to bother the GOP elders too much, the new guys on the block are determined to do something about it.

Senator Corker isn’t up for re-election this year, but the senior TN Senator Lamar Alexander is. The inter-party battle lines are drawn, and will be played out in the August 7th Republican Primary with Conservative State Representative Joe Carr challenging liberal-leaning Alexander for his US Senate seat. Lamar has the money, the name recognition, and the support of Governor Haslam. Joe has the enthusiasm, a Conservative voting record in the TN General Assembly, and the benefit of being on the right side of history.

Tighten your seat belts, folks. It’s gonna’ be an exciting bellwether of things to come!

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