There are many lessons that can be learned from the disastrous 16 day government shutdown this month. One would be that if the Republican Party doesn’t get its act together the 2014 congressional elections could be brutal. And that’s a lesson the Big Business wing of the Republican Party seems to understand as they plot the demise of the Tea Party. The 2014 Republican primaries are going to be something to see.
It took a tea party insurrection that disabled the federal government and wrecked the Republican brand, but after months of handwringing, establishment Republicans are preparing to attack ultra-conservative ideologues across red America.
From Alabama to Alaska, the center-right, business-oriented wing of the Republican Party is gearing up for a series of skirmishes that it hopes can prevent the 2014 mid-term election from turning into another missed opportunity. But this will not be a coordinated operation. It will be messy, ugly, and prone to backfiring. And if the comeback succeeds, it will be in fits and starts, most likely culminating in the selection of a presidential nominee in 2016
Republican on Republican attacks, this is going to get ugly fast. The Republican Party has rightly earned the title of the more cruel and ruthless of the two major political parties – now that fear and loathing gets turned inward get your popcorn.
The establishment Republicans don’t seem to have as much unity or power as they had before 2010, but they still have a taste for blood and access to cash.
Tactics being discussed among Republican strategists, donors, and party leaders include running attack ads against tea party candidates for Congress; overthrowing Ron Paul’s libertarian acolytes dominating the Iowa and Minnesota state parties; promoting open primaries over nominating conventions, like the ones that produced Republican hardliners like Virginia gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli and shutdown-instigator Mike Lee of Utah; and countering political juggernauts Heritage Action, the Club for Growth, and FreedomWorks that target Republican incumbents who have consorted with Democrats.
Do these people realize Dick Armey literally brought a gun when he took on FreedomWorks? So, good luck with that.
In any event, this is a positive development for the country as maybe the Republicans can work out their demons amongst themselves for a change instead of forcing their existential crisis onto the country via political stunts in DC.