Thu Dec 13, 2012, 05:58 PM
Playinghardball (8,232 posts)
We only wish the teabaggers were calling it quits
o matter what Brooks or Ari Fleischer or Alex Castellanos or any other mainstream conservative pundit says, the driving question occupying the minds of dejected conservatives now out in actual America is not wondering what they can do to better welcome blacks and Hispanics and college kids with bad facial hair into their party. The real question they've been asking themselves since the election is probably closer to, "Why bother?"
A lot of these people gamely banded together to support a Republican nominee who left most of them cold during primary season, Mitt Romney. But there was a palpable air of We're giving this one last chance! in the effort to oust Obama through conventional mainstream politics. And when it was over, pundits everywhere insisted they faced a political Sophie's Choice: stay losers forever, or surrender on core issues.
Taibbi suggests that Sen. Jim DeMint's sudden resignation is symptomatic of the tea party's "we're taking our ball and going home" mentality. And if true, it would make everyone happy. We'd be happy because fuck the tea party. The Republican Party establishment would be happy because fuck the tea party too—those assholes cost the GOP a Senate majority. And the teabaggers would be happy because they could remain pure and unsullied by reality and facts.
Of course, that would make them as politically relevant as the Occupy protesters who refuse to sully themselves with the muck of electoral politics. In this world, you can gather all you want in the streets, but it's the people who play during election time who wield all the power. Witness the craziness in Michigan this week, where conservative billionaires threatened hesitant Republican legislators with primary challenges.
The teabaggers matter as long as they can foist the Sharron Angles and Christine O'Donnells and Richard Mourdocks of their world on their party. That's why they have enough leverage in a gerrymandered House to put the fear of god into (nominal) House Speaker John Boehner.
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