Tea Party caucus getting tepid reception
…[T]he tea party movement is a loaded political weapon for Republicans heading into the midterm elections.
Until now, they have had the luxury of enjoying the benefits of tea party enthusiasm without having to actually declare membership. But now that Bachmann has brought the tea party inside the Capitol, House Republican leaders and rank-and-file members may have to choose whether to join the institutionalized movement.
The more I hear about this idea, the more I disagree with this move.
Heading into the midterms, Republicans have history and momentum on their side–for now. I never underestimate the GOP’s ability to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.
Already, Eric Cantor has said that the caucus is not such a great idea, along with Tea Party favorite, Marco Rubio. To the extent that the caucus is to represent the principles of the Tea Party, how does the movement interpret Rubio’s and Cantor’s decision? Is it less inclined to support these candidates and members?
But forget the distractions that are bound to come up with this idea. My biggest issue is about credibility.
A Tea Party-backed candidate has yet to win a significant election. It seems to me that having a caucus would mean the members of the caucus would have some clout in their representative body. If the Tea Party movement shows that it has the push to swing elections overwhelmingly, then forming a caucus would make more sense. After the fact.
If the Tea Party falls flat come election night, then the caucus will look pretty silly.
To be continued…