A Commentary by J. D. Longstreet
Over the weekend I watched some of the talking head shows on Sunday and I read a few syndicated columnists -- and I have concluded, based on what I read and heard, that the Republicans don’t get it, either. When I say: “republicans,” I, of course, mean the “establishment” republicans.
I believe we are about to see a civil war breakout between the two factions of the Republican Party in Washington.
Frankly, I had hoped this wouldn’t happen, but my gut continuously whispered to me, during the campaign for the House and Senate, that this was very likely to happen.
The GOP, it seems, has conned itself into believing it can “co-opt” the Tea Party republicans. I don’t think they can… at least, I HOPE they can’t.
I’m a rock-ribbed conservative, a “constitutional republican.” I have more in common with the Tea Partiers than I do with the GOP.
I have been a republican since the day I registered to vote on my 21st birthday almost half a century ago. I have been through the good and the bad with the GOP ever since. But, then, what choice had I? I sure as heck could never become a democrat!
Now comes the Tea Party, a conservative movement that speaks my language, believes as I do, and appears to be slowly, but surely, edging its way toward becoming a full-fledged political party – a political party I could join.
The Tea Party candidates were sent to Washington, by conservative voters, to make sure the US is brought back to constitutional rule. If that means refusing to cooperate with the establishment republicans when they attempt to compromise with the liberal-socialist democrats -- then that is what they are charged, by the voters, with doing. They are on a mission. Never forget that.
I don’t think the GOP understands that. If they do, there is no evidence, at least, that I have seen, to indicate that they do.
I suspect we are about to see some really, er, different politics than we have seen in a very long time on display after January 2011. Watch for a considerable amount of “in-fighting” between the two factions of republicans.
The Tea Parry republicans will not rubber-stamp the GOP agenda simply because it is the GOP agenda. They are not going to be allowed to lose contact with their constituents. As I said earlier they are on a mission. They have their marching orders from the voters. Any deviation for those orders and there will be hell to pay. Ultimately, turncoats will be voted out of office in two years, or six years, depending upon the body to which they were elected.
The democrats, if they are smart – and they ARE – will be taking advantage of the scraping between republicans and Americans can trust the dems to create any number of scenarios to perpetuate the fraternal fisticuffs between the republican siblings.
If I turn out to be correct on this, look for one thing to become abundantly clear -- the need for a political party to replace the GOP.
Obama will be observing all this and he will use it to his advantage in the Presidential Election of 2012. Oh, he will feint toward the middle for a few weeks then he will revert directly back to his leftists, socialist, agenda because that is who he is, that is what he believes, and no one should expect anything different from him.
I have concluded that the only way for the Tea Party to survive, as a real power broker in American politics, is for it to bite the bullet and become a real political party. The left, AND the right, were both caught by surprise this election cycle by the sheer audacity of this grassroots conservative movement. That won’t happen again. Next time around both the dems and the GOP will be ready -- and BOTH will do everything in their power to crush the Tea Party.
The establishment politicians still look upon the Tea Party as the “torches and pitchfork” crowd. Both the democrats and the republicans have bruised egos and very long memories. They WILL take their revenge – and it won’t be long in coming.
The establishment republicans do not seem to understand that conservative voters were voting -- not so much FOR republicans as they were AGAINST the democrats. Parse that anyway you will but you cannot escape the fact that conservative voters had no other choice except the GOP. Given another choice, a conservative choice, they would have abandoned the GOP and happily cast their lot, and their ballots, for that party.
In a few weeks we will know, for sure, whether the GOP got the message, or not. For my part, I simply do not believe they did and it should become apparent to everyone shortly. Once that happens, I believe the Tea Party should call a national “organizing” convention, and officially create a new political party that will truly represent the ideals of conservative Americans.
As I look down the road into the near future, I am convinced it must happen.