Just How Long Will There Be a "Tea Party?"
by Alec Kohut
In the wake of President Obama’s decisive victory, as the first salvos in the Republican Party’s internal struggle are being delivered, the question of the Tea Party’s future has been questioned. Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, in a direct shot at Tea Party candidates has already stated that the GOP had to stop being “stupid.” Consultant turned pundit Steve Schimdt said that conservatives are now seen as “loons and wackos.” So the question being asked is can the Tea Party survive within the Republican Party.
The answer is simple and definitive: Yes.
Even the impending war within the GOP that even I envisioned just months ago, may not come to fruition. Why? Because the Tea Party has proven itself the most effective electoral organization of either party in decades. Even longtime GOP stalwarts dare not speak disparagingly of the Tea Party for fear of being “primaried.” The Tea Party’s success in Republican primaries has forced the GOP to adopt the Tea Party’s message, as their message.
It’s a very simple proposition, Republican candidates and campaign consultants speak ill of the Tea Party at their own peril, and as long the Tea Party is the major influence in GOP primaries, they will be a force in American politics. And wherever there is a motivated group with a singular purpose in American politics, money will follow.
But let us not confuse survival, with longevity. The Tea Party will survive and be the most influential group within the Republican party until they lose the only purpose for which they survive. The glue that holds this angry mob of pure nonsense together, their singular purpose, will exist for just four more short years. The Presidency of Barack Obama, whom they love to point out holds the middle name Hussein, will end in January 2017, and so will the group know as the Tea Party.
Oh sure, some remnants will still be visible. Just as I imagine somewhere someone is still clinging to the “occupy” movement. But without a black President, there will be no Tea Party. Every issue they claim to so care about will remain, only without a person of color in the White House. Then all of code words shrouded in a phony patriotism they now espouse will ring hollow to their white ears.
Phrases such as, “Take America Back,” and “The President Hates America,” will fall by the wayside and the Republican party will restore some semblance of sanity and stop debating contraception and if rape is just another form of conception that is God’s intention. Nor will we comfort in the wails of Victoria Jackson crying that “America has died.”
The only real question is just how far will the Tea Party set the GOP back before President Obama finishes his second term? How long will it before Latinos, African-Americans and sane women actually consider dipping their toes into the Republican pool?
By the looks of it, the Tea Party will likely inflict as much as damage as possible. Already with their asinine secession petitions and plans to de-fund Planned Parenthood in Ohio, they look to be as crazy as ever. Plus, the angry mob is very upset at the “Republican establishment” for abandoning such Tea Party favorites as Joe Walsh, Allen West, and Todd Akin.
So don’t expect the Tea party to go quietly. They still hold enough angry crazy white people to win any primary election in America, and will likely set at least the early tone of the 2016 Republican Presidential nomination, before slowly fading into oblivion.
After the circus that was the GOP primary, will the Tea Party focus it’s energy on one solid “conservative” to take back the White House? Probably not, but with the limited life span of the angry mob of nonsense known as the Tea Party, I can at least dream of a 2016 Presidential nomination of Michelle Bachmann, can’t I?