Saturday, August 28, 2010

A question about the Tea Party

Is the Tea Party a positive or negative movement for conservative voters? While the party principals of small government and personal responsibility appeal to many of us, will our support of candidates that liberals call extreme translate to fewer independent voters pulling the levers for GOP candidates this fall? Only time will tell. One thing that is a bit troublesome to this conservative voter are the number of "good republicans" having lost primaries and now choosing to run as independents. Will the Tea Party prove to be an asset or a liability in November?

We're told that the Tea Party movement weeds out true conservatives from posers. I guess that depends on your definition of conservative. Either way, Charlie Crist was never conservative. Now he's turned his back on his party and taken up the independent banner to the detriment of Marco Rubio, the chosen candidate of his former party. As he siphons votes that would have been sent Marco Rubio's way we have to ask ourselves,
is the Tea Party movement causing more trouble than it's worth?

This question isn't lost on anyone who considers the next likely Benedict Arnold to join the ranks of turncoats (this time as a Libertarian) is Lisa Murkowski. Talk about irony. It appears she very likely lost the Republican primary to the Sarah Palin endorsed candidate, Joe Miller, in of all places Alaska. Word is that if, after all ballots are counted, Joe Miller is declared the victor, she may run as a Libertarian. Andrew Halcro, a former Republican state legislator and Sarah Palin detractor has commissioned a poll to see what Murkowski's numbers look like in a three man race. He also used to have a blog focusing on political issues and was the first to question if Palin had abused her power when she fired Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan, leading to the Troopergate investigation. If the numbers look even remotely promising look for Halcro to fund Murkowski's run as a Libertarian, just for spite if nothing else.

Is the Tea Party a good thing? Absolutely. Anything that reveals more information about our candidates and facilitates discourse is very positive for a democracy. Will Tea Party endorsed candidates be seen as too extreme in November like the White House insists? Will these endorsements backfire and give us more liberal legislators in November than we had hoped for? Only time will tell but I must admit, I'm concerned. In the big picture though, the Tea Party movement is evidence of a healthy democracy.

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