Friday, October 18. 2013
I don't have time to write at any length on this, but I thought it was worth noting that the two front page articles in the Wichita Eagle this morning -- well, aside from two other articles about shootings, past and present -- were titled "Obama calls for end to partisan fake crises" and "Despite failed efforts, tea party hangs on." The former included a picture of the president next to a quote from him: "You don't like a particular policy or a particular president, then argue for your position. Go out there and win an election." Above that is the tag line, "Political climate must change."
The Eagle is a fairly moderate newspaper that tends to blow with the wind. Each year, for instance, they endorse more Republicans than Democrats, but that's partly because they overwhelmingly go with the incumbents: they like the establishment in large part because they are the establishment. So a big part of the takeaway here is that for now at least the Republican (or as they would put it the "Tea Party") efforts to shut down the federal government and to force a default on the federal debt were not only not appreciated but were regarded as downright dangerous. This makes sense, of course: there is nothing the establishment hates more than anything that disrupts business as normal. But they rarely come out and say that because they like to pretend that both parties are legitimate and sane, even though these days the Republicans show little evidence of it -- and in fact have used the respect accorded them by self-conscious moderates to move political language far to the right. At least today they're reminding us that the "Tea Party" has gone beyond the bounds of respectability.
One more thing I want to note on the "bipartisan" deal that solved the immediate crisis. Sen. Pat Roberts, who is up for reelection next year and is being challenged in the Republican primary from the right voted against the deal. Rep. Lynn Jenkins, whose primary opponent next year is critical of how hard she's turned to the right since winning in 2012, voted for the deal. Neither may think they have anything to worry about from the Democrats in 2012, but both are aware that the split within the Republican party could swallow them up.
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Excerpt: Tom Hull - On the Web - Entries for Friday, October 18. 2013
Tracked: Oct 26, 06:55