Charles Krauthammer has come to my rescue. You see, I’ve been on the receiving end of some spirited reaction since asserting in last weekend’s column that what we commonly call the Republican establishment — i.e., not all individual Republicans but GOP leadership — “is more sympathetic to Obama’s case for the welfare state than to the Tea Party’s case for limited government and individual liberty.” The statement may have been provocative in the sense of expressing a truth that people on the political Right prefer not to talk about. But it was not controversial because it is indisputably true.
I agree with McCarthy’s conclusion there (the entire post is good). Honestly, I have had a difficult time distinguishing leftists from moderate, consultant-class Republicans since the shutdown. Their arguments are eerily similar.
Jeff Goldstein at Protein Wisdom peered into his narrative crystal ball yesterday.
The rhetorical ground is already being set, with these two races its supposed proofs: look at how well Chris Christie did in a blue state! Look at how Cuccineli’s extremism lost us Virginia!
I sincerely hope Cuccinelli can pull it off. But I think the deck has been very intentionally stacked against him. It’s time we understood a simple truth: Every political battle now is an attack on the TEA Party by the status quo ruling class. And that’s because the TEA Party is the last barrier to the surrender of individual sovereignty and the permanence of big government statism favored by crony capitalists, corporatists, and liberal fascists.
Goldstein quotes a recent WaPo piece by Dana Milbank, who is crowing about “the Tea Party” blowing it. This is the same Milbank who in 2010 was writing about how Marco Rubio was either going to lose to Charlie Crist in the primary or lose to the Democrat in the general.
The day before these elections, the narrative machine is already fired up.
In New Jersey, there is a candidate in Gov. Chris Christie on his way to an improbable landslide victory in a blue state, and he is urging Republicans to follow his lead nationally.
In Virginia, gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli represents the conservative wing of the party who has not been able to sway voters in his state.
Every GOP mainstream politician and consultant will spend the next few months completely incapable of saying little more than “Chris Christie!” They will have polls-OH!-will they have polls. Everyone will be taken as undeniable proof that Christie can beat Hillary, the zombie apocalypse, and the 1927 Yankees once time travel is a thing.
Most of them will be…useless.
If the 2012 election’s Republican polling debacle wasn’t enough to make you lose faith in them, go back and check out the Democrat presidential polling from three years before the 2008 election.
Those polls will tell you two things:
1) Early predictions are ridiculous and largely for the 24/7 media circus.
2) Hillary Clinton has already proven that she’s not an inevitable victor.
And remember the words “last barrier.”