Monday, November 2, 2009

Tea Party Republicans and Democratic Victories

There have been strange goings on in Upstate New York recently, and as a lifelong Democrat I have to cheer. The Republican Party is self-destructing there, and it is showing signs of being a nationwide trend. The right-wing extreme is in full attack mode and not only are Democrats targets, but so are Republicans who are judged to be too liberal in the minds of the right wing orthodoxy.

This latest uprising in the Republican ranks began when John McHugh a Republican Congressman from Upstate New York was nominated to serve as Secretary of the Army by President Obama. (Who's reaching out and trying to be inclusive here? Could it be that Socialist, Stalinist President who is much maligned by the Palin-Beck extreme right-wing of the Republican Party?) At any rate a special election was called to replace Mr. McHugh, in a district that hasn't elected anything but Republicans since somewhere back in the Ice Age.

In the ensuing dogfight over the Republican nomination Dede Scozzafava won the nomination. Her opponent, one Douglas L. Hoffman, couldn't accept losing to a Republican who he thought was way too liberal, so he decided to run in the general election as a Conservative Party candidate. It seems Ms. Scozzafava supports gay marriage and abortion rights, and disagrees with some points of the party line as regards economics. She was heartily endorsed by the Republican Party and its National Chair, Michael Steele. She was attacked from the extreme right by the Palin axis.

In spite of the fact that Ms. Scozzafava was the legitimate Republican candidate, Mr. Hoffman was endorsed by fellow Republicans from the right-wing extreme, Sarah Palin, Dick Armey, and Tim Pawlenty. In recent polls it was becoming apparent that Scozzafava was in 3rd place in a 3 person race, and was not going to win. She gracefully withdrew. At this point, despite the fact that he was running on a Conservative Party ticket, Republican National Chair Michael Steele, and former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich threw their support behind Douglas L. Hoffman.

As a result, Ms. Scozzafava has endorsed the Democratic candidate for the Congressional seat, Bill Owens. The Republican Party is in total disarray. They are under siege from elements of the extreme right, led by Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck, and assorted members of the right-wing lunatic fringe. The net result in Upstate New York is that it is altogether possible that the Democrat will win a Congressional seat that has been Republican since the fall of Rome at least.

Nationwide, the Tea Party Republicans have begun to move in this manner against anyone judged to be on the wrong side of what they perceive as right, be he Democrat, Republican, or Independent. They have visions of taking over control of the Republican Party, but what they are actually doing is splitting the Republican Party and forcing more moderate elements of the party to vote for Democrats. The upshot here is, "Good news for continued Democratic domination of politics nationwide. Bad news for anyone not of the extreme right-wing of the Republican Party." There are just not enough serious right-wing nuts in America to sustain a party dominated by the Tea Party sorts and Sarah Palin.

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