Editorial

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-02-2009
Editorial
65
Thu, 09-16-2010 - 8:35am

Timely, because I was just talking with DD about people getting off on being "angry" to the point where they aren't thinking about who they are putting in charge:



http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/16/opinion/16thu1.html?hpw



Primary Day 2010: The Tea Party’s Snarl





Democratic operatives are ablaze with excitement over the victory of two particularly dubious Tea Party candidates in Tuesday’s Republican primaries, envisioning smoother paths to victory in the races for governor in New York and United States senator in Delaware. But for voters of all stripes, Tuesday’s primaries should illuminate the growling face of a new fringe in American politics — and provide the incentive for level-headed voters to become enthusiastic about the midterm election.





Republican leaders have to decide if they want the tiny fraction of furious voters who have showed up at the primary polls to steer them into the swamp for years ahead. They have a chance to repudiate the worst of the Tea Party crowd and show that they can govern without appealing to the basest political instincts. So far, they have preferred to greedily capitalize on the nuclear energy in the land without considering its destructive effects.




Democrats, especially beleaguered incumbents and the White House, need to counter the toxic message of the Tea Party so voters have an alternative.



For both parties and certainly the broad swath of independent voters, defeating this new crop of Tea Party nominees has become imperative to avoid the sense of national embarrassment from each divisive and offensive utterance, each wacky policy proposal.



Take the new Republican nominee for United States senator from Delaware, Christine O’Donnell. She founded a group called the Savior’s Alliance for Lifting the Truth, with a curious focus on sexual purity, and claimed there was scientific evidence that God created the world in six 24-hour periods. She lied for years about being a graduate of Fairleigh Dickinson University, having earned a degree only in recent weeks, 17 years after she left campus. She has no steady source of income and has a substantial trail of unpaid bills, battles with the Internal Revenue Service and questionable use of campaign donations for personal expenses.



Ms. O’Donnell defeated Mike Castle, a veteran congressman and example of the moderate and conciliatory approach that Northeast Republicans once brought to Washington. Her campaign ridiculed him for being 71 years old with a history of heart problems. Ms. O’Donnell called Mr. Castle “unmanly.”



Or consider Carl Paladino, the Republicans’ new nominee for governor of New York, who has transfigured the state’s justifiable disgust with Albany into a malevolent snarl at the world. It is one thing to promise to shake up state government; it is very much another to thuggishly proclaim that he intends to clean up Albany “with a baseball bat” and turn the Assembly speaker, Sheldon Silver, upside down to get his blood flowing and then send him “to Attica.” This is the man who has vowed to send welfare recipients to state prisons to pick up their checks and be given lessons in hygiene. He has defended an ally’s comparison of Mr. Silver to Hitler or the Antichrist and is known for forwarding e-mail messages to friends with racist or pornographic images.



In both cases, the Republican establishment did everything possible to avoid having the party be represented by these two, lest the link to the Tea Party become evident. Karl Rove, long the party’s tactical mastermind, dismissed Ms. O’Donnell as “nutty.”



But, in fact, the party’s hopes for retaking Congress are deeply bound up with the fate of Tea Party candidates across the country, and the party’s leaders have done little to distance themselves from the extremism that now constitutes mainstream conservative policy.



When the House Republican leader, John Boehner, voiced a possible compromise on tax cuts, he was immediately shouted down by other party officials and pilloried as weak by right-wing blogs. Mr. Rove noted that Ms. O’Donnell is unlikely to win in November, possibly preventing the Republicans from taking over the Senate. He is now a pariah himself in those same circles.



On Wednesday, Mr. Boehner invited Tea Party activists to help “drive the debate” in Washington and shape the legislative agenda. That invitation act should be a dose of adrenaline to dispirited Democrats, independents and mainstream Republican voters who had not fully grasped the stakes in November’s election.



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"Of
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-01-2010
Thu, 09-16-2010 - 11:35am

I think that the Democrats are smacking their electoral chops way to early on these two particular candidates. The voters of the Republican party like these two and will show up at the polls in November. I read somewhere that people who care enough to show up and vote in primaries, definitely show up to vote in the general election. That said, while I think those two particular politicians are extremists, I also think that the chance of them and their views having major impact once in office are about nil. In the Senate, there will be other senators who will moderate O'Donnell's possible actions. In the NY governor's office, the realities of the budget and having to work WITH a legislative body will moderate Paladino's ability to go too crazy. That is the fact across the board in government. Even a president has his/her hands tied in going too far in any one direction by the legislature and the courts.

Democrats need to get off their duffs and treat these two candidates and really all the tea party candidates as serious challengers. Just pointing out their radical viewpoints, statements, actions isn't enough to win elections. Democrats need to paint a clear picture to the electorate that motivates the voters to go to the polls to vote for Democrats. The picture must be stark. Democrats and independents are not reliable voters. They may not like these two candidates, but it might not be enough to get them to actually vote.

~Opal~
~Opal~    
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-15-2010
Thu, 09-16-2010 - 11:36am

Are you really serious? What had Obama ever done that qualified him to be president? He was among the least qualified of anyone we've ever elected. That's why we so often elect former governors as president. They have experience governing.

So please don't try to imply that any experience is actually needed.

>>Luck is what you call it when preparation meets opportunity<<
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-15-2010
Thu, 09-16-2010 - 11:40am
Somehow I doubt she'll be taking the bait.

>>Luck is what you call it when preparation meets opportunity<<
iVillage Member
Registered: 01-22-2000
Thu, 09-16-2010 - 11:50am

Did someone here try to make a crack about unpaid bills, and how that might affect what we should think about whether one of these candidates should be given a chance???? I think I saw that. I am hoping the suggestion was a hoax. Please tell me it was....



Sonny

Avatar for jbgattuso
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-29-2003
Thu, 09-16-2010 - 11:58am

"Impressed with O'Donnell's unpaid bills, are you?"



Are you forgetting about all the unpaid taxes by those in power at this moment?

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-02-2009
Thu, 09-16-2010 - 12:13pm

I'm not implying anything.

 

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"Of
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-02-2009
Thu, 09-16-2010 - 12:13pm
Well, then don't bait her.
 

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"Of
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-02-2009
Thu, 09-16-2010 - 12:15pm
I. asked. a. question.
 

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"Of
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-11-1999
Thu, 09-16-2010 - 12:16pm

What will be interesting to see is what kind of long term effect the Tea Party will have on the Republican Party as a whole. They don't like organized political parties and their method of operation is very decentralized and grass roots up rather than the traditional model of party control at the top.

Delaware has pretty much showed that the Republican leadership is losing control of the party to the Tea Party and the likes of Limbaugh, Hannity, Palin and Beck. The big problem with this is the very decentralized nature of it, a traditional party is able to target it's resources to specific races and the Tea Party model negates that.

It will be interesting, too to see if the Democrats can pick up the moderates that are being driven from the Republican Party. Winning national elections in this country is all about building coalitions like Roosevelt and Reagan did and the take-no-prisoners style of the Tea Parties precludes that. I don't think that they are going to win enough converts to their cause to become a majority, especially given the age demographics of the movement. The young are where the future lies and neither the TP nor the Republicans are going to attract them with an anti gay marriage, anti ecology message as these issues are important to the young.

dablacksox



Cynic: a blackguard whose faulty vision sees things as they are, not as they ought to be.---Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dictionary.

dablacksox


Cynic: a blackguard whose faulty vision sees things as they are, not as they ought to be.---Ambrose Bierce, The Devil's Dictionary.

Avatar for jbgattuso
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-29-2003
Thu, 09-16-2010 - 12:16pm

"I'm not implying anything.