The GOP may yet make itself irrelevant as regards national politcs
This is as troubling, as it is ignorant. That it comes from someone out of the RNC makes it potentially disastrous for the GOP. And I say that while also being willing to admit that elements of any so-called Tea Party movement, or the various groups who have co-opted that brand, haven’t exactly thrilled me lately, either. I’ll elaborate concisely below.
Where Have You Gone, Bill Buckley?
David Welch is a former research director for the Republican National Committee.
Fast forward half a century. The modern-day Birchers are the Tea Party. By loudly espousing extreme rhetoric, yet holding untenable beliefs, they have run virtually unchallenged by the Republican leadership, aided by irresponsible radio talk-show hosts and right-wing pundits. While the Tea Party grew, respected moderate voices in the party were further pushed toward extinction. Republicans need a Buckley to bring us back.
The fundamental concept underlying the recent Tea Party movement is not conspiracy; it is liberty. That an apparently mainstream establishment Republican would so idiotically and publicly come out and smear it with the Bircher brand is beyond insulting. It goes beyond being merely stupid; it’s ignorant, outrageous and completely indefensible.
Furthermore, if there is to continue to be a viable GOP at the national level after a period during which everyone may be forced to admit there may indeed be a significant re-alignment going on in American politics, (see Realigning election(s) for a start,) it is going to have to encapsulate a growing libertarian-ism that may indeed come of age under a legitimate political figure like a Rand Paul and others.
I don’t want un-electable nut job would be conservatives with a total disregard for what it requires in thought, deed and speech to get elected in America today. But I don’t want a Republican Party so lost in itself that it seeks little more than a power-sharing arrangement with Democrats in Washington these days, as it increasingly appears to have no genuine respect for the fundamental concept of American liberty, or freedom from government, or whatever the hell you want to call it.
By equating the Tea Party with the Birchers, in effect acting more like a Bircher, than what should be a serious Republican, this David Welch doesn’t just make himself sound like a dangerous idiot, he hints of a Washington establishment GOP that has utterly abandoned the cause of liberty and may be in the process of making itself irrelevant as regards national politics for some decades to come.