Skip to main content

Sen. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell brandishes rifle at Conservative Political Action Conference 2014 on March 6, 2014
The storyline:
In 2014, the tea party insurrection is starting to look more like the Boston Massacre.

In state after state this primary season, entrenched politicians are proving that incumbency counts for something after all, leveraging the stature and financial firepower that comes with high office to demolish challengers from the activist right.

Or here's another way to look at it: The Republicans who won did so by moving so far to the right that they denied oxygen to tea party challengers. I mean, let's not forget than in the past nine months alone, Republicans have shut down the government, refused to extend emergency unemployment aide, voted repeatedly to repeal Obamacare, held hearing after hearing on tea party conspiracy theories, created a new committee to uncover the nonexistent Benghazi conspiracy that the other committees were unable to find, forged a consensus that global warming is a hoax, and blocked votes on equal pay, employment nondiscrimination and the minimum wage. The list could go on.

So they literally gave no opening for anyone with any semblance of sanity to challenge them from the right. And even though that led them to victory, it's not like they were winning enormous blowouts. Take Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, for example: He won, and given that he seemed vulnerable a year ago, you can't take that away from him. But he still had the weakest primary performance of any incumbent Senator from Kentucky in 75 years. This is a guy who has held his seat for 30 years and despite that fact, 40 percent of GOP primary voters cast their ballots for somebody else.

If these guys suddenly start rejecting tea party policies, then it might be time to start asking how they managed to pull it off. But for now, it seems pretty obvious: They "beat" the tea party by joining it.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site