09.17.2010 0

Official Washington Screams at O’Donnell Victory

It wasn’t until Christine O’Donnell beat official Washington’s choice Mike Castle in a Delaware primary election for the Republican nomination to seek the U.S. Senate seat that it happened.

The Washington, DC insiders have finally gone completely nuts.

Democrats were declaring victory in a race that they had previously conceded, and the know-it-alls in the Republican Party who created a political environment that allowed Barack Obama to become president, became completely unhinged.

How could the actual Republican voters in Delaware give up a “sure thing” Republican takeover in order to nominate a candidate who actually is in alignment with their principles? Don’t they understand the potential power they are giving away? Unsophisticated rubes.

Karl Rove, who gained his fame as President Bush’s campaign guru, became the official mouthpiece of insider DC Republican “intelligentsia” when he castigated the voters’ choice of O’Donnell on the Sean Hannity show on FOX News, and again the next day, providing political fodder for Harry Reid’s “pet” candidate, Democratic Party nominee — Chris Coons.

A reasonable person would ask why Rove and those of his ilk freaked out.

They are scared, and cannot afford to have O’Donnell win the general election. An O’Donnell victory forever destroys their capacity to choose the “safe” nominee because he/she has the best chance to win. An O’Donnell victory in November would strip the power of this argument from them.

Of course the irony of the “vote for the electable candidate” selection process is that it produces candidates who are virtually indistinguishable from one another as was the case in Delaware.

Last year, New Jersey broke this mold by electing a Republican as its governor who promised to cut government. Governor Chris Christie has turned the establishment of the state on its head with his plain spoken imposition of budget cuts to pull the state back from the brink of bankruptcy. No one thought he could be elected, yet he was.

In Massachusetts, no one thought that a Republican named Scott Brown who touted himself as a fiscal conservative could win the so-called Ted Kennedy Senate seat — yet he did.

These two cataclysmic events in late 2009 and early 2010 signaled brightly that the political world has changed and the politicians better get on board or they are going to get to find out that the people really aren’t messing around.

Those who are flocking to the tea party banners have for years been told to sit in their corners and trust the big money political professionals to give them the candidate that can win. This year, the “silent majority” of the Republican Party have gotten up collectively and screamed in their best Howard Beale voice, “I’m mad as Hell and I’m not going to take it anymore.”

Record deficits, the decline of the American standard of living, failing public schools, high unemployment, taxpayer bailouts of failing banks, the housing crisis, and a general disgust that many elected officials seem to be more interested in feathering their own nests rather than serving the public interest, these have all fueled an electoral revolt among citizens who have never felt they needed to get involved before.

The politicians in both parties have let them down, and the tea party movement is rapidly remaking the face of the Republican Party to represent their values, and the insiders better shut up and listen. In 1852, there were two political parties in America, the Whigs and the Democrats. The vacillating Whigs wanted to be in the middle and not take on the most pressing issue of the day — slavery. In 1854, the Republican Party was born, and by 1860, the Whig Party ceased to exist, and Abraham Lincoln was our first Republican Party president.

A political party that stands for nothing serves no purpose and is destined to disappear from the political landscape. The basic debate in American politics today is about whether larger government is the answer or the problem. The tea party movement is in the process of taking the Republican Party back from those who have forgotten the basic credo that the best government is the least government, and the establishment deal makers don’t like it.

The great part about America is that we get to vote for our elected representatives. Perhaps the political intelligentsia will learn a valuable lesson from the 2010 election cycle — a candidate has to be electable in the primary election, and if not, they never get to run in the general election. All the wringing of hands by the power brokers about lost opportunities are merely the dying gasps of those who are seeing their fortunes built on political connections being shattered by an electorate determined to fix Washington, and save their country.

America’s leaders, both Democrat and Republican, have lost the trust of the people, and now those people will not be ignored, just ask Arlen Specter, Bob Bennett, Lisa Murkowski, and now Mike Castle.

It sure will be interesting when the Capitol Building is filled with idealistic tea partiers who believe in constitutionally limited government rather than angling for a spot on some obscure committee that only matters to people in DC. If you think the insiders are screaming now, just wait until January 3, 2011.

Rick Manning is the Director of Communications for Americans for Limited Government.

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