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Chan Lowe: Tea Party zealotry


If you want an example of the ultra-right’s ability to flex its newly-pumped-up muscle in the Republican Party, go no further than Karl Rove’s embarrassing about-face on Fox News last week.

When confronted with the improbable news that Christine O’Donnell had won the GOP primary against the party’s designated standard-bearer in Delaware, Rove put on his independent news analyst hat and used words like “unelectable” and “nutty” to describe her.

By the next day, he was extolling her virtues and claiming that his statements of 24 hours earlier amounted to an endorsement. Sometime in between, Rove had gotten The Word.

Rove, of all people. The “genius,” credited by no less a figure than W., himself, as being the architect of two presidential election victories. One of the party’s most powerful generals.

His problem now? That’s the old party. The party that may have been ruthless in politics, but still used reason as its compass when formulating its strategies.

The Republican establishment is stunned and scrabbling to regain its balance after last Tuesday. As the hierarchy dutifully lines up to support the deeply flawed O’Donnell (minus her primary opponent Mike Castle, to his credit), they must contemplate the new reality; that in today’s poisonous voting atmosphere, the more unqualified⎯even unbalanced⎯a candidate appears, the more attractive he or she becomes as the runaway vehicle that will crash its way right into the U.S. Capitol building.

The bitterest pill for the former power elite to swallow is that they know she owes them nothing, particularly after the smash-mouth language they used against her in support of Mr. Castle. That’s why they’re now pouring money into her campaign in hopes of righting the imbalance, and setting the hooks for controlling her later.

Good luck with that.

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The only way the Democrats will stay in party is if these Wingnuts keep being the GOP nominees. Other than that, the Democrat don't have a clue and deserves to be kicked out of office.

You seemed to be afraid of the democratic process that is our republic Mr. Lowe. Perhaps you would like to see it "fixed" so your candidates win and continue to drive the country in a ditch with the socialist policies of the last forty years.

Carolyn, I think Mr. Lowe merely has the fear that all rational people have... That these wing nut crazies may some day have a real voice in American politics. God help us all then.

Mr. Lowe, you think that the Republicans have made "reasoned" decisions in the past, ha?

Do you consider taking a huge chunk of the Treasury of the US and giving most of it to a private entity, Goldman-Sachs, to be "reasonable"?

Do you consider promoting amnesty for illegal aliens and their families "reasonable"?

Do you consider invading Iraq under the guise of WMD "reasonable"?

If so, they you are part of the problem. At issue is the fact that NOTHING that happens in our country in this day and age that is put forth by either party could possibly pass as "reasonable".

The Democrats are beyond hope, having opted for the very successful strategy of enslaving entire groups of people with entitlements. They have successfully managed to get fully 47% of the people in this country that should be paying taxes into the "N" column, "N" being "non-payer".

They have also been very successful at putting disincentives to work in place and bringing more and more people into the loving embrace of big brother. Those people will forever vote Democrat, as they need the Dems to continue to rape and plunder the productive class to support their "supporters" and keep their votes.

Therefore the productive class has 2 options - get rid of the elitist RINOS like Crist, or start another party from scratch.

What we have here isn't "zealotry" by the tea party. Instead it's called "the folks" throwing the Ruling Class overboard. This country was never intended to have a near usurping of power from the states by the Federal Government but that is what we have. The country was never intended to be a welfare state, where there were more people in the cart than there are pushing the cart. Instead of sticking to their roots of fiscal responsibility, individual liberty and limited government, the Republicans in power, esp the Neocons, have instead opted to become Democrats. For that, there is a price to pay.

There are 2 choices left - reform the Republicans or start a new party. If the Republican Party has any sense of self-preservation then they will jump on the bandwagon with the "zealots."

Dear Floridian,
"The folks" as you call them are funded by elitist politicos. Ground roots my patootie. Turn OFF Fox for just one night will ya....

"...socialist policies of the last 40 years"???

What planet have you been living on? Are you calling the policies of Nixon, Ford, Reagan, Bush and Bush socialist, or just those of the three Dems (one a one-termer and the other a half-termer at this point) you so despise?

What a ridiculous comment. Please go read a book.

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About the author
Chan LoweCHAN LOWE has been the Sun Sentinel’s first and only editorial cartoonist for the past twenty-six years. Before that, he worked as cartoonist and writer for the Oklahoma City Times and the Shawnee (OK) News-Star.

Chan went to school in New York City, Los Angeles, and the U.K., and graduated from Williams College in 1975 with a degree in Art History. He also spent a year at Stanford University as a John S. Knight Journalism Fellow.

His work has won numerous awards, including the Green Eyeshade Award and the National Press Foundation Berryman Award. He has also been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. His cartoons have won multiple first-place awards in all of the Florida state journalism contests, and The Lowe-Down blog, which he began in 2008, has won writing awards from the Florida Press Club and the Society of Professional Journalists.
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