The Tea Party’s Suicide Pact

The right-wing fringe is leading the GOP to electoral disaster.

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If Senate Republicans are the surrender caucus and the House GOP is the suicide caucus, then the Democratic House caucus is the victory caucus.

I'm a fan of the Military History Channel and all during the GOP/Tea Party default debacle, I kept thinking of the kamikaze planes crashing into American aircraft carriers off Okinawa. The pilots were brave, but they didn't stop the U.S. from destroying the empire. Japanese soldiers on Pacific atolls during World War II had to choose between surrender and suicide, and, like the House Republicans, chose to kill themselves to atone to their emperor Ted Cruz for their defeat.

So far, there's no sign that Emperor Cruz or his minions in the party of tea will give up the fruitless fight. The tea partiers are the GOP's kamikazes and they are prepared to fight until the last Republican dies. One of the ironies of the battle is that red district tea partiers will survive the 2014 midterms, while the few moderately conservatives Republicans left in Congress will go down in flames in their purple districts.

Why are the tea partiers so suicidal? The tea party is hell bent on breaking the GOP and picking up the pieces. 

[See a collection of political cartoons on the tea party.]

Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., said last week that "the GOP was going nuts." King was wrong. The GOP got to nuts more than a year ago and now has reached lunacy. According to national surveys by the Wall Street Journal and NBC News, the GOP's net rating five weeks ago was -43; it was -46 last week. The same polls showed that the net rating of the Affordable Care Act was -13 in September but only -5 last week.

The intent of the tea party was to destroy the ACA and save the GOP from itself. National polls indicate that all the party of tea did was hurt the GOP and save Obamacare from itself. Another way of looking at these numbers is that 38 percent like the ACA but only 22 percent like the GOP.

In the last few days, the Tea Party has made it clear the dead enders will continue the hopeless fight until it finishes off the GOP.

Cruz said late last week that he will do everything he can to kill Obamacare. The suicide caucus has voted to repeal the ACA 40 times and tried to defund it during the default debacle but it's still alive. The definition of insanity is, of course, to do the same thing over again and expect a different result

[See a collection of political cartoons on the Republican Party.]

The day after the end of the budget battle, President Obama called on the House to pass a comprehensive immigration reform law. Several House Republicans have said they will fight against immigration reform to the last breath. The tea party might win the congressional battle against immigration reform, but it would lose the electoral war by further alienating the fast growing Latino voting population.

Last week, prominent Republicans like the Lt. Governor of Texas, Dave Dewhurst, called for President Obama's impeachment. The suicide caucus in the House has the power to impeach the president but it would need 67 Senate votes to remove him from office. There are only 46 Republicans in the Senate, and some of them wouldn't even vote to kick the president out of the White House.

The suicide caucus' motto should be "if it feels good do it" even if it leads to electoral disaster. If the tea party does kill off the GOP, the epitaph on the party's tombstone should either read "With friends like ours, who needed enemies," or "In the party of Lincoln something was stinking."

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