dilluns, 8 de novembre de 2010

Tea Party

Avui tenim una nova aportació externa al bloc provinent de Washington DC. 

I have long maintained that the United States --a non-parliamentary unitary executive system-- is not really a two-party system.  The Democratic and Republican parties can be seen, for our purposes, as the equivalent of multi-party parliamentary coalitions.
The left-leaning party (the Democratic party) is made up of everyone from self-described socialists to so-called "Blue Dog Democracts; on the other hand, the right-leaning smaller government party (the Republicans) consists of a broad spectrum that runs the gamut from near Anarchists to so-called Northeastern Republicans, the latest in a long tradition of not very conservative but still barely electable in the liberal Northeast politicians.
This quick summary is useful because many elections seem mainly to be about politicans fighting for the great mass of undecided centrist independents, in other words, pulling undecided moderate voters into their coalition.  This election, in sharp contrast, showed almost every politician trying desperately to appeal to the Tea Party, a movement that is strongly allied with the right.  The handful of candidates who eschwed or ran against tea party themes lost (i.e. Russ Feingold), had very tight races (i.e., Harry Reid), or didn't really care because they were in safe districts (i.e., Barney Frank).
The question that is floating out there but is not getting nearly the attention that I think it deserves is: Just how right wing is the tea party?  This right-leaning poster sees it as common sense but there is no question that its small-government and anti-spending bent flies in the face of liberal and Democratic party orthodoxy...but, it obviously resonated with voters this year.  There are also questions about its staying power and its ability to resist being co-opted when they actually hold power.
Stay tuned.  Exciting as this was, the real test of the tea party is two years away.  Expect a Democratic primary challenger to President Obama and numerous outstanding candidates fighting for the right to challenge him under the banner of the Republican Party.