The GOP Must Be on the Attack
Many in the media and all of the Democratic punditry salivate at the concept of the Tea Party picking the GOP nominee. The groupthink/convention wisdom is that a Tea Party-ordained nominee is akin to picking Sharon Angle in Nevada or Christine O'Donnell in Delaware. Of course it's not, but no sense in letting them in on that.
Let the left think that the Tea Party is "dying out" (Harry Reid) or that the nominating process is a "disaster" (James Carville). These are the same sort of comments made about conservative GOP candidates or platforms prior to 1980, 1994, and, most recently, 2010.
The clear analysis is actually that when the left gets this loud, this angry and hateful, this emotional, and this certain, it is because the left is running scared. It ought to be. Any attempt at sober analysis cannot come to a conclusion that "Occupy" is an important and influential movement and that the "Tea Party" is a dead soldier in the battle for hearts and minds. Any such conclusion is not just partisan or wishful; it is abjectly wrong.
It is the Tea Party that carries the weight of force. The same conservative base (not yet named the Tea Party) did so in 1980 for Ronald Reagan and for Newt's "Contract" in 1994. To not understand that those overwhelming wins were generated by the exact same voters with the exact same intentions of those who now have a name to them is to be so misguided as to miss the possibility that the election of this fall could become a rout.
The left's angst is not really an issue to most conservatives. What is disconcerting is the anxiety within the institutional leadership of the GOP. It's stated concern is that a "Tea Party" candidate (read: Newt Gingrich) would be a down-ballot disaster that would cost the GOP any shot at control of the Senate and might cost it its current control of the House. That thinking is as narrow as the liberal joy over the concept of a strong conservative push is simple-minded.
The path to victory for the GOP. Check that -- the path to a blowout victory in 2012 runs through the core of the intensity of the Tea Party. This is not to say that Gingrich is the only answer. Rick Santorum surely has strong appeal among Tea Party partisans, and Mitt Romney surely could win them over. Make no mistake: conservatives will strongly back Romney if given a man who will step up, say he hears us, and grab the flag.
The GOP leadership is enough to make most conservatives grasp each side of their heads in guarded concern of how it might manage to throw away what should be a huge victory against a damaged, disliked, and dangerous president.
Allow me to be clear. Barack Obama and his failed statism are not just beatable in the fall; they are routable! The Tea Party faithful are, apparently, the only ones who understand this. The Tea Party is trying to scream to the GOP leaders, to those election chickenhawks..."Attack!" This is not about a love for any one candidate; it is about winning. Winning big and winning now means going on offense, immediately.
Obama and his message have only one shot at claiming victory this fall -- just one. That lies in having the GOP so back on its heels that it allows the other side to frame the arguments to the voters and to dictate the terms of the debate. The Tea Party is doing its level best not to allow that to happen. It did so by the message it shot across the bow of the GOP in South Carolina.
Newt Gingrich did more (again) for the chances of a Republican blowout than the GOP can imagine. And to think we heard hand-wringing after that victory. It should have been celebration. Celebration that the conservatives are engaged and energized. That they are taking the fight to Obama, whether the GOP likes it or not.
The media wanted to provoke an internal GOP fight. It began with Bachmann v. Pawlenty, and it has extended now to Romney v. Gingrich. This is all very good for the media; the media loves these battles because they serve two concurrent purposes. They give juicy headlines to gossip about, and they keep the focus on the non-issues of the GOP candidates and not the actual current threat of "Occupy White House." The GOP is being outflanked in a transparent diversion. If the generals are not going to lead, then by God, the troops will mount their own offensive. Ex-wives and tax returns are not issues. Massive and mounting debt supported by legalized theft in the desire for "fundamental change" of the American way of life is.
The time is now. To the GOP leadership: step back and stop reading the headlines or giving the pundits, analysts, and reporters your ears. Just listen.
That sound you hear is a roar. The Tea Party is coming over the mountain. Time to turn and charge!