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Monday, January 07, 2013

It Might Come Down To The Tea Party Or Paul Ryan, But Not Together

There has been much speculation, split in opposing directions I must add, about the future political prospects of Rep. Paul Ryan after he voted against the Tea Party position on the fiscal cliff deal. Ryan has not only voted to "ram through a massive tax hike bill with little to no spending cuts in the dead of night" to put it in the Tea Party's exact words, but he rubbed dirt in their faces by claiming the alternative - which by the way was the tea party’s position - was much worse than voting for the senate-brokered deal that passed.

Again, some think Ryan's cliff deal position has raised his stature with the American public.

The Week Excerpt:
Unlike another Tea Party rock star, Marco Rubio, Paul Ryan can claim serious legislative achievements and boast that he has put forth by far the most detailed plan of attack for addressing the deficit not just in the party, but in Washington. Indeed, not even the president has come even close to laying out his vision in anywhere near the detail that Ryan has. Furthermore, Ryan's plan is so conservative that most GOP leaders avoided directly endorsing it for fear that they would be attacked for being extremists of the right. Thus conservative media powerhouse Eric Erickson was very wrong when he tweeted yesterday: "Thus ends the Paul Ryan 2016 Presidential Exploratory Committee." The exact opposite is true: So begins Ryan's move toward 2016. Ryan was already a credible conservative thinker. Now he can fend off claims that he is not pragmatic. Indeed, his words Tuesday sounded positively presidential.

THAT is a very possible scenario.

Of course it depends on how well informed American voters remain over the next several years. That includes the Tea Party because if politicians like Rubio who stand with and vote for tea party principles are viewed by the general public as weak and pandering to their cause – they are finished. But only the Tea party can allow that to happen by letting others exploit that distinction. Conversely, if the Tea Party continues to turn a blind eye and support politicians like Paul Ryan who has at the same time successfully made it look courageous and pragmatic to oppose them, the Tea Party will look weak and die a slow unnoticed death on the vine. I'm not complaining mind you. But with only two opposing choices available, only one can appear courageous and pragmatic.

Also, everything Paul Ryan does, EVERYTHING, is done by design to advance his career. Nothing else matters. Ever. Not country, not party, not principle and certainly not the Tea Party. Lastly, the construct that Ryan's vote on the fiscal cliff deal has recast him as courageous and pragmatic is nothing new either. This meme has been used over and over again in his defense with his votes on TARP, the auto bail-out and the first stimulus.

Believe it or not, the "courageous and pragmatic" meme would have been used had Ryan voted "nay" on the cliff deal. It's Ryan's defensive meme for nearly all backlash and he doesn't care who sits on the other side of the damage. It's for his benefit only. Just the same, it will be up to the Tea Party whether they continue to support someone who consistently votes against their positions and is by any other definition - their number one interloping villain.


Pete (Alois) said...

And didja notice that our esteemed Gub'ner just announced that he's going all moderate? I can't prove this, but it's long been my theory that Scottie takes his marching orders from Rep. P.R. He's too dumb to come up with anything on his own.

Lou Kaye said...

I agree with you Pete. Ryan and Walker's political temperament and imaging are running on identical paths that are too close to be coincidental. Both are trying at the same time to distance themselves away from Tea Party extremism without appearing to do so. What they both considered feats of courage to stand against (progressives, unions, liberals) are now being morphed into feats of courage to stand with or compromise. They are playing everyone, possibly even their own spouses and families. Nothing is sacred.

Pete (Alois) said...

Love this site, btw. One of my favorite reads. Keep up the good work!

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