In recent posts, I showed the totally unnecessary costs of flirting with default, I gave kudos to responsible GOP leaders, and I laid out the overwhelming expert opinion that the Tea Party's flirtation with default and forced government shutdown was unpatriotic and un-American, as well as damaging to our economy and the national defense. Mainstream voters increasingly see all of this. Thus, a poll released Tuesday night by CNN/ORC International found that the disapproval rate of voters regarding the Tea Party Movement hit a record high of 56%. Only 28% of voters view the movement positively.
Here is Senator John McCain's summary of the effort to defund Obamacare thru a shutdown and the threat of default: “It was a fool’s errand. We inflicted pain on the American people that was totally unnecessary. We cannot do this again. . . . We, Republicans, have a hole that we've got to come out of and obviously we're going to have to do a lot of work."
Senator McCain is hardly alone among GOP elder statesmen who have condemned the Tea Party's tactics. Former GOP chair and former Governor of
Alabama Haley Barbour agreed with McCain regarding the whole Tea Party
concept of insisting on legislation not otherwise attainable through ordinary
processes under the Constitution: "It never had a chance."
Former GOP Governor of New Hampshire and former White House Chief of
Staff John Sununu blamed the shutdown on the Tea Party and Senator Ted
Cruz, telling the AP that: "It's time for someone to act like a grown-up in this process."
Senator Orrin Hatch echoes these views: "Let’s face it: it was not a good maneuver and that’s when you’ve got to have the adults running the thing.” Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush told Senator Ted Cruz, a Tea Party leader, that he should "have a little bit of self-restraint."
These statements from leaders of the GOP that the leaders of the Tea Party have proven themselves foolish, immature and unrestrained echo my own analysis that the leaders of the Tea Party are unfit to govern (from its incipiency). A broad consensus of the political spectrum has now reached that conclusion. Tea Party support is down to 28%. The movement, however, still poses a grave danger to the US and the American economy. Indeed, since the fall of the Soviet Union, only the war on terrorism exceeded the danger posed to our economy, our government and our way of life than the Tea Party's willingness to allow a default on our debt and the disabling of our government.