The midterm elections proved a massive defeat for Barack Obama and the democrats, losing the majority in the house, several senate seats and governor posts. However, the most interesting aspect of the election isnt really Barack Obamas problems or the GOP pickups in general, but the emerging wave named The Tea Party.
The Tea Party isnt actually a party as such, but a movement primarily within the republican party. They have been called rightwing nutters and extremists, however that didnt deter the american electorate from sending several GOP candidates with a Tea Party backing into newly gained seats. A look behind the curtain of the tea party however reveals a much for diverse and interesting movement than a simple spur of the moment display of extreme rightwing politics.
First of all, the politics of the tea party are in fact not particularly rightwing as such – indeed in some ways quite to the contrary. The tea party argues less government, more freedom and a return to the constitution as it was written? Now, that is in fact quite liberal and certainly wouldnt go a miss for any decent libertarian candidate. Yes, the tea party has some fairly obscure speakers who from time to time dwell in outragious weirdness, but the basic foundation of the movement is that of personal freedom, in the classic liberal way, from the state and to the people.
Could the tea party movement carry a candidate to the whitehouse? It isnt actually unlikely given how much grassroot support the movement has gotten, however they desperately need to put a more charming face on their efforts than that of oldschool republicans without a hope in hell of capturing the middle ground american. Is that possible? Very much so, the messages are clear and appealing – and could sell way across the independent and democrat fence … but, and it is a big but, for now the most prominent figure is Sarah Pahlin. All her qualities untold, she is probably not the ideal candidate to deliver that message of freedom and constitutionalism in a way that appeals beyond the republican base – and the republican base simply isnt big enough to carry anyone inside the walls of the white house. Interesting times ahead.