Sunday, August 8, 2010

Sunday Question for Conservatives

Jonathan Chait (smart guy, but certainly a liberal, and highly partisan) has been talking lately about "tactical radicalism," which he defines as "a belief that ideological purity carries no electoral cost whatsoever."  He elaborated yesterday:
[Republicans]made it harder on themselves because the party leadership can't control the base's tactical radicalism.  Of course, the flip side of this strategy is that, by nominating extremely conservative candidates, Republicans maintain very tight party discipline among the members they do elect. Democrats are much more prone to nominate moderates in swing districts or states. This means Democrats have more seats than they "should" have, but they also have a more fractious caucus.
OK, the question, or rather questions.  First: do you think Chait's description is correct -- that Republicans have become "tactical radicals"?  Second: do you agree with Chait that the likely results are fewer GOP seats, but a more unified Republican conference in Congress?  Third: how do you feel about the trade-off?

1 comment:

  1. Yes. Yes.

    The North East and the West Coast are clearly more liberal then the Deep South and the Plains. Many conservatives think that all of the country wants right wing conservatives like the South does.

    When The Club for Growth campaigned against Chafee and announced a challenge against Specter they lost senate seats for the GOP. The result was that the dems got a sixty seat majority. I think the GOP would also have a better chance defeating Boxer if they had a pro choice challenger.

    I think the Club for Growth and the Tea Party are damaging the long term prospects for the GOP because they are promoting the line that the GOP lost in 2006 and 2008 because of spending. Given the poor performance of the economy during the Bush years I think the GOP needs to rethink its supply side economic agenda. The Club for Growth and the Tea Party are preventing this from happening.


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