Establishment GOP’s Tactics Will Backfire

July 4, 2014

Earlier this year, the conventional wisdom was that the moderate establishment had taken control of the GOP back from the Tea Party and other “extremists.” With Dave Brat defeating House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Chris McDaniel receiving the plurality of the votes in the primary for Senate in Mississippi earlier this month it appeared to be reversed. Now, with Cochran’s defeat of McDaniel in the runoff and my loss to Bob Beauprez in the Colorado gubernatorial primary, many are calling the deaths again. The Cook Political Report argued, “Reports of [the Tea Party’s] death were premature and reports of their resurgence are premature.” Politico now says that Eric Cantor’s defeat was an “exception in a year that’s otherwise gone well for the establishment.” While I don’t think the importance of Cantor’s defeat can be underestimated, it’s hard to argue with these statements. The establishment candidates won many primaries, even in very conservative states. However, I believe that the scorched earth tactics they used against candidates such as McDaniel and me may make these victories pyrrhic. I am the first to admit that I am not the greatest campaign strategist or political analyst. My policy has always been to say

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