The recent government shutdown and debt ceiling date show there is a rift between Tea Party and the “Republican Establishment” on whether to go with strategy or ideology.
Knox College student Alex Uzarowic says that despite the differences, it is essential that the two groups work together.
…Words like RINO (“Republican In Name Only”) or “Republican Establishment” along with “wackos” (used to generally insult the Tea Party) should not be used by anyone in the GOP. The elephant is frail and needs some medicine: prudence, as my colleague Derek Draplin wrote recently. Republicans need to unite and start governing again with policies benefiting the public good and not just a heavily conservative electorate that mandates Republican primaries. They need to propose tangible alternative solutions to the Obama agenda.
As much as conservatism matters, governance is primordial. It takes two to tango, and both parties need to duke it out with solid policy proposals instead of intense and vitriolic political discourse.
Case in point, check out Governor Christie. He was right when asked about Senator Rand Paul’s opposition to the wiretapping from the NSA. Christie’s argument is highly debatable on constitutional grounds, whether the NSA is justified to do what it has been doing under the Bush Administration and the Obama expansion in power. However, Christie was spot on when he told the media that such discussions should be kept in college classrooms instead of actual national conversations.
This is about governance, and not ideological conversations. Edmund Burke always warned us against ideology, because ideology shoots for a utopian mode of governance. Conservatism is a way of living, social customs that come from our own prescription and not political philosophies. These “esoteric” conversations, as Christie said, about ideology and what is “good conservatism” should stay behind in our classrooms and focus truly on service.
That’s the issue at hand here. If Republicans would care a lot more about the American people rather than pushing conservative ideology, we would have a much stronger party and much humbler and prudent party.
Republicans need to unite as a group behind good governance instead of strict conservative dogma. As Madison understood it well himself, governments are composed of individuals from a variety of political stripes and everyone needs to work together. This cooperation prevents one faction from delegating all public matters.
Tea Party members and Republican establishment types need to understand that their division is only serving the Democratic Party, emboldening the opposing faction and weakening their own. We need a clearly divided government to serve the public good and prevent tyranny, but we need an actual Republican Party First.