It looks like Erick Erickson, the founder of the website RedState.com, doesn’t feel particularly Red (as in Republican) right now. In an editorial published Wednesday, he says:
Having been an elected Republican and someone who routinely takes the position of supporting conservatives in primaries and Republicans in general elections, the Mississippi race does crystalize for me the desires of many to start a third party. In essence, tea party activists are the RINOs. A Republican Party campaigning on making the Senate “conservative,” used liberal Democrats to preserve an incumbent Republican and defeat a conservative. The actual conservatives are the outsiders with the GOP establishment doing all it could to preserve its power at the expense of its principles.
The problem for those who call themselves Republicans is that it is harder and harder to say exactly what a Republican is these days. The great lesson from Mississippi is that Republican means, more or less, that if elected the party will reward its major donors, who are just different than the Democrats’ major donors. Policy differences are about different donors, not an actual agenda to shift the country in a different direction.
The Republicans have become the party of lobbyists, most of whom were on twitter celebrating their purchase.
Mississippi is a crystalizing election in that sense. Cochran is, for all intents and purposes, a marionette. His strings are pulled by staffers and lobbyists. They drop him onto the stage of the Senate and pull up a string to raise his hand. These puppeteers are so invested in keeping their gravy train going that they will, while claiming to be Republicans, flood a Republican primary with Obama voters to ensure their gravy train continues.
But to me, it sounds like Erickson is bemoaning the same problem that bothers many liberals — that there is just too much damn money in politics. So would he consider teaming up with progressives who want campaign finance reform? That would be an interesting partnership.
In the end, Erickson concludes:
I’m just not sure what the Republican Party really stands for any more other than telling Obama no and telling our own corporate interests yes. That’s not much of a platform.