Thursday, May 6, 2010

GOP showing in primaries revives talk about Tea Party viability

Mark the first round down, shakily, for Republican incumbents and party favorites. With one race in Ohio yet to be settled, Tea Party movement-backed challengers and other outsiders were shut out in competitive House and Senate primaries in three states Tuesday. While some Republican primary winners struggled — former Indiana senator Dan Coats’s comeback bid advanced with 40 percent of the vote in a five-way race — the results renewed a debate about the clout of the insurgents in the remaining primaries and on fall elections. Six months before the midterm elections, polls show a disaffected electorate. As a result, even Democrats concede Republicans are in line to make gains. “The big question is whether the Tea Party is a tempest in a teapot. Do they have the organizational capabilities to compete with the Republicans?’’ said John Feehery, a Republican strategist...more

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