Monday, October 7, 2013

Some Business Roundtable Republicans Angry with the Tea Party

Interesting story by Philip Rucker in the Post about attempts by business interests to mount primary challenges to Tea Party congressmen who have been prominent in engineering the shutdown, like Justin Amash of Michigan:
Within Grand Rapids’ powerful business establishment, patience is running low with Amash’s ideological agenda and tactics. Some business leaders are recruiting a Republican primary challenger who they hope will serve the old-fashioned way — by working the inside game and playing nice to gain influence and solve problems for the district. They are tired of tea party governance, as exemplified by the budget fight that led to the shutdown and threatens a first-ever U.S. credit default.

Similar efforts are underway in at least three other districts — one in the moneyed Detroit suburbs and the others in North Carolina and Tennessee — where business leaders are backing primary campaigns against Republican congressmen who have alienated party leaders. The races mark a notable shift in a party in which most primary challenges in recent years have come from the right.

“It’s a new dynamic, and we don’t know how far it’s going to go,” said Vin Weber, a former GOP congressman who is close to the House leadership. “All the energy in the Republican Party the last few years has come from the tea party. The notion that there might be some energy from the radical center, the people whose positions in the conservative mainstream are more center-right but who are just furious about the dysfunctionality of government — that’s different.”
I am not hopeful about this, really; Republican primary voters are increasingly tuning out business interests, and many of them are as angry at Wall Street as they are at Washington. But maybe the threat will  induce some Congressmen to look harder for a budget deal.

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