GOP Intra-Party Reciprocity Is Essential

Posted: Nov 06, 2013 10:00 PM

Democrats don't have much to feel good about in the wake of last night's elections -- Chris Christie's incredible dominance in a blue state, Terry McAuliffe's squeaker of a win in a state where a romp had been predicted.

But if there's anything that will raise their spirits, it's the infighting and recriminations this morning.

Tea Partier are pointing out that the Republican Party essentially abandoned Ken Cuccinelli. Absolutely true -- it happened in early October, where the polls were predicting a McAuliffe blow-out. Parties generally try to invest resources where the chances of victory seem highest. (As Hugh Hewitt argues, the GOP should perhaps be investing in some trustworthy polls of their own to enable better decisionmaking.) Similarly, the Democrats abandoned Barbara Buono in New Jersey, where her defeat seemed (and was) assured.

In the wake of Sharron Angle, Christine O'Donnell, Ken Buck, Richard Mourdock, Joe Miller and (most deplorably) Todd Akin, it's perhaps understandable why the GOP establishment didn't hold out much hope for a Cuccinelli victory back in early October.

But with just two races -- one of which is going to be easily won by a GOP incumbent -- couldn't the national party have done more to prove its bona fides to the Tea Party by supporting Cuccinelli a bit more? Especially if the party is going to be counting on Tea Party support in two years? And if Chris Christie is going to ask and hope for Tea Party support in his obviously upcoming 2016 campaign, couldn't he have helped Cuccinelli out?

On the other hand, there are plenty of conservatives -- like this one today -- vehemently attacking Chris Christie. Does it really make sense to go after the Republican who's most capably demonstrated the capacity to win votes across party lines, while still governing pretty conservatively in a blue state?

As I've pointed out before, Tea Party/Establishment have more in common with each other than any of them do with Democrats -- and we've got to work together. That means reciprocity. Any wing that expects the support of the other wing should be prepared to offer its own support when it matters.

Recommended Townhall Video