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Ralph Z. Hallow quotes CTPP Ralph King in The Washington Times:
If the GOP is still the party of the big tent, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie needs to check the roof over his section for a gaping hole.
Over the past few days, Republican establishment leaders have rained down on Mr. Christie with a barrage of opinions — sometimes contradictory — in response to the media-driven fury over the closing of lanes on a New Jersey bridge that has put Mr. Christie’s 2016 presidential ambitions at risk.
Some party leaders have suggested “Bridgegate” is a small-potatoes scandal unworthy of attention, or pleaded to give Mr. Christie the benefit of the doubt. Others have shown far less sympathy, suggesting that the New Jersey governor should own a controversy that emanates from his own smashmouth political style.
. . .
Even former President George W. Bush’s chief political adviser, Karl Rove, the last Republican strategist to forge a coalition for the White House, has gotten crossways with a vocal wing of the party by suggesting that Mr. Christie may have earned some “street cred” last week with the tea party by quickly firing the aides responsible for the lane closures and resulting traffic tie-ups.
“Rove’s statement shows, as he [has] shown in the last election cycle, he has no idea what he is talking about when it comes to the tea party or elections,” said Cleveland Tea Party founder Ralph King. “The firing of [Mr. Christie‘s] top aides was not enough to hide his RINO [Republican in name only] horn, and it is laughable at best for Rove to think this earned Christie any ‘street cred’ with the tea party movement.”
Political scandals can be galvanizing, getting party members to rally behind figures they think are unfairly accused or to abandon unsalvageable targets quickly. But the GOP has been unable to do either with Mr. Christie.
Republicans’ wildly varied responses suggest party leaders are far apart on who should be the next face of the party or even what terms the next elections should be fought on. Is it pragmatic politics or ideology that will beat the Democrats the next time?
Right now, the answer depends on whom one asks.
That is, whether you ask conservative value voters OR the go-along get-along elite GOPs.
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