Former Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele is either getting ready to register as a Democrat, or at long-last establishment Republicans have had enough of their TEA-swilling counterparts and the Republican Civil War is indeed on in full-swing. This week, appearing on Chris Matthews’ “Hardball” program, Steele said that Republicans are making things harder on themselves, “Particularly from members of the House, who take these arcane, asinine positions that they know have no basis in fact and no grounding in reality.”
Steele was responding directly to Rep. Blake Farenthold (R-TX (of course, right?)) making comments at a town hall meeting that he believed House Republicans had the votes to impeach Obama right now. “If we were to impeach the president tomorrow, you could probably get the votes in the House of Representatives to do it. But it would go to the Senate, and he wouldn’t be convicted,” Farenthold is seen saying to his constituents in video of the town hall.
To observers outside the GOP, it’s very clear that there is a tug of war going on between the hard-right wing of the party and the moderates who know that the hard-right fringe is becoming less and less palatable to average Americans. Steele is completely correct in saying that the most fierce and trenchant opposition he gets from Republicans in the House comes from people not based in facts or reality. They’re the ones saying things like “legitimate rape” and “self-deportation.” At some point one of these two Republican forces is going to met with a choice — continue on to another or new party, or acquiesce control of the GOP and take a back-seat. Right now neither side looks willing to exercise either of those options, so the rest of us can just grab some popcorn and watch.
Watch former RNC Chair Michael Steele’s comments here: