WashPost Columnist and Former Editor David Ignatius Wants to Hunt the Tea Party 'RINO Hunters'

Several Washington Post journalist/operatives are also teaching in the Karen Tumulty School of Unselfishly Un-electing The Tea Party. In Sunday’s paper, columnist David Ignatius (formerly a Post foreign editor and assistant managing editor for business news) penned a piece titled “Disarming the RINO Hunters.”

“Many Republicans have been muttering over the past few weeks of political craziness that the tea party’s hold on the GOP must be broken to protect their party’s health — not to mention the country’s,” Ignatius huffed. “So I’ve been asking people what a movement to break the extremists’ power would actually look like.” Guess who he asked for expertise?

Besides Obama campaign architect David Plouffe, who clearly would like to pick off Tea Party members of Congress. Check the box for Tea Party-hater Norm Ornstein:

The key factor, several analysts told me, is whether major business groups such as the U.S. Chamber of Commerce are on board. “The business community has been AWOL,” argues Norm Ornstein, a resident scholar with the American Enterprise Institute. He says that traditional business groups such as the chamber have ceded the ground to more right-wing groups such as the Club for Growth and Heritage Action.

Check another box for “conservative” Tea Party-hater David Frum:

A backlash is clearly building within the GOP and beyond. Conservative commentator Rod Dreher wrote in the American Conservative about “the tragedy of tea party Republicans destroying their credibility with reckless brinksmanship.” David Frum, a former speechwriter for President George W. Bush, urged the GOP to expel tea party members and argued, “Right now, tea party extremism contaminates the whole Republican brand.”

Talk about someone who hates a "big tent" GOP! Following on Frummy, Ignatius reported his experts say “the key to change is challenging the 40 hard-core extremists and perhaps 40 more who sympathize with them,” without endangering the “mainstream.” Wave your hand if you honestly think the Post wants to make elections safe for “mainstream” Republicans in the fall.

A less poetic acronym than RINO would be RIMI, for Republican In The Media’s Image. The RIMI party would let Obama “govern” just the way he likes. Or the RIF Republicans, for Resistance Is Futile.

Ignatius is placing his hope in “mainstream” primary challengers, like to Rep. Justin Amash. He faces “a primary challenge from Brian Ellis, a local business leader who sits on the school board and epitomizes the traditional GOP mainstream.” But is Ellis really running as a moderate? Would the Post ever endorse a candidate like this?

"Congressman Justin Amash has turned his back on our conservative principles by voting against the Paul Ryan Budget that would cut spending by $5 trillion, and against a 20% tax cut for small businesses," Ellis said in a statement. "Congressman Amash refused to vote in favor of the Keystone Pipeline and he even voted to allow our tax dollars to fund America's largest abortion provider."

Sorry, Dave. Tax cuts? Keystone Pipeline? Banning funds for Planned Parenthood? That sounds a lot like one of those extremist conservatives you want removed from Washington like a bad pimple on the glorious face of socialist brotherhood.

Big-hearted liberal Post blogger Greg Sargent also wants to advise on "How the GOP can save itself from the Tea Party." Sargent says Speaker Boehner should just refuse to acknowledge they exist and "get things done" by creating a moderate-liberal supermajority with the Democrats:

One starting point might be to accept this as a given: There is probably nothing that Tea Party conservatives in the House will ever accept that could also prove acceptable to Obama and Senate Democrats, and therefore has a chance at becoming law. Therefore, if Republicans do want to enter into the normal give and take of governing - a big "if," to be sure - it will require a willingness to rely on an alliance of non-Tea Party Republicans and Democrats to get things done.

David Ignatius David Frum Norman Ornstein
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