Tea Party increasingly becomes albatross around neck of GOP

Tea Party increasingly becomes albatross around neck of GOP

In your school days, do you recall reading a poem called “The Ancient Mariner” by Samuel Taylor Coleridge? Remember the albatross? When the bird appeared, the sailors cried out with joy. They hailed it. They welcomed it. Then the old mariner shot the bird with his crossbow. Bad luck followed as the sailors dropped dead one by one. The old mariner’s life is spared as he is cursed to tell the tale.

The albatross reminds me of the Tea Party. It’s ironic that a black man would play a significant role in welcoming the Tea Party into the Republican fold. The year was 2009. Michael Steele, then chairman of the National Republican Party, embraced the movement. They were good patriotic Americans. The nation’s debt was like a runaway freight train, and these youngsters’ only concern was to help.

The Tea Party’s success in the 2010 November election resulted in the Republicans winning back the House and gaining seats in the Senate. The Republicans hailed the Tea Party. They rejoiced even as the Tea Party slated their own candidates to run against traditional Republicans.

Do you remember the 2011 debt-ceiling crisis when a major credit-rating agency lowered the nation’s credit rating to AA+? That happened as a result of Tea Party politics. The Tea Party seems to be driven by this paranoia that the nation has been taken, and it is their mission to get it back. Congressman Mike Doyle made this comment. “The Tea Party has no compunction about blowing up this economy.”

After that crisis, it should have been apparent to most Americans that the political system that the founding fathers designed ceased to be. This is documented in the last chapter of Jimmy Carter’s book “White House Diary.”

Even though we see a strengthening economy and a substantial recovery in the housing market, a veil of gloom and pessimism looms over Washington. I believe that Americans can feel the desperation and frustration that the Tea Party politicians are experiencing.

If they could just find that one impeachable offense and if they could just apply the kind of political pressure that would force the president to resign. If they could just create the climate that would force more government officials to defect and if they could defund Obamacare and shout down the government, maybe the president will lose his cool and go crazy.

The poem by Samuel Taylor Coleridge is pertinent. The Tea Party is an albatross hanging around the neck of the GOP. The youngsters in the party don’t seem to realize that the decisions that they make not only affect this country but countries worldwide.

A two-term president can only serve eight years, not a hundred.

Alfred Spencer, Warren