Many hard-right conservative voters are threatening to sit out the 2014 midterm elections, because they say some Republican lawmakers aren't doing enough to obstruct healthcare and immigration. Even Tea Party favorites, like Senator Marco Rubio, are under attack for supporting the border security plan that Tea Partiers call “amnesty.” The changing sentiment also presents a huge threat to hard-right governors like Rick Scott of Florida, John Kasich of Ohio, and Rick Snyder of Michigan. Apparently, Tea Party members in those states think those ultra-conservative governors aren't extreme enough.
This pressure from the Tea Party could cause major problems for the GOP in future elections. Republicans can continue to move further right to appease the Tea Party, but they risk alienating independent voters, and even members of their own party. Already, two recent polls show that the majority of self-described Republicans think their party is on the wrong track, and believe that the GOP is doing too little to compromise with President Obama. Obstructing even more legislation, if that's even possible, isn't likely to improve those poll numbers.
According to Sarah Jones of Politicus USA, Republicans are now paying the price for their 2010 gamble. Backing extreme Tea Party candidates in that election did win them the House, and created a major road block for many of the president's proposals, but it allowed their party to be taken over by an uncontrollable minority. And, that minority has the power to split the Republican vote, and cost them future elections. It looks like 2014 could turn out to be a very interesting election year.
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