The New Know Nothings

Sarah PalinSarah Palin said last week in Little Rock:

“Now the smart thing will be for independents who are such a part of this Tea Party movement to, I guess, kind of start picking a party. Which party reflects how that smaller, smarter government steps to be taken? Which party will best fit you? And then because the Tea Party movement is not a party, and we have a two-party system, they’re going to have to pick a party and run one or the other: ‘R’ or ‘D’.”

Well, it pains me to disagree with Sarah Palin, so I won’t. What I will say is that America has a proud tradition of third parties. Think back to the Federalists, the Whigs, the Know Nothings, the Green Party, the Libertarian Party. Remember the Bull Moose Party, the America First Party, the States’ Rights Democratic Party. These, and tens more, are all examples of America’s diverse political history and examples of why it is okay to have more than a two party system in the United States.

Yes, most Tea Party members are very conservative. Yes, most are traditionally Republican voters. But that’s no reason for them to waste their votes on a Republican or a democrat when there could be a Tea Party candidate on the ballot. Asking Tea Party Patriots (and members of TPAIN, Tea Parties for America’s Indivisible Nation) to compromise their political principles by voting for an ideologically impure candidate is just wrong. If they are weak on one issue, who knows how many more they would compromise on when it becomes expedient. No, we need Tea Party candidates or no one.

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