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GOP moderates

Posted: February 11, 2014 7:45 a.m.
Updated: February 12, 2014 5:00 a.m.

Convinced that hard-right policies won’t help the party regain the U.S. Senate in this year’s mid-term elections, mainstream Republicans are doing everything they can to help moderate candidates who are facing challenges from Tea Party hopefuls and others who hew to hard-right policies. Many say the core principles of the Tea Party -- smaller government and lower taxes -- have been hijacked by candidates who espouse a social agenda that’s not acceptable to average Americans. And they want to stop those candidates.

For instance, the political wing of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is stepping in to help defeat primary candidates they see as un-electable in November. And the National Republican Senatorial Committee is also taking a hard look at such primary races, saying the organization will funnel money towards those candidates who have the best chance of winning in November.

Those things are happening in states across the country. The danger, of course, is that the GOP will alienate many conservatives, who will give up in frustration rather than going to the polls in November. But it appears a risk the party will have to take; Republicans have a history of falling on their swords over ideological issues. Nominating candidates who can’t win general elections gives the party nothing, and the new strategy is the only chance of retaking the Senate and perhaps stopping some of the ultra-left (remember, Democrats love to criticize the far right but fail to admit their own far-left proclivities) policies of the Obama administration.

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