The ascension of the Republican Party to power in the Congress and the White House in the elections of 1860 sparked the secession crisis and subsequent American Civil War.
Now there is talk of a secession crisis within the Republican Party, as the Tea Party movement has stalled in its efforts to turn the Republicans in a more conservative direction. Sarah Palin has threatened to leave the Republican Party, disingenuously claiming that it really has left her. Glenn Beck has advocated "defunding the GOP." And Erik Erickson has hinted at that the failure to defund Obamacare will lead to a third party movement that will divide the Republicans.
Such talk is as mad as that engaged in by Southern "fire eaters" in 1860.
Our Tea Party Movement is not a party. Nor has it the makings of a party. Although ostensibly non-partisan, the Tea Party Movement has become a faction of the Republican Party. The attempt to start a third party would be disastrous for both the Republicans, the Tea Party Movement, and the country. Such a move would so weaken the Republicans as to leave the Social Democrats in control of all branches of the United States government. And whatever the nature of a new third party, it would hardly function as a viable alternative to the two major parties. So far we have been unable to establish ourselves as the dominant faction within the Republican Party. We are still working to win over the majority of Republicans to our point of view. What makes us think we have the support among the American public to warrant the creation of a new political party?
Hopefully, the talk of Palin, Beck, and Erikson is just that--talk intended to move establishment Republicans to embrace the ideas of constitutionally limited government, fiscal responsibility, and free markets. If such threats are real, than I can only concur with Alice:
What else can the establishment Republicans to stand on? The "signature accomplishment" of the Bush Administration?