Many Republicans have been very eager to associate themselves with Tea Party followers, hoping to tap into the movement's deep enthusiasm. Now Democrats say they are more than willing to help Republicans do so.Calculating that moderate and independent voters might be turned off by some of the more extreme positions postulated by Tea Party types and Republican conservatives, the Democratic National Committee and Congressional Democrats are trying to join the two in the minds of voters.
Hulse ran down some of those "more extreme" positions:
It embraces more consensus conservative positions, like the repeal of the new health care law and extension of all the Bush tax cuts, as well as some less widely shared, like ending the direct election of senators; abolishing the Departments of Energy and Education and the Environmental Protection Agency, and ending Medicare.
Ending Medicare is out of the mainstream, abolishing the Education Department much less so; but the Times is not in the habit of tarring left-wing policy initiatives as "extreme."
Hulse let the GOP have a say:
Republicans were not impressed. They portrayed the new effort to merge the Tea Party and the Grand Old Party as a desperate effort to distract voters from the Democratic agenda.You can follow Times Watch on Twitter .