Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Annie, Get Your Gun: It's Open Season on RINOs

“I think the message is pretty clear: conservatism has never been stronger than it is today, and we are taking our country back.”
~ Texas Governor Rick Perry, during his gubernatorial primary victory speech after defeating RINO senator Kay Bailey Hutchison for the Republican nomination.

Hutchison Concedes Texas G.O.P. Primary to Perry

HOUSTON — A year ago, Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison had all the advantages when she laid her plans to run for governor: a high popularity rating, a party shaken by President Obama's victory, a big bankroll and, most important, the backing of influential Republicans, who felt the incumbent governor, Rick Perry , was too divisive and too conservative.

But by the time Republican voters went to the polls here in a primary on Tuesday, the political ground had shifted under Senator Hutchison, who lost in a three-way race to Mr. Perry.

Early on, he had courted the Tea Party movement and had wooed social conservatives worried about abortion and right-wing Republicans fed up with Congress. Throughout the campaign, Mr. Perry had run against Washington, portraying Ms. Hutchison as a spendthrift who had supported pork barrel projects and the bailout for the banks.

Speaking to supporters on Tuesday night in Driftwood, Tex., the governor said the election had proven the conservative movement in America was alive and well despite the Obama presidency.

“I think the message is pretty clear: conservatism has never been stronger than it is today, and we are taking our country back,” Mr. Perry said.

So strong was the anti-Washington sentiment here that a political neophyte from the far-right wing of the Republican Party, Debra Medina, came in third in the race with a respectable showing, despite having only a fraction of the money of Mr. Perry and Ms. Hutchison.

The senator called the governor and conceded defeat at 9:30 p.m. Central time, when the returns showed she was losing 31 percent to 52 percent, putting Mr. Perry over the mark he needed to avoid a run-off. She thanked her supporters, including former President George Bush, former Secretary of State James A. Baker III and former Vice President Dick Cheney .

“It has been a long road and a hard-fought campaign, but tonight we fell short,” she said, calling on the party to unite behind the governor.

Mr. Perry will face Bill White, the former mayor of Houston, in the general election. Mr. White cruised to an easy victory over six other Democrats.

“You have got to give Rick Perry and his team a great deal of credit for being the longest-serving governor in Texas history and still running a campaign as an outsider,” said Mark Sanders, a Republican consultant. “Outsiders are what people want right now.”

The Republican primary in Texas reflects the grass-roots rebellion among conservatives against moderate Republicans and Democrats that has shaken up politics across the country, beginning with the defeat of the Democratic candidate for Senate in Massachusetts by Scott Brown, a Republican.

RINOs and Democrats beware! The American people are coming for you.

Parenthetically, Perry knows that the Tea Party Movement is instrumental in restoring fiscal and political sanity to the government.

Update: The NY York Times update the headline for the story above. It now reads, "'Yes for Governor Is 'No" to Washington." I guess they figure the story was about Perry's victory, not Hutchison's defeat. There may be hope for the lamestream media yet.

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