Guest Viewpoint: Are Republican failures the Tea Party's fault?

— It is an article of faith in Washington among the ruling class that were it not for those unreasonable conservatives like Ted Cruz and Mike Lee that Republicans would control the Senate. Those are the types, so the mantra goes, who win primaries and then lose elections that could otherwise be won. Were it not for them, Republicans would control both Houses of Congress rather than just one. They invariably point to Richard Murdock of Indiana and Todd Akin of Missouri.

Granted they lost, but what about the anointed "reasonable" Republicans? How have they done in recent elections? To keep things simple let's just look at the 2012 Senate elections.

Scott Brown the incumbent Senator from Massachusetts who was elected by promising to be unreasonable about Obamacare came to Washington and joined the smart set. With all the advantages of incumbency he managed to get 46 percent of the vote against the fake Native American Elizabeth Warren. He now is threatening to screw things up for the GOP in New Hampshire.

In Florida, Connie Mack IV son of the former reasonable Republican Senator Connie Mack III managed to round up 42 percent of the vote against Senator Bill Nelson who has a hard time stringing three words together.

Former reasonable Republican Congressman Pete Hoekstra of Michigan got 38 percent against Debbie Stabenow whose approval rating has never been much over 40 percent.

Former ultra-reasonable Republican Congresswoman Heather Wilson got 45 percent for an open Senate seat in New Mexico.

Tommy Thompson, the former governor of Wisconsin who also occupied a chair in the Bush Cabinet collected 46 percent of the vote to lose to Tammy Baldwin by 5.5 percent in an open seat race. Ms. Baldwin's main claim to fame is that she is a self-proclaimed lesbian making her another first in the Senate.

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