The Tea Party will prove transient
ft.com — Major losses for the Democrats in November’s mid-term elections are widely expected, with Republicans predicted to recapture at least the House of Representatives. No matter what the final tally is, instant analysis will proclaim that American politics has been transformed by the Tea Party movement. But the instant analysis will be wrong. New American political movements come in two varieties: genuine third-party movements and those that just mobilize the base of one of the existing parties. The former transforms an existing party system; the latter reinforces it. And the Tea Party is an example of the latter – so while it has attracted a great deal of attention, it has little long-term potential to transform America’s political landscape.