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I am trying to wrap my brain around the possibility the Republicans regain control of both houses of Congress now that Nate Silver, the best prognosticator in the business, puts it at attainable odds.

To embrace such an event, I think it only honest to divorce oneself with preconceived hysteria based on claptrap always heard on the campaign trails and imagine how this new Republican majority actually would govern. We may get a glimpse of that as the hotly contested races merge a tad closer to the center as the number of days count down before the Nov. 2 midterms.

As with most political observers, I am intrigued as to how much clout the new Tea Party contingent will swing in both halls of Congress, particularly the Senate. Their noise should not be mistaken for their small numbers.

If they are true to their campaign words, Sharron Angle of Nevada, Jim Hall of Alaska, Ken Buck of Utah and Rand Paul of Kentucky will take a my way or the highway approach to legislation. That might be fine with Jim DeMint of South Carolina and perhaps a dozen more hard corps conservatives from North Carolina, Oklahoma and Texas and others who skip my mind.

A warning: Too ridged translates to too many filibusters and all their best laid plans become dead on arrival. Specifically, don’t even try to repeal the health reform law because there is no way Congress could override an Obama veto with a two-thirds vote. That’s just a waste of time and money.

In the House, Michelle Bachmann of Minnesota is salivating over the prospects of a Tea Party caucus. If caucus membership reaches 125 and joins forces with Blue Dog conservative Democrats, it on paper could be a dynamic force and definitely influence the scope and direction of legislation.

That prospect doesn’t concern me nearly as much as Bachmann and her pals having subpoena powers on a variety of committees. Can anyone in their right (re: judicious, not political) mind imagine if she carries out her threat to issue a litmus test to all 435 members of Congress whether they are true patriots by her definition? That may be an exaggeration. But political purges, there will be. In this regard, the guy to watch will be Darrell Issa, R-San Diego, who will head the government oversight committee.

John Boehner as House Speaker, promises a new leadership and guarantees the Republicans will not return to their old spending habits they rubber stamped for the first six years of the Bush administration. This coming from a man who has the reputation of being the laziest within the leadership ranks.

Mitch O’Connell as Senate majority leader promised an outline of a new Republican agenda in the final two months of the midterm campaign.

I’m sorry, guys, but unless you two become more specific, you are asking us to buy a pig in the poke.

If the mantra is cutting taxes and reducing spending, the questions I would ask is where and what and how it effects the deficit budget and national debt. This is easier said than done. Just ask Bill Frist, Bob Dole and Newt Gingrich.

The nation under the Bush II administration proved that lower taxes, printing and borrowing money to pay for programs and a lax regulatory body brought us to the brink of a Great Depression.

I, for one, as a centralist Democrat, do not believe the liberal nonsense that Republicans favor only the rich, screw the so-called middle class and abandon minorities and the impoverished. It just appears that way in campaign rhetoric.

But I can’t stop thinking about even those small numbers of ultra-conservatives, perhaps those Tea Party winners, on whether the jaws of Washington culture doesn’t swallow them hole and spit them out because if their elected peers don’t, the federal bureaucracy will.

I look at it this way. Ron Paul, the libertarian Republican from Texas, has managed to hold onto his principles because his vote never once influenced the outcome of legislation since he first arrived in 1976.

Those new Tea Party Senators will not have that luxury. They will have to learn how to govern, to compromise, or become self-imposed one term despots.

(Photos top to bottom courtesy  — Sharron Angle, myspace.com; Rand Paul, truthliberty.blogspot.com; Ken Buck, coldstoneuae. com; Joe Hall, solidprinciples.com; Ron Paul, wired.com)

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