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With the fight over the debt ceiling raging, the Christian Science Monitor takes a look at a so-called rift in the GOP between the social conservatives and the fiscal conservatives.Per the common view, which the CS Monitor articulates, the Tea Party is comprised of fiscal conservatives, but don’t necessarily see eye-to-eye with the social cons.
This is nonsense.
Hardcore fiscal conservatism is social conservatism.
At its core, what those advocating austerity, and those advocating a default (via a refusal to raise the debt ceiling) are arguing for a cleansing of America through a period of pain. The economics don’t really make any sense, but if you believe America has lost its way, which pretty much all Tea Partiers believe, then hardcore retrenchment and restructuring is the only path towards absolution. Kicking the can is not.
And it’s not like this is a new idea at all. Jim DeMint was the latest to point out that social and fiscal conservatism go hand in hand, and really, you just won’t find that many hardcore fiscal conservatives who aren’t also social conservatives, so just anecdotally they go together.
It’s one reason Obama faces a tricky path here. The hardcore fiscal conservatives are on a social mission, as well as an economic one, and when you’re guided by that, negotiation isn’t at all straightforward.
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