Could there be a more telling example of the political schizophrenia afflicting the Republican Party than its response Tuesday night to the State of the Union speech?
There were three of them — four if you count the response given by U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtenin of Florida, who essentially translated one of the responses in Spanish.
You had Rep. Cathy McMorris-Rogers of Washington giving the “establishment wing” response; then you had Sen. Mike Lee of Utah delivering the tea party response; and then — and this is the strangest of all — you had Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky delivering what can best described as the Rand Paul wing response.
What’s going on here?
Are Republicans speaking with one voice or three? I get that the tea party wing is trying to “legislate” by obstructing everything under the sun. The establishment wing that includes Speaker John Boehner wants to do certain things and wants to actually legislate, but it’s being held hostage by the tea party cabal.
And Rand Paul? Who or what in the world bestowed this guy with the gravitas to speak independently of either the establishment or tea party wings of a once-great political party?
All of this seems to suggest to me that Republicans can’t sing from the same hymnal, let alone from the same page.