FoxNews reports it as a blunder, but I call it damn fine politics!
Yesterday there was a GOP backed bill to permanently extend key provisions of the Patriot Act. The GOP establishment have lived off of the Patriot Act as their bread and butter for the last decade. Now with a near super majority, passing such a Bill should be simple, right?
There are a number of Patriots in Congress right now, elected as members of the Tea Party, who are very serious about the role of the government and the constitution, and who are very serious about returning rights stripped from the citizens over the last decade. These GOP Tea Partiers are voting in the style of a true third party, sending a very clear message to the GOP - You are NOT in control.
Our Congress is made up of three or four parties right now, though there are only two official party caucuses... The Democrats who are strongly united to the left, as most of the "fourth party" blue dog moderates lost their seats in 2010, the remaining moderate Blue Dogs, the centrist GOP, and the Tea Party Republicans. If you run the numbers, there is no majority party in our government - so in the style of the British House of Commons, a unity government must be formed. If the GOP continues to ignore the constitution, you can be sure that the Tea Party will not be voting in favor of the Bill; and the GOP becomes a minority party once again.
The power in Congress lies in the hands of the Tea Party/Libertarian/Constitutionalist officials. What we have seen in Congressional voting in the past two days is a lesson in the Constitution, and a civics reminder for the establishment (minority) GOP - WE THE PEOPLE hold the power!