Reporting from Washington — "Tea party" icon Sharron Angle lashed back at John McCain Thursday, ridiculing him as a creature of the political establishment and highlighting the deep fissures within the GOP that the debt-ceiling debate have again laid bare.
Angle, who failed in her bid to unseat Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in Nevada last year, wasted little time in responding to McCain, who, quoting a Wall Street Journal editorial, derided tea party politicians as “hobbits” a day earlier.
Angle referenced McCain’s support of the Wall Street bailouts in a statement.
“As in the fable, it is the hobbits who are the heroes and save the land. This Lord of the TARP actually ought to read to the end of the story and join forces with the Tea Party, not criticize it,” Angle said. “It is regrettable that a man seeking dialogue, action and cooperation for votes on the floor of the United States Senate has only one strategy to achieve that effort: name-calling. Nice.”
In citing the Wall Street Journal editorial board, McCain placed himself in the camp of Republicans who believe that the party should obtain the best deal it can in spending cuts, while ensuring that the debt ceiling is raised to avert a federal default. In pushing for no-go provisions such as a balanced budget amendment, he said, tea party conservatives and other opponents of House Speaker John A. Boehner’s debt-ceiling bill were risking a national crisis — along with a massive blow to the GOP’s national image.