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Battered, Abused Progressives Struggle with Biden, Tea Party as Midterm Elections Near

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Progressives gather for a rally in Ohio led by former President Bill Clinton by

The Tea Party is winning. In their efforts to remake the Republican Party and advance a cultural and economic agenda that is in sync with what their members support, they are defeating GOP incumbents in races for the Senate and House. They are winning local and state elections and stealing headlines. And, as lunatic as their candidates seem, the organization responsible for making civil debate near impossible during the Obama Administration's push for health reform has become a force politicians and the media legitimize more and more each day.

While a Tea Party insurgency remakes a Republican Party, Democrats and the Obama Administration work to manage progressives' anger and frustration and keep numerous liberal or progressive organizations pacified. A recent example is Vice President Joe Biden appearing on The Rachel Maddow Show on MSNBC to specifically tell progressives "get in gear, man" because "there's a great deal at stake."

Progressives don't need to be told there's much at stake. In politics, there's always a lot at stake. That's exactly why progressives are so disgruntled; they don't think the Obama Administration and Democrats get it.

Biden carried out the job he was tasked with and delivered a message aimed at whipping progressives in the same way Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel and White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs have been whipping them:

"If they take over the House and the Senate, don't kid yourself. They've made it really clear. Pete Sessions said [if the GOP takes over Congress], "We'd have the exact same agenda." And look, there is a lot at stake here, and our progressive base, you haveyou should not stay home. You better get energized because the consequences are serious for the outcome of the things we care most about. And I didn't mention half the stuff we've gotten done." [emphasis added]

But, progressives have been energized. Unions and party activists energized support for Bill Halter in Arkansas. Instead of supporting the candidate progressives favored, Obama and other Democrats aided and supported Blanche Lincoln, a conservative Democrat that fought back against efforts to reform healthcare up until the final vote. They sent a strong message to unions and party activists that they would not support grassroots efforts to elect candidates who could possibly advance key reforms if elected. And, this happened with Andrew Romanoff in Colorado too; the establishment helped Michael Bennet.

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Kevin Gosztola is managing editor of Shadowproof Press. He also produces and co-hosts the weekly podcast, "Unauthorized Disclosure." He was an editor for
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