Regarding “GOP has problems if Coburn seen as a RINO” (Our Views, Oct. 1): U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Muskogee, is indeed a fiscal conservative; however, on other “conservative” issues, such as federal government overreach in general and the lawlessness of President Obama and his administration in particular, he's tepid at best. Your characterization of Tea Party Patriots and Heritage Action as “fringe elements within the [Republican] party” shows intentional disregard of recent election results. Moreover, your citation of the Reid-Angle Nevada Senate Race in the 2010 elections belies your position. Sharon Angle led in all polls by more than five points until, on Election Day, the unions invaded Las Vegas for a get-out-the-vote efforts; Reid miraculously won. You fail to acknowledge that, principally due to the enthusiasm, financial support and grass-root activism of the “fringe elements” supporting tea party candidates, the 2010 election yielded Republican gains of 63 House seats, five Senate seats and six governorships.
History shows that when Republicans field conservative candidates, they win. When they field RINOs, they lose — John McCain and Mitt Romney — because the “fringe elements” don't bother to vote.
John Lee, Edmond
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