The Republican Party hates the Tea Party and for a lot of good reasons: the Tea Party threatens their power structure; it brings principle into the equation; it exposes illegal and unconstitutional acts; it demands accountability. These are all things that interfere with the game of politics. Republicans like the retired Senator Alan Simpson of Wyoming and current senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky are big players in the game of politics.
The Game of Politics
The average American does not understand politics, because they do not realize the utter contempt politicians have for their voters. Politics is a game played in capitols by players called politicians. Politicians are dedicated to the art of the game of Politics, which is not unlike the art of chess. The idea is to be clever, to allow the opponents to make their moves with confidence that one is capable of an artful maneuver to negate that move and produce a favorable outcome. The game starts after every election and runs until the next election. Some games run over several election cycles. The end result of the game (to them) is government.
This is why principles do not matter to politicians (and if it does they are considered outcasts). Principles get in the way of the game; they disrupt the flow. Sometimes, when these principles are used as a creative move, they are respected, but not because they are principles, but because they are clever.
It doesn't matter what is written in the Constitution, unless it lends itself to the artful move. It doesn't matter if wars are started, or banks are busted, or the people are enslaved, as long as the moves being made result in an advantage to one party or another.
Of course, this does not address every politician in every case; there are no absolutes. Yet, when this game has been played for so long the purpose of government is lost. Every day is just another opportunity to take advantage of a clumsy or inartful move by one's opponent. Passing laws is what governments do, the game cannot be played without the passage of laws. So, when a citizen asks a politician about the Constitution, it is a question of principle that discomforts them, because it constrains their plan of attack and limits their actions in the game.
This was evident when the Rhode Island State Senator told the Second Amendment advocate to "go f*** yourself." Politicians don't abide by principles, they figure out what bills they will have to sponsor, or pass to obtain votes or funds and become advocates for those bills. Simple.
This is also why voting does not bring about the desired outcome. The vote is simply the totaling of the scores at the end of the game, which realigns the board for the next game to begin. It is a way of distributing chips to one party or the other producing handicaps and strategic advantages based on the results of the last game.
This cynical view of government is what has led us to our diminished status as a nation. It is why we need principled representatives in congress. It is why there is no point in voting for one party or the other. The people will never get what they want, which is liberty, justice and prosperity. It isn't so much that the game is fixed, it isn't. It is just that the outcomes of government are fixed: more laws, less liberty, less power for the citizen, less accountability, more taxes, more scandals and more abuse.
Reform is impossible, no matter how many right-minded politicians one sends to congress, the game remains the same. They either learn how to play, or they are shuffled off to the closet for not being a "good player" i.e. an asset to the team.
The only remedy (a temporary one at that) is to reset the entire game and change the rules before they begin to play. This reset will happen, but only as a result of some horrible event: the economic collapse of the Western world or an internal civil war, both of which might lead to foreign invasion and occupation at any rate.
The Republicans seem poised to take some advantage over the Democrats in the next election due to the clumsy way the Democrats played their hand with Obamacare and the incompetence of the Obama Administration (the only legacy Obama will ever own outright). But they are overplaying their hand. The bloom is off the rose and most conservatives understand that there is no real difference between a Republican and a Democrat. Offering up Jeb Bush will have the same result as offering up Mitt Romney only with much greater devastation.
Mitt Romney did not lose because Barack Obama was popular, he lost because 4 million conservative voters opted out of the decision. Jeb Bush will likely cause the same defection if not worse. This is the last gasp of the dying Republican Party. They have betrayed the Constitution; ignored the abuses of power by the Obama Administration; aided and abetted the budget deals that have indebted the nation, indeed the world, to hostile powers. How many acts of treason must be committed before conservatives finally understand that the Republicans are not capable of fidelity to the republic? To them it is a game they play with our lives and liberties.
The Republicans think conservatives have nowhere else to go with their votes so they will be returned to power, but why empower people who will never deliver principled government? Don't forget, Republicans passed the Patriot Act, out of which sprang Homeland Security and TSA. Jeb's brother signed on to TARP and saved the bankers while it ruined millions of small businesses and cost countless families their homes. Reagan signed the first immigration amnesty bill in the 80's. Nixon created he EPA. The Republican Party is as devastating as the Democratic Party, because they are playing the "game."
The only way to change the game is to change the rules. The only way to change the rules is to reset the game. The only way to reset the game is to clear the board.