Tea Party favorite, Dr. Rand Paul, criticized the GOP for the big spending and budget deficits during the Bush years, while long-time Progressive, Ralph Nader, criticized Democrats for being weak, indecisive, and beholden to big business.
Paul, son of Congressman Ron Paul and Republican candidate for US Senate in Kentucky, stated:
"We as Republicans have taken the easy way out a lot of times. We vote to cut taxes, but we don't ever vote to cut any spending..."
He added, "The Republicans doubled the debt and now the Democrats are tripling the debt. There's not a lot of kudos to go around to either side."
Meanwhile, Ralph Nader condemned Democrats for their inability to inspire their voter base, challenge a rising Tea Party and Republican backlash, and enact unapologetic, progressive policies. Nader stated:
"People are really upset about where corporate globalization, one-sided trade treaties, and costly foreign wars have taken our country. Working Americans who have lost their jobs can stay at home in November and cost the Democrats elections as they did in 2004..."
He added that few differences separate Democrats from "the most craven Republican Party in history", and the latest tax credit package will only benefit the big corporations that have outsourced production to China and India. He also encouraged President Obama to raise the federal minimum wage to $9.50.
Nader even went so far as to praise former President Ronald Reagan as a model of conviction, steadfastness, and positive vision, despite his support of big business and a very weak economy in the early '80s.
These fair-minded critiques are badly needed in today's partisan-fueled political arena. Both parties have significantly disappointed their respective bases over the last ten years, and unless internal reform is enacted, they can expect more and more of their once-loyal followers to register as Independents. But, maybe that's exactly what the Doctor ordered for the "two-headed, one-party monster".