Stu Rothenberg says “the Republican Party continues to fracture more seriously than I expected following last year’s re-election of President Barack Obama.” And Democrats continue to help them out with that, most recently by voting “present” on the Republican Study Committee’s (RSC) budget, forcing 118 Republicans to vote against the bill. It’s not the first time the Democrats have pulled this stunt, but Republican opposition to the RSC budget hit an an all-time high.

Most people don’t even know that the Republican Study Committee exists, but it’s been around since Paul Weyrich conceived it in 1973. Every year since 1995, the RSC has offered an alternative budget. Their budgets are always ludicrous, and this year is no different. They would raise the retirement age of Social Security to seventy, slash Medicare benefits, and slash discretionary spending so radically that it would balance the budget in four years. Even the lunatics at American Thinker laughed at the RSC budget.

Vacuuming that much money out of the economy with massive cuts in government spending is likely to trigger the kind of economic crisis the budget hawks profess to want to avoid.

Offering a budget like this is deranged and childish, and the Democrats were happy to let it pass so that they could destroy the Republicans over it in the next election. But what really happened is that the Democrats refused to give the GOP a free ride. They maximized the number of Republicans who would have to vote ‘no.’ In the end, more Republicans voted against the budget than for it (104-118). And this is in spite of the fact that the current member list of the RSC shows that they have about 175 votes in Congress.

Meanwhile, the Tea Party caucus is dead and Michele Bachmann is on the run.