LAS VEGAS - The Republican Empire, led by Lord McConnell and Darth Boehner,

isn't taking primary challenges by tea party insurgents lying down,

and an all-out intra-GOP war is breaking out.

The Wall Street Journal reported recently that Senate Minority Leader

Mitch McConnell has been pressuring business interests to get off the

sidelines and start backing Republican incumbents who are being

challenged by conservative candidates in next year's GOP primaries.

Meanwhile, in the House, "Speaker John Boehner also has moved to

undermine the power of the tea party."

McConnell is especially putting the strong arm on defense

contractors, but "the effort to beat back challenges from the right

goes beyond the defense industry," the paper notes.

"The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other business groups have been

stepping in to help business-friendly Republicans aligned with the

GOP leadership," a sign that corporate interests are worried that

"tea party-aligned candidates might try to eliminate tax breaks and

spending favored by business."

Yes, we can't have Republicans opposing corporate welfare and crony

capitalism now, can we?

Just to remind everyone...

The tea party movement didn't begin with the election of Barack

Obama in 2008.  That's just when it was unofficially nick-named

after Rick Santelli's famous rant in February 2009 over the

government's plan to refinance mortgages.

No, the tea party movement actually began to evolve in 2006, after

Republicans failed to live up to their fiscal conservative promises

- remember the Bridge to Nowhere? - despite winning the White

House, the Senate and the House of Representatives in 2004.

Indeed, conservative anger with congressional Republicans resulted in

the GOP losing control of the House and the Senate in 2006, as

conservatives stayed home or voted for third-party candidates.

The electoral carnage continued in 2008, with Republicans - who

apparently didn't learn their lesson in 2006 - losing a

staggering eight seats in the U.S. Senate!

Oh, and by the way, do you remember who was in charge of the National

Republican Senatorial Committee's (NRSC) campaign operations and

political debacle that cycle?  It was Nevada's own former Sen. John

Ensign and his stand-for-nothing strategist, Mike Slanker, who is now

running Gov. Sandoval's stand-for-nothing re-election campaign.

Fortunately for the nation, the tea party movement - augmented by

Rep. Ron Paul's emerging liberty movement - became fully engage in

the 2010 cycle and returned Republicans to the majority in the House,

and held it in 2012.

So regardless of what establishment Republicans and the media tell

you, the tea party movement hasn't hurt the GOP, it saved the GOP.

And one last reminder: Republicans blew the opportunity to beat Obama

in 2012 despite all manner of White House failures over four year's

time.  Now ask yourself: Was the GOP presidential nominee a tea party

Republican or an establishment Republican?

'Nuff said.

Chuck Muth is president of Citizen Outreach, a conservative grassroots advocacy organization. He can be reached at