So has the Tea Party been a positve or negative for the Republicans?
Has it destroyed the party, or delivered it?
Has it improved it or deformed it, evidenced by some recent “electable-or-not” candidates coming from the primaries?

Peggy Noonan at WSJ writes that the Tea Party was nothing less than the savior of the Republican party. Without it, the R’s would have been left for dead politically, relegated to regional status and effectiveness.

The tea party did something the Republican establishment was incapable of doing: It got the party out from under George W. Bush. The tea party rejected his administration’s spending, overreach and immigration proposals, among other items, and has become only too willing to say so. In doing this, the tea party allowed the Republican establishment itself to get out from under Mr. Bush: “We had to, boss, it was a political necessity!” They released the GOP establishment from its shame cringe.

She goes on and says:

I know and respect some of the establishmentarians [republicans who’ve been around DC since the days of Reagan], but after dinner, on the third glass of wine, when they get misty-eyed about Reagan and the old days, they are not, I think, weeping for him and what he did but for themselves and who they were. Back when they were new and believed in something.

Agree or disagree?