File - In this Thursday, Nov. 30, 2017, file photo, the sky over The Capitol is lit up at dawn as Senate Republicans work to pass their sweeping tax bill, in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)
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So, too, are almost half the 87 new House Republicans elected in the biggest GOP wave since the 1920s.Rep. Austin Scott, R-Ga., who was president of that freshman class, objects to the tea party brand that he says was slapped on the group by the media and the Obama administration.By some measures, the tea party Republicans have been successful.Combined with the tax package, the GOP-led Congress is on track to push annual deficits near $1 trillion next year, as high as during the early years of the Obama administration when the government struggled with a deep recession.House Republicans are wrestling with a midterm message at a pivotal moment for a party that Boehner says no longer exists.Boehner's successor as speaker, Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., also is stepping aside. He was a conservative up-and-comer long before the tea party, but has run into many of the same challenges Boehner faced in managing a fractured majority. In fact, there are an unusually high number of House Republicans retiring this year, including nearly a dozen from the tea party class.
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