RedState's Eric Erickson, one the the Tea Party's figureheads, has called for urgent surgery to save the movement. He's worried that Tea Partiers have no recruiting strategy and poor leadership; but worst of all, he thinks the "brand has been effectively destroyed" by "three years of demonizing the Tea Party as 'racist,' 'extremist,' and 'radical.'" Piling on the rhetoric, he adds, "the brand has become a cancer."
It is now a drag on the candidates it supports, with the Left (and GOP establishment types like Karl Rove) gleefully labeling conservative candidates as "outside the mainstream."
In the meantime, while the Tea Party had once enjoyed 24% popularity, according to a recent Rasmussen poll, only 8% of Americans now identify themselves as members of the Tea Party.
Erickson's prescription for the Tea Party's future? "Keep the mission, dump the name, go forth and multiply."
@Neo_NtheMatrix Neo, you're a good example of why The Tea Party is seen as extremists. If someone was discussing ways to decoratively fold a napkin, you'd chime in with "And Obama is ruining our country with the way he folds his." You're obsessed with a single-track thought with no moderation at all.
HMMM.......always been a coffee drinker myself (black, no sugar/cream...just like my heart I've been told). Don't even care for sweet tea (so un-southern of me). Yeppers, coffee and water (straight out of my filtered tap to save the environment, which is another subject). But the description does fit "'racist,''extremist,' and 'radical"!!
We do need a legitimate 3rd party....and this isn't it! The Republicans are for the rich. The Democrats are (now) for the (entitled) poor (unlike 50+ yrs ago when they were the "working mans" party). We NEED a legitimate 3rd party for the working middle class. The Working Party (WoP's).... any other name suggestions?
Racist, extremist, radical ... and yet they didn't start out that way. When the Tea Party first gained notoriety back in 2008, it was primarily in response to the enormous amounts of taxpayer dollars being given to "too big to fail" corporations. I liked that. After Obama became president, it seemed to be taken over, little by little, but ultra right wing extremists mostly of the Christian fundamental variety. Sad, so sad. ;)
well said! LOL! I think it's funny that they are blaming the dems for maligning their name, but they are the ones who invited those extremists into their organization. If you want to be a legitimate party, it would behoove the members to make sure that those who join understand its PEACEFUL strategy of persuasion. Of course, no one can keep all the kooks out of their group, but nothing prevents a party from refusing to give a platform for those kooks! The 1st amendment explicitly mentions "peaceful" as a condition for remaining a protected assembly of people. Whatever happened to the virtue of "personal responsibility"???
How funny you call Tea Party ideas as being outdated...strict adherence to the United States Constitution, reducing U.S. government spending and taxes and reduction of the U.S. national debt and federal budget deficit.
@jaybebo84 - If those were the only "ideals" expounded by Tea Party members and candidates for public office, I would call them Libertarians. However, the Tea Party has been taken over by the lunatic fringe who keep tripping over their own ridiculous statements.
It's not about the brand it's about the message. The tea party like the Republican Party at large was hijacked by extremeist which killed it. Moderate messages are needed for moderate times. The McCarthy era witch hunts don't play anymore. Stop demonizing people that don't agree with you and find common ground. There is always some to be found.
@PayThatCEO it was clearly in the best interest early on as the culture war was popular with conservatives and the so called moral majority had major influence. People are aware now that it was just about promoting discrimination, diffisiveness and hatred toward certain minorities.
Meh, the Tea Party itself WAS fine, with admirable goals including lower taxes and decreased government bloat, but they refused to do enough to distance themselves from all the anti-gay marriage anti-abortion SOCIAL conservatives that jumped on board when they realized people were actually paying attention to the Tea Party message. Regardless of what other posters say, the core values of the ORIGINAL Tea Party had nothing to do with social issues, and that made them a target for those who wanted to ride on their soapbox...and THAT made them easy targets for the "same ol' grouchy white bigots" crap.
@stepped_in_it Heck, if nothing else the Tea Party made people feel good cause it really did start mostly as an old fashioned group of ordinary folks who thought they could make the U.S. a better place. There was a sense of hope and pride that had little to do with Divinity, though belief in religion did play a part because many of the Founders identified themselves as religious.
@Real4WheelDrv Yes they did! Then they allowed the 'pubs enter their "fray" and the 'pubs polluted the whole pond! And the 'pubs had an agenda for doing that (IMO). Most 3rd parties dilute the voting base of the republicans subtracting from and fracturing the republican party.....which is what then became of the Tea Party.....a fractured, polluted republican "off shoot"!
No doubt, the media has done the same type of hatchet job on the Tea Party as they did on Robert Bork, Dan Quayle, Sarah Palin, big oil, gun owners... A reporter with an agenda has about as much veracity as a used car salesman.
Nope. The Tea Party did themselves under by getting out there on the web and being awful in public. They didn't need the media to do them under; they shot themselves. Even now, every time the GOP issues a memo suggesting diplomacy in discussion, people who self-identify as Tea Party rush out onto the web to do the opposite of what they suggest, being offensive as is imaginable, and all the while crying about being persecuted "for no good reason at all." It's like watching a kid throw a loud tantrum and then profess he has no idea why his parents sent him to his room.
The tea party had the potential to make Libertarians into a viable party who held some national offices. But they couldn't leave social issues alone. The original stated intent of smaller govt and less spending should have made the tea party and the Libertarians natural allies. Instead they got embroiled in god, guns, gays, illegals and abortion. That simply is not a separate party but the far right of the GOP and it not where the majority of America is at. America was ready to listen to the Tea Party about fiscal responsibility but instead you had to parade around guys with AR-15's and get all involved with anti gay marriage and such. You destroyed your own movement.
I agree that the Tea Party should be more of a Libertarian movement than it is. But I also think that the media focused more on the nut cases that are tea partiers than on the more rational members. Just like the mdia did with the Occupy movement. Some of the occupiers actually put forth valid points. But the media by over dramatizing the nut cases did a disservice to both movements and to the country as a whole.
The beauty of the Tea Party is that it is decentralized and doesn't have a recruiting strategy. It, like its namesake is born of anger from an oppressive government out of touch with the people. The real problem for the Tea Party is that it is heavily infiltrated by the GOP, which has dirtied it's waters.
I have always disliked the Tea Party and most liberals thinking that if your a republican your part of the Tea Party movement. I'm not and never have been. It needs to go away! Republicans need to unite! I've always thought the Tea Party was a cancer to the Repulican party. Yes, we need activism; but that was not it! Please, liberals and Democrats realize there is a difference. Not all of you are part of fringe liberal groups and republicans have never thought you were. Give us the same benefit!
The problem began when the GOP embraced these losers and used them to get the far-right vote. When the GOP publically repudiates these people and casts them out, then we will have no reason to conflate the two.
The GOP, on the other hand calls anyone who doesn't agree with them a liberal, and equates all liberals. So they can't claim they are being picked on unfairly.
@cpeter133 I do not lump all liberals together. I don't even refer to a democrat as a liberal until they show they are one. There are also degrees of liberalization. From just a lean all the way to so liberal they fell off the end of the ruler that determines how liberal a person is. Again, you have to give the benefit of the doubt until proven otherwise. The entire GOP did not embrace the Tea Party. Did you see one head of the Republican Party at any tea party event? Nope. They weren't there because they did not embrace or agree with them. As I said before, liberals would not know that because heaven forbid they actually try to keep up with what the main Republican Party is doing.
Initially, they had a reasonable message. But as time went on, their true agenda came forth. Too many wanted to live in a time that has long since been forgotten. Just like any political party today. They will be hijacked by whatever extremists that feel they can benefit from their message.
Scrap the party system, just vote for the best man for the job. 6 debates, on TV, 3 with moderator asked questions, 3 were the common Joe Blow ask questions. Then one week before election they turn in pre- written, 1 hr closing speeches, and later that night they deliver those speeches. 7 days later we the people vote. The max they can spend campaigning is 50 million. Done.
@stepped_in_it I mean damn, We The People, are not in control here. Seems to me that our system has kind of went off course. It's like we elect a King to 4 year terms.
Oh check out the new bill being brought up. It will require any and every gun owner, any type firearm, to have a $ 250,000 "violence liability ins policy". Or your guns are taken away. They are talking about it right now on talk radio.
@Thegrif "When governments fear the people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny. 1."When governments fear the people, there is liberty. Thomas Jefferson quotes "When the people fear the government, there is tyranny." The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government." Why is the Obama government so anxious to take away the right of citizens to own fire arms. Is the Obama democrats following the advice of Rham Emanual..." never let a crisis go to waste."
The teabigots are finished. First it was the credit rating debacle. Then it was the refusal of the teabigots to let the President's Jobs Bill come out of committee. Then it was the fiscal cliff. These guys need to be flushed and forgotten.
What does America do with its Old Used up Tea Bags........They hit the Garbage Can. Baggies where and are their own worst Enemy and their Moment in Time is now Irrelevant and Useless.(all of their own Making)
I think that the more moderate term "conservative" should be taken back from people whose political ideals are more aptly named "reactionary". William F. Buckley was conservative. Alex Jones is reactionary. The two should not characterized as speaking from the same platform.
"...by "three years of demonizing the Tea Party as 'racist,''extremist,' and 'radical.'" They would have been better off except they did attract extremists and radical racists, as well. They can thank Fox News for adopting them and hauling in all their fans to the party.
The media is going to savage conservatives no matter what name we use, just as they will savage individual conservatives running for office from now until eternity so long as lliberals are in control. We have become a moral minority.
I personally love how they think rebranding is going to fool people into thinking it's a whole new group. It'll have the same easily-recognized people, issues, and tactics. Every story will begin "Senator ******, former tea party member and now [insert new group] member..."