Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Were Tea Partiers Taking Notes at CPAC?
Townhall.com ^ | February 24, 2010 | Joel Mowbray

Posted on 02/24/2010 5:07:55 AM PST by Kaslin

With attendance bursting at the seams, this year’s Conservative Political Action Conference clearly benefited from the new recruits and fresh energy stirred up by the nascent tea party movement.

But the secret ingredient to the enormous success of this year’s largest-ever CPAC was the steady hand of experienced leadership behind the scenes that ensured everything went smoothly. It is precisely that kind of skillful guidance that will be needed for the tea party movement to coalesce and realize its enormous potential.

Spontaneous, grassroots uprisings are exhilarating and the tea parties and health care townhalls last year helped flatten the Democratic surge. And Scott Brown effectively tapped into the energy source for his stunning victory last month in Massachusetts. That was just one race, however, and it was the sole focus of the nation for its last week.

Nationwide Congressional elections this November are the playing field of established parties with infrastructure and truckloads of cash. That doesn’t mean the tea partiers won’t be able to exert leverage on the races, but giving proper voice to those disaffected by big government and irresponsible politicians will require leadership and sophisticated organizing.

The conservative movement—groups ranging from Americans for Tax Reform and the Heritage Foundation to the National Rifle Association—helped pave the way for the tea party revolt of 2009. And conservative activists, including supporters of these longstanding grassroots groups, comprised a large percentage of the attendees at tea parties.

But how exactly the energy, message and political newcomers generated by tea parties transforms into a part of the conservative movement or the GOP hasn’t yet been sorted out. Based on talking to CPAC attendees, it’s safe to say that at least several thousand of them went to a tea party or health care townhall.

If attendance at CPAC is any indication, the Republican National Committee isn’t much interested in interacting with and listening to motivated conservative activists. RNC Chairman Michael Steele spoke at CPAC, but according to former Michigan GOP Chairman Saul Anuzis, of the 168 RNC national committee members, only three spent real time at the conference.

As the tea parties have uniformly expressed, they have no desire to be co-opted; but it is obvious that they feel ignored by both political parties. Many elected GOP officials, such as Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin and Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, have been working diligently to bring core conservative principles back into the fabric of the party.

It would seem, though, that the official Republican Party apparatus would need to take every opportunity to engage tea partiers and other disaffected conservatives. Arizona GOP Chairman Randy Pullen and California GOP Chairman Ron Nehring were there, actively interacting with the CPAC attendees—but no other state chairmen were. David Norcross of New Jersey, who is a solid conservative, was the only other national committee member even there.

The answer for the tea party movement isn’t necessarily to anoint a single leader, either. “They have 50-plus leaders; it’s entrepreneurial organization,” explains Anuzis, who ran last year for the RNC chairmanship and has attended CPAC for years. “Their trick is to ask, ‘What do we do to force Republican candidates or any candidates to earn our support?’”

In the coming months, those activists seeking to change the direction of government will face the same challenges as all burgeoning movements. Enthusiasm is aplenty, but what about focus and leadership? Supporters of the failed White House candidacies of Barry Goldwater in 1968 and Ronald Reagan in 1976 ended up remaking the GOP, and then they incorporated the Christian conservatives awakened by Pat Robertson’s presidential bid in 1988.

If the tea partiers doubt the importance of experienced hands steering the ship, they should look at the incredible success of this year’s CPAC. Many things could have spiraled out of control, yet these possible flare-ups ended up as minor blips.

One buzzed-about example came on Friday afternoon when one student “condemned” CPAC for allowing a conservative gay rights group to co-sponsor the conference. After he was booed off the stage, CPAC vice-chairwoman Millie Hallow, one of the most under-appreciated women in Washington, then took the podium and reminded the crowd that CPAC allows for “freedom of opinion.” Normalcy soon returned.

CPAC has actually had the same leadership team in place for several years running. American Conservative Union Chairman David Keene has attended over 30 CPACs, and this was his 26th year as chairman of the event. In addition to defusing a potentially volatile situation, 15-year veteran Hallow also stage-managed the big dinners, both of which went smoothly and ended on time. Lisa DePasquale excelled in her fourth go-around as CPAC Director, building a schedule with broad appeal. CPAC Communications Director Ian Walters was working his 13th CPAC, and somehow (yet again) managed to help generate overall positive press in the mainstream media—no small feat.

Because of the experienced team planning and managing CPAC, the event moved to a bigger hotel to handle its expanded attendance of 10,000, without skipping a beat. And the squabbles inherent to politics were kept at a minimum, while attendees networked furiously and generally enjoyed themselves. All of which could pay enormous dividends this November.

For their sake, let’s hope the tea partiers were taking notes at CPAC.


TOPICS: Editorial; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: cpac4gaymarriage; cpac4romney; cpacfubar; keene; keene4romney; romney; romneypac; unconservative

1 posted on 02/24/2010 5:07:55 AM PST by Kaslin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

“It is precisely that kind of skillful guidance that will be needed for the tea party movement to coalesce and realize its enormous potential. “

B.S. The beauty of the real tea party is our disorganization and grassroots activism. This piece was written by a GOP bureaucrat.


2 posted on 02/24/2010 5:12:22 AM PST by Saundra Duffy (For victory & freedom!!!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin
It is precisely that kind of skillful guidance that will be needed for the tea party movement to coalesce and realize its enormous potential.

To me, tea partys are not and will never be organic.

3 posted on 02/24/2010 5:15:15 AM PST by Theophilus (Shall the throne of iniquity have fellowship with thee, which frameth mischief by a law?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Saundra Duffy
“This piece was written by a GOP bureaucrat.”

A bunch of condescending elitists looking to steal the TP thunder.

This can not pass.

4 posted on 02/24/2010 5:16:13 AM PST by wolfcreek (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lsd7DGqVSIc)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

Most of these organizational technocrats have been handsomely compensated from the billions of dollars sucked out of hardworking conservatives in the last few decades.

I wonder how many of them would work for free.


5 posted on 02/24/2010 5:20:29 AM PST by EternalVigilance (TATBO - "Throw All The Bums Out")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

The Tea Party is a state of mind. A state of mind of like individuals who want a fiscal conservative federal government.

There should never ever be an officially registered Tea Party. Individuals of the Tea Party mindset should only contribute directly to candidates.

Any officially registered Tea Party should be known to be tainted and avoided at all costs!


6 posted on 02/24/2010 5:22:22 AM PST by avacado
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin
Bunk.
CPAC and the GOP better be taking notes about the Tea Party.
It's a sea change.
7 posted on 02/24/2010 5:22:25 AM PST by MaryFromMichigan
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

Exactly the kind of condescending establishment pablum that ticks Tea Partiers off.


8 posted on 02/24/2010 5:22:32 AM PST by 9YearLurker
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: avacado
There should never ever be an officially registered Tea Party. Individuals of the Tea Party mindset should only contribute directly to candidates.

Any officially registered Tea Party should be known to be tainted and avoided at all costs!

agreed - many dems are now TP's too - I dont see a common home for the disgruntled in that respect.

It should remain grassroots....too many heads to cut off the beast to battle it effectively from their side

9 posted on 02/24/2010 5:25:46 AM PST by Revelation 911 (How many 100's of 1000's of our servicemen died so we would never bow to a king?" -freeper pnh102)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

“For their sake, let’s hope the tea partiers were taking notes at CPAC.”

I think it is the Repub-RINO’s like Steele that should have been the notetakers.

We’re not going away. We are a political force that nobody can deny.


10 posted on 02/24/2010 5:27:24 AM PST by panaxanax (It's time for TEA Party Patriots to get an 'ATTITUDE'.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

"Phoney conservatives they are."


CPAC/ACU is run by David Keene, involved by scandal.
“”Palin-bashing CPAC/ACU Chair donated $2,000 to Arlen Specter, endorsed Romney””

“”Exclusive: Conservative group offers support for $2M”

“”Palin rebuffs CPAC, Keene””


“Washington Insider David Keene Disses Governor Palin, Claims to Speak for Grassroots
“Keene’s ACU also puts on the annual CPAC conference in Washington.

.In the last three years CPAC has devolved into nothing more than
an annual love fest for the most established of establishment
Republicans, Mitt Romney. It should come as no surprise that David
Keene supported Mitt Romney in 2008. “


“David Keene Endorses Romney“


“ACU President David Keene Endorses Romney
Long courted by Romney, Keene agreed to formalize his endorsement of
the former governor during a face to face meeting in Florida on
Tuesday, according to knowledgeable sources.“


“David A. Keene (born May 20, 1945) is the current chairman of the American
Conservative Union, a position which he has held since 1984. Additionally, he is the
managing associate at the Carmen Group Lobbying, a lobbying firm based in
Washington, D.C. In December 2007, Keene endorsed Mitt Romney's presidential campaign. “

11 posted on 02/24/2010 5:28:12 AM PST by Diogenesis ("Resistance to tyrants is obedience to God." --Thomas Jefferson)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin
If the tea partiers doubt the importance of experienced hands steering the ship, they should look at the incredible success of this year’s CPAC. Many things could have spiraled out of control, yet these possible flare-ups ended up as minor blips.

uhm...wow. Pure unadulterated clueless arrogance. CPAC was a freak show on parade.

12 posted on 02/24/2010 5:28:28 AM PST by TADSLOS (Tea Party. We are the party of NO! NO to more government! NO to more spending! NO to more taxation!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin
It is precisely that kind of skillful guidance that will be needed for the tea party movement to coalesce and realize its enormous potential.

Another one that just doesn't 'get it'.

If we were to coalesce and become another top-down led faction, we will be treated just like another pimple on the GOP's hindparts.

The T.E.A. party (let's start spelling it right) is from the ground up and its real strength lies in its state and local influence.

On the right issue, nationally, all the local water droplets will be a tsunami--of their own volition. But we will become just another smear under the GOP bus if we let those who do not understand us or our movement dictate who we are or how we organize.

13 posted on 02/24/2010 5:30:05 AM PST by Smokin' Joe (How often God must weep at humans' folly. Stand fast. God knows what He is doing.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: wolfcreek
You do need some help ~ people who can look into the way these guys speak and see what they really mean.

This was a hit piece ~ the target was the young man, Ryan Sorba, who was BOOED as he got up to speak. That was the issue. If the homosexual privileges crowd booed him afterward, that wasn't the issue ~ it was the "before speaking" part.

CPAC, or was that some other kind of "packing operation" we were looking at, blew it when they let the homosexual activists ACT OUT.

Now, how do I know it was a "hit piece"? Well the second paragraph tells us that "experienced leadership" made everything run well. BTW, it was that same "leadership" that brought in the homosexual activists who then went outside the program to BOO a speaker BEFORE he spoke.

What the writer is telling us is that was the plan of their "experienced leadership" all along ~ that the BOOS were exactly what they wanted for this particular speaker.

YAF ought to think about that and disaffiliate itself from further involvement with CPAC.

14 posted on 02/24/2010 5:31:02 AM PST by muawiyah ("Git Out The Way")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: wolfcreek

Just confirmation that there are elitists in the GOP that need to be cleaned out before we move on to clean them out of the government in general.


15 posted on 02/24/2010 5:34:13 AM PST by MrB (The difference between a humanist and a Satanist is that the latter knows who he's working for.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin
Let's hope the Tea Partiers were taking some notes on what not to do, as well...
16 posted on 02/24/2010 5:47:47 AM PST by Titus Quinctius Cincinnatus (We bury Democrats face down so that when they scratch, they get closer to home.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Theophilus

I repost a comment I made on another thread:

“The MOST critical issue of all is the homosexual issue. Hopefully it was an aberration at CPAC and we will push back hard enough to get them back in the closet. It is our Waterloo as a nation. If we lose this battle and accept the homosexual lifestyle as normal, then we’ll just accelerate the path to national destruction.”


17 posted on 02/24/2010 5:51:28 AM PST by pajama pundit
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin
"But the secret ingredient to the enormous success of this year’s largest-ever CPAC was the steady hand of experienced leadership behind the scenes that ensured everything went smoothly."

Bullcrap!!! We have been doing just fine without ANY "steady hands of experienced leadership".

Those so called "steady hands of experienced leadership" is what got our country into the mess it's in!!!

"that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."

18 posted on 02/24/2010 5:52:56 AM PST by NoGrayZone (In this election year, we'll see many daring Davids take on entrenched Goliaths.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: TADSLOS

“CPAC was a freak show on parade.”

Next year they can call it FudgePAC.


19 posted on 02/24/2010 6:14:02 AM PST by Beagle8U (Free Republic -- One stop shopping ....... It's the Conservative Super WalMart for news .)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: Diogenesis; presidio9
You know what, I am tired of your anti Romney rant. all you do is smear him.

You claim to be a Palin supporter, but I never see any post by you defending her. Freeper presidio9 posted recently a column by that leftwing lunatic Richard Cohen who was smearing Sarah Palin.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/2452922/posts?page=1>

I went through the entire thread and there was not one post by you defending her

Now go ahead and flame me

20 posted on 02/24/2010 6:21:30 AM PST by Kaslin (Acronym for Obama: One Big Ass Mistake America)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: Diogenesis

” “Phoney conservatives they are.”

CPAC/ACU is run by David Keene, involved by scandal.
“”Palin-bashing CPAC/ACU Chair donated $2,000 to Arlen Specter, endorsed Romney”” “

David Keene was the neational political director for George W. Bush in 1980 AGAINST Reagan, after Reagan had given him his start in 1976 as southern coordinator. To associate him with the word conservative renders the term meaningless.

The fact that he supports Romney is just more evidence of hte historical parallels between 2012 and 1980.


21 posted on 02/24/2010 6:24:10 AM PST by Brices Crossroads (Politico and)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

wow. This author needs to look around at NY-23, MassSen, VA Gov and NJ Gov races, and he and the RNC insiders need to be the one taking notes. Grassroots are THE source of these recent events, not the party. The party is so 2006 and 2008. The energy is not coming from an HQ building in Washington DC, sir.


22 posted on 02/24/2010 6:59:55 AM PST by ilgipper
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ilgipper
NJ Gov races, and he and the RNC insiders need to be the one taking notes. Grassroots are THE source of these recent events

Yes and no. The grassroots tea party candidate for governor in NJ was Lonegan. He lost the primary. What happened in NJ is enough of us did the right thing and voted for Christie in the general. Christie was the establishment candidate.

So far he's doing a good job, btw.

23 posted on 02/24/2010 7:03:08 AM PST by Huck (Q: How can you tell a party is in the majority? A: They're complaining about the fillibuster.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin
Nationwide Congressional elections this November are the playing field of established parties with infrastructure and truckloads of cash.

If you wait until November your choice will be limited to an Arizona senate race of McCain vs. some democrat. The primaries and the local county parties are the place to hit first.

24 posted on 02/24/2010 7:06:54 AM PST by KarlInOhio (New Olympic tagline Shut up, Bob Costas. Shut up! Shut up! Shut up! Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

Sorry, FRiend, no flame for you. Check your Freepmail.


25 posted on 02/24/2010 7:59:26 AM PST by Diogenesis ("Resistance to tyrants is obedience to God." --Thomas Jefferson)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

did anyone else get freepmail asking them to join group to get rid of Brown...calling him a traitor?


26 posted on 02/24/2010 9:58:23 AM PST by dalebert
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: dalebert

Just because he voted yes to go ahead with the vote?


27 posted on 02/24/2010 10:08:00 AM PST by Kaslin (Acronym for Obama: One Big Ass Mistake America)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 26 | View Replies]

To: Revelation 911

The tea party is actually a movement and not a political party.


28 posted on 02/24/2010 10:17:03 AM PST by Kaslin (Acronym for Obama: One Big Ass Mistake America)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

i suppose...


29 posted on 02/24/2010 11:11:29 AM PST by dalebert
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 27 | View Replies]

To: pajama pundit
Note: I wrote "partys"??? I should have written: "parties".

The MOST critical issue of all is the homosexual issue. Hopefully it was an aberration at CPAC and we will push back hard enough to get them back in the closet. It is our Waterloo as a nation. If we lose this battle and accept the homosexual lifestyle as normal, then we’ll just accelerate the path to national destruction.

I disagree, Romans indicates that homosexuality is symptomatic of a deeper sin: self-idolatry. Homosexuality is a form of gradual suicide. Abortion is an insidious form of homicide: child sacrifice. In homosexuality there is no innocent victim. In abortion the victim is as innocent as a person can be prior to salvation. I agree that both abominations lead to national destruction but abortion is much worse.

30 posted on 02/24/2010 11:18:56 AM PST by Theophilus (Shall the throne of iniquity have fellowship with thee, which frameth mischief by a law?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: dalebert
Scott Explains Vote
31 posted on 02/24/2010 11:22:15 AM PST by Kaslin (Acronym for Obama: One Big Ass Mistake America)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin
of course - but there are going to be many that identify it as a new home of sort - wether it is a party or not

as a party though, it would be doomed IMO because the varied ideologies would pull it apart....as a movement with 2-3 core issues, it can be effective

32 posted on 02/24/2010 11:51:55 AM PST by Revelation 911 (How many 100's of 1000's of our servicemen died so we would never bow to a king?" -freeper pnh102)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 28 | View Replies]

To: Revelation 911

I agree


33 posted on 02/24/2010 12:20:04 PM PST by Kaslin (Acronym for Obama: One Big Ass Mistake America)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: Kaslin

thank you ....hope the one who sent me the freepmail sees it.


34 posted on 02/24/2010 6:52:54 PM PST by dalebert
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 31 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson