Skip to comments.Original tea partyers returning to GOP fold
Posted on 03/09/2014 9:52:17 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
Fortunately, the actual voters behind the tea party movement of 2009 did some good before the vultures arrived.
Since that movement's peak in 2010, the sentiment of those original voters a pretty even split of Republicans, Democrats and independents has been hijacked by every political circus-barker able to buy a domain name that includes such key words as freedom, liberty, warrior, conservative or tea party.
These same political operators have no problem making money from frustrated voters by challenging incumbent Republican officeholders with often untested, unsophisticated but deep-pocketed candidates with mixed results.
People fed up with the government are still around, still energized, still anxious to give voice to their votes. They just wearied of those trying to make a buck with a website, a campaign or a book reflecting an inflexible, often extreme ideology that shares little with the tea party's original purpose.
And they don't like to be politically bullied.
I can speak from experience, that it is the case here in Pennsylvania, said Dwight Weidman, a Franklin County Republican. Most of the folks who came out for the tea party when it began have dissociated themselves from these extreme elements.
Weidman points to the challengers of U.S. Rep. Bill Shuster in Western Pennsylvania who claim to be true conservatives or tea party patriots opposed to Shuster's establishment record. He believes the more strident that Shuster's challengers become and the more they associate with the extreme fringe, the worse they will do with rank-and-file Republicans and regular voters in November.
It is odd for Shuster's conservative bona fides to be challenged, since he holds 100-percent ratings on nearly every conservative-cause scorecard.
The situation is not unique to Pennsylvania.
In last week's Texas Republican primaries involving U.S. Sen. John Cornyn and U.S. Rep. Pete Sessions, high-profile tea party challengers garnered far more press credibility than they deserved largely because they pushed the storyline of a deep divide among Republicans in very conservative Texas.
The results weren't even close, and never were going to be.
Yet, in the lead-up to Sessions' landslide victory over upstart challenger Katrina Pierson, you would have thought the 10-term congressman from Dallas was within a hair's breadth of losing.
Matt Kibbe, president of FreedomWorks PAC, one of those money-making tea party groups, was quoted as calling Pierson one of the best activists in Texas who has been working overtime, trying to help Pete Sessions find his way back home. He confidently predicted she would win.
Ted Cruz, the freshman U.S. senator from Texas, called her an utterly fearless, principled conservative without once mentioning Sessions.
And reports in conservative media that Pierson was surging in the closing weeks of a bitter battle were wildly over-hyped, either because those reporting this news were fed bad information or made the fatal mistake of reporting what they wanted rather than what really was happening.
Sometimes movements end. In fact, every political movement in this country has ended or at least faded into one of the traditional political parties, from the Anti-Mason and Free Soil factions to the Wets, Drys, Progressives and so on.
Cornyn's crushing victory of more than 50 percentage points over tea party challenger Rep. Steve Stockman, and Sessions' two-to-one defeat of Pierson, are glimpses of how voters who just four years ago were part of the tea party movement have now settled back into their true conservative base the Republican Party.
That doesn't mean they won't revolt again; Ross Perot's impact on the American electorate didn't occur all that long ago.
The dime-a-dozen outside groups that oversold their influence in Texas and in other states will continue to absorb great gobs of money in more races across the country, by accusing the Washington establishment and others of conspiring against them and provoking their losses.
They certainly will never admit that their own poor campaign skills or their untested, unvetted candidates might be the real problem.
This cycle will end only when voters realize that these are not groups filled with ideological purists willing to do battle because they are true believers. They're just good-old-fashioned political swindlers.
And swindlers only close their doors when the cash stops coming in.
Just wait until 2014 and 2016, Honey.
Never was, never will be.
I’d call the GOP DC establishment the swindlers. 2012 was a racket by the beltway consultants, who showed no inclination to win despite all their fundraising. They just wanted to cash in their percentage of all the media buys.
I tend to avoid “folds” as they tend to breed nasty fungi and bacteria.
Tea Party PEAKED = Tea Party NOW IN DECLINE...
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, so what’s so surprising here?
If Karl Rove and the GOPe’s, keep trashing conservatives, conservatives won’t just stay home
they will send a message to the GOPe’s in an extreme way, if you know
what I mean.
No suport for GOPe candidates going forward...
Ditch Mitch, by any means necessary.
>> Sometimes movements end
As did the article.
Now it’s time to wash the hands.
I should say they have given up because they have the government after them and they are laying low till the government stops attacking the people that they work for.
The GOPe and me are done for good.
I rather fight a known enemy than have to watch my back against an enemy who pretends to be my friend.
Milton Wolf, running against Pat Roberts in Kansas, is a moron.
Yes I want the true RINO types to pay with a primary challenge, but Wolf is wasting valuable time and money that Conservatives should spend elsewhere.
Might have a degree of believability to it if the GOP was actually doing anything to attract voters, but this article wants you to believe conservatives are motivated by spineless ineptitude. Anyone who thought we would topple all the rinos in one cycle need to remove their rose colored glasses. If we remove one or two, we will be doing good, and the establishment will have to start paying attention. Especially when it is depleting a substantial amount of their coffers just to get to the general election. Wars are not one on a single battle, and we are going to have to wear down the GOPe over time.
The reason is that there is nowhere to go! (party-wise)
So how can they return to the fold? The idea was to work though the party, not to replace it.
Now one thing that may have changed is donations...I know that I have not been very loose with my cash insofar as the party is concerned and prefer to support individuals only.
So....I don't see anything reversing it's self...and Texas is not a State that is of or was of concern to tea party folks..
And beating one of those old dog repubs with fat war chests and connections is probably not likely to happen there in the great state of Texas, without a scandal or two..
The article seems to be saying that the tea party has lost influence and is nothing but swindlers.
This isn’t how I see things at all.
I see the tea party folks like Cruz as the only grownups in the room.
I think one of the important points is the description of some as inflexible. This idea of a single issue focused litmus test for tea party or conservative candidates is a major failing.
Take the pro life groups as an example. Their sole focus is abortion issues and unless a candidate follows their path lock-step, they take their ball, their money, their vote, and go home. A person could have great leadership skills and a whole host of other qualifications, but they are dismissed and not considered unless they meet this groups singular need. Even worse, their groupthink mindset shuns and shames others away, even those with similar political beliefs. You get labeled and dismissed as the opposition.
This behavior, actively in display here in FR, is stupid, childish, and cult-like. It is the path of an extremist and inevitability leads to isolation and political failure. Much of the Lefts success politically is owed to their ability to seize on issues like this and exploit their oppositions unyielding stance. Abortion, legalization of cannabis, and gay marriage are good examples of singular issues that keep zealot voters home and allow Democrats victory.
Just my take in it.
I want to know who these deep-pocketed TEA partners supposedly are. I don’t think they exist