Skip to comments.Nate Silver: ‘Tea Party’ Has Outlived Its Usefulness
Posted on 05/23/2014 9:06:24 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
Heres a familiar-seeming political tale. An incumbent Republican senator, from a famous political family and with a long history of moderation, is challenged by an upstart candidate in the GOP primary. The upstart is a successful entrepreneur turned talk-radio host and small-town mayor with a reputation for slashing spending and fighting unions; the Club for Growth endorses him. The Republican establishment rallies to the incumbents side. Karl Rove works for the incumbent; Mitch McConnell and John McCain stump for the incumbent. In the end, the incumbent wins, but barely. Then the incumbent goes on to lose to the Democrat in November in a race that may have tipped the balance in the Senate.
You might assume that this story refers to something from the 2010 or 2012 election cycles, when so the narrative goes tea party candidates caused all sorts of grief for the Republican establishment and potentially cost the GOP control of the Senate. But the details dont quite fit any election in those years. Instead, this is the story of the 2006 Republican primary in Rhode Island. Lincoln Chafee was the incumbent; Steve Laffey was the upstart; Sheldon Whitehouse was the Democrat who beat Chafee that November, when Democrats took control of the Senate, 51-49.
With McConnell having defeated his challenger, Matt Bevin, in the Republican primary in Kentucky this week, theres been a lot of talk about whether the influence of the tea party is waning. According to a series of mainstream media accounts, McConnell crushed the tea party in the latest big beat for the movement, which is losing steam as the economy improves.
(Excerpt) Read more at fivethirtyeight.com ...
Tea Party is hot and heavy in an all important race in Mississippi.
this is what we call transparent, int the way that it is supposed to deflect but looks so contrived it’s transparent, like a little kid, dragging a chair across the kitchen floor expecting to not be found foraging for forbidden food.
Nate, though, is an adult, and a well respected, in some circles, journalist and essayist.
He’s right. It’s time to move into the next phase of securing a decent country for our kids.
What’s the next phase? Outright rebellion?
The TEA party is anybody who has come to the conclusion that the feral government is out of control to the point that it has become evil, and needs to be reined in and pruned back.
Basically, if our Republican Senator acts like a conservative, he will never have to worry about the Democrat. Problem is once the Senator becomes a democrat, he gets what he deserves.
The Tea Party is the future.
Nate Silver has no idea of what the ‘Tea Party’ is.
No, it’s the Republican Party that has outlived its usefulness.
“Nate Silver has no idea of what the Tea Party is.”
Actually, after reading the article (which is relatively fair), I get the sense that Nate Silver knows more about the Tea Party than politicians like Mitch McConnell do.
“Nate Silver: Tea Party Has Outlived Its Usefulness”
Nate’s got to say something to get back in the good graces of the RATS since he predicted losses for them in Nov.
Actually, Silver agrees with that assessment. In reading the article he is saying that the “Tea party” is really a part of the GOP and that calling it a separate Party is pretty meaningless now. He is not saying that conservative influence is meaningless.
the “TEA party” is a set of convictions to certain principles and values that transcends politics as usual-
like liberty, personal freedom, respect for Constitutionally based law, individual responsibility and distrust of bureaucracy that has demonstrated its contempt or fear of all of the above
It is never going away.
It may change names
Give it a strong leader to build a national voice and look out
a politician who doesn’t “get it” does not share those convictions and values
The tea party is a freaking state of mind you moron.
My, my. People are falling all over themselves lately to declare the death of the Tea Party.
To paraphrase Mr. Clemens, the reports of its death are greatly exaggerated.
There was, and remains, a broad, deepening grassroots resentment of the politics currently being inflicted on the American public by a self-proclaimed elite that has arrogated to itself the ideological direction of the country and will brook no opposition. That was annoying when it consisted merely of sneering within the media; now in power it is far more than that, it is totalitarian and deadly.
The gaps in the wall aren't going to be papered over by reassurance that establishment, elitist Republicans are in any sense a counterweight to establishment, elitist Democrats. They have proven to be co-conspirators.
And so the "Tea Party is dead!" triumphalism has a very hollow ring to it. It was never really alive as they define political life, but that doesn't mean it has gone away.
The failure of the Republicans in that election was that they failed to raise the alarm on all the election fraud that occurred. Not that Atty General Holder would have done anything about it, anyway.
Actually, Nate's pretty spot-on here. The Tea Party isn't a proper noun "Party" but rather a collection of ideas represented by many smaller organizations and individuals who may or may not agree on candidates and policies.
Yes. The Founding Fathers endured much less before the first shots were fired.
Tea Party Has Outlived Its Usefulness
I think we heard similar words from Prime Minister Lord North in 1774.
It took a few more years back then to see it through. It will be the same today. We may lose several battles, but we will lose the war if we quit.
I think a lot are pushing amnesty so they can drop it as a final FU on the way out the door.
Being correct in his prediction of trends and elections is more important and valuable to Silver than being liked by his fellow liberals.
Yea believing that I am over taxed and the government wastes 80% of my tax money has “outlived it’s usefulness”.
Kiss my ass Nate
Agree 100%. People are too quick to attack this article as anti-conservative. It's definitely NOT. READ the article.
He's just saying the term "tea party" has outlived its usefulness, especially given that since it's not really a political party at all. It now means a thousand different things as a result. Nebulous terms & labels without structure are not useful for a movement. IMHO he's right - ditch the "tea party" label.
Yet another druid full of himself exaggerating the demise of a permanent fixture to the political landscape.
The Tea Party is not one group, not even a few groups. It is an expression of the will of the grassroots and will never go away until the GOPe is thoroughly cast out and into the camp of democrats where it comes from.
Yes, the GOPe will lose elections in November because the Tea Party base will not support it, democrat victories not withstanding. It may take another one or two election cycles for the GOPe to be neutered, but it will happen. They cannot survive without the Tea Party but the Tea Party can survive without them.
To understand using an apt historical analogy, there is a two-front war going on, the Tea Party vs. the GOPe and the Tea Party vs. the democrats, similar to the second world war where a pacifist USA was drawn into a two-war front with the Germans and Japanese.
In the second world war, the top US military brass spent the first two years fighting each other over issues of money and resources more than they spent hot war fighting against the real enemies. But once the effort was organized and focused, the US war machine ran the enemy machine aground and starved it into submission.
The same is happening in the two-war front that the Tea Party is engaged with. When the time comes that its fund raising and candidate selection are more focused and more efficient, it will run the GOPe out of business and breach the barriers of democrats and their media.
Hmmm... every week for the last 6 years there’s an “end of the tea party” column.
Right on. Tea Party is not a group, it is in our heart of hearts and will show up at the ballot box...and if the ballot box can’t be trusted then I believe the tea party WILL become a formal group and the chips will fall where they may.
If that was true why do they fear it so mush?.
Then I’m well up on the curve. But I’m getting old. I hope to live long enough to see how this all turns out. We need to get started.
Amazing the people who know nothing of the math behind statistical sampling on both right and left who act like they know more than an expert in the field.
As with others from my previous profession, being accurate in ones’ predictions matters far more than the ideology of who wins. When I was a pollster, I’d much rather do an accurate and useful survey for a dem than tell a rep what they wanted to hear. Or vice versa. Pollsters are like pitchers or batters - the team only matters at the moment, what counts is the stats. Nate isn’t perfect, but if this was baseball he’d be a 300+ batter.
Ideology doesn’t matter, only accurate numbers. A pollster would rather predict within a percentage point or two, a landslide for someone they hate than screw up a poll for someone they love.
It’s good to let the enemy think that we have gone away.
That way when the Socialists lose big in the 2016 election it will be a surprise attack!
If this country is going to change for the better it has to be done at the county and state level. The tea party people are stronger at this level. Little change towards reestablishing the original intent of the Founders is not coming out of DC.
According to a series of mainstream media accounts, McConnell crushed the tea party.
And that’s “crushing.”
> “IMHO he’s right - ditch the “tea party” label.”
And replace it with what?
How about nothing at all.
Personally, I think it's silly. Say the words "Tea Partier" and in the minds of those who don't post on Free Republic is the image of some beer-bellied white guy wearing camo and/or a tri-cornered hat and waving around a Gadsden flag, --an image that sends moderate suburban voters fleeing, --the very voters who decide elections.
Conservatives, limited government proponents, whatever.
Nate: The TEA Party is in a war with the GOPe. In any war, battles are won and lost.. the Tea Party is here for the long run and it’ll take years like other wars.
Pollsters are like pitchers or batters - the team only matters at the moment, what counts is the stats.
No, you're wrong. It depends on what stats (context) and at what moment. In baseball, all that should matter is winning the World Series. Everything else is secondary including stats. Not even runs scored is an important figure. A World Series can be won with 4 runs in 4 games and that's a pathetic figure in total runs.
There's plenty of history where a team with lesser stats wins the World Series. And there are many explanations for this such as the league the winners came from and the annealing process of statistics experienced from such league.
Nate isnt perfect, but if this was baseball hed be a 300+ batter.
Ken Griffey Jr and ARod were once together at the same time on the same team and were consistently 40+ home run hitters with well over 300 batting averages in same seasons for the Seattle Mariners, yet the team finished in the cellar if not close to it. Statistics only have meaning in context.
In the case of Silver's remarks concerning the Tea Party, the remarks are not statistical, they are merely remarks of an observation of irrelevance to the political process based on nebulous definitions, categorizations, and outcomes. His remarks could be characterized by the quote coined by some politician as a "nothing-burger". The only thing that sticks out is the title, and it is devoid of serious analysis or purpose, not to mention its false inference.
Michael Barone was once upon a time a star prognosticator and diviner of political outcomes. He's since crashed and burned. Statistically we can say he had a nice run. But his run could have been a random draw based on a universe of methods; in other words his models were false but surprisingly correct. All models are false but some are useful
Silver really hasn't had much more success than other prognosticators. Based on historical records and demographics, the same results have been produced by many contemporaries to Silver.
The real statistic to watch that is relevant to Silver's foul title is the number of times those in the media have professed the death of the Tea Party.
I will defer to you :-) My comments about pollsters in general is more about the fact that the ones I’ve known and worked with would rather be right than be ideologically correct. Good points all, Nate could just be lucky. Time will tell.
Regards, and thanks for an enlightening post.
> “Good points all, Nate could just be lucky.”
No, he’s not lucky, he’s just using data and methods that are easily used and have been used by others.
It’s a bit like someone who can point north without a compass, lots of people can do that, even high school students.
Silver is just better at marketing his name.
Statistically what he is doing is not impressive, innovative or new. Do a search of political pollsters and you will find many others that use basically the same data and methods with maybe a small tweak here and there, an adjustment for a special factor etc. but all reach pretty much the same conclusion.
You nailed it. I’m very active in our Tea Party. We’re not going away.
He has no innate idea but he’s a reasonable guy. I am mixed on Nate Silver’s analysis.
I have watched the stories seesaw in the press: First round of primaries we lost, then we won the next, then we lost again. Keep watching. You are right.
Most important point, made by many others, is that the ideas are winning.
What is true for the image of the tea partier is true in general during election season: The pictures that people hold in their minds are so very important, especially with an uninformed electorate. When voters thought of Bevin, the first thing that popped into their mind was a cockfight.
Our candidates are relatively inexperienced, but they just have to remember that less is more. When you’re on the national stage, you can’t just say whatever you think of or do whatever seems like a good idea at the time.
They have a saying in Brooklyn: Don’t talk unless you’re going to gain something by it.
“Lucky” in the sense of, as you say, marketing himself well. Just like the most famous singers are not necessarily the best- technically competent and professional. The pollster profession is an interesting one; thought I wanted to do it at one time and worked all sorts of parts of several gigs, polling outfits, TV stations. As with legislative aid, the other thing I explored, just too many weird hours and irregularity in employment for me.