Skip to comments.Follow The Tea Party Money
Posted on 06/10/2014 9:24:02 PM PDT by nathanbedford
Will The Tea Party gain renewed credibility which it does not deserve?
Professor Brat's stunning upset ousting the Majority Leader in the Republican primary, the first time ever at American history, is being credited to The Tea Party and we are being told that the tea party now has a new lease on life.
Did the The Tea Party actually significantly contribute either money or shoe leather to David Brat's win? Evidently not. Brat has spent only about $100,000 and has virtually no money with which to campaign in the general election. Clearly The Tea Party has not contributed significant money.
More, it appears that the candidate himself does not claim the mantle of The Tea Party but instead describes himself as a "free market" candidate. With the evidence we have before us now it appears that this victory cannot be claimed as the property of The Tea Party. That is not to say that Brat does not represent a true grass roots conservative rebellion against the Rino establishment, he does and he is fully worthy of our support. The question is, where was The Tea Party?
A few weeks ago an article which appeared In Politico was covered here on FreeRepublic which cataloging a devastating list of tea party groups who have recorded unconscionably high administrative costs and pathetically small contributions to grassroots candidates. I have yet to see a rebuttal of these data and as far as I know we are looking at a group of leaders of many tea party movements who are lining their pockets at the expense of ingenuous conservatives who have parted with their money as well is their prayers.
With Brat's victory prominent in the news it is time to ask, what about it, where is the money going?
It’s not a victory for the national Tea Party groups like TPX, TPP, etc. But local Virginia tea partiers were behind Brat.
The Tea Party has never been about electing ‘Tea Party candidates’. It has been about electing conservatives. We did that tonight.
I think it’s a good point. As some on Twitter mentioned tonight, this is a Tea Party win (via the voters), but the organizations taking the mantle of the movement were hardly involved at all.
One of the key benefits of this movement is that it’s about ideas, not about specific people. Many of these groups have fundraised as THE leaders of the party, but we haven’t gotten much back from them in terms of electoral success. You mentioned there has been no response to the charges of high administration costs. That seems to speak volumes.
Well, the conservative grassroots tea party voters won the primary for him. That pretty much makes him the tea party candidate (vs the losing GOP establishment $$$ candidate).
Of course it has, that is how it identifies the conservatives it supports against Rinos, although both are identified as "Republicans."
Lois Lerner must be fuming.
Thanks for pointing this out, because too many people are attempting to call this a “tea party victory” when in fact it was the victory of one man and his ideas. His views may align with those of the tea party, but coincidence does not equal causation.
This doesn’t prove the “tea party” (whichever or however you define that term) is yet an effective element in influencing election outcomes (as Lindsay Grahams victory proves). Mr. Brat was a good strong candidate who pulled off an incredible upset by making his case with the voters who turned out today. “The Tea Party” should study all the factors surrounding tonight’s victory and learn from this example instead of rushing to take credit for an outcome it had little to do with.
Your money should only be going directly to good candidates. Period! If anyone is sending his money to any organization -- GOP, Tea Party or otherwise -- he's a sucker.
I don’t think that’s the case. Take the Tea Party in Idaho for example. They supported a conservative challenge to Mike Simpson, but supported incbumbent senator Jim Risch to walk right to renomination. Risch was nominated in 2008, and has since been a solid conservative in the senate, but he is not a ‘Tea Partier’. Indeed, he predates the Tea Party.
Look at Jeff Sessions. Very popular among the Tea Party, I myself totally backed his reelection, but he’s not a ‘Tea Partier’.
What is the difference between a senator like Mike Lee and a senator like Jeff Sessions? Not much really. Both are conservatives, and both have the support of the Tea Party.
It’s never been about so-called Tea Party groups and organizations.
It’s about US.
We, the fed up.
We, the sick and tired.
We, THE PEOPLE.
Why donate money to a “Tea Party Patriot,” “Tea Party Express,” or whatever EIEIO group comes along, when you can contribute directly to a political candidate who shares your values?
It eliminates the bureaucratic middleman.
Yes, my wife and I (and I think many others as well) have learned the hard way that you should only give to the candidate.
I think he represents Tea Party values, the people’s values. Tea Party is just another name for the people.
It’s good to see Brat winning so close to DC, right where they live.
Something like the first Mannassas, hmmm?
It will be revealing to see if the GOPe puts their resources behind the people's choice or leave him twisting in the wind.
The Tea Party is not an organization. It is a mindset. That mindset won.
I think you’ve summed it up well. I’ve seen some truly idiotic stuff put forth by a purported “tea party group” in ways that cause even Conservatives to fight amongst themselves, even though everyone agrees on the fundamental principle that underlies the issue.
This doesn’t help any more than when 5 or 6 “tea party candidates” divide the conservative vote amongst themselves so the GOP elitist can win.
Listen to Dave Brat say it himself: he won on the strength of ideas that reflect common sense and solutions that are based on conservative principles, not “left vs right” nonsense:
In defense of the local TEA Party groups, most of these people are political neophytes and ordinary citizens who have no idea how to run an organization and manage its financial books. That needs to change moving forward, and I expect it will.
To those posters who say that the only prudent course today is to send your money to the candidate rather than to an organization, I say again, yes.
But the question for us is how do we gain political power to save the Republic through conservative principles. The best vehicle for that is and remains the Republican Party which is tragically entirely in the clutches of a Rino establishment. How do we gain control the party, or at least how do we influence it?
Until now the best hope has been to organize and present a united front and that we have been doing under the rubric of, "The Tea Party." Can you imagine approaching the likes of Cantor, Boehner, McConnell as an individual saying you better listen to me or I'm going to send my $20 contribution to the candidate? You will not even get a hearing from these men. But if we are organized and we approach the Republican establishment and say we represent the votes and the contributions of millions of American conservatives, we will at least get a hearing.
The point is that we lose leverage if we cannot present a united front. But a false and fraudulent front is worse than no front.
Please name the “leaders” of the “Tea Party”. Who is speaking for us?
That is the elusive nature of a genuine grass roots effort.
I heard Laura Ingraham, who campaigned for winning Tea Party Candidate Dave Brat, say on Fox tonight that the head of the Tea Party Patriots organization, Jenny Beth Martin, would NOT help Brat, in fact she would NOT even take Brat’s phone calls.
This woman pays herself using Tea Party donations 9 times more than she spent on behalf of Tea Party Candidate Matt Bevin who lost to RINO Mitch McConnell.
She draws a salary as president of the Tea Party Patriots nonprofit arm getting more than $272,000 in the 2012 fiscal year, according to the groups most recent tax filing.
She also gets money for “strategic planning” ($120,000.00 between 7/2013 and 5/2014).
Don’t donate to the Tea Party Patriots. They are a scam organization. Give to your LOCAL Tea Party/Liberty group.
Mark Levin’s relevant remarks on the Brat victory:
he sure got a bunch of my money, and i’m a tea partier.
“Tea Party President Jenny Beth Martin, who runs the super PAC (Tea Party Patriots Citizens Fund) has been receiving $15,000 monthly consulting fees.” (http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-politics/wp/2014/04/28/tea-party-patriots-defends-its-spending/)
there are reports that Martin has possibly spent a considerable sum of money on cars and homes.
if accurate this should be a great concern to a number of people.
People who identify with the tea party have been called every name in the book. Nazis, racist, nuts, etc. In addition their businesses and personal finances have been targeted by the federal government through the IRS and numerous other agencies.
It wouldn’t surprise me at all that many of these people are simply laying low and are really pissed off. That when they get a chance to vote they will. And they know who is responsible for what’s been done to them as do their friends and associates.
“The Tea Party is not an organization. It is a mindset. That mindset won.”
BINGO -— And that is exactly what Brat said. He’s smart to avoid applying labels to himself since day-to-day folks may have preconceived notions of what those labels mean. HE PRESENTED HIS IDEAS (which just happen to be Tea Party, constitutional conservative ideas) to the voters in his district and helped them understand those ideas. And that is what drove his victory.
What you said. Bingo.
Anyone ever heard of teaparty.net?
I got a solicitation email from them tonight.
Had never heard of them before, they have a drop box(?) at 1701 PA Ave WashDC, ...
letter signed by Todd Cefaratti. Freedom Organizer.
Tea is spelled that way T e a throughout the letter and in the letter head.
I responded to the email with a ‘questionnaire of my own
Who are you
Why have I never heard of you before
Are you a Registered Solicitor
E Mail address must be good as it didn’t ‘bounce’ though I haven’t gotten an answer and really expected my ‘note’ to ‘bounce’.
I only contribute to individual campaigns, not to organized networks. The Tea Party is an idea, not something to be co-opted by nationally led groups. I’ve belonged to several local groups in my area...each focuses on issues important in their districts and are not exactly the same. If they (a national group)support a candidate that I’m on board with, ok. But that is not always the case.
and I’m very wary of those that claim a Tea Party mantle...look no further than the gubernatorial election in Va. to see what can happen. People in his district are wide awake. Campaign $$ didn’t buy them. I hope it turns out that way in much of the country. Time will tell.
Went to a Tea Party Express rallye once, and frankly it felt kinda hokey. We are better off in small groups. Yes give ( and participate !) at the local level, and the smart ones never became a 501c3 and are passing the hat so to speak to survive.
Which only goes to prove the original message of the tea party, I guess. (lower case by design)
A new way to elect public officials. I hate Parties anyway. Someday the USA will have an electoral college again. No R or D and people will forget the once donkey and elephant.
And in the paltry $200K Brat had, there didn't seem to be ANY national TPA-whatever money. No national support, advertisement, what have you.
This wasn't a win of the National Tea Party acronyms - far from it. It was a win by people in a district over a man who let his second-tier power lord over the rest of the country with an outright hatred it seemed at times, especially for conservatives of the Tea Party sentiment/persuasion who were bolstered by the likes of Laura Ingram and other talk radio hosts.
These national groups have gotten away with it so far judging by the dirth of reporting on their finances and where/on whom the funds are spent. I hope this Cantor loss brings some of this to the light of day.
If these groups really are legitimate, they had damned well better step up their game. This means SIGNIFICANT support in the general election campaign for Brat. If they do not and Brat loses and what conservatives have fought so hard for is deeply tarnished by defeat, these groups will have sealed themselves in that bag of dirty laundry I'd label corrupt money grubbers, IMO.
I wholly agree. Not $ accumulating organizations with no seeming accountability, but to real, conservative candidates.
The difference IS the difference.
Don’t be a joiner. Give directly to the candidate.
The voters are the united front. These buttheads do not listen to Jenny Beth Martin any more than they listen to you or me. Eric Cantor hears us now.
I believe a political party is a coalition designed to obtain and exercise power. The nature of the American constitutional system virtually dictates that power be obtained and exercised through two a party system. Any deviation from this fundamental principle of American politics leaves those who deviate impotent. That was the underlying assumption of the reply to which I referred you in the other thread.
Some time ago I wrote a reply explaining my understanding of why the American political system is a two-party system and only functions as a two-party system. There is no realistic exercise of political power outside the two-party system.
Here is that reply:
Governing is about exercising power. Political parties are about appropriating that power to one's own purpose. The founding fathers created a government containing many checks and balances in an effort to frustrate human tendency to consolidate power in one tyrant or, on the other hand, to concede power to the mob. Political parties in America are designed to overcome the checks and balances put by the framers into the Constitution.
The peculiar architecture of the American federal system with its bicameral legislatures, tripartite "coequal" branches of government, staggered elections for various branches, Constitutional limitations of government power especially freedom of the press and speech, are designed to make government impotent in the absence of a general consensus. The purpose of political parties is to provide that consensus for its constituents' point of view, to provide a consensus about how power should be wielded across the various competing entities of government.
The peculiar architecture of the American federal political winner take all system with its checks and balances means that it functions properly as a two-party system. Any successful attempt to form a third political party invariably condemns the political party from which it shoots off and to which it is most closely ideologically aligned to oblivion. Since it is human nature to entertain incessant arguments over the proper application of political power, political parties in America have developed a survival mechanism, they co-opt the principle grievances of the splinter group and make the dissidents' platform their own. This has been the history of political parties in America since the beginning. When a new ideology becomes popular, one party or the other seeks to absorb it.
If the party misjudges the public mood and embraces a splinter ideology in an effort to co-opt when that ideology is too radical to be palatable to the general public, the party loses the next election because it moves out of the mainstream. If the party misjudges the other way and declines to co-opt a movement which happens to be of sufficient strength, the party loses the next election because it has fractured its base. If a party attempts to absorb views of the other party, or approaching that of the other party, it risks losing the next election by alienating its own base. If it fails to absorb views approaching the ideology of the other party, it risks losing the next election by isolating itself to its own base.
Political parties are eternally faced with the same dilemma: should the party dilute its core message to attract less ideologically motivated voters or should it confine itself to a pure message and energize its core constituents? In attempting to solve these tensions, political parties are like amoebas or yeasts, everlastingly dividing or growing.
Any form of tea party organization or leader is a notice to the presstitutes that a new target has been set up, and the range is clear. Open fire. The tea party is an idea shared by many. Social media is the organization.
Your civics lesson seems to indicate that only a 2 party system works. Where does JBM and the tea party express fit in? Or other tea party organizations?
The Republican establishment profits from the existing system and the media are ideologically opposed to the old Republican ideology so, yes, the establishment will combine with the media in an attempt to discredit the tea party and its ideology.
If The Tea Party is ultimately successful and takes over the Republican Party it is only a question of time until it becomes the establishment and it must fend off or co-op the next new ideology. That is normal and it is the way our system has worked since the framers first started decrying political parties.
What is not normal and what is not legitimate is for leaders of the upstart ideology to sell out before they acquire political power while they hold themselves out to their constituents as offering the vehicle to acquire political power through influencing the Republican establishment. That is fraud. It is fraud to collect money under false pretenses.
It's also illegitimate to claim credit for an election victory such as David Brat's when they contributed nothing. By nothing I mean no money whatsoever, no endorsement, not even a word of encouragement.
Listening to the news reports today, the major media trumpet the victory as a victory of The Tea Party when at most it was a victory for tea party ideology, thankfully uncontaminated by hucksters who have apparently infiltrated the movement. Most people who hear those news reports are not political junkies like we are and will assume that the tea party movement is not dead but alive and vigorous. Part of that is to the good but we ought not to deceive ourselves as to what happened here.
It will be difficult enough to wrest power from the likes of Boehner and McConnell without crippling the effort by tainting it with opportunists.
I agree with that!