An Excellent Spirit has posted on the Tea Party phenomenon. Here and here. We have also written about our “Unhyphenated America, Tea Party leader, Lloyd Marcus. Notwithstanding all we have done, the lamestream media seems to have lost track of the Tea Party, even writing that the Tea Party was over, lost its mojo and no longer a factor. Here and Here. The problem with all that rhetoric is that it is just that. What the lamestream media does not know is that the Tea Party members in groups across the nation have gone nowhere but back to work. The work of defeating President Obama and electing US Senators and Congressmen in all states, but especially in the so-called “swing” or “battleground” states.
Wikipedia gives us our first hint. Scott Rasmussen says that, the bailouts of banks by the Bush and Obama administrations triggered the Tea Party’s rise in 2007-2008. Then in early 2009, the mortgage crises triggered another Tea Party wave of meetings as people lost houses to banks that were getting bailed out. Then Fox News called many of the protests in 2009 “FNC Tax Day Tea Parties” which it promoted on air and sent speakers to. This was to include then-host Glenn Beck, though Fox came to discourage him from attending later events. This led to the 2010 Elections which the Tea Party dominated in many races in many states. What has happened to the Tea Party since the beginning of 2011? There have not been large boisterous rallies. There have not been passionate issue meetings. Many Congressional candidates have dispensed with town halls or meetings with constituents to avoid the Tea Party’s questions. Has the Tea Party died down? Is it like the smoldering embers of yesterday’s bright fire? Just a bunch of hot coals, but nothing more?
An Excellent Spirit knows otherwise. In February 2011, Wikipedia relates that the Tea Party Patriots organized and hosted the American Policy Summit in Phoenix, Arizona. In September 2011, CNN and Tea Party Express co-hosted a Republican primary debate among presidential candidates which featured questions from various Tea Party groups. In March 2012, Incumbent Rep. Jean Schmidt was defeated in the primary for Ohio’s 2nd congressional district by tea-party backed Brad Wenstrup, an Iraq Veteran and podiatrist. Also in March 2012, tea-party backed Incumbent Rep. Don Manzullo was defeated in the primary election for the new Illinois’s 16th congressional district by first-term incumbent and former tea-party favourite Rep. Adam Kinzinger. In April 2012, Sen. Orrin Hatch, seeking renomination, received less than 60% of the vote of the Utah state Republican convention, forcing a primary election. Hatch easily defeated the Tea Party candidate Dan Liljenquist. In May 2012, tea party favorite Richard Mourdock defeated long-serving Sen. Richard Lugar in the Indiana Senate GOP primary with a 20% margin of victory. With an endorsement from Sarah Palin and the help of the Tea Party, Nebraska’s Deb Fischer pulled off an upset victory in that state’s 2012 Senate race. Her opponents, Attorney General Jon Bruning, and state Treasurer Don Stenberg, each spent well in excess of $1 million, where as Fischer spent $100,000, augmented by twice that much in SuperPAC spending from Chicago Cubs part-owner Joe Ricketts. Fischer currently leads Democratic challenger former Sen. Bob Kerrey by 10 points. Tea party candidate for Senate Ted Cruz got enough of the primary vote in Texas to force a run-off vote against establishment GOP candidate David Dewhurst in May 2012. Cruz defeated Dewhurst in the runoff election with a 14% margin of victory. The “grass-roots activists who identify to a large extent with the leaderless tea party movement” played a part in Scott Walker‘s election to Governor of Wisconsin in 2010 as well as his recall election victory in 2012. A FOX News exit poll showed Tea Party support was a key part of Walker’s win in 2012, just as it was in 2010.
In Atlanta, the Tea Party partnered with the NAACP and the Sierra Club to defeat the $7.2 billion dollar Transportation Investment Act in June 2012. The act had the support of both Democratic and Republican “establishment” politicians. The act was supported with $8 million used to sell the project to the public, while the Tea Party had only $15,000.00 to oppose it. With concerns that much of the act would do little to improve Atlanta’s transportation problems, it was defeated with a 63% “no” vote. In Pennsylvania, Tea Party activists and FreedomWorks pushed for a law that would allow businesses to provide student tuition grants for school-choice in return for tax credits. The law was signed by Gov. Tom Corbett on June 30. In Missouri, tea party supporter Todd Akin won a three-way contest to become the GOP nominee to challenge incumbent Senator Claire McCaskill in the fall. One of Akin’s main rivals was another tea party candidate, Sarah Steelman, whose backers included the Tea Party Express and Sarah Palin. In August, presumed Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney selected Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin as his vice-presidential running mate. The move was praised by the Tea Party Express, the Tea Party Patriots, Sarah Palin, as well as many other Tea Party groups. In Wisconsin, establishment Republican and former governor Tommy Thompson won that state’s GOP Senate primary, defeating Eric Hovde and former U.S. Rep. Mark Neumann, in August. Hovde, who finished second, had the backing of Freedomworks. Neumann, who finished third, had the backing of the Tea Party Express, the Club for Growth, and Sen. Jim DeMint. Finally, In Florida, former veterinarian and Tea Party supporter Ted Yoho defeated 12-term GOP Rep. Cliff Stearns in the GOP primary in August. Thereafter the pundits and analysts weighed in. William J. Bennett, contributing an opinion on CNN, stated “The public sector union machine, once a colossus of Democratic power, looks weak in the wake of Walker’s triumph. With mandatory union dues now extinct, union membership has withered in Wisconsin. AFSCME’s Local 24 in Madison has seen its ranks drop from 22,300 to 7,100, while AFSCME’s statewide membership has been cut in half. In short, Walker has broken the long running cycle of handoffs and paybacks between union leadership and state politicians. … Local tea party groups, like the Racine tea party, and national groups, such as Americans for Prosperity, have hosted dozens of rallies for Walker, recruiting volunteers from around the country and pouring in campaign donations in unparalleled numbers. Any rumors of a tea party demise have been short-lived.”
The victory of Tea Party candidate Richard Mourdock over long-time establishment incumbent Sen. Richard Lugar has put the Republican party in jeopardy of losing their once safe seat in Indiana. Polling shows Mourdock to be in a statistical tie with Democratic challenger Rep. Joe Donnelly. Whilst in Missouri, a seat that the GOP needs to win in order to retake the Senate and where the Incumbent Senator Claire McCaskill is seen as very vulnerable, the Republican nominee Todd Akin, once surging ahead of McCaskill in the polls, caused controversy with his legitimate rape remarks. The once easily winnable seat for the Republicans, has now turned into a deadheat. All of this has caused many in the lamestream media (wishful thinking) and the political scientific adademia that make a living teaching, but being mostly wrong about races, to say the Tea Party has sort of lost its mojo and energy. They say that “Tea party activities have declined since 2010. According to Harvard professor Theda Skocpol, membership in Tea Party chapters across the country has slipped from about 1,000 to 600, but that this is still “a very good survival rate.” Mostly, Tea Party organizations are said to have shifted away from national demonstrations to local issues. A shift in the operational approach used by the Tea Party has also affected the movement’s visibility, with chapters placing more emphasis on the mechanics of policy and getting candidates elected rather than staging public events. Despite the fact that political people wishing to win an election must swing from getting attention and primaries to getting their vote to the polls, the MSM is still dumbing down the movement. “The tea party’s involvement in the 2012 GOP presidential primaries was minimal, owing to divisions over whom to endorse as well as lack of enthusiasm for all the candidates. Which is not to say the 2012 GOP ticket hasn’t had an influence on the Tea Party: following the selection of Paul Ryan as Mitt Romney‘s vice-presidential running mate, the New York Times declared that the once fringe of the conservative coalition, Tea Party lawmakers are now “indisputably at the core of the modern Republican Party.” That is a short, not always precisely accurate recap, but it will suffice to give our readers a good picture. What is important is what is next. What can the Tea Party do in November. Can they register enough new voters? We call them “stealth voters” because they mostly have not participated in past elections and cannot be polled, forecast or expected by the other side. Can they expand their voter base and voter lists and can they get their millions of voters to the polls?
If they do, they will most certainly change this and future elections. Most swing or battle ground states will be won by fewer than 5-7% of the votes cast in that state. If the Tea Party can register and get another 10% new, previously unknown voters to the polls, they could overturn the whole apple cart. The Tea Party Congress Freshman Class of 2011 could easily become the US Senate Tea Party Freshman Class of 2013 and the Tea Party President of 2013.
Brietbart Big Government has this article that says that 41 million Tea Party Americans will vote in the Presidential Election and in the US Senate and House races in the states. “The Tea Party is regularly ridiculed and declared “dead” by the mainstream press and their elitist allies in Washington and Hollywood. Not surprisingly, when Tea Partiers show up and rally by the thousands, they get all but ignored, while 30 Occupy Wall Street crazies in masks will always get wall-to-wall coverage and admiration. TV shows and movies take cheap shots at Tea Party conservatives, often linking them to murder-of-the-week cases on insipid crime procedurals or dismissing them as “birthers.” But a new Associated Press poll shows tea party supporters may have the last laugh in November. The AP/GFK poll shows that 31% of likely voters consider themselves Tea Party supporters. With 131 million votes cast in the 2008 elections, that translates into an incredible voting bloc of 41 million Tea Party supporters waiting to cast ballots. These voters have already made their voices heard in Wisconsin earlier this year, as well as in Republican primaries in Texas and Nebraska. That 31% of likely voters figure is greater than the 19% who described themselves as either strongly or somewhat liberal. Surprisingly, liberals have escaped media characterization as being a small, fringe-like group with little power or influence. At 19% of likely voters, self-described liberals would have a turnout of 25 million voters, some 16 million fewer voters than the Tea Party. The good news for Mitt Romney and other Republican hopefuls is that the Tea Party supporters also appear ready to turn out in much higher numbers than all other voters. For instance, while they only made up 23% of the initial polling sample, which was a sample of all adults, their numbers improve as unlikely voters were removed by the AP from the data. When unregistered and unlikely voters were taken out of the poll, their share of the vote increased by 35%, to nearly one-third of the voting population.”
The University of Colorado has an election model they say has correctly predicted every election back to 1980. They say Romney will win and win handily. “University of Colorado Professors Ken Bickers and Michael Berry have quite a set of bragging rights up their sleeve – namely, they’ve devised a mathematical model of the Electoral College that has predicted every Presidential race correctly since Ronald Reagan won the Presidency in 1980. And despite recent polls showing the presidential race deadlocked both nationally and in key swing states, Bickers and Berry‘s model shows a race that isn’t even close. According to them, not only will Mitt Romney win, but he will win big, taking 320 Electoral Votes to President Obama’s 218 – a result almost as decisive as President Obama’s win against Senator John McCain in 2008.
If these figures bear any relation to what actually happens on November 6th, we are in for a Tea Party, the like of which would cause the Queen of Hearts to bring out her finest setting. That said, An Excellent Spirit says again, Remember in November and VOTE! Your life and the lives of your children and grandchildren depend on it!