The Tea Party has been under attack since its inception. Republican hierarchy including, if not especially, Karl Rove, the NAACP, the mainstream media, and, of course, Democrats have found fault and condemned the Tea Party.
There were rumors that the Tea Party was no longer viable, that it was on life support, and that it was a damaged brand. Now in a Rasmussen poll released Monday, January 7, 2013, we are informed “the Republican backed Tea Party has reached its most unpopular level since its inception. Just three in 10 voters have a favorable view of the movement with half of the poll’s respondents said that they view the party ‘unfavorably.'” (http://www.examiner.com/article/tea-party-goes-overboard-polls; 1/8/13)
I have problems with these findings for several reasons; a couple of which I will share here. But, first things first.
The Tea Party is under attack from many directions with the Republican hierarchy leading the charge. I will even say that, at one point, I personally believe certain factions within the Republican Party were pleased to see the NAACP publicly condemning Tea Party groups as racist.
I believe it would have been to the Tea Party groups great advantage had they remained autonomous entities juxtaposed to their leaders very quickly aligning themselves with the Republican Party. There was no need to crawl into the pig sty of Republican Party politics.
In 2010, the Tea Party groups still possessed autonomy and individuality. They were community-based and headed by members of the community. The people had assembled because they were outraged by Obama’s uncontrolled spending, the expansion of government, and Obama’s commitment to forcibly take more of our money by increasing our taxes. The Tea Party groups sprang up because the people found that, regardless of their views on abortion and/or same sex marriage, Obama was a threat to our way of life. And they were right.
Where Tea Party groups were wrong is that many of the leaders of the said groups fell prey to their own egos and their failure to recognize from the outset that Republican hierarchy and most Republican politicians were only interested in the Tea Party groups when it came to rallying votes and to giving money.
The Republicans were no more interested in having autonomous, community-level groups supporting the candidates of their choice and making decisions based on what is best for the people than Lenin would have been.
I warned Tea Party groups I spoke to in 2009, and following the Tea Party orchestrated avalanche of victories in 2010, that the greatest threat to their cause would be Republicans. I warned that Karl Rove’s vicious attack on Tea Party members after Christine O’Donnell defeated Mike Castle in Delaware; an attack for which he was forced to do a public mea culpa was a foreshadowing that my assertions were valid. I warned pursuant to his disparaging comments about the then South Carolina Gubernatorial candidate Nikki Haley as the Tea Party helped her claw out a victory. But my warnings went unheeded.
This isn’t a case of patting myself on the back. It is the case of my understanding that Republicans do not want We the People to think and stand up for ourselves. As I wrote over a decade ago, the only thing the hierarchy wants from us is our money and votes.
I warned that if the Tea Party groups wanted to make a difference, they would distance themselves from GOP establishment, concentrate on vetting candidates, and supporting the candidates of their choice — not by genuflecting and following the dictates of the GOP. But that is exactly what many Tea Party groups did and this is what has happened. I warned in April 2009 that the Republican hierarchy realized what the Tea Party had not realized at that time, and that was the very real threat that an organized Tea Party could present.
The idea being blathered by media, et al, is, first and foremost, the will of a Republican leadership upset that the candidates we were responsible for getting elected refused to do their bidding. It is a blatant, although left-handed, way of depriving We the People of our right to self-determination.
But, my warnings were for the most part ignored, and now the media and Democrats glibly declare the Tea Party movement dead while the likes of John McCain, John Boehner, Karl Rove, and Reince Preibus give thumbs up away from the public eye.
The Rasmussen poll found that only eight percent of those polled say they are members of the Tea Party. The poll found that views of the Tea Party movement were at their lowest ever.
But I’m not inclined to blindly accept Rasmussen’s findings that easily. I want to know what their demographics were of the 1,000 likely voters contacted for the poll. What was the average age of the people polled? Was the group weighted more male or female? Were there fewer veterans or persons who had never served? Was the poll weighted more Democrat, Republican or Libertarian? How many of the people were retired? Where did the greater number of those polled live? Were they east coast, west coast or the mid-west? What was the average income of those polled? What was their level of completed education?
All of these things and more factor into polls, and without having answers to those questions, I’m not inclined to simply believe the poll. That said, I would also want to know how many of those polled were basing their viewpoints on what they had heard discussed on radio or television.
The most important thing for We the People to keep in mind is that neither of the two major parties is interested in seeing We the People demand those we elect exercising our right to demand smaller government, lower taxes, reduced spending, fewer restrictions pursuant to what we can or cannot do with our property, and so forth.
They want to determine and define what our right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness will be, and they will do whatever it takes to ensure they retain that power. And if We the People remain in our coma of belief that the Republican Party leadership gives a whit about us, we will be condemned to being marginalized and voiceless.
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