#NCPOL: What Tea Party?

ripI participated in the big 9/12/09 march on Washington that is credited with being the coming-out party for The Tea Party movement.  As my friends and I walked amid the hundreds of thousands of fed-up citizens, a friend of mine commented: “This is wonderful.  Let’s hope this is more than a flash-in-the-pan.  Let’s hope this thing can grow, prosper and flourish.”

Well, here we are — nearly five years later.  The Revolution of 2010 installed a House majority and closed the gap in the Senate.  The GOP majority in the US House has foresaken repealing ObamaCare for “fixing” it.  They promised to attack the debt when they took over in 2011, but have been part and parcel to increasing the debt ceiling on multiple occasions.

Amnesty is coming.  Renee Ellmers has been trumpeting it loudly and denouncing anyone opposed to it as an idiot.  It was done in 1986, and check out what it’s done to California.  Since 1992, Republicans have pretty much been wiped out of power there and the economy has been decimated.  The state has the look — and feel — of a Central American banana republic.  These people in DC are going to finish the job – doing for the country what they did to California.  

In Raleigh, the conservative revolution has presented itself as budget-cutters and belt-tighteners while actually exploding state spending. They’ve balked at significantly reducing the gas tax — one of the highest in the nation — and are getting ready to saddle us all with toll roads.

It’s going to get better at the NCGOP convention.  Delegates there will be presented with a new-and-improved party platform that omits repealing ObamaCare, waters down opposition to amnesty, and deletes all references to toll roads.

It’s been said government goes to whoever shows up a the polls.  Turnout was abysmal on Tuesday.  Prior to Tuesday, if you went by word on the street, you would have been convinced that Thom Tillis and Renee Ellmers were dead meat.  Tuesday proved that it’s one thing to gripe about politicians, but it’s another to show up at the polls and do something about it.  Much of what came to the polls on Tuesday were the low-info voters who remembered the names repeated to them during commercial breaks for The View and Wheel of Fortune.  

I encountered LIVs who honestly thought Tuesday’s choice was between Clay Aiken and Thom Tillis.  I saw one woman at my polling place insist loudly that she was a “registered independent” even though the registration documents showed her as “registered Republican.”  One home-schooling mama in our area was a ringleader in the Tillis campaign MAINLY because Speaker Thom was nice to her children when they visited the legislative building a few years back.

The mushroom treatment administered by the establishment worked like a charm.

A lot of people were swayed by the constant big-lie spin that Thom Tillis was the only one who could beat Kay Hagan.   (The polls showed Tillis leading the GOP primary field, but losing to Hagan in the general election.)  It’s clear there is a desire to see her go. Just like with ACC basketball, everyone wants to be on the “winner’s” bandwagon.  When Duke has a good year, EVERYBODY is a Duke fan.   (Speaking of hopping on the bandwagon — Erick Erickson of RedState once called Thom Tillis “terrible.” Today, he’s beating the bushes for people to donate money to Thom.  Judson Phillips of Tea Party Nation also endorsed Tillis.  Tillis is owned and managed by Karl Rove — who pledged to CRUSH The Tea Party.) 

In 2009, we were demanding freedom.  In 2014, we’ve got a Republican party offering us slightly more efficient management of the welfare state.  Election Day is over — for now.  DC and Karl Rove and Eric Cantor have pretty well — with the exception of the Walter Jones race — picked our congressional delegation for us.

While activists continue to jockey for influence within the Tea Party movement and shovel out fundraising letters to the “rubes,” the establishment has been devoting time, cash and energy to fortifying their positions and defining down the grassroots as nuts and kooks.

Those “nasty ads” will go away and be replaced with happier detergent and department store ads.  The Ruling Class will keep picking your pockets for their own self-preservation.  And 2009-2010 and 1776 will keep fading away into little more than distant memories — footnotes in American history textbooks. 

21 thoughts on “#NCPOL: What Tea Party?

  1. “Observers see what they want to see in the results, and they can be blinded by their preconceptions and personal preferences.”

  2. First, I want to encourage you not to be so disheartened. The Tea Party Activists in this state and throughout the country are an important voice for liberty and limited government.

    However, I think your diagnosis of the problem is incorrect.

    The Tea Party in our state hitched its wagon to a very flawed candidate in Brannon. Yes, I know he is a good and passionate candidate. Yes, I believe he is a conservative and probably was the most conservative of all of the senate candidates. But as someone who liked the stands/views of ALL of the 3 top vote getters in the senate primary, let me tell you my impression of Brannon from his own words, his website and tv appearances.

    First, it takes the balls of a brass monkey to run for the nomination of a federal office like the US Senate in a party in which he publicly announced he did not support that party’s candidate for President.

    Second, his failure to testify in his own defense in the case regarding civil damages in his business dealings didn’t help him at all.

    Third, he simply runs off at the mouth far too much for his own good. He posted on his personal website an attack on the Vatican calling it part of the new world order, should have disqualified him from getting ANY Tea Party support. People are responsible for what they say and in this case, it was something he said thoughtfully and from his heart and posted on his website himself.

    Finally, I didn’t get to meet him in person. But let me tell you how he came across on tv, especially in the debate hosted by Time Warner. As if true of most people when talking about something they are passionate about, Brannon was very animated in his delivery of his talking points. However, he needed to tone down the facial expressions (I now know why people call some folks “Wild-eyed”.

    And about the 10th time he mentioned the words “Back to the Constitution”, he just seemed nutty. People can be hardcore constitutionalists and only say it once or twice. For me, he came across as not having any real, practical solutions or plans but rather as someone who was a crazed lunatic. I know, I know, some folks like crazed lunatics who support the constitution but most people want conservative, constitution-revering public servants who can discuss the issues with some depth rather than just pratter off talking points.

    Since you are a leading blogger in the state, you should encourage all tea party activists to find true believers who know how to talk to the GOP bases instead of putting forth candidates who simply don’t know how to talk to the average voter.

      1. The real wisdom is in the document in which Brannon educated everyone on while campaigning. Its pretty sad when someone who wants to govern within the limits of the constitution is called “nutty”.
        The average voter has given us two terms of Obama.
        ODW- the issues are not all that deep. The remedy is adherence to the US Constitution.
        Im afraid we are about to find out that Hagan has more balls than Tillis.

        1. It’s “…sad when someone who wants to govern within the limits of the constitution is called ‘nutty’.”

          It’s also heartbreaking. Further, those who do not govern within the limits of the Constitution are guilty of treason.

          Does the average voter think oaths of public office (and other public service oaths) are a quaint traditional ritual? Do they even think at all?

  3. FYI – Here in Moore County, 3 of the candidates endorsed by the local TEA Party won (Hicks, Graham, Ritter), and 3 others lost statewide but outperformed in Moore County as compared to their district/statewide results (Brannon, Roche, Doran). TEA isn’t dead. In some cases it’s just divided (Brannon v. Harris; Doran v. Levinson, etc.).

  4. I feel like I am reading an obituary — the gloom of this article is so thick.

    I also think that we are our own worst enemy. We put up flawed candidates, we expect one election to turn everything around and we lack patience. As much as I loathe the liberals, their patience and progressive chipping away at all that this country was founded on are to be admired. Their talking points are simple, consistent and typically emotional. And, it works. They win. We should face those facts.

    In the meantime, since I have children and I have to be able to look them in the eye and say I tried, I am going to hold my nose in November and VOTE. I am going to hope that each and every conservative gets off of his behind, sets aside his ideological purism and does the same. Have we not learned our lesson yet about staying home??

    We can change nothing unless we win elections. And, once we win, then we can clean house. But, we must win first.

    1. Tillis is no better than Hagen. Better to let Hagen have it or “write in” your favorite candidate. Stay home and let him get gutted in the general. Tillis is Tricky Dick Burr’s clone remember.

    2. Isn’t it possible that idealogical purism got us into this mess? Wasn’t it the Tillis and Harris campaigns harping on Brannon NOT being a party loyalist , not voting for the sake of voting?? Him not holding his nose?
      It isn’t like there’s a different in this senate race unless you look at the libertarian. Maybe Mrs. Hagan wins this go round the party will get the message.

  5. Tuesday, I voted for the LAST time. My vote does nothing, except frustrate me. There is NO difference between the Dems and Republicans at this time. With Hagen you know what you get…nothing but adherence to the Democrat Party wishes. Meanwhile the “Republicans” adhere to nothing. They are afraid of their own shadows. Burr and most of the “Conservative ” representatives are scared to do anything to upset the applecart. No, I won’t vote anymore. It is useless. We are a one party nation and if the country fails, it can be directly attributed to lack of leadership in ALL branches of the government. Sad day fr NC. Big money has spoken and Karl Rove, Rance Pribus et al have sold out the voters again.

  6. I will take a look at third party candidates in Nov and if I find no one who represents my conservative views, then I will stay home.

  7. To all of you folks who are going to stay home and not vote, thanks in advance for screwing my children. I loathe the GOP but detest the DNC more. To sit back because of what you think things should be is shameful. I would love to know where you ideological zealots were when the progressives began systematically dismantling this country years ago. This cesspool in which we live DID NOT happen overnight.

    And, I repeat — unless we WIN, nothing will change.

    1. Kim, it’s sad you even have to make this argument. I will not stay at home. Staying home is like voting FOR Hagan and FOR Harry Reid. Yes, Tillis stinks, but there IS a difference, even if’s only a small one. I won’t abandon those like Ted Cruz that are actually trying to do right.

    2. Oh, I certainly plan to vote… I’m very likely going to cast my ballot for the Libertarian candidate in the Senate race this year.

      I’ve honestly got no dog in that race now… I’m now a bystander, eating popcorn. Either way it goes, we’ll have a cronyist, special interest bought, amnesty supporting, big government person sitting in that office come November, same as we do now.

      Supporting the same “establishment” GOP only gets you… well, the same thing voting Democrat gets you. We’ve seen, only a few short years ago, what it looks like when they’re all in power… pretty much the same BS we get now. Why in the world would I support and advocate for that to anyone?

      Maybe next time 🙂

      1. ^ wisdom

        Continuing to support a GOP that doesn’t stand for your values is akin to staying with an abuser because they “might” stop one day if you just try to be nicer. That’s crazy talk. One day I can see ‘unaffiliated’ being an actual party in this state.

  8. Kim, we’re going to have a catastrophic collapse (and hopefully civil war) within the next 20 years anyway. Might as well not delay the inevitable.

  9. It’s sad to hear so many just giving up. The progressives didn’t destroy this country in a day or even a year. It took over 100 years! We have been trying for a FEW years to get back on track, and so many of you are willing to throw in the towel.

    Thanks to an education system controlled by the left and a corrupt media, the average Joe is uninformed or just plain stupid. The current USA finds a huge similarity in Rome…right before the collapse of that Republic. Most people are busy eating cake (for free) and being entertained by the circus. Heck, a few people couldn’t even figure out where to go vote and knew almost nothing about the candidates. And they know NOTHING about the Constitution.

    I know there is something very wrong when I am able to (hopefully) change some people’s mind. A few will actually listen. However, it’s very sad to see that people are so uninformed that their mind can be changed. No one would have changed mine because I did my own due diligence.

    Facts aren’t important to so many, and they will pull the D or the R because my daddy did that. Is it any wonder that our Republic is dead?

    1. You’re right. Our Republic is in shambles. You’re also right about giving up; that’s the surest way to lose in anything. If liberty isn’t worth fighting for, what is?

    2. The phrase “giving up” struck me as odd…. I certainly am not “giving up” anything…. but I think there is a big difference between “giving up”…. versus realizing that the “establishment” GOP is not a vehicle capable or interested in promoting and advancing those ideals I think are truly important.

      I’d say, both parties have increasingly made it very evident that they arent interested in any of that.

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