The Tea Party Movement: Problematic For Republicans

>> Friday, May 21, 2010

"Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." ~ George Santayana

I am beginning to think this National Tea party movement may end up doing serious damage to the Republican Party's efforts to unseat Obama in the Presidential election of 2012. In the aftermath of recent primary victories by "Tea Party" candidates across the nation, to me, it is troubling that some of these candidates are actively campaigning more vigorously against Republicans than Democrats.

The Tea parties were a great idea in the beginning, when Americans across the country began to realize how dangerous the Obama administration's policies are. They served as an resounding wake-up call to those who were in the middle of the road and still unconvinced that electing Obama was a colossal mistake.

The Tea Party movement served it's purpose at the time.

Now, it's time to get back to the business of throwing the Liberal Democrats out of office. It will take a concerted effort by Republicans to accomplish that goal. But, sadly, we cannot do that with a "Tea Party".

I sense a split in the Republican party, and that isn't a good thing.

Third party candidates, for whatever reason, never win.

All they manage to do is insure a victory for the party that didn't split.

In 1912, Former Republican President Theodore Roosevelt attempted to wrest the Republican nomination from William Howard Taft* , and when he failed, he launched the Bull Moose Party. In the election, Roosevelt became the only third party candidate to come in second place, beating Taft but losing to Woodrow Wilson, who, many feel, was among the worst Presidents in our history.

Democratic Alabama Governor George Wallace ran for President as an independent in 1972, effectively splitting the Democrat vote between himself and George McGovern. If you remember, Democrat George McGovern was defeated by Republican Richard Nixon as a result.

Republican John B. Anderson ran for President as an Independent in 1980 against President Jimmy Carter and Republican Ronald Reagan. Although Anderson was a Republican, he was endorsed by many Liberal Democrats, which probably split the vote among Democrats, many of whom obviously felt that Jimmy Carter was an atrocious President, but could not bring themselves to vote for a Conservative Republican.

Likely, many Democrat voters felt that a Liberal Republican was preferable to a Conservative Republican, and Conservatives owe them a debt of gratitude for that, since Conservative Republicans hold Ronald Reagan up as the paradigm of Conservatism to this day.

In 1992, George H.W. Bush probably would have retained the Presidency had it not been for a Republican-turned-independent candidate, H. Ross Perot, who successfully pulled enough Republican voters away from Bush to insure Clinton a victory despite his numerous scandalous distractions (Gennifer Flowers, etc).

If, in 2012, the choice of Conservative candidates for President is split between the Republican party and the Tea Party, Obama will win the Presidency again.

This is something that Conservatives cannot allow.

Even a RINO President is preferable to a Marxist President.

If a Tea Party candidate is selected to run for President, he must be selected to run by the Republican National Convention, and not as an independent third party.

*Taft was as big as two men, so it was fortunate that he had two names, both William and Howard.


Dan Trabue May 21, 2010 at 2:04 PM  

He who lives by the noisy, abrasive discontents, dies by the noisy, abrasive discontents?

Dan Trabue May 21, 2010 at 2:10 PM  

"In a fit of enthusiastic madness I created a rational creature and was bound towards him to assure, as far as was in my power, his happiness and well-being . . .

I refused, and I did right in refusing, to create a companion for the first creature. He showed unparalleled malignity and selfishness in evil; he destroyed my friends . . . Miserable himself that he may render no other wretched, he ought to die.

The task of his destruction was mine, but I have failed."

~Victor Frankenstein

Jim May 21, 2010 at 2:37 PM  

Cross-posted at "Casting Pearls:

In 1992, with the majority of the country feeling betrayed by Democratic President Bill Clinton and seeking a change, George H.W. Bush probably would have won the Presidency handily had it not been for a Republican-turned-independent candidate, H. Ross Perot, who successfully pulled enough Republican voters away from Bush to insure Clinton a second term despite his numerous scandalous distractions.

Better read that paragraph again and rethink or consult your history books. (or just stop smoking dope ;-) )

I fully supported Jimmy Carter over Ronald Reagan. However, by the time I got to the polling place, the TV was on and it was already a forgone conclusion that Reagan (having conspired with Iran to hold the American hostages) was going to win. So I voted for Anderson so he could get federal campaign money to cover some of his campaign debt.

I think people are beginning to see that the "Tea Party" people are just mad. They're really not FOR anything real; just mad. And they don't realize that people like Dick Armey are using them for their own financial purposes. So they glom onto somebody like Rand Paul because he's anti-government until they find out what "anti-government" means in reality instead of theory.

Mark May 21, 2010 at 8:38 PM  

Jim, you're right. I got that wrong, so, I fixed it. It doesn't change the point, however. The Republican vote was split between Bush and Perot, and that created a victory for Bill Clinton.

Marshall Art May 21, 2010 at 9:27 PM  

Mark, and others,

I don't think you've got it exactly right about the Tea Party. From the start, my impression, and I believe this is accurate, is that the party consisted of people who were fed up. They were fed up with Bush's handling of the economy, and especially the spending of the Repub majority before 2006, and with Obama's goofiness taking it to an incredibly goofier level, they could take no more and began their protests. Yeah, they are mostly conservatives, but they aren't looking for third party candidates, but solid conservative candidates. That may mean opposing weak Republicans, but who shouldn't be doing that?

Mark May 21, 2010 at 11:11 PM  

Art, I fully agree that the tea parties started with people on both sides of the aisle who were fed up with the outrageous tax and spend policies of both the Bush and Obama administrations.

My point is, it appears the tea partiers are calling for an independent Conservative party candidate to be an alternative to traditional Republican and Democrat "politics as usual" candidates.

It's a nice dream, but if it happens, I fear it will only insure an Obama victory in 2012. Like it or not, we need to keep the party together, even if it means nominating a "moderate" Republican for President.

Ideally, the best candidate would be the most Conservative candidate, and indeed, we need to be working towards that goal. But, if we can't accomplish that task, we must support the candidate the Republican party nominates.

Conservative Republicans tried Protest voting in the last election and we got Obama. Hopefully, we've learned something from that.

Jim May 21, 2010 at 11:27 PM  

The Republican vote was split between Bush and Perot, and that created a victory for Bill Clinton.

No argument there. And I'll never forgive Ralph Nader for giving us George W. Bush.

Marshall Art May 22, 2010 at 10:42 AM  

Screw Ralph Nader. I'll never forgive people like you for giving us Obama.

Marshall Art May 22, 2010 at 10:46 AM  


I agree we need to stay within the two party system to get anything of substance done. I just don't think that there's a real push for a third party by the Tea Party people. Those upset with certain Republican candidates are only disgusted that they are not conservative enough. We have some in my state pissed about Mark Kirk. But his sorry as won the primary so we're stuck with him as far as I'm concerned. Here in the People's Republic of Illinois, where Chicago Mayor Richie Daley is preparing for the possibility that the Supremes will overturn his fascist disarm-the-law-abiding gun laws, to get enough support for a real conservative is unlikely.

Bubba,  May 22, 2010 at 10:59 AM  

Mark, I respectfully disagree.

A RINO would not seek to repeal and replace Obama's policies: he would instead try to reform the status quo only at the edges and thus have the GOP adopt the larger underlying assumptions.

The United States would then join the U.K. in having both major political parties arguing over who can better manage the Leviathan state, and no major force arguing for its dismantling.

If a car is heading for a cliff, it's good to slow it down, but not at the cost of locking the steering wheel, where disaster is delayed but not averted, and where averting disaster becomes that much more difficult.

"Conservative Republicans tried Protest voting in the last election and we got Obama. Hopefully, we've learned something from that."

The more important hope is that the GOP has learned that they need to promote a genuine alternative to Progressivism rather than their own version of it.

If they haven't learned that, then they've outlived their usefulness. It's extremely important to vote out the first president who appears to actively loathe both this country's founding principles and even the country itself: it's important, but it's not enough.

We have to replace the person AND repeal his policies, and because a RINO won't do that, he would make the policies harder to replace by creating a bipartisan consensus about their existence as the status quo.

ELAshley May 22, 2010 at 1:15 PM  


I don't think you need fear the Tea Party forming or supporting a third party candidate this time around. The movement is not populated by fools-- we know what's at stake, and we know what support of a third party candidate would do. If control cannot be wrested from Democrat hands this fall, this country may not survive, and it won't matter what the Tea Party Movement does (of which, btw, I am a member). We have this one chance to pull the nation back from the precipice. And even if we win, there's still no guarantee we can save it. It may already be too late.

Some of you boneheads will laugh, or blow it off as nutty-- and so what? --but we could be on the verge of a second American civil war. It doesn't look pretty out there. If violence breaks out in this nation over Obama's radicalism, he may likely impose martial law (go ahead fools, laugh), and under those conditions he can pretty much do as he pleases. I can't think of anything more dangerous than a man who supports and defends Muslims more than he does the Constitution OR his supposed (non-existent, actually) Christian faith.

Obama is the most dangerous man who ever sat in the White House. God help him... God help us all.

Bloviating Zeppelin May 24, 2010 at 2:06 PM  

Third parties do in fact sap votes from various lines. Unless you have other evidence, I am not aware of a massive push for a third party.


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