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Tea Party pot has gone cold with Americans

By DOUG THOMPSON
May 16, 2011

Poll after poll shows the American public fed up with the tea party and its phony claims as a grassroots movement.

Support for the party sits at 30 percent or lower and those who see the party in an unfavorable light often top 60 percent.

The polls offer little hope for the spate of Republican candidates who see the tea party as crucial to their election chances, including twice-failed Presidential candidate Ron Paul, the Texas Congressman who is often incorrectly cited as the “father of the tea party movement.”

The polls suggest that anyone who is identified as close to the tea party movement cannot be elected on a national scale.

An AP-Gfk survey taken May 5-6 shows tea party support nationwide at 30 percent while 63 percent describe themselves as non-supporters.

An NBC News Poll by Democratic pollster Peter Hart and Republican Bill McInturff add more doom and gloom for the tea baggers: Only 26 percent consider themselves supporters while 62 percent said “no” when asked if they supported the movement.  The poll was conducted May 5-7.

Other polls confirm the bad news for the tea baggers.  A USA Today/Gallup Poll taken April 20-23 had 30 percent support for the party.  A CBS News/New York Times survey from April 15-20 puts national support for the tea party at 24 percent while 66 percent said they didn’t support.

What happened? Writes Joshua Green in The Atlantic:

(The Tea Party) appears to have reached the limit of its influence in Washington. Here, where it counts most, the Tea Party is looking like a spent force.

There are a number of reasons for this. The outsized political personalities most closely associated with the movement have started to fade. Glenn Beck is waning. Sarah Palin’s presidential hopes are passing into rapid eclipse. Even Representative Michele Bachmann of Minnesota — founder of the congressional Tea Party caucus, heir to Palin, reliably batty provocateur, and once-proud supporter of the Ryan budget plan — has begun cautiously backing away.

She is doing so for the same reason as everybody else. The Tea Party message, so seductive in the abstract, can be deadly in its particulars to any politician seeking a broader appeal. As that doctrine is put into practice, even prospectively, voters are beginning to balk.

During the spring recess, for example, many Republicans went home to find angry constituents alarmed that they might lose their government benefits. In a special congressional election in two weeks in a conservative district in upstate New York, momentum appears to have swung to the Democratic challenger, who has mercilessly attacked the Republican incumbent for supporting the Ryan plan. A recent USA Today/Gallup poll shows that Americans’ views of the Tea Party are growing more negative, with 47 percent unfavorable and just 33 percent positive. No wonder Republicans in Washington are having second thoughts.

Bottom line: Turn off the stove. The tea pot has boiled over and even the steam is gone.

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8 Responses to Tea Party pot has gone cold with Americans

  1. logtroll

    May 16, 2011 at 9:18 am

    This squares with our local taxedenoughalready partiers, many of whom are retired with their hungry lips on one or more government teats. Why they didn’t know that they were proceeding to cut themselves off is a testament to their (lack of) intelligence.

    Not that there isn’t merit to the notion that some cutting needs to be done, I guess they just didn’t think that they would be included in them who will need bandages.

  2. frank verismo

    May 16, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    “Support for the party sits at 30 percent or lower’

    With Congress recently hitting an all-time-low of 14 percent they’d weep with joy to have such heady approval ratings.

    “Glenn Beck is waning. Sarah Palin’s presidential hopes are passing into rapid eclipse.”

    Good riddance to transparently opportunistic fakes. May their attempts to hijack the movement end in the most thorough and deserved ignominy.

    • woody188

      May 16, 2011 at 3:18 pm

      Nice one frank. Many still don’t know that the tea party is made up of local groups with no national leadership. It was designed this way on purpose to prevent someone like Palin or big tent Republicans from co-opting the movement. But they didn’t count on the corporate media working against them to put the likes of Palin et al in the spotlight as their leaders. Then they associated the attack on government employees/benefits with so called “tea party darlings.” Now they are proclaiming the biggest threat to their duopoly dead, all thanks to their sycophant ditto-head media.

      At least Doug was right about one thing, Ron Paul did not start the tea party.

      • woody188

        May 16, 2011 at 4:12 pm

        “If those in charge of our society — politicians, corporate executives, and owners of press and television — can dominate our ideas, they will be secure in their power. They will not need soldiers patrolling the streets. We will control ourselves.” — Howard Zinn

  3. Sandune

    May 16, 2011 at 1:28 pm

    The Republican National Committee has managed to change so much of the agenda that not only the voters are running away but any new candidates from trying for the leadership. Governor Huckabee said yesterday that he is not an angry Republican Conservative and would not fit in that classification.

    I warned the RNC years ago to stay true to the agenda of individual freedoms. Apparently the GOP does not understand what that is. My problem is that I do not trust the Conservative Tea Party members. They either deliberately refuse to touch on the problems in America or they simply do not recognize we have any. It has been years since a decent debate on how much government do we want or need and it is washed away by how much law enforcement do we want in our personal lives.

    This morning the Conservatives are blaming Obama for opening the gates to flood Louisiana The way this is worded sounds like a declaration of war against the White House. The man who posted this had been the subject of one of my searches during these disasters. He had been washed out and had not picked up his calls or emails for several months. I knew he had a drinking problem so I left messages around his neighborhood. My backing with the Red Cross has allowed me to locate many people who may have a drug or alcohol problem and I need to find them. He lost nothing and his home had no more than 3 inches of water. But he is paranoid about everything and I assume guilty of much more than simply drinking too much.

    So he starts another tirade about our President deliberately flooding the basin. This story is just the kind of thing that will trash another of Obama’s actions. This is the only focus the Conservatives have at this time.

    As the mother of 3 grownup teenagers, this kind of fight should have been eliminated during the Junior High School years. My girls all ran for elections but sadly my son was chasing girls. Not everyone has a desire to win an election, My son did find a lovely sweet girl from Dublin! My girls married rich Jews. This is a perfect story.

    May I assume that there is no Republican available to run for the White House next year? I’m good with that as we could do much, much worse than President Obama. Let the religious right go dormant until they come up with a party for the people. I’m on every body’s mailing list and I check in here a couple of times a day depending on what is being done to my home. I got my voter’s registration card in the mail and I managed to register as a Democrat. The world did not come to an end.

    I’m hoping that CHB Reader Rant can do some debates about when and how we bring our troops home. It seems that some mailings to our Congress Critters might help.

    • woody188

      May 16, 2011 at 3:25 pm

      Three inches of water can still ruin a home and many items within, not to mention the loss of crops and livelihood for that year.. No, it’s not a lot via comparison, but it is still flooded and not habitable. They may never get rid of all the mold and that musty smell even after the mud and water is gone. Were I in this position I would be out for blood as well. Very few can point to something so specific and say the President’s decision negatively impacted my life directly and disastrously.

  4. Sandune

    May 17, 2011 at 9:42 am

    For as long as I can remember there has been a debate about what should be built and what should be protected along the Mississippi River. Again it will take a government law to tell the people long the river whether they should build anything.

    The dam was built with drainage facilities to protect much of the development found in the major cities downstream. What upset me is that it will be used against the White House for using the drains. It is all based on an angry Republican group who will use anything to degrade our President.

    Woody I have been a Red Cross member for over 20 years and I know what water can do to a building. Is our government in a position to buy up all the land in the spill basin?

    I am personally sick of the anger being expressed by so many members of the GOP. This has been my party since 1953 and I do not recognize the need to destroy an elected official. I did not like what they did to Clinton but when this same party backed the war in Iraq I came unglued. These people verge on the insane with their visions of President Obama in the center of his coven working on the destruction of America, I used to try to explain that once a Republican was in the White House, the neocons would shut up and get back to legal stuff. That branch of the GOP is gone. The crazies have used terrorism as threats against our President. The problem is that this segment of the GOP is growing faster than reality can settle in. I see the same paranoia that kept America in wars in Korea and Vietnam.

    What kind of people use racism and bigotry, not to mention homophobia to destroy America? The result is an anger so deep that we may never get over this last election and the battle coming for the next one.

    Out for blood? Yeah, that sound right…..

  5. Almandine

    May 17, 2011 at 3:07 pm

    And then there’s the Anti-Tea-Party… yeah, all those in the American progressive mainstream, which absorbs any and all who have no inner compass.

    http://www.alt-market.com/articles/127-how-to-identify-members-of-the-collectivist-fringe