Rasmussen: Tea party tops GOP on generic Congressional ballot

posted at 9:30 am on December 7, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Rasmussen has a warning shot across the bow of Republicans who may be feeling smug about the recent lead taken by the GOP in the generic Congressional ballot.  Most people presumed that the sudden reversal had more to do with Democrats than Republicans.  However, when offered a chance at a third party comprised of Tea Party protesters, Republicans fare worse than the alternative — and Democrats win:

Running under the Tea Party brand may be better in congressional races than being a Republican.

In a three-way Generic Ballot test, the latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds Democrats attracting 36% of the vote. The Tea Party candidate picks up 23%, and Republicans finish third at 18%. Another 22% are undecided.

Among voters not affiliated with either major party, the Tea Party comes out on top. Thirty-three percent (33%) prefer the Tea Party candidate, and 30% are undecided. Twenty-five percent (25%) would vote for a Democrat, and just 12% prefer the GOP.

Among Republican voters, 39% say they’d vote for the GOP candidate, but 33% favor the Tea Party option.

Fortunately, there is no such thing as a Tea Party, er, Party, which Rasmussen asked respondents to assume when answering this survey.  It would take too long to form such a party, and as the results above show, it would be a self-defeating process, especially in 2010.  A split on the Right would produce another Democratic victory at a moment when Congress desperately needs a course correction from its radical, statist path.

The news here is not good at all for Republicans, however.  Even registered GOP voters split 39/33 on whether to vote for a generic candidate from their own party.  This reflects the damage done to the GOP during 2001-6, when voters thought they were electing small-government, fiscal-restraint politicians, and wound up instead with porkers who spent hand over fist.  Democrats don’t have that same kind of problem; they have 71% of their voters locked in to the party, with only 7% favoring the Tea Party brand.  Independents, as noted above, are even less enamored of the GOP, favoring the Tea Party 33/12, with 25% going Democrat.

The key in 2010 is to have the GOP represent the Tea Party brand, and the only way to do that is to firmly insist on fiscal restrain and reduction of government as the platform for the election.  The Right needs to put aside all of its usual hobby horses and focus on the message from the Tea Party movement.  If they need an excuse, call it a moment of national crisis as the Democrats attempt a takeover of the health-care and energy industries.  The next election has to be fought on those narrow terms in order to bring the GOP into line with the tea-party momentum and unite against what is clearly a fringe progressive movement to massively expand an already-broke government.

If the Republican Party can do that, these generic numbers will become formidable.  If not, expect another cycle of loss and frustration.

Update: Tom Maguire gets the zinger of the day: “Tea baggers on top in a three way.”


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Ross Perot and the GOP lost…. but the PHILSOPHY won…

Romeo13 on December 7, 2009 at 10:16 AM

true Clinton spent less that Bush

unseen on December 7, 2009 at 10:19 AM

I would too. but the prospects are not good at this point in time

unseen on December 7, 2009 at 10:14 AM

The Dark Side is quicker; more seductive.

- The Cat

P.S. Local Tea Parties need to get together NOW and start grooming candidates for Republican Primaries (Also get one into Democrat Primaries for good measure). Start meeting with Incumbents that are fixable so as to get your voice heard on the floor of the House and Senate.

Actually getting a few people into both the GOP and Dem primaries it may screw things up so badly that that they’d have to rethink the way elections and primaries are ran. Maybe to the point of getting that 1st 2nd 3rd choice thing working.

MirCat on December 7, 2009 at 10:20 AM

Yeah… you see, I read the Ross Perot saga as a WIN for Fiscal Conservatism, even though the GOP lost.

Face it… his “threat” to the two party status quo brought BOTH partys in line and balanced the budget… and notice that as soon as the threat was gone, BOTH partys went back to spending….

Ross Perot and the GOP lost…. but the PHILSOPHY won…

Romeo13 on December 7, 2009 at 10:16 AM

…and eight years of Slick Willy set the stage for 9/11. Between his failure to deal with Sadam and several terror incidents around the world, and his “Peace Dividend” of stripping the military, he made 9/11 possible.

Pardon me for not throwing Ross a parade. The little wench only ran to punish 41.

Laura in Maryland on December 7, 2009 at 10:23 AM

Spirit of 1776 on December 7, 2009 at 10:18 AM

i see your point. i also do not think the consitution is flawed simple that it has been proven to be unenforceable when one party controls the three branches. The statists now control the entire gov and have for years. They also control the other firebreaks that the founders placed on gov. Namely the media and the education of voters. Therfore we must have a new firebreak because the old ones no longer work. Term limits is one idea but is not the only one. You idea of voting them out has with a 96% incumbantacy rate been shown not to work.

unseen on December 7, 2009 at 10:25 AM

Note to the Republican party: take note and change now, or cease to exist.

James Moriarty on December 7, 2009 at 10:26 AM

Sarah Palin needs to NOT run for President.

I think she would be far more beneficial if she replaced Michael Steele.

uknowmorethanme on December 7, 2009 at 9:52 AM

Like I said, this poll will scare the daylights out of the Whigs, who, true to their history, will get the lesson exactly backwards.

james23 on December 7, 2009 at 10:26 AM

You idea of voting them out has with a 96% incumbantacy rate been shown not to work.

unseen on December 7, 2009 at 10:25 AM

It’s not “my” idea. It’s the idea that a Republic can work. That people can govern themselves. I’m going down with that ship if I have to.

Spirit of 1776 on December 7, 2009 at 10:26 AM

There power does not come from serving many terms. Their power comes from their ability to tax on one side and dole it out on the other. Tighten those up.

Reduce the entire tax code to a simple formula that is equal for all WITH NO LOOPHOLES.

Require that all spending bills express all spending as the specific purpose of the bill. NO EARMARKS… EVER.

CC

CapedConservative on December 7, 2009 at 10:29 AM

Tea Party existence or not, an American values his/her own vote, and a good portion of these Ts will sit out rather than vote for some lame-o R. They shouldn’t, no, but they will. Be optimistic and say only 25 percent is lost. Split the Undecideds and without even factoring in ten percent vote fraud (and rising) on the D side – for which polls, should but do not adjust – and the Rs lose. At least be prepared for no take-back-the-house-majority-in-2010. Can the Rs get schooled soon enough? Doubtful. This Independent was an R for a few years there, did some volunteer work…enough to be thoroughly NOT impressed.

curved space on December 7, 2009 at 10:32 AM

This poll demonstrates the validity of the Fire Fifty strategy to take the House away from Pelosi in 2010. Conservatives should run as Republicans against Blue Dogs, with no Tea Party candidate, and run as Tea Party Independents, with no Republican candidate, against the “mushy middle”. These are ~80 Democrats, rural and suburban, mostly Midwest through Northeast, in non-gerrymandered districts where a Tea Party Independent can win but where Republicans have demonstrated they can not.

motionview on December 7, 2009 at 10:33 AM

Nobody I know is interested in a 3rd party.

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 10:35 AM

My teaparty wasn’t partisan and wasn’t about elections. It was about issues and policies.

That’s why it attracted a broad spectrum. Nobody was talking 3rd party politics at all. We found common ground based upon principles.

I wish the politicians and the pollsters would stay out of it, frankly.

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 10:37 AM

First if Ross Perot somehow becomes the perceived head of Tea Party supporting candidates that will damage the brand.

Second, there are already some GOP candidates trying to co op the Tea Party label, only to be determined that they are not fiscal or any other kind of conservative. They are simply RINO’s in search of a new skin.

Third, voters have got to get plugged in and really check out who is running for office in their area. Democrats can ignore this advice, I am talking about people who have a brain and want to make an informed decision that is based on more then having a (D) after their name. You 35 percenters continue your life of ignorant bliss and let the 65% of adults in this country try to get it straightened out.

Just A Grunt on December 7, 2009 at 10:37 AM

That’s kind of hard for me to believe that the Democrats would be the beneficiaries of the tea party vote. Aren’t the dems the ones that have the marxists? The republicans aren’t. Tea partiers are some of the most informed people I’ve ever met so no matter what choice they make for an election, I know it will be the correct one.

Tea Party shirts: http://www.eyeconshirts.com

Anastas on December 7, 2009 at 10:39 AM

Poor Rush isn’t going to be happy.

pifactorial on December 7, 2009 at 9:38 AM

Are you kidding. Democrats in power is Rush’s goal. More $$$$$ that way.

Decider on December 7, 2009 at 10:39 AM

It’s not “my” idea. It’s the idea that a Republic can work. That people can govern themselves. I’m going down with that ship if I have to.

Spirit of 1776 on December 7, 2009 at 10:26 AM

No the Republic can work and people can govern themselves still. I am simply stating that for the people to govern themselves more effectivly they need additional tools and those that want to RULE us need less tools. More limitation on power is never a bad thing. The more limitation on power among the powerful means more freedom among the rest. Power is one thing that is a zero sum game unlike the economy, or wealth creation.

unseen on December 7, 2009 at 10:42 AM

The 3rd party debate is a straw man.

This poll is not about the viability of a 3rd party. It is about who ought to be leading the 2nd party, the opposition. And on that Q, the results look clear to me: common sense conservatives.

james23 on December 7, 2009 at 10:42 AM

My teaparty wasn’t partisan and wasn’t about elections. It was about issues and policies.

That’s why it attracted a broad spectrum. Nobody was talking 3rd party politics at all. We found common ground based upon principles.

I wish the politicians and the pollsters would stay out of it, frankly.

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 10:37 AM

The tea bag movement is Republican-ONLY. It is made up of people who are upset we have a democracy and they lost an election.

It it was non partisan it would have started during the Bush era. The tea baggers hate Obama not government. They are fearful of a Black President.

The spin stops here!

Decider on December 7, 2009 at 10:44 AM

Well… will Repubs support a Conservative who is NOT a Republican? or is Party loyalty more important than Philosophy?

Romeo13 asks the relevant question. The RNC should have supported Scozzafava over Hoffman. They put Party loyalty over political principles.

motionview on December 7, 2009 at 10:45 AM

Decider on December 7, 2009 at 10:44 AM

Ah, the Racist Troll appears…. how amusing…

Romeo13 on December 7, 2009 at 10:47 AM

It it was non partisan it would have started during the Bush era. The tea baggers hate Obama not government. They are fearful of a Black President.
The spin stops here!
Decider on December 7, 2009 at 10:44 AM

Why, Ms. Garafalo. We’re honored to have you here at Hot Air.

kingsjester on December 7, 2009 at 10:48 AM

The tea bag movement is Republican-ONLY. It is made up of people who are upset we have a democracy and they lost an election.

It it was non partisan it would have started during the Bush era. The tea baggers hate Obama not government. They are fearful of a Black President.

The spin stops here!

Decider on December 7, 2009 at 10:44 AM

I’m so fed up with liberals like you who claim to be against stereotyping people, yet do it all the time to those of us who oppose your agenda on ideological grounds. There were plenty of us, especially libertarians, myself included who complained during the Bush years. You and your ilk just weren’t listening.

I personally spoke to people of all races, ethnicities, and political parties, including union members on 9/12. You can continue to put your hands over your ears and sing la la la la la, though. F-ing idiot.

Firefly_76 on December 7, 2009 at 10:49 AM

just more confirmation that rodeo clown morons like beck who advocate 3rd parties are delusional idiots

combine the 2 and what do you have – VICTORY OVER THE DUMOCRATS.

conservatives need to TAKE back the gop, not run against them, which would only lead to liberal domination for decades

beck is doing more harm than good

sidewinder22 on December 7, 2009 at 10:49 AM

People are forgetting the Independent Voter….they are already trending Conservative going by the last races in New Jersey and Virginia.

Dr Evil on December 7, 2009 at 10:50 AM

It it was non partisan it would have started during the Bush era. The tea baggers hate Obama not government. They are fearful of a Black President.

The spin stops here!

That is such baloney. Our teaparties in CA were definitely non-partisan. We were, honestly, a great deal more focused on state issues. They arose out of a plan to tax the dickens out of us here.

“Heads on a Stick” was a fun motif, and every single GOP representative and state senator was on a stick, trust me.

You don’t know what you’re talking about.

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 10:52 AM

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 10:52 AM

I am an Independent who leans Libertarian I go to tea parties.

Dr Evil on December 7, 2009 at 10:54 AM

CapedConservative on December 7, 2009 at 10:29 AM

Good point… but IMO the real problem is a systemic one. The only arbiter of Federal Power, is the Federal Government.

Origionaly States had much more power is the Fed got out of whack… but now ONLY the Federal Government can sue itself when it takes too much power, or does not follow the Constitution.

Case in point, Birthers and the Natural Born citizen clause… most cases were thrown out because the Courts ruled that Citizens don’t have the Standing to ask the question… and one court went so far as to say that ONLY the Congress could ask that question…

So, in essence, only the Federal Government has the right to ask if the Federal Government is following the Constitution????

(don’t want to debate the question itself, but its whacked that no one has the right to even ask it…)

Romeo13 on December 7, 2009 at 10:54 AM

The Republicans need to listen to what the Tea Partiers are saying and bring their ideas into the GOP platform. If, in a three-way race, “Tea Party” gets 23% and Republicans get 18%, if the Republicans can embrace the Tea Party movement that makes 41-36 for the Republicans, with 23% undecided–which way would they vote, or would they not vote?

We don’t need a Tea Party Party, which like Ross Perot’s Reform Party, split the conservative vote in 1992 and 1996 and gave us 8 years of Bill Clinton.

Like Reagan did, Republican leaders need to re-shape the GOP platform to address the concerns of the Tea Partiers–lower taxes, cut spending, free-market solutions, energy development, and strong national defense. Any Republican leader that can energize the Tea Partiers around his/her ideas can cruise into the White House in 2012. Who will pick up Reagan’s torch?

Steve Z on December 7, 2009 at 10:56 AM

just more confirmation that rodeo clown morons like beck who advocate 3rd parties are delusional idiots

sidewinder22 on December 7, 2009 at 10:49 AM

Ahhh… the GOP speaks… and as usual, are sooooo persuasive…

It does your “group” soooo much good to call those you are trying to convince “delusional idiots”.

Romeo13 on December 7, 2009 at 10:57 AM

I don’t think this means everyone wants a third party candidate. I think this is a message to Republicans to Stop Spending! When a real election takes place I would hope that all those who are considered “tea Partiers” would vote for the Republican. The alternative is 4 more years of Obama and I don’t think any Conservative, moderate or pure, would let that happen.

sandee on December 7, 2009 at 10:57 AM

Unless the Democrats can pull a majority in a 3-way race, they don’t “beat” anyone. Runoffs mean Democrat losses.

spmat on December 7, 2009 at 10:57 AM

Tea parties don’t need to be on the national radar, in my opinion.

I think the local issues are the appropriate focus. The national “connection” should be kept very simple and relate to policy issues, etc., not to elections.

None of us can know one another’s state issues. Let local politics thrive!

When someone comes along and usurps these populist movements, it never fails to end up being used in a way that doesn’t benefit real people.

I say: Keep them out!

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 10:58 AM

The tea bag movement is Republican-ONLY. It is made up of people who are upset we have a democracy and they lost an election.

Decider on December 7, 2009 at 10:44 AM

So you rats lose 41-36 and this makes you happy. Brilliant deduction, Holmes.

LibTired on December 7, 2009 at 10:59 AM

Decider on December 7, 2009 at 10:44 AM

Google “Lloyd Marcus” or the “Tea Party Anthem” sometime.

cs89 on December 7, 2009 at 10:59 AM

I would hope that all those who are considered “tea Partiers” would vote for the Republican. The alternative is 4 more years of Obama and I don’t think any Conservative, moderate or pure, would let that happen.

sandee on December 7, 2009 at 10:57 AM

Problem is that the Repubs have used that exact tactic for many years now… and (speaking for myself) it got us to a point where Fiscal Cons / libertarian (ie freedom) concerns were not only on the back burner, but in some cases activly worked against by the GOP (McCain Feingold?, No child Left?).

The arguement of voting for the lesser of two evils, has only brought us more evil…

Romeo13 on December 7, 2009 at 11:02 AM

There is no need for a third party, just a need to get more conservative candidates into Republican politics. It will be a sort of rage against the machine and all of this talk about purity tests and such is all just background noise.

Start with tiny steps and for me that means anybody who will tell me that the federal government is not going to come riding into town on it’s white horse to save the day. Get the federal governemnt out of my life. In other words I would vote for somebody who goes to Washington and promises to just sit on his hands. Voting only on those budget items absolutely necessary to keep the country running, like defense and annual budgets, with NO earmarks.

Is that too much to ask for?

Just A Grunt on December 7, 2009 at 11:02 AM

The tea baggers hate Obama not government. They are fearful of a Black President. The spin stops starts here!

Decider on December 7, 2009 at 10:44 AM

Nice try moron kos-kiddie. The tea-parties are a grassroots movement of ALL responsible taxpayers who have had enough of unfunded spending practices by ALL polititians—Republicans and Democrats. They do not fear the color of the man’s skin, they fear his policies and the policies of this liberal democrat party that are fundamentally leading this nation into bankruptcy.

Rovin on December 7, 2009 at 11:03 AM

Well voting for the “lesser of two evils” last time would have been a lot better than not voting as some did. McCain is far from my favorite candidate, but he sure as heck would have been a lot better than what we have. The “real” Republicans who stayed home last time because he wasn’t “Conservative” enough should be thinking twice about doing that this time around. In case you are wondering I am an ultra-Conservative and I voted for McCain because off Sarah.

sandee on December 7, 2009 at 11:07 AM

I say: Keep them out!

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 10:58 AM

JAJAJAJA EH Comrade! Glorious Revolution Forever! Silence the dissenters! They aren’t even humans after all!

daesleeper on December 7, 2009 at 11:08 AM

PIMF, because of Sarah

sandee on December 7, 2009 at 11:08 AM

Great analysis Ed. The best way for the Republicans to capture the energy of the Tea Party movement is to nominate the one candidate who believes in their principles….Sarah Palin. If they nominate another plastic establishment type candidate like Romney, the Democrat Party will win again.

DB9 on December 7, 2009 at 11:11 AM

I think the tea party direction right now is a bit of a mistake. National elections aren’t really national. They are local.

Look at VA. McDonnell did NOT run on that kind of platform, and he not only won but pulled along a huge number of GOP downticket with him. That is significant. It doesn’t do anyone any good to have 1 winner and then end up with a ton of opposition. They can’t move out of the box.

That’s another way to fail, in my opinion. Focus on national positions and miss the real change potential, which is state and even more local political venues.

I personally won’t participate any longer in making everything about one race. That’s what I think is wrong with our country today.

It’s a form of president worship. It’s indulgent, too.

Real change must be local, it takes participation in an ongoing way, and it takes commitment. It’s not about Sarah or Obama, even.

Who is president rarely changes people’s lives in any significant way, other than war. Who is running your state policies?

Oh boy, they matter.

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 11:13 AM

JAJAJAJA EH Comrade! Glorious Revolution Forever! Silence the dissenters! They aren’t even humans after all!

daesleeper on December 7, 2009 at 11:08 AM

You obviously don’t know what I’m talking about. LOL*

Whatever.

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 11:13 AM

The 3rd party debate is a straw man. This poll is not about the viability of a 3rd party. It is about who ought to be leading the 2nd party, the opposition. And on that Q, the results look clear to me: common sense conservatives.
james23 on December 7, 2009 at 10:42 AM

Exactly. RINO’s are trying to claim that the only possible solution to the Republican Party’s electoral problem is that more voters need to start doing what their “representatives” tell them to.

And it never occurs to them, even for a second, to imagine that maybe – for the first time in decades – the Republican Party should start listening to the voters for once.

…with 23% undecided–which way would they vote, or would they not vote?
Steve Z on December 7, 2009 at 10:56 AM

We know perfectly well what the Independent numbers look like for Obama. Just ask yourself: how many of them hate his guts because they were shocked to find out he was so gosh-darned conservative?

logis on December 7, 2009 at 11:14 AM

And it YOU don’t get with it and join the team, Ed Morrisey, it will be YOUR FAULT when the Democrats rule for years to come.

Eyas on December 7, 2009 at 11:14 AM

This is when smart people do stpid things

For a pollster to judge a hypothetical and in essence stir up doubts and resentments without attempting to first measure – who exactly is even running the Tea Parties is even more astounding.

1st – most Tea Parties are and were and still will be basically – republican led. This is not really a shock since independents and libertarians have never ever organized nor attempted to make even a regional platform – all Rass did was judge two parties against a set of prinicples that have yet to see one vote in any legislature in the USA

2nd – Ed has confirmed here that he is not really interested in whats best for the country and that would be the return to a more conservative and family values Republican party but that he would shamelessly promote a fantasy poll and use it to again promote what the MSM is trying to do – undermine Republicans so they may keep their minority hold on power and take away the freedoms of the majority

Not that anyone is really even remotely surprised

EricPWJohnson on December 7, 2009 at 11:20 AM

Tyranny by the minority may hang around for quite some time. And we can expect stooge 3rd party candidates planted and supported by unpopular democrats like in the NJ governor race, unless conservatives follow Teddy Roosevelt’s selfish impulse and stupidly deliver elections to the left with their own 3rd party quests.

Mark30339 on December 7, 2009 at 11:24 AM

I realize everyone (DB9) is excited about 2012, but we need to focus on 2010. We can stop the hemoraging next year by taking the House away from the “Progressives” in 2010.

The Tea Parties are not about Obama, they are about the debt; our willingness to bear the debt, and our demand that it not be made worse.

motionview on December 7, 2009 at 11:24 AM

family values

Actually, my tea parties had none of that social/cultural agenda stuff.

Otherwise, I wouldn’t have attended.

We found common ground regarding state tax proposals. I don’t see much interest in the culture wars.

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 11:25 AM

We don’t need another party…. We just need to take control of our own. Reagan had a unique way of focusing like a laser on issues that everyday Americans believed in, such as limited govt., less taxes, jobs, and a strong national defense. Pretty simple stuff, really. I wonder when the next true great conservative leader will step forward and pull our country back from the downward spiral that Carter,errr…Obama has lead us down.

kriscoleman on December 7, 2009 at 11:26 AM

Hey Ann, have you joined Ed’s fan club on Facebook?

I think you have.

DarkCurrent on December 7, 2009 at 11:31 AM

No wonder, look at those Republicans voting against Obamacare; yet, instead of fighting this like a war, they sit up there is Washington D.C. and propose amendments. (in other words, they are playing little games right into the Dems hands) I am sickened.

mobydutch on December 7, 2009 at 11:40 AM

The tea bag movement is Republican-ONLY. It is made up of people who are upset we have a democracy and they lost an election.

It it was non partisan it would have started during the Bush era. The tea baggers hate Obama not government. They are fearful of a Black President.

The spin stops here!

Decider on December 7, 2009 at 10:44 AM

No, the douchbag stops here, on his way to DU, KOS, or other Obama teabagging sites. Bad Troll! Get in your cage!

MechEng5by5 on December 7, 2009 at 11:42 AM

Decider, if the anti-war morons were nonpartisan they would have an anti-war rally every month like they did during the Bush administration.

Speedwagon82 on December 7, 2009 at 11:43 AM

Palin will be unelectable in 2012 IMO, 2016 is a different story, which is why I suggest she heads the RNC to re-energize the base.

uknowmorethanme on December 7, 2009 at 9:59 AM

Huh?

Tell that two the thousands who are lining up sometimes a day in advance, and sleeping out in the cold, to meet her. Every single one of those want her to be POTUS.

She was just at Ft Hood. Raised a bunch of money for the victims of the terror attack. She donated her royalties from the sale of books there.

To a man, woman, and child, everyone was saying they just met the President.

Trust me, if she runs, she’s the next President. That’s a simple as that.

But right now we must concentrate on 2010. 2012 is a lifetime away.

Sarah will help here, as well.

BTW, Sarah is the Keynote Speaker at the first annual Tea Party Convention in Nashville, in February. Michelle Bachmann will be there as well.

If the Tea Party people get behind Sarah, and there is no reason to think they won’t, then it’s a done deal.

gary4205 on December 7, 2009 at 11:43 AM

That’s another way to fail, in my opinion. Focus on national positions and miss the real change potential, which is state and even more local political venues.

* * *

Real change must be local, it takes participation in an ongoing way, and it takes commitment. It’s not about Sarah or Obama, even.

Who is president rarely changes people’s lives in any significant way, other than war. Who is running your state policies?

Oh boy, they matter.

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 11:13 AM

I agree with you to the extent that you argue that change starts at the local level and that people need to get involved locally. Many of us, me included, need to get more involved locally.

But I disagree that there aren’t serious national issues, constitutional (and therefore necessarily national) in scope in play in every Congressional election, and many statehouse elections, in 2010.

And, I disagree that national/constitutional concerns should be put aside in favor of parochial factors when we vote and act in 2010. Supporting the guy or gal who brings home the bacon for our district, the constitution and the nation be damned, got us into this mess of national debt.

To paraphrase the old lefty bumper sticker, Think Constitutionally, Act Locally

james23 on December 7, 2009 at 11:49 AM

If not, expect another cycle of loss and frustration.

with the current leadership in the GOP congress, I’ll be expecting alot of frustration…

cmsinaz on December 7, 2009 at 12:03 PM

The key in 2010 is to have the GOP represent the Tea Party brand, and the only way to do that is to firmly insist on fiscal restrain and reduction of government as the platform for the election

If tea partiers are pissed about spending what are the republicans pledging to cut? If they are not willing to cut any spending they will need to raise revenues (taxes) to cover the defecit. If the republican party is incapable of taking on any of the large spending items (SS, Medicare, Medicaid, Chip, DOD budgets) then they are just blowing smoke when they talk of fiscal responsibility.

snoopicus on December 7, 2009 at 12:49 PM

Lets face it people the problem is not the Democrats, its the entitlement programs that have ballooned out of control. Until we have a party that wants to take on AARP we will never get Medicare, Social Security or our budget under control. The problem is senior citizens who demand benefits their children aren’t willing to pay for. Until we can discuss things like this, we are spinning our wheels.

snoopicus on December 7, 2009 at 12:52 PM

Very interesting. So it appears that the Republican Party is the third party that might spoil it for the Tea Party, not the other way around. Rush’s conventional wisdom about 3rd parties may have exceeded it’s expiration date.

FloatingRock on December 7, 2009 at 12:53 PM

To paraphrase the old lefty bumper sticker, Think Constitutionally, Act Locally

james23 on December 7, 2009 at 11:49 AM

Or, “Vote early, vote often”

And, I disagree that national/constitutional concerns should be put aside in favor of parochial factors when we vote and act in 2010. Supporting the guy or gal who brings home the bacon for our district, the constitution and the nation be damned, got us into this mess of national debt.

Right on!

This is end result of what AP refers to as the sacred process of “petitioning for re-dress”. At least that’s what it’s called in public. In private, it’s referred to as “Payola”, and its a crime.

I would like to know how what grievances have been re-dressed in Murtha’s district in the at last 10 years. Or did he just send our money to his district to secure his re-elections?

AP?

BobMbx on December 7, 2009 at 12:54 PM

BobMbx on December 7, 2009 at 12:54 PM

Good point… someone really needs to do a study on how many Congress critters get RICH, while in Ccngress…

Heck…. look at the Clintons… how in the heck do you become multimillionaires JUST based on what the Government pays you?

Romeo13 on December 7, 2009 at 12:57 PM

It’s not “my” idea. It’s the idea that a Republic can work. That people can govern themselves. I’m going down with that ship if I have to.

Spirit of 1776 on December 7, 2009 at 10:26 AM

My sentiments are the same, and unfortunately going down with the ship has the highest probability of occurence.

No Republic in history has ever seen it’s 300th anniversery, most never even come close. At 230 odd years I fear we may have played this string out. We are showing all the same symtoms as Rome, the parallels are uncanny.

After the fall of Rome(the global cop of its day)mankind experienced The Dark Ages, when life was nasty, brutish & short. Then the planet was sparse with humans and the possibility of secluded respite could be acheived, today…not so much.

I fear for my neice & nephew, but I am glad to have no progeny of my own to weigh upon my soul.

Archimedes on December 7, 2009 at 1:11 PM

Tea Parties are local. The convention in Nashville will be more like a confederacy than a structured party.

No hierarchy means no co-opting. All these little power-hungry people will just need to get along with their peers or go RINO/democrap. There simply isn’t any room in a tea party for bosses.

The tea parties will naturally follow Sarah wherever she goes. She doesn’t look behind her because she knows that we TRUST her.

Keep playing on the porch, all you lapdogs. Conservatives, via tea parties, are in the process of taking America back from the filthy fascists. You can thank us later.

platypus on December 7, 2009 at 1:13 PM

There are several large states, like CA, where the Republican party is useless. If there were a Tea party in these states, their candidates would probably fair better than the current Republicans do. Comparing this to what a conservative 3rd party would do in places like Texas makes little sense.

It would seem that regional 3rd party polls would be far more interesting than the simple ‘do not split from my corrupt republican party cause the other corrupt party is worse’, kind of a poll.

IF a true 3rd party happens, it will likely start with regional factions, not simply with a presidential candidate.

Freddy on December 7, 2009 at 1:27 PM

Freddy on December 7, 2009 at 1:27 PM

With perhaps the exception of only Orange County, CA looks a lost cause. The same is true here in Illinois.

Archimedes on December 7, 2009 at 1:36 PM

What tea partiers should do is what I have long advocated for Libertarians. Ditch the party, its useless, we will never have a 3rd party that is competitive. We should focus our efforts on safe districts where we can raid primaries. Use California as an example, the Democrats will almost certainly win the election, so we need to steal the primaries. If libertarians/tea partiers would raid primaries and push the Dems to the right on economics, and push the Repubs to the left on social issues, they would have more success than all the Libertarian Parties and Tea Parties combined.

snoopicus on December 7, 2009 at 1:39 PM

Just because they’ve called their get-togethers “Tea Parties”, does not make it an assemblage that aims at forming a third “party”.

And why not propose a parallel alternative to strictly “Democratic Party”? How about a choice “Obama Democrat”?

And where is “Independent”?

Most of the elected Democrats are following the President like lemmings. But many registered Democrats and non-Tea Party leaning independents detest the direction and scale of the Obama program.

This is inherently partisan, and below the Rasmussen I’ve come to know through often fine work product.

Anil Petra on December 7, 2009 at 1:42 PM

The tea bag movement is Republican-ONLY. It is made up of people who are upset we have a democracy and they lost an election.

Decider on December 7, 2009 at 10:44 AM

The Tea Parties I’ve been involved with had Republicans, Independents, Libertarians and yes, even a few Democrats in attendance. The organizers turned down all Republican polititians and even turned away “Newt for President” supporters, because the Tea Party movement is about “us”, our wonderful country, and our constant loss of freedom and not the politicians.

yoda on December 7, 2009 at 1:44 PM

By NEVER even considering leaving the now-defunct GOP (who are in the process of adding amendments to ObamaCare rather than opposing it) Ed Morissey confirms that the shoe he’s tried to fit others with is now on his foot — and he’s upset about it.

Fortunately, there is no such thing as a Tea Party, er, Party, which Rasmussen asked respondents to assume when answering this survey. It would take too long to form such a party, … because no one wants it, RIGHT ED?

As the results above show, it would CLEARLY NOT be a self-defeating process, AS ANYONE WITH AN IQ ABOVE 85 CAN PLAINLY SEE, especially in 2010.

The split on the Right, which constantly and consistently REINFORCED AND DEMANDED BY ED MORRISSEY will produce another Democratic victory at a moment when Congress desperately needs a course correction from its radical, statist path.

The news here is not good at all for America.

This reflects the damage done to the America during 2001-6, when voters thought they were electing small-government, fiscal-restraint politicians, and wound up instead with MORE REPUBLICAN porkers who spent hand over fist.

The key in 2010 is to vote for whoever represents the principles of the Tea Party; rather than beating the dead GOP horse.

Why does Ed Morrissey unfailingly front for a dead “party” instead of firmly insisting on fiscal restrain(t) and reduction of government as the platform for the election?

Why won’t Ed Morrissey put aside all of his usual hobby horses and focus on the message from the Tea Party movement.

Why does Ed Morrissey refuse to unite against what is clearly a fringe progressive movement to massively expand an already-broke government?

Why does Ed Morrissey demand another cycle of loss and frustration?

YOU’RE THE THIRD PARTY NOW Jackass; deal with it.

Eyas on December 7, 2009 at 1:58 PM

BTW, despite careless wording, no one is really advocating a THIRD party. What is being advocated is a SECOND party which actually represents the wishes of the majority of Americans. A SECOND party to REPLACE YOUR party, Ed.

YOU are the THIRD PARTY proponent who keeps fu*#ing up the elections by chronically, unwaveringly, and un-thinkingly voting for NEO-STATISTS.

Wake the F*#% UP! YOU are the MINORITY that keeps RE-ELECTING DEMOCRATS AND SOCIALISTS.

Eyas on December 7, 2009 at 2:06 PM

With perhaps the exception of only Orange County, CA looks a lost cause. The same is true here in Illinois.

Archimedes on December 7, 2009 at 1:36 PM

Actualy, California is in play IF you can make the proper arguement.

Its bankrupt, and everyone knows it. Liberal policies have destroyed the economy there… and you need to point out that the Libs have been in control for years… their rule has failed.

Problem is that the Republican brand is tainted as well there…

So, a viable NEW choice… a conservative one… would force Dems and the “ethnic” groups to reexamine who, and what, they support, instead of just pulling the lever out of habit. They would have to THINK…

A Fiscal Con/ libertarian party would take California in a landslide.

Romeo13 on December 7, 2009 at 2:31 PM

The tea bag movement is Republican-ONLY. It is made up of people who are upset we have a democracy and they lost an election.

Decider on December 7, 2009 at 10:44 AM

WRONG TROLL, the Tea Party movement are people who SUPPORT AND DEFEND THE CONSTITUTION, you remember the Constitution don’t you? The Constitution, the founding document that is the FINAL LAW in the United States which the Democrats hate and the Republicans sometimes ignore.

nelsonknows on December 7, 2009 at 2:36 PM

Actualy, California is in play IF you can make the proper arguement. Romeo13 on December 7, 2009 at 2:31 PM

THIS is the kind of idiocy we have to put up here in Commiefornia. A town hall meeting at a Black Liberation Theology Church where we could NOT directly ask questions under threat of arrest. You can hear MY question at 2:38 and you can hear me yelling at this idiot, Representative Lois Capps, who is so stupid that she thinks car insurance is federally mandated and “Health, Life and Liberty” is in the Constitution” instead of a misquote of the Declaration of Independence.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WB3bEcXyf_k

nelsonknows on December 7, 2009 at 2:43 PM

I agree with all of you. Tea parties are local. We’ll make peace with one another, too, on a national way in principle, on a local way in practice.

And when we run into walls, then we won’t vote that way. That’s OK.

The one thing I trust is that there isn’t some kind of facism deal.

Sometimes I think the pollsters would like to make it into that.

No way. I’m not going back to partisanship.

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 2:43 PM

Well considering that Republicans lead in generic polling overall by 7 points, I think that there is good news for them as well in recent Rasmussen and Gallup polling. I do think that voters are letting them know however, that they want a real distinction between Democrat and Republican. They are concerned about spending and they want to make sure the Republicans get the message.

I just hope that the people on the right do not mess around and hand the Democrats another victory.

Terrye on December 7, 2009 at 3:01 PM

Voters aren’t interested in any 3rd party nonsense. Teaparties aren’t ABOUT this.

Teaparties are about issues. Period.

And we’re united on that front.

We may disagree terribly over abortion or gay rights or a host of other cultural issues, but I think there is a huge tent of teaparty type issues.

I don’t think it benefits to make it into some kind of big party. I would caution people on this. I think the teaparty “organizers” are probably easily identified as those who would like to make some name for themselves in some way.

Ditch them. Now.

They are NOT populism or the reason people came together. We don’t owe them anything.

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 3:09 PM

Doesn’t matter if we have 2 parties, 3 parties are 115 parties, I don’t care. As long as raise the standards bar and send these crooks to prison and take away their tax payed benefits when they screw up.

bluegrass on December 7, 2009 at 3:10 PM

Voters aren’t interested in any 3rd party nonsense.

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 3:09 PM

From what little I’ve heard, Rush falls into this same trap of thinking. This “3rd party nonsense” isn’t just one big contrived conspiracy. Plenty of people are interested in it. Plenty of voters are interested in it. All evidence points to this being the case, and none points away from it.

You can say that voters shouldn’t be interested in this “nonsense”, or that not enough of them are to achieve any useful aim, but hyperbolic statements denying they exist are delusional at best.

pifactorial on December 7, 2009 at 3:17 PM

The point IS that the GOP needs to LISTEN to the Tea Party Movement and ABSOLVE themselves of RINOs who refuse to support and defend the CONSTITUTION.

nelsonknows on December 7, 2009 at 3:25 PM

As far as the GOP is concerned, the Tea Party folk are a problem, not a solution.

Brian Paasch on December 7, 2009 at 3:42 PM

The problem with being a polling company is that you have to keep polling. Even stupid questions like a who would win if the tea party were a third party. It’s fairly obvious that only the Republican Party has any interest in what the tea partiers were saying: No new taxes, stop spending money, smaller government, government by the people.

So instead of dividing the issue into three — the Dems, the Repubs and the tea party (again, which doesn’t exist) — you should add the tea party philosophy to the Republican party and we’ll see a real, sustainable majority this time. As long as we remember that we are Republicans and that we adhere to real standard conservative principles of small govt, low tax burden, entrepreneurship, etc.

My poll, anyway.

Tennman on December 7, 2009 at 3:48 PM

As far as the GOP is concerned, the Tea Party folk are a problem, not a solution.

Brian Paasch on December 7, 2009 at 3:42 PM

I do not think that is true at all. I think a lot of Republicans, like Pence here in Indiana are actually going out of their way to get on the good side of the Tea Party people because he is a fiscal conservative.

Terrye on December 7, 2009 at 3:58 PM

The point IS that the GOP needs to LISTEN to the Tea Party Movement and ABSOLVE themselves of RINOs who refuse to support and defend the CONSTITUTION.

nelsonknows on December 7, 2009 at 3:25 PM

nelson, strictly speaking RINO is supposed to mean Republican in name only, so if a person sees themselves primarily as something other than Republican, why are they worried about RINOs?

Terrye on December 7, 2009 at 3:59 PM

I don’t think it benefits to make it into some kind of big party. I would caution people on this. I think the teaparty “organizers” are probably easily identified as those who would like to make some name for themselves in some way.

Ditch them. Now.

They are NOT populism or the reason people came together. We don’t owe them anything.

AnninCA on December 7, 2009 at 3:09 PM

I think it depends on who they are…however, I do agree that if the Tea Party people try to form a third party, they will split among themselves over issues that have nothing to do with the big issue drawing them together in the first place.

That is the difference between a movement and a political party.

Terrye on December 7, 2009 at 4:03 PM

gary4205 on December 7, 2009 at 11:43 AM

Good grief even if she did 1000 stops and got 2000 people on each stop that would only be 2,000,000 total votes for her. Like going to a rolling stone concert and thinking they can get elected.

dpierson on December 7, 2009 at 4:06 PM

dpierson on December 7, 2009 at 4:06 PM

Flawed logic. The crowds are an indicator of passion, not a 1-to-1 indicator of voting patterns.

Or did Obama sell almost 70 million books?

/sarc

cs89 on December 7, 2009 at 4:54 PM

Better dead than Red.

Who cares if these guys keep on winning. They’ve never, ever managed to do anything right. Let them hang themselves. Everything they’re doing can be undone, some day, and when the American people have decided they’ve had enough.

These Communists will thoroughly discredit themselves and though some of us younger ones will be old and gray, at least our children and grandchildren will be free of these bastards…forever.

Dr. ZhivBlago on December 7, 2009 at 4:56 PM

I recieved a message from TaxDayTeaParty.com requesting that I take their poll. I’ve done so, and I also left my comment there.

Whatever the Beltway Insiders in the GOP think hardly matters today. We know what they think, that is what cost us dearly in the last 2 election cycles, and that is why the Tea Party movement MUST take back the GOP from the liberal wannabe’s running it today.

The GOP won’t see a red cent from me, but SarahPac and others will.

DannoJyd on December 7, 2009 at 4:59 PM

All the Tea Partiers are is a collection of republicans disgusted with their party leadership, ineptness and refusal to listen, and independents disgusted with both parties. When the election happens, the folk who will lose are incumbents and the dems have most of those.

JIMV on December 7, 2009 at 5:00 PM

All the Tea Partiers are is a collection of republicans disgusted with their party leadership, ineptness and refusal to listen, and independents disgusted with both parties. When the election happens, the folk who will lose are incumbents and the dems have most of those.

JIMV on December 7, 2009 at 5:00 PM

Exactly, JimV. Well said.

I heard a suggestion today from my boss, a fiscal hawk and social conservative who breaks with party orthodoxy on some issues. He says: run on a platform of no new taxes and no laws will be passed that are not deficit neutral and they will do everything in their power to reduce the deficit—including dumping Obamacare.

I think the Dems have proven that no logic or threat will dissuade them from the socialist/suicidal path, and the voters will be only too happy to remove them in large numbers. But the GOP has to recognize that voters are hearing the Tea Party message loud and clear.

I like Jonah’s idea.

Jaibones on December 7, 2009 at 5:12 PM

cs89 on December 7, 2009 at 4:54 PM

You just made my point. Regardless how many people show up for the book tour it says nothing about her chances to win a general election. So keep your sarc and use your head/

dpierson on December 7, 2009 at 5:17 PM

By hobby horses you meen pro-life, freedom to bear arms, and not allowing gay marriage?

Rode Werk on December 7, 2009 at 9:43 AM

As a Tea Party leader in MA, I can assure you those issues are not at the top of the list but they are on the list.

Right to bear arms is very near the top. Being pro-life is fairly representative – goes hand in hand with all the “inalienable rights” mumbo jumbo. And traditional marriage is supported – especially here where the rule of law has been abandoned.

Being fiscally conservative only gets you so far with the Tea Partiers I know. Almost every candidate will run on a fiscal conservative platform in 2010. The social issue will be more definitive than most think (I believe.)

gopmom on December 7, 2009 at 5:51 PM

The key in 2010 is to have the GOP represent the Tea Party brand, and the only way to do that is to firmly insist on fiscal restrain and reduction of government as the platform for the election. The Right needs to put aside all of its usual hobby horses and focus on the message from the Tea Party movement… The next election has to be fought on those narrow terms in order to bring the GOP into line with the tea-party momentum…

Hmm, where could one possibly hope to find a concise list of fiscally-conservative positions that puts aside “all the usual hobby horses” to focus on a narrow platform. Oh, hey, how about this one.

Fabozz on December 7, 2009 at 6:01 PM

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