Jim Geraghty declares death of Tea Party movement

posted at 7:21 pm on January 20, 2016 by Taylor Millard

Jim Geraghty is wondering if the Tea Party movement is dead. The pithy National Review columnist opines four theories about what happened to the movement ever since it started making waves in 2009, especially in light of Sarah Palin’s endorsement of Donald Trump. Geraghty has plenty of valid points, but it really depends on which Tea Party he’s talking about. The Tea Party which started in early 2009 was a force against taxation, overspending, government bailouts, and its anger had been building for years. It decried the actions of both parties for deciding to not follow the Constitution and to expand government where there was no reason to. Here’s what several people at a Georgia Tea Party rally told The Christian Science Monitor in 2009:

But protesters like Kevin Tanner of South Dakota said deficit spending by both parties has unnerved Americans.

“The Republicans have their own problems because we elected them and they didn’t do what we wanted,” says Mr. Tanner.

Many protesters expressed a sense that basic American freedoms of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are threatened by new Washingtonpolicies seen by many as more socialistic than capitalistic. The proposed taxpayer bailout of homeowners who may have inflated their earnings in order to secure mortgages is one example, says Jeff Crawford, a protester from Dacula, Ga.

Michelle Malkin spent days pointing out the pork inside the 2009 budget, driving home the point it was wasteful spending which wasn’t going to solve anything. Andrew Breitbart went after ACORN, and inspired people to figure out a way to mix politics and culture which didn’t come off as Ben Stein-like (no offense to Stein) in its delivery. The Tea Party of 2009 led to the 2010 election of Rand Paul and Marco Rubio in the U.S. Senate, along with Justin Amash and Tim Huelskamp in the House. Most of these men were willing to challenge the Establishment because they believed in fiscal responsibility, keeping budgets balanced, and restraining the role of government in our lives. But one thing I noticed around late 2010 was a change in the Tea Party protests from a more organic force to an almost religious movement. Maybe the original Tea Party members thought the gains it made in the 2010 election were enough, and decided to go home to focus on their families, jobs, and hoped what was accomplished would be enough to push back against government. For whatever reason, the focus seemed to shift from fiscal responsibility to other things: worshiping God, social conservatism, and, at times, immigration. There’s nothing wrong with this, but that’s not what the Tea Party was founded upon. The first Tea Party rally in Arizona I went to in 2012 was definitely more of a show, and not like the rallies I’d seen on TV, watch online, or read about on blogs. Geraghty also seems to notice a change in the Tea Party’s goals.

The movement has indisputably undergone some uncomfortable ideological contortions over time, as most movements do. Folks who roared with fury about Obama’s big-spending early years showed little appetite for entitlement reform. Those who once fumed about runaway government invading the citizenry’s privacy appear comfortable enough with Big Brother as long as he’s leaving them alone.

It’s possible the shift in focus from “just” fiscal responsibility to fiscal responsibility and a host of other issues is why Tea Party support has fallen. It’s easy to get behind one issue, but things get dodgy when other issues get introduced and muddy up the waters. It could be just the natural order of populism and going from one issue to the other without any real direction. Geraghty also notes the change in focus could be why the Tea Party’s popularity has also dipped, even though more and more state governments are in the hands of the GOP.

After the 2014 midterms, the Republican party enjoyed a roaring comeback; all told, they’ve now picked up 11 governorships, 13 Senate seats, 69 House seats, 913 state legislative seats, and 30 state legislative chambers in the Obama era. But the Tea Party’s reputation never recovered. In 2011, 30 percent of Americans told Gallup they considered themselves “tea-party supporters.” By October 2015, only 17 percent said the same.

Geraghty may be right in declaring the Tea Party dead, but there are still elements of the Tea Party running strong. Dana Loesch, FreedomWorks, Ace of Spades, The Foundation for Government Accountability, FTR Radio, and, oh yeah, Hot Air are still around and still fighting for the ideals the Tea Party stood for from a fiscal standpoint. Thomas Massie, Justin Amash, Rand Paul, Greg Abbott, Scott Walker, and Ted Cruz are all still in their elected positions and (mostly) fighting for the financial sanity the 2009 Tea Party protests were all about. This could just be the natural order of movements: they grow, they wither, and their seedlings sprout up to continue on the mission of their parent. It isn’t always going to be easy, but that doesn’t mean what happened in 2009 should be forgotten. What it does mean is the fiscal hawks need to keep fighting and keep explaining why sanity is needed. This means things like entitlement reform, audits of the Fed and Defense Department, and cutting government where it needs to be cut (no more farm subsidies please) are all issues which have to be pressed, but messaged in a way to get more people involved. It also means holding elected officials (at all levels) accountable. It could mean a “Primary ______” movement, but it could also mean calling elected officials to ask why they voted the way they voted, or showing up to town hall meetings to raise concerns. The steam may have blown off the fiscal Tea Party but it doesn’t mean its mission is over. The question is who’s going to be willing to take up the mantle?


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Comments

They’ve been declaring this for years.

If it were actually true, they’d be rejoicing, not lamenting.

Paperclips on January 20, 2016 at 7:23 PM

Since when did National Review have anything Tea Party about it?

VorDaj on January 20, 2016 at 7:23 PM

Who let Traylor park off the leash? AP taking a day off? This is not an improvement, but I guess with traffic down as much as it is, he’s the best you can get.

DFCtomm on January 20, 2016 at 7:24 PM

Hotair is Tea Party? Salem is about as un-Tea party as it gets.

VorDaj on January 20, 2016 at 7:24 PM

This whole article is discombobulated.

VorDaj on January 20, 2016 at 7:25 PM

Ace of Spades

Ace just admitted today he’d be a big flaming liberal, if they’d only come to their senses, and quit the stupid, but that is the Tea Party, or was. It was a bipartisan organization originally, so just how does a bipartisan anti-stupid movement get co-opted by the GOPe?

DFCtomm on January 20, 2016 at 7:29 PM

It was certainly dead to me when the GOP coopted it as its fundraising arm. The Tea Party was supposed to be a single-issue movement for fiscal sanity; the moment “gay marriage” or “abortion”, or even “gun control” is uttered, the Tea Party should butt out of the issue.

Rix on January 20, 2016 at 7:30 PM

From last night’s QOTD:

When the TEA Party first arose it was based on fiscal conservatism, not any kind of broad-spectrum conservatism. The movement was noted for bringing together a lot of people with otherwise divergent politics on related issues where they held common views, i.e., taxes, uncontrolled government spending and a metastasizing, ever more intrusive federal bureaucracy. The national debt, the massive deficit, the insane bailouts of the banking industry greedheads, the lunacy of the federal government-guaranteed loan driven real-estate bubble and a Political Class that totally ignored their concerns driving the nation ever faster toward the fiscal cliff were the issues that brought the movement together.

It’s a media and RINO promoted fantasy that the TEA Party was ever anything else. (Note the correct spelling of TEA Party; it means Taxed Enough Already Party.) It served the purposes of the political Left, Democrats, the MSM and the RINOs to re-define the movement as out on the fringe of the political Right, made up of puritan Conservative ideologue nutcases with impossible to meet litmus tests.

It’s truly amazing to see all the alleged political analysis of recent events based on the false narrative and not the political reality of the movement and it’s history. Most of the people writing this garbage were never willing to accept the movement for what it was in the first place. Since then they’ve been smelling their own farts for far too long and have completely lost touch with reality.

It’s no wonder they had so much trouble grasping Trump’s appeal and can’t see the logic in Sarah Palin’s endorsement. It’s the reason they continue to believe Trump’s supporters are idiots and Palin must be motivated by nothing but unprincipled self-interest.

I suspect that if the day comes when Trump is inaugurated President these damned fools will still be wondering what the Hell happened. Most of them will never figure it out.

novaculus on January 19, 2016 at 11:15 PM

The people who took part in the initial TEA Party movement are still out there. The Political Class and MSM scumbags whose agendas they threatened may have succeeded in painting them and the movement as Right wing fringe nuts but that doesn’t change the reality. Neither does the fact that some people have tried to hijack the movement for their own purposes.

novaculus on January 20, 2016 at 7:31 PM

I declare the USA dead.

bgibbs1000 on January 20, 2016 at 7:32 PM

♫ Ge-ragh-ty, who? ♫

(flicks cigar ashes…)

Told you I could yodel….

viking01 on January 20, 2016 at 7:33 PM

Jim Geraghty declares death of Tea Party movement

Whoops! Looks like he spelled Occupy Wall Street incorrectly..

Torcert on January 20, 2016 at 7:35 PM

The steam may have blown off the fiscal Tea Party but it doesn’t mean its mission is over. The question is who’s going to be willing to take up the mantle?

No one person can save the country now. The Laws of Reality will ultimately do the job, rather mercilessly.

The inevitable economic collapse will be unprecedented, and the odds of a Second Renaissance emerging that embodies individual sovereignty and liberty are very poor indeed …

ShainS on January 20, 2016 at 7:36 PM

I note the management is once again trolling us with this guy’s completely un-original postings that appear to be intended to generate disagreement and angry responses.

I guess it is the new business model under Salem control.

It seems to be working at some level, but it still stinks.

This place is going to Hell since MM sold it off.

novaculus on January 20, 2016 at 7:36 PM

novaculus on January 20, 2016 at 7:31 PM

rockmom made a really good point earlier today, no one is running of reducing the dept. Not on either side.

Cindy Munford on January 20, 2016 at 7:37 PM

Why is it so hard to understand that most of the people elected under the “tea party” banner have sold out and are just as much establishment as boner and ryan?

I’m an independent conservative. I don’t need any organization telling me what to think or who to believe, I’ll make my own mind up there, thanks. No TEA party for me.

Andy__B on January 20, 2016 at 7:39 PM

The so-cons ruined the tea party.

When Rick Santelli called for the first tea party it was all about getting taxes and spending under control.

I have no idea where the other elements came from

weedisgood on January 20, 2016 at 7:40 PM

I doubt Taylor Millard or Jim Geraghty had a clue what, who, or why the tea party movement rose in 2010. Salem, National Review, and these two beta male fanboys sneered at the tea party.
Pithy? Just shut up.

HornetSting on January 20, 2016 at 7:40 PM

Many people were run off from the TEA Party because of the media declaring it was an anti-Obama, and therefore, racist organization. The average working citizens isn’t going to take up the precious free time and resources to be called racist, bigoted Nazis. And don’t forget those who were given extra scrutiny from the IRS.

Cindy Munford on January 20, 2016 at 7:41 PM

The anti Tea Partiers think the coming 20,000,000,000,000 in debt is just wonderful.

CWforFreedom on January 20, 2016 at 7:41 PM

It died to me when the TP threw a big party for the TP elite to celebrate the 5 year anniversary. Meanwhile politicians continue on their unabated robbery of the middle class and then get all wee weed up when a guy like Trump comes along and challenges their fiefdom. Conservatism is in just as much chaos as the GOPe.

Jackson on January 20, 2016 at 7:43 PM

weedisgood on January 20, 2016 at 7:40 PM

How would your dumbazz know?

Cindy Munford on January 20, 2016 at 7:43 PM

I have no idea where the other elements came from

weedisgood on January 20, 2016 at 7:40 PM

Let’s see if you know what you’re talking about.

Walk me through your thesis…dopehead.

Pure silliness…thanks for your concern.

CWforFreedom on January 20, 2016 at 7:44 PM

weedisgood….you are in the top 5 of dumbest current posters here.
Go ask your dealer for your prize.

CWforFreedom on January 20, 2016 at 7:44 PM

weedisgood….you are in the top 5 of dumbest current posters here.
Go ask your dealer for your prize.

CWforFreedom on January 20, 2016 at 7:44 PM

Gee, I hope I didn’t make it to that top 5 list….

Andy__B on January 20, 2016 at 7:45 PM

Many people were run off from the TEA Party because of the media declaring it was an anti-Obama, and therefore, racist organization. The average working citizens isn’t going to take up the precious free time and resources to be called racist, bigoted Nazis. And don’t forget those who were given extra scrutiny from the IRS.

Cindy Munford on January 20, 2016 at 7:41 PM

That did stunt the growth of the Tea Party.

31giddyup on January 20, 2016 at 7:46 PM

So the Tea Party is Dead? Is this just like the Gamer’s are Dead? Because that one didn’t work out so well for the talking heads in media either.

patches on January 20, 2016 at 7:46 PM

it really depends on which Tea Party he’s talking about.

Glenn Beck described himself as the face of the Tea Party today. I certainly hope that one is dead.

Joseph K on January 20, 2016 at 7:46 PM

Folks who roared with fury about Obama’s big-spending early years showed little appetite for entitlement reform.

Here’s the deal, Jim. Some people woke up and realized that “entitlement” reform meant handing over their money to the same @ssholes who tanked the economy in 2008, and have been fvcking them over ever since.

Joseph K on January 20, 2016 at 7:49 PM

Gee, I hope I didn’t make it to that top 5 list….

Andy__B on January 20, 2016 at 7:45 PM

Just top 10 for you.

/i kid.

CWforFreedom on January 20, 2016 at 7:50 PM

Dana Loesch, FreedomWorks, Ace of Spades, The Foundation for Government Accountability, FTR Radio, and, oh yeah, Hot Air are still around and still fighting for the ideals the Tea Party stood for from a fiscal standpoint.

Hahahahahahahahahaha!

Joseph K on January 20, 2016 at 7:50 PM

National Review has always been a shill for the GOPe and an unpaid arm of the RNC. Screw them and anyone who hangs out at that rag pretending to be a conservative.

they lie on January 20, 2016 at 7:50 PM

HornetSting on January 20, 2016 at 7:40 PM

I went to a Tea Party gathering long before 2010. W might have even still be in office because it was a response to TARP and too big to fail.

Cindy Munford on January 20, 2016 at 7:50 PM

Cindy Munford on January 20, 2016 at 7:37 PM

Both Trump and Cruz have raised the issues of the national debt and massive deficits. Addressing these issues requires shrinking the size of the government. I don’t hear either of them focusing on these issues lately, but I’ll admit I don’t listen to much campaign trail rhetoric.

I don’t recall hearing any other candidates on either side addressing these issues or talking about shrinking federal spending or the federal bureaucracy. Obviously, Hillary and Sanders would both expand the government and explode the debt and the deficit.

novaculus on January 20, 2016 at 7:51 PM

Anyone who doesn’t write

T
E
A

for Taxed Enough Already, has NO credibility.

Schadenfreude on January 20, 2016 at 7:53 PM

If there was a Death to “The Tea Party” it would be because the RINOs stabbed them in the back. And while holding them down letting the Democrats Decap’ them in Terrorist Fashion. Nothing but hate from those 2 organization for “The Tea Party.” Sad, but TRUE.

Nat George on January 20, 2016 at 7:54 PM

And don’t forget those who were given extra scrutiny from the IRS.

Cindy Munford on January 20, 2016 at 7:41 PM

Excellent point. The MSM and the Political Class didn’t just conduct a smear campaign against the good Americans who rallied under the TEA Party banner. The Obama administration attacked them with the IRS and every other agency whose resources could be perverted to that political agenda.

novaculus on January 20, 2016 at 7:54 PM

HornetSting on January 20, 2016 at 7:40 PM

I went to a Tea Party gathering long before 2010. W might have even still be in office because it was a response to TARP and too big to fail.

Cindy Munford on January 20, 2016 at 7:50 PM

Late February/early March 2009….i have to stop doing four things at once. Tea Party made their voices heard in 2010.

HornetSting on January 20, 2016 at 7:54 PM

Jim Geraghty is wondering if the Tea Party movement is dead.

Way to be topical, National Review. Any thoughts on the IPod vs. iPhone? I’m thinking buying some AAPL stock but I think tablets won’t catch on.

sauldalinsky on January 20, 2016 at 7:55 PM

When Rick Santelli called for the first tea party it was all about getting taxes and spending under control.

I have no idea where the other elements came from

weedisgood on January 20, 2016 at 7:40 PM

Are you really that dense? How do you think you get taxes and spending under control?

Here’s a clue:

Smaller Gov’t. (that has ripples going all over the place)
Cut entitlements (Means doing away with the socialist agenda)

Now you figure out how you do those two things without ripping the heart out of the liberal ideology and the GOPe crony capitalists and you will see where the other elements came from, sweetie.

they lie on January 20, 2016 at 7:57 PM

novaculus on January 20, 2016 at 7:54 PM

As I recall, Boehner and McConnell were also “caught” demeaning the Tea Party.

CoffeeLover on January 20, 2016 at 7:57 PM

Dana Loesch, FreedomWorks, Ace of Spades, The Foundation for Government Accountability, FTR Radio, and, oh yeah, Hot Air are still around and still fighting for the ideals the Tea Party stood for from a fiscal standpoint.

Hahahahahahahahahaha!

Joseph K on January 20, 2016 at 7:50 PM

Effing hilarious. This tool is a comedian and doesn’t even know it.

novaculus on January 20, 2016 at 7:57 PM

The so-cons ruined the tea party.

When Rick Santelli called for the first tea party it was all about getting taxes and spending under control.

I have no idea where the other elements came from

weedisgood on January 20, 2016 at 7:40 PM

Damn, I hate to say it, but actually agree with weed on this one. The movement got corrupted by the soc-cons and GOPe, with a handy helping of persecution by IRS, DOJ, etc.

Now please excuse; will be back after make appointment with a shrink …

smokeyblonde on January 20, 2016 at 8:00 PM

Ace just admitted today he’d be a big flaming liberal, if they’d only come to their senses, and quit the stupid, but that is the Tea Party, or was. It was a bipartisan organization originally, so just how does a bipartisan anti-stupid movement get co-opted by the GOPe?

DFCtomm on January 20, 2016 at 7:29 PM

Here’s the quote:

On the greater point, I think the piece is right. “Conservatives” aren’t all actually conservative. I’m considered a sort of “hard rightwing conservative firebrand” or something, but in fact I’m really a pissed off liberal who’s angry that self-claimed “liberals” claim a string of propositions, most of which I agree with, and then proceeds to violate all of these claims without any compunctions at all, in order to gain political power and pay off political constituents.

Ace’s description could pretty much describe Guy Benson, Taylor Millard, AP, Kevin D. Williamson, and 75% of the “conservative” pundit class.

I call them 9-11 Conservatives, who for the sake of nationalism and Patriotism, became conservative after the outrage of 9-11 because the Left behaved so abominably.

Same with the Neocons who left the Democrat Party in the late 60’s because the SDS crowd had taken over.

Meanwhile, real conservatives like Ron Paul, Sam Francis, and Paul Gottfried were run out of the movement. Some, in order to survive, flirted with more unsavory elements of the Right (Paul), while people like Francis went over whole cloth. Watching a twit like Guy Benson and his ilk savage Ron Paul for being a psychopath is rich. Paul is a classic old Rightist, direct from the pre-WWII Taft wing of the GOP. Guy Benson is a Democrat who wants lower taxes.

Joseph K on January 20, 2016 at 8:01 PM

HornetSting on January 20, 2016 at 7:54 PM

I can barely do one thing at a time.

Cindy Munford on January 20, 2016 at 8:03 PM

for Taxed Enough Already, has NO credibility.

Schadenfreude on January 20, 2016 at 7:53 PM

How many people pay equal to or greater than their share of the federal spending? Looking at my taxes, in the top 20% of tax payers, I barely make that level of contribution each year.
Each person not paying their weight is getting a subsidy on their government. We all know what happens when you subsidize something. People want more of it.
I have a hard time believing that the majority of the people who are Tea party are all making more than I am.
$3.9 trillion spending. $700 billion of it on the backs of future generations.

Constitutionalist on January 20, 2016 at 8:03 PM

Another insulated establishmentarian with no clue what’s going on in the real world, who is more concerned about the future of a traitorous party than he is about the state of a stumbling nation.

Tea Party dead? No, we just call ourselves vulgarians now. Suck it, Geraghty.

Right Mover on January 20, 2016 at 8:03 PM

As I recall, Boehner and McConnell were also “caught” demeaning the Tea Party.

CoffeeLover on January 20, 2016 at 7:57 PM

The TEA Party movement threatened the entire Political Class, Democrats, Republicans, Donors and the political media. They are all parasites using the federal government to suck the life out of the Productive Class, i.e., the taxpayers. They are all on the DC gravy train and the TEA Party movement meant to derail it and make them all get off.

novaculus on January 20, 2016 at 8:03 PM

The pithy National Review

Pith on that….

viking01 on January 20, 2016 at 8:05 PM

The Tea Party started out as establishment-approved populism — i.e., false populism meant to focus on Paul Ryan’s pet issue: the budget. Not an inherently unworthy goal, but also not something that strongly resonates with the average Joe, but insofar as it provided a protest vehicle against Obama’s cult of personality, was nonetheless cathartic.

Populism at its core though seeks to turn the government to change its policies in service of the people themselves. Now they’re recoiling at the unapproved variety that doesn’t kowtow to the libertarian / economic conservative talking points of smaller government, lower taxes, less regulation, freedom & liberty, etc. They’re freaking out that an “authoritarian” a la Trump has combined a different set of ideas: nationalism, populism, and social conservatism, which can articulate an active and conservative role for the government, that shares no policies in common with liberalism, and is beloved by the base.

Stoic Patriot on January 20, 2016 at 8:05 PM

Guy Benson is a Democrat who wants lower taxes.

Joseph K on January 20, 2016 at 8:01 PM

The whole thing was quality.

DFCtomm on January 20, 2016 at 8:07 PM

Maybe worse then that. Possibly the death of the conservative movement.

KMav on January 20, 2016 at 8:09 PM

Over time it was Hi-Jacked by the So/Con elements. IMO
It’s not how it started.

bazil9 on January 20, 2016 at 8:10 PM

The TEA Party movement Donald Trump threateneds the entire Political Class, Democrats, Republicans, Donors and the political media.

Right Mover on January 20, 2016 at 8:11 PM

smokeyblonde on January 20, 2016 at 8:00 PM

Just read upwards and saw this..I agree with weed? Shoot me.

bazil9 on January 20, 2016 at 8:12 PM

Hilarious just how many of you want to blame us social conservatives for the death of the Tea Party. You won office, you got the chance to face down Obama on the budget and taxes, and your elected representatives blinked. Don’t blame us for the failures of your champions.

Stoic Patriot on January 20, 2016 at 8:15 PM

smokeyblonde on January 20, 2016 at 8:00 PM

Just read upwards and saw this..I agree with weed? Shoot me.

bazil9 on January 20, 2016 at 8:12 PM

Yea … both of us! Short as still on phone with shrink … :)

smokeyblonde on January 20, 2016 at 8:16 PM

Excellent point. The MSM and the Political Class didn’t just conduct a smear campaign against the good Americans who rallied under the TEA Party banner. The Obama administration attacked them with the IRS and every other agency whose resources could be perverted to that political agenda.

novaculus on January 20, 2016 at 7:54 PM

Yep and members of the GOP used it as a pulpit to demean us with names. Mainly McCain.

bazil9 on January 20, 2016 at 8:19 PM

Hilarious just how many of you want to blame us social conservatives for the death of the Tea Party. You won office, you got the chance to face down Obama on the budget and taxes, and your elected representatives blinked. Don’t blame us for the failures of your champions.

Stoic Patriot on January 20, 2016 at 8:15 PM

As an original TEA Partier, it wasn’t just the socons which would be a natural outgrowth of people who want to rein in government, but that in conjunction with active and coordinated efforts by the GOPe and Dems doomed the movement in it’s original form.

I think true TEA Partiers will always be what they were back in the beginning, just wiser and with better tactics (hopefully).

smokeyblonde on January 20, 2016 at 8:21 PM

bazil9 on January 20, 2016 at 8:12 PM

Yea … both of us! Short as still on phone with shrink … :)

smokeyblonde on January 20, 2016 at 8:16 PM

LOL..I’m just gonna have a drink.

I was in Orlando with the 1st big tea party event..it was dems, repubs, independents..that would never happen again.

bazil9 on January 20, 2016 at 8:21 PM

Then we elected “Tea Partiers” that are not Tea Party..Flake, Ayotte to name 2.

bazil9 on January 20, 2016 at 8:24 PM

I remember the initial Tea Party and the people who constituted it. I participated in it.

These are people who just DO NOT march and gather as we did. It was an eyeopener, to be sure.

Even though we have been co-opted and denigrated, we are still there, and I think you will see a resurgence in the coming year.

May be wrong, but I doubt it.

irongrampa on January 20, 2016 at 8:30 PM

LOL..I’m just gonna have a drink.

I was in Orlando with the 1st big tea party event..it was dems, repubs, independents..that would never happen again.

bazil9 on January 20, 2016 at 8:21 PM

Doing that too :)

Then we elected “Tea Partiers” that are not Tea Party..Flake, Ayotte to name 2.

bazil9 on January 20, 2016 at 8:24 PM

Hopefully one of the lessons learned.

To be honest, for me, this is one of the reasons I like Trump and don’t mind the attacks on him or his supporters: I have no delusions about Trumps past nor his conflicting statements. I support him for a small handful of very specific stances and the fact that he couldn’t possibly be any worse than >90% of the other candidates.

smokeyblonde on January 20, 2016 at 8:33 PM

Stoic Patriot on January 20, 2016 at 8:15 PM

SoCons had nothing to do with it. The Political Class and the Political Media recognized the threat to their game and attacked the TEA Party movement with every weapon at their disposal. No one should be surprised that some craven political types jumped on the TEA Party bandwagon to get themselves elected, then got off and climbed on the DC gravy train.

novaculus on January 20, 2016 at 8:33 PM

(W)e are still there, and I think you will see a resurgence in the coming year.

May be wrong, but I doubt it.

irongrampa on January 20, 2016 at 8:30 PM

Yup. We are still here.

Fallon on January 20, 2016 at 8:43 PM

Each person not paying their weight is getting a subsidy on their government. We all know what happens when you subsidize something. People want more of it.
I have a hard time believing that the majority of the people who are Tea party are all making more than I am.
$3.9 trillion spending. $700 billion of it on the backs of future generations.

Constitutionalist on January 20, 2016 at 8:03 PM

The obvious point is that if the government wasn’t so large, then everyone would be closer to paying a share.

LoganSix on January 20, 2016 at 8:45 PM

Good to see Weed expanded so thoroughly on his claim.////

CWforFreedom on January 20, 2016 at 8:52 PM

To some extent social conservatives may have hijacked the Tea Party label.

But mostly, the media did a phenomenal job branding the tea party as crazy rigt wing social conservatives.

asdf on January 20, 2016 at 9:03 PM

Good to see Weed expanded so thoroughly on his claim.////

CWforFreedom on January 20, 2016 at 8:52 PM

I blame the celestial alignment …

smokeyblonde on January 20, 2016 at 9:05 PM

Mental and Emotional Onanism With A Sweat Sock!

williamg on January 20, 2016 at 9:05 PM

Hot air is not “still fighting” for any form of fiscal sanity.

Every single time an opportunity arises to cap the debt ceiling or pass a balanced budget, or reduce any spending at all; Ed , Allah, Taylor and Jazz begin the idiotic default talk. They line up with Nancy Pelosi and Obama insisting that the only cure for out of control spending….is even more out of control spending. They belittle anyone who suggests otherwise.

Hot air does not fight for fiscal sanity.

kpguru on January 20, 2016 at 9:09 PM

It’s amazing to see all these articles at once from the “conservative” press bemoaning “the death of the TEA Party,” or that Sarah Palin suddenly isn’t the Sarah Palin we knew, etc.

I bet that the real reason is that people are realizing that the “litmus test” approach hasn’t worked to make things better. A lot of conservatives have judged politicians based on how many boxes they check off on a list of issues, and such lists don’t seem to have a box for “Does this guy have experience getting things done?” Some of us think that box is the most important one to check off right now — so much so, that we’re willing to overlook a number of flaws to get it. In other words, we realize we have to stop wasting time on candidates who won’t do anything once they get into office.

Thus our support of Donald J. Trump, a social moderate who has admitted to buying politicians to get things done, but who nevertheless has also expressed support for the Second Amendment and has said that illegal immigration is a problem that must be solved.

Aitch748 on January 20, 2016 at 9:14 PM

Geraghty. Yeah. He’s the go-to-guy on the Tea Party. What an establishment lout.

AmeriCuda on January 20, 2016 at 9:20 PM

National Review: Where ‘conservatives’ still believe the Freedom Caucus is anything but a bunch of fraud statists who exploited a niche (and a lot of patriotic people who actually believed their words) for better committee assignments

AmeriCuda on January 20, 2016 at 9:25 PM

Yep and members of the GOP used it as a pulpit to demean us with names. Mainly McCain.

bazil9 on January 20, 2016 at 8:19 PM

Heh. McCain calling us “hobbits”. I was just thinking about that the other day.

And now the Hobbits are marching towards Mordor, carrying “The Precious”

lineholder on January 20, 2016 at 9:28 PM

The thing is, you morons don’t get to decide what the tea party is, or when its over. WE, the people, do that. Trump IS a manifestation of the very very core idea of the Tea Party, the idea that the entire self styled elite governing class of this country is corrupt and useless and we’ve had enough of you. the johnny come latelys who tried to co opt it into a social conservative movement were just more charlatans. the tea party candidates in 2010 and 2012 were not uniformly anything except they were mostly people new to politics. in other words,one of us, not one of them. There have been so many polls showing people truly believe that a random bunch of names out of a phone book could do better than our current congress. you guys read those polls but never rally believed them, or internalized them. That is the core reason why you cant dent Trump. Whatever you accuse him of, we have a very simple rejoinder: Perhaps it’s true, but even if so…you are still very much worse.

johngalt on January 20, 2016 at 9:30 PM

The original TEA party folks are still out there. I am one of them. WE have not gone anywhere, we are waiting for the opportune moment to strike again. The ignorance of Taylor’s article, and much of the hyperbole on the net today compels me to comment further.

It was obvious that the movement needed to define itself, or be defined by the progressive opposition. This initial organizing and definition is what I worked on. I watched the following divisions develop.

In late 2009 into 2010, a schism formed between those with the original intent (free markets, balanced budgets, low taxes), and those that wanted to “take over” the Republican party and reform it.

The “GOP reformers” wanted to start at the precinct level to “fix” the GOP by taking control of the local party.

The original intent folks wanted to start their own party or PAC.

A third group wanted to stay “grass roots” (essentially unorganized above the local level).

The “reformers” and “grass roots” camps had folks that wanted to add all sorts of social conservative planks, while the “originalists” wanted nothing to do with anything but the original fiscal issues.

Over time, the “originalists” got frustrated with the GOP reformers, and the “grass roots” only folks, and split away.

The “reformers” were eventually to be completely overwhelmed by the GOPe machine. The “grass roots” stayed in local organizations, and most fell in with the national organization Tea Party Patriots. TPP remained a “grass roots” only, nearly ineffectual organization until 2014, when they finally acquiesced to reality and became a PAC. That move was too little too late, for by that time multiple GOPe counterfeit “TEA Party” organizations were formed by the GOPe trying to co-opt the brand. Of course they ruined it, which was exactly what the GOPe wanted.

The originalists are still out there, and when the time is right, will start an new party. Originalists have always supported the idea of burning down the GOPe. Donald may be the tool that starts the process.

piratesockpuppet on January 20, 2016 at 9:34 PM

an oldie but a goodie…the surrender caucus surrendering on the shut down…some of the quotes are really telling now.

johngalt on January 20, 2016 at 9:36 PM

Good to see Weed expanded so thoroughly on his claim.////

CWforFreedom on January 20, 2016 at 8:52 PM

I blame the celestial alignment …

smokeyblonde on January 20, 2016 at 9:05 PM

…or paraquat…

viking01 on January 20, 2016 at 9:44 PM

I have no idea where the other elements came from

weedisgood on January 20, 2016 at 7:40 PM

….hemp

JugEarsButtHurt on January 20, 2016 at 9:54 PM

Headline:

Jim Geraghty declares death of Tea Party movement

First line, paragraph one:

Jim Geraghty is wondering if the Tea Party movement is dead.

listens2glenn on January 20, 2016 at 9:59 PM

The picture is of Pastor William Temple. Nice guy. Tons of beautiful costumes.

Fallon on January 20, 2016 at 10:18 PM

The original TEA Party was more libertarian. Then the conservative movement took it over. That gap in 2010 had a lot to do with it with the original groups holding their fire because of IRS scrutiny.

Nothing wrong with either the libertarian end nor the conservative movement end, it just ended up like a garden-variety political party with a kitchen-sink set of goals.

MaggiePoo on January 20, 2016 at 11:46 PM

Mr. Millard gets it mostly wrong again.

From the very first rallies in 2009, the MSM, Republican establishment, and Democrats have been trying to finish it off by calling it various names and claiming it was violent and extreme. You know, the same has rioting blacks calling for the murder of cops, union thugs intimidating businesses and destroying property, OWS rioting and shutting down business–none of whom the MSM ever calls violent or extreme.

While a couple of groups have tried to make money off the tea party by forming official organizations, they by and large have very little in common with the original tea party which is still alive and well.

See, the tea party was never and organization like the Green Party, Republican Party, Democrat Party, No Labels, etc. It doesn’t have any leaders that run it because it doesn’t exist in a tangible format. There are tea party supporters who are influential such as Palin, but she isn’t a tea party leader because there is not tea party organization (those that claim they are long ago abandoned most of the principles and are easily demonized). She just provides inspiration and opinions.

If you really want to understand the tea party and why its still here but unseen, then read the book The Starfish and the Spider: The Unstoppable Power Of Leaderlsss Organizations by Ori Brafman and Rod A. Beckstrom. You’ll see why the MSM, et al, have not yet put a stake into the tea party heart. There is no leader to demonize, no organization to attack, no list of members, no offices; in other words, it is a movement that is simply based on a few principles such as smaller government, rational spending, return to our Constitutional roots, equal enforcement of our laws, and a few others. That exists only in the mind and is not embodied in organization, offices, leaders, board members, contributions, etc.

We are still here. You don’t see the rallies because they cost a lot of money. The city requires permits, insurance, compensation for the extra protection, cost of setting up and clean up, and well, there isn’t any organization to do or fund all of that.

But trust me, we are still here and have no intentions of becoming a formal organization. Principles need no office spaces or leaders.

BMF on January 21, 2016 at 6:39 AM

I’m coming to join ya, Elizabeth!

Deafdog on January 21, 2016 at 8:25 AM

I blame the Republican Party.

claudius on January 21, 2016 at 9:02 AM

I am constantly reminded that the political class still doesn’t understand the Tea Party. You can be a Tea Party supporter and like both Trump and Cruz. The divide comes down to which one do you think will be most effective in fixing government and putting Americans first.

I would be extremely happy with either Trump or Cruz. If I had to guess, I think the heart of the Tea Party is with Cruz, but the brain is with Trump.

We love Cruz. He’s been with us the longest, fought the hardest, and is the most principled.

That said, I know Trump is going to get the most done, but I have to admit to myself that it might not always line up with what I think is the best result.

So, what do I do. Do I go for Cruz and get some of what I want or do I go for Trump and get a lot of what I want and some of what I don’t.

At the moment Trump is my guy because there is so much to do.

One caveat to what I said above… Cruz voted for TPP and Trump said it was a disaster. If that had gone the other way, then I’d have to re-think my entire position.

strickler on January 21, 2016 at 9:23 AM

I am a Tea Partier and I have not died.

californiacitizen on January 21, 2016 at 9:57 AM

Yeah… Right….

If you strike me down, I will become more powerful than you can ever imagine…

Come and Take It – Gonzales 1835

Subsunk

Subsunk on January 21, 2016 at 10:08 AM

Wow! Reading this stuff for years and here in the simple headline it says it all. THE DEATH OF THE TEA PARTY. That is what happens when you put to much faith and hope into one person. They start to become bigger then the movement. Sarah Palin just plunged a dagger into the heart of the TEA PARTY and you can wrap it up in a green body bag because it is dead. The best days of this country are really behind it. Obama ignores the Constitution and now thanks to Bush43 for putting the fifth rubber stamp ignore the constitution liberal on the courts in John Roberts, anything the left wants will be approved.
My only regret is my kids and their kids will never see the greatness that this country was.

pwb on January 21, 2016 at 10:51 AM

The TEA Party movement threatened the entire Political Class, Democrats, Republicans, Donors and the political media. They are all parasites using the federal government to suck the life out of the Productive Class, i.e., the taxpayers. They are all on the DC gravy train and the TEA Party movement meant to derail it and make them all get off.

novaculus on January 20, 2016 at 8:03 PM

And only one candidate running has targeted the entire Political Class. Gee, I wonder why he’s so massively ahead…

dominigan on January 21, 2016 at 12:27 PM

I am constantly reminded that the political class still doesn’t understand the Tea Party. You can be a Tea Party supporter and like both Trump and Cruz. The divide comes down to which one do you think will be most effective in fixing government and putting Americans first.

I would be extremely happy with either Trump or Cruz. If I had to guess, I think the heart of the Tea Party is with Cruz, but the brain is with Trump.

We love Cruz. He’s been with us the longest, fought the hardest, and is the most principled.

That said, I know Trump is going to get the most done, but I have to admit to myself that it might not always line up with what I think is the best result.

So, what do I do. Do I go for Cruz and get some of what I want or do I go for Trump and get a lot of what I want and some of what I don’t.

At the moment Trump is my guy because there is so much to do.

One caveat to what I said above… Cruz voted for TPP and Trump said it was a disaster. If that had gone the other way, then I’d have to re-think my entire position.

strickler on January 21, 2016 at 9:23 AM

Absolutely agree. The turning point for me was thinking through the next logical scenarios… what would happen if Cruz became President. What results should I expect? Unfortunately, I could only come up with “lame-duck” scenarios. We need RESULTS. And that’s when I realized that the only way we could get results would be to bring in someone who demonstrated the ability to command the media, bypassing their filters going straight to the American people, and smash the establishment politician’s control over the system. Insanity is doing the same thing over and over hoping for different results. I’ve decided to think outside the box, and do something other than the status quo insanity.

dominigan on January 21, 2016 at 12:31 PM

I was at the earliest Tea Party rallies, here in central Kansas. Supported candidates, donated, flew the Gadsden flag.

That’s long enough ago that the yellow has faded on my “Don’t Tread on Me” license plates.

I’ll still vote for the appropriate candidates. But since the election of BHO, I’ve been putting a lot more time and money into getting self sufficient. Farmland, backup power, stored food. And a great big pile of guns and ammo.

Still believe in liberty and the defeat of government tyranny? Sure do. Just want my bases covered when the ballot box loses its power.

Sure enough, I’m just a whacko bird. Probably just an isolated case. Nothing to worry about.

Demonized on January 21, 2016 at 4:01 PM