The Daily Beast, a publication that ran stories at the beginning of 2012 about the demise of the Tea Party, has conceded the Tea Party is far from dead and has actually come “roaring back” after the 2012 elections.
David Freedlander wrote in the publication, which also recently harassed private citizens who donated to Sarah Palin’s political action committee, that the movement the mainstream media wrote off and the Republican establishment tried to get rid of is actually having a resurgence.
As evidence, he cites Texas Attorney General and Republican gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott, who “once described his daily routine as going into the office, suing Barack Obama, and then calling it a day.” Freedlander notes Abbott has “sued the federal government 27 times in all” and a sign at his campaign announcement read, “Fast cars, firearms, and freedom–Endorsed by Greg Abbott.”
Freedlander mentions Republican Virginia Attorney General and gubernatorial candidate Ken Cuccinelli and Tom Emmer, who is the frontrunner to replace Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) in Congress.
He notes the popularity of Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), much to the chagrin of “Republican bigwigs decided that they would need to do something to prevent” the Tea Party and conservatives from “hijacking the primary process.”
As former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin, who moves Tea Party voters more than any other politician in primaries, has repeatedly said, the Tea Party, as Freedlander observes, is a movement “not without precedence on the American political landscape” from both sides.
“In the mid-1990s H. Ross Perot ignited a wave of tired-of-the-same-old-politics voters with his Reform Party,” he writes. “Ralph Nader and the Green Party enjoyed some momentary momentum at the end of the Clinton era.”
Freelander notes that “establishment figures” he interviewed for his article refused to concede that the Tea Party will take over the Republican Party but could not, as they did after 2012, predict the movement’s demise in light of its recent surge.
“None of the establishment figures interviewed for this article thought that the Tea Party would become a permanent part of the Republican Party,” Freelander wrote. “It is too old, too white in a young and diverse country. But few were willing to predict when the demise would ultimately come.”
In his article, Freedlander also observes that the Tea Party movement grew out of the “conservative disappointment with the George W. Bush administration” on policies like No Child Left Behind and TARP, in addition to President Barack Obama’s wasteful spending, stimulus, Obamacare, and bank bailouts.
Freedlander notes that the Tea Party’s ultimate appeal is due to the fact that Tea Party conservatives do not see a difference between Republicans and Democrats in the permanent political class and view supporters as underdogs “punching above” their weight class.