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Does GOP really no longer need Tea Party energy and activism?

Does GOP really no longer need Tea Party energy and activism?

“Too bad he doesn’t have so much ire for Democrats.”

When I helped co-found a San Diego Tea Party group in 2009, one of our biggest action items was battling against Obamacare.

Our members dialed Congress relentlessly, believing our representatives might weigh the will of the people.  What ever delusions I had about that concept utterly vanished when then Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi paraded through a Tea Party rally by the Capitol with her big gavel.

As for Obamacare passage, that’s history, courtesy of congressional Democrats — and reports on the new law’s progress show that it is an even larger failure than we originally projected.

So, imagine our opinion of of the Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner when he gave Pelosi a big kiss and a warm hug—especially since he holds that position courtesy of the hard work of Tea Party members across the country.

Karen Beseth, aka “Lonely Conservative”, is less than impressed about one of first actions taken by Boehner upon resuming his duties: He booted boot two of the insurgent congressmen from the influential Rules Committee.

Too bad he doesn’t have so much ire for Democrats.

However, it seems that all the calls protesting the automatic choice of Boehner as Speaker may still have had an impact.

It wasn’t the Republican votes against House Speaker John Boehner that truly rattled the GOP leadership, it was the phone calls.

There were hundreds of them, jamming the phone lines of the district and Capitol offices of dozens of House GOP lawmakers.

The callers were not angry about legislation. Nor were they asking for help with a local matter. They were demanding their representative vote against Boehner Tuesday in his bid to win election to a third term as speaker.

For the GOP leadership, the flood of calls was a game changer. It thrusted the leadership into triage mode as it scrambled to heal the growing rift among House Republicans.

“We’ve never been lobbied quite like that,” House Rules Committee Chairman Pete Sessions, R-Texas, told the Washington Examiner on Wednesday. “We yesterday began a new era of circumstances, and one is that we have members who are going to solicit the outside in ways that they have not previously.”

The Republican leadership is about to make the unpleasant discovery that motivated Americans have not deleted their phone numbers and email addresses just because the GOP has control of both the House and Senate. Californian Karen Siegemund spearheads Rage Against the Media, which focuses on challenging the current media templates. Her plans are to keep the heat on the Republicans just as high, if not higher than it was on the Democrats:

What we have to do, I think, is remind our reps that the anger out here is very, very real. But if they do stand up for conservative principles, we will support them. What we have to do is keep up the pressure, to let them know we are watching, and that we support them as they help Boehner be the Speaker we need.

Of course, when it is time for the next election, the Republicans will, once again, ask for Tea Party money and its grassroots activism. But if this is how Speaker Boehner plans to proceed, when 2016 rolls around, Republican leaders may find themselves without the help of those who opposed the status quo.

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Comments

Of course, when it is time for the next election, the Republicans will, once again, ask for Tea Party money and its grassroots activism.

I, for one, won’t be fooled again. No support. No enthusiasm. And most important of all, no $$$.

    Not A Member of Any Organized Political in reply to walls. | January 9, 2015 at 1:29 pm

    Let the GOPpers find out to their extinction as a political party – that they now are nothing without the “Parti Te!”

    ConradCA in reply to walls. | January 9, 2015 at 3:47 pm

    I left the Republican party because they surrendered to the progressive fascists and Tyrant Obama the Liar. He shut down the government and they surrendered.

    ConradCA in reply to walls. | January 9, 2015 at 3:48 pm

    We should donate our money and enthusiasm to helping a Tea Party challenger defeat Boehner the Surrender Monkey in his next primary.

    areaman2014 in reply to walls. | January 11, 2015 at 11:47 am

    Only thing the RNC has gotten from me lately is a dial tone!

No offense, but nobody campaigns for Boehner. People campaign for their local candidate. Exactly how do you propose to turn up the heat on Boehner in 2016? What did you leave on the table in 2014/15 in trying to get him unelected from speaker? I’m not saying you can’t do a lot better in 2016, but if you’re going to up your game, you can’t wait until 2016. Boehner is going to be emboldened by the fact that we couldn’t even force a second vote. He’s going to feel like he has a mandate to go on as he has been going. His inevitability is only going to be strengthened in 2016 unless people act intelligently and energetically to weaken it.

Anyway, not denigrating your efforts or those of others in the Tea Party. Just saying that, unless you have a real plan, nothing will change from 2014 to 2016.

    Henry Hawkins in reply to Immolate. | January 9, 2015 at 12:18 pm

    If I may use a sports analogy, the wins a team enjoys are the result of what was learned from losses. No team, and no socio-political movement like the Tea Party begins in perfection. The goal is progress, not perfection. The goal is getting better at what you do, not refusing to try unless guaranteed a victory beforehand.

    You’re not denigrating TP-ers’ efforts, but you declare we have no plan. Your ignorance of the plan doesn’t negate its existence. The TPs – and more importantly, the pervasive growth in numbers of people who hold the same TP values, but don’t go to the meetings or events – have made consistent, solid progress since inception. The number of votes against Boehner fell short, 25 of 29 needed, but that’s more than double the last vote. Perfection, hardly. Progress, definitely. Each cycle, the TP is helping put more and more conservative candidates in office. Perhaps you only see the federal picture. If so, check out what’s been accomplished on the state and local levels by TP actions and assistance. Also, check out declining GOP registered voter lists. This is anecdotal, perhaps peculiar to my location, but in our Tea Party org I’d estimate half the members are former GOP members who changed to Unaffiliated (the term used in NC) which is essentially ‘independent’. There are many, many vectors for exerting pressure on the likes of John Boehner.

    So, Henry… what’s The Real Plan then?

    Oh, hell no. If you want to know the various ‘real’ TP plans for between now and 2016, go join your local TP and find out.

      Immolate in reply to Henry Hawkins. | January 9, 2015 at 12:57 pm

      No thank you. I believe in the principles that founded this country and I teach them to my children and those I encounter in my life, but I believe that my time and money is best dedicated to God and getting the lost under the sound of the Gospel. Perhaps the Tea Party will become a weapon God uses to reassert His will in the United States, or perhaps they will become a footnote in our eventual fate. I figure as long as I’m doing His will, I don’t need to question my priorities. I do wish you well, however, in your quest to light a fire of accountability under our government.

      Philippians 4:8-9
      Finally, brethren,
      whatsoever things are true,
      whatsoever things are honest,
      whatsoever things are just,
      whatsoever things are pure,
      whatsoever things are lovely,
      whatsoever things are of good report;
      if there be any virtue,
      and if there be any praise,
      think on these things.
      Those things, which ye have both learned,
      and received, and heard, and seen in me, do:
      and the God of peace shall be with you.

        platypus in reply to Immolate. | January 9, 2015 at 1:36 pm

        So you are Bible motivated? Good for you. But don’t assume that because you don’t see it means it isn’t there.

        Try Ezekiel 37. What part of that vision fails to describe the birth of the tea party? Pay particular attention to verse 8.

        As the Messiah said, let he who has ears to hear, let him hear. Take the plunge my friend – believe that this whole uprising is ordained by God Almighty. Once you see it that way, lots of stuff becomes clear.

          Immolate in reply to platypus. | January 9, 2015 at 3:27 pm

          Like most broad-spectrum conservatives, I had the “vision” of the Tea Party before there was a Tea Party. Limited government; personal responsibility; limited regulation; personal liberty; integrity in government, etc. Nobody has to sell me on their ideological agenda. Their political agenda is no real concern to me since I’m not a part of their organization, such as it is, and I will tend to vote alongside them to the extent that our ideological goals align.

          I don’t think it’s a Tea Party thing to be fed up with Boehner. I think it’s a conservative thing. I’d like to see him replaced, but I couldn’t convince my rep to vote against him, and I’m not about to toss my rep over this one thing considering the purplish hue of my district, and considering that he votes conservative 19 times out of 20. I’m not sure what we can do to improve our chances to replace him in 2016. Perhaps have a credible candidate who actually wants to do it? I do think that those who believe that we were “this close” to forcing a second vote this time around and that that improves our chances next time are discounting a lot of variables. It takes revolution to change the status quo, not evolution. That means a new and unexpected strategy next time, not just more of what was done last time. We’ll see.

        Henry Hawkins in reply to Immolate. | January 9, 2015 at 1:50 pm

        Wow. This post is completely different than the one I responded to, where you (somewhat) condescendingly counsel the Tea Party on what they ought to do and/or can’t do while simultaneously revealing you haven’t much of a clue as to what the Tea Party has and continues to achieve.

        I am wholly ignorant of things religious and have no idea how to respond, so I’ll try to post quotes from holy books too:

        मानव शरीर भगवान का मंदिर है।
        भीतर जागरूकता का प्रकाश kindles जो
        सच प्रकाश हो जाता है।
        अपने भीतर के मंदिर के पवित्र लौ
        लगातार उज्ज्वल है।
        एकता का अनुभव
        मानव प्रयासों की पूर्ति है ।
        जीवन के रहस्यों को उजागर कर रहे हैं

        Record how it felt to see the above text. That’s how it feels when someone lodges a political criticism, is respectfully challenged, and responds with biblical citations.

          Immolate in reply to Henry Hawkins. | January 9, 2015 at 3:00 pm

          Okay, we’re really just talking past each other at this point. I responded to an article about how the TP was really going to sock it to Boehner next time if he doesn’t watch out with advice that next time is too late to influence Boehner’s behavior–do it now. You responded to me with “we do have a plan and if you don’t know it, you should join the TP to find out what it is.” I declined the invitation for faith reasons, and wished you the best of luck, and sought to inspire you with scripture that was appropriate to my sincere wish.

          It sounds like you took it for some sort of rebuke, strangely. I think the TP is fighting for the things in that Bible verse, and I hope they achieve them. But I have other priorities. Don’t be so eager to find offense with those who support your cause, even if they don’t join it.

          Oh and all that random gobbledegook, was that some kind of snarky dig at Christianity? I’m just wondering if I should be offended or not, so I can get to it.

          gregjgrose in reply to Henry Hawkins. | January 9, 2015 at 3:02 pm

          >> … I am wholly ignorant of things religious and have no idea how to respond …

          Allow me. When he says I believe that my time and money is best dedicated to God and getting the lost under the sound of the Gospel, you say, “Then why are you wasting time here?”

          Immolate in reply to Henry Hawkins. | January 9, 2015 at 3:31 pm

          Does commenting on blogs during the work day preclude evangelizing?

        jayjerome66 in reply to Immolate. | January 10, 2015 at 12:14 pm

        “Perhaps the Tea Party will become a weapon God uses to reassert His will in the United States”

        What? God-the-All-Powerful needs a minor wing of a political party to reassert his will in the US? Why would a Supreme Being need help asserting his will? Couldn’t he just snap his fingers and make it happen?

      The number of votes against Boehner fell short, 25 of 29 needed, but that’s more than double the last vote. Perfection, hardly. Progress, definitely.

      Progress? Really? This isn’t progress. Rather, it is a painful reminder that many Republican officeholders who claim they support Tea Party goals can talk the talk 24/7, but won’t walk the walk (my own representative is one of them).

      Immolate made a good point: some Tea Party folks don’t see to have much of a plan. As far as I can tell they are willing to settle for working within the system and help elect Republicans no matter how lousy they are. That is their choice, but they should not be surprised if the “lesser of two evils” ends up being indistinguishable from Democrats (Arlen Specter and Charlie Crist anyone?).

      As a Tea Party independent I have come to an unalterable conclusion: the GOP ain’t my ally. Twenty-five votes is not a lot to show for after six years of the obvious failures of Obama and his GOP enablers. If you want my preferred plan (long shot as it is), here it is: a third political party. The Democrat Party is insane, and Boehner is Pelosi with an orange hue and a nicotine habit. Isn’t it time to try something other than propping up the brain-dead GOP?

        Henry Hawkins in reply to Recovering Lutheran. | January 9, 2015 at 3:45 pm

        “Immolate made a good point: some Tea Party folks don’t see to have much of a plan. As far as I can tell they are willing to settle for working within the system and help elect Republicans no matter how lousy they are. That is their choice, but they should not be surprised if the “lesser of two evils” ends up being indistinguishable from Democrats (Arlen Specter and Charlie Crist anyone?).”

        A smaller paint brush please. WHICH Tea Party folks have given you this impression? You’ve started there are some. Who are they?

NC Mountain Girl | January 9, 2015 at 12:21 pm

The Republican House caucus right now is a lot like the MLB team with a lot of great talent in AAA ball. Boehner is the career utility man who through a string of setbacks by the team (the 2006 and 2008 elections) has a place in the starting lineup. But that’s only until the young talent is ready for the majors. It helps if one looks at organizational dynamics rather than seeing everything in terms of ideology. At 435 members the House is an unwieldy sized organization to manage. It takes a couple of terms for any newcomer to get to know everyone well enough that to be able to convince any 217 of them to agree on something.

I expect the campaign for who will lead the House Republicans in 2017 has already begun. Indeed, what has been happening reminds me a lot of the long battle between Bob Michel and House newcomers in the early 1990s. Michel saw the handwriting on the wall and resigned before he got kicked to the curb.

“Does GOP really no longer need Tea Party energy and activism?”

See, from my POV that isn’t really the proper question.

In my own little district here in Texas, the question is…and WILL BE…how is the eGOP going to resist TEA party energy and activism?

Kevin Brady WILL be challenged HARD in a primary if I and others like me have anything to do with it. And finding a better candidate than that mediocrity will NOT be hard.

    platypus in reply to Ragspierre. | January 9, 2015 at 1:43 pm

    Finding a better candidate might be easy. Just follow Buckley’s quip about the first 100 names in the Boston phonebook. Just make sure it’s a local phone book. 🙂

    audax in reply to Ragspierre. | January 9, 2015 at 5:11 pm

    Brady was my Congress Critter too when I lived at Champion Ravenaeux. Your right he is a mediocrity! Now Culberson in T-7 is my Congress Critter and needs a good primary opponent too! Texas can do better than these two very mediocre spineless, ball-less poofs!

In other news, the House just approved the Keystone XL Pipeline.

    redc1c4 in reply to snopercod. | January 9, 2015 at 3:04 pm

    sound & fury, signifying nothing: Obola will veto the bill, and Congress will not override.

    nor will the MFM cover the story, let alone allow it to be remembered in 2016.

    kabuki government

Given a choice between having a large Tea Party influence in the GOP (with corresponding pressure to cut spending rather than increase it) and losing elections to Democrats, the lefty GOP Establishment prefers the latter.

Besides: the GOP Establishment will blame all losses (regardless of the candidates) on the Tea Party.

    Not A Member of Any Organized Political in reply to Recovering Lutheran. | January 9, 2015 at 1:32 pm

    RE: “Given a choice between having a large Tea Party influence in the GOP (with corresponding pressure to cut spending rather than increase it) and losing elections to Democrats, the lefty GOP Establishment prefers the latter.”

    Clearly.

    They still hope to get themselves elected individually so they can suck at the teet of the public taxpayer in ever greater amounts.

    Henry Hawkins in reply to Recovering Lutheran. | January 9, 2015 at 1:52 pm

    Exactly so. Any plan to lessen the flow of taxpayer money through the federal government troughs will face resistance from those feeding at said troughs.

we need a concerted effort, to either primary Boner out, or, failing that, support his opponent, regardless of party, in November, so he is no longer in office. this should be the #1 focus of Tea Party members & organizations nationwide.

better to lose that seat than keep him in DC.

They may be fooled before even then, especially with the retaliation from Boner. 25 members is enough to cause a significant problem for him in the next year and if the retaliation continues that number will grow.

The Tea party needs to seize the day and pass legislation to make every state a shall issue concealed carry licenses. This would create a civilian militia to fight terrorism and crime. Where criminals and terrorists will not be able operate without encountering numerous armed civilians. Furthermore, bearing arms is a civil right.

    Henry Hawkins in reply to ConradCA. | January 9, 2015 at 3:55 pm

    The ‘Tea Party’ is not a political party and cannot pass legislation. Their support and assistance is helping certain candidates and certain policies and/or bills. Protecting 2nd Amendment rights is a big part of that.

    All might note that, like all political movements, a certain (small) number of ‘Tea Party’ orgs have backslid on principles for various reasons, sort of like how Green Peace and PETA began with good intentions and got sidetracked from within by uberliberals. Any sufficiently large political movement will have its Westboro chapter here and there.

    Better to think of ‘Tea Party’ as a set of principles upon which a set of political aspirations are built: balanced budget, follow the Constitution, etc. The number of ‘official’ TP members is one number. The number of voters who sympathize with and share these principles is far, far larger, and that is what is producing ‘Tea Party’ victors and victories.

So, there should be no consequences for the rebels?

Boehner let it go last time. Good for him. Make sure people understand there are consequences. That’s life. No free rides.

You were had by a show. The conference UNANIMOUSLY voted Boehner Speaker in the caucus meeting for the new Congress in November, including your “heroes” Gohmert and Yoho. As Mulvaney pointed out, that’s why he wasn’t part of it this time, it’s just a show for the rubes.

And the rubes loved it, as usual. Ate it up like Rainbow Stew.

Suckers. Now go write out a check to Christine O’Donnell, she’s running low on cash again.

    wendybar in reply to Estragon. | January 9, 2015 at 5:12 pm

    You keep on believing Boehner. Run along and send your check to him, so that he can turn it over to Comrade Obama. You talk about being a rube???!!!!

Subotai Bahadur | January 9, 2015 at 4:08 pm

Does GOP really no longer need Tea Party energy and activism?

They certainly seem to feel that way. And what they believe they need or do not need actually is no longer the point under discussion. The real question is, do they have a snowballs chance in hell of ever getting it. What I want to see happen is the foundation of Committees of Correspondence linking TEA Party groups and leading possibly to a SECOND Party. There is no reason to be involved with the Republicans any more.

The Republicans will go the way of the Whigs. Fine. I expect most of them to become Democrats. Also fine. We will at least know which side they really are, and always have been, on.

Will it mean Democrat victories if we still have elections [that in itself is a very questionable point now that both major parties have accepted the principle that a Democrat president has the power to rule by decree]? Yes. But we have just had an object lesson that a Republican wave election victory means that the Republicans will give the Democrats everything they want in direct contravention of the Constitution and their promises to their voters.

If there is no longer a “lesser of two evils”, why ally with either? If we must fight, let it be under the banner of a defiant rattlesnake instead of a flag of a donkey humping an elephant.

And if electoral politics do become moot, a clear separation will be . . . . appropriate.

    Henry Hawkins in reply to Subotai Bahadur. | January 9, 2015 at 5:33 pm

    The GOP has merely decided it’s easier to move left and capture enough independents to form a majority than it is to keep their own conservative base. One path means hard stuff like raising gas taxes, funding Obamacare, and caving on immigration reform (the ‘secure the border first’ requirement is GONE from the GOP). The other path means balancing the budget, cutting spending, killing Obamacare, and securing our southern border, among other things, and the GOP wants nothing to do with any of that, lol.

Headline: “Nancy Pelosi hugs speaker, gets Boehner.”

Well…. saying it out loud is funnier.

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