Posts Tagged ‘Tea Party’

Reports of the Tea Party’s Death Have Been Greatly Exaggerated

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

There have been a lot of wishful thinking thumbsucker pieces from liberal media outlets proclaiming that the Tea Party is done, finished, a spent force. (Here’s an example.)

And indeed, those looking only at some top-line races in Texas (like Katrina Pierson’s failed attempt to take down Pete Sessions) might find tend to agree.

However, a look at all the races (including many down-ballot) shows that the Tea Party is alive and well.

Start at Lt. Governor. Dan Patrick says he followed the Ted Cruz blueprint and leaned heavily on the Tea Party. “If you have a candidate who will work and at least enough resources to fund a statewide race then and you have the credentials, the tea party will bring you to victory.”

Texans for Fiscal Responsibility’s Michael Quinn Sullivan sees conservative victories up and down the ballot:

  • The most liberal Republican in the Texas Senate lost.
  • Conservative ranks in the Senate are swelling.
  • Every House conservative won re-election (with re-enforcements coming from the open-seat races).
  • House incumbents affiliated with Speaker Joe Straus lost big.
  • Statewide races saw the TFR-backed candidates earning commanding leads going into run-offs.
  • Sullivan goes on to cite Don Huffines defeating John Carona, Brooks Landgraf defeating Austin Keith, and the defeats of Straus allies Bennett Ratliff, Ralph Sheffield, Linda Harper-Brown, Diane Patrick and Lance Gooden.

    This AP piece touts Tea Party success in Texas, but is lamentably short on details.

    Even liberal fossil Paul Burka says that “If there was a clear winner in last night’s election, it was the tea party,” noting the defeats of Joe Straus allies Harper-Brown and Ratliff.

    So too at the national level. The enthusiastic response to Sarah Palin’s speech and other Tea Party favorites shows that the movement is far from dead.

    Which is not to say huge obstacles don’t remain. The Tea Party still hasn’t built up their financial networks enough to reliably take on big-money incumbents, and even in Texas, previous Tea Party gains were insufficient to wrest the Speakership from Straus (who just spent $2,578,942.72 to retain a job that pays $7,200 a year). But the Tea Party movement is still very much alive and kicking, much to the chagrin of RINOS, democrats and the media…

    David Barton to Primary Cornyn?

    Thursday, November 7th, 2013

    National Review is reporting that evangelical historian David Barton is considering a primary challenge to John Cornyn?

    Can he take out Cornyn?

    I don’t see it:

  • Barton is well known in evangelical circles, but not outside of them. Despite the endorsements of various Tea Party groups, I don’t see him playing well among fiscal conservative, business conservatives, or libertarian-leaning Republicans, and he can’t win the nomination without significant support from those groups.
  • Despite the media’s love of a good Republican primary fight, Barton has the profile of someone they would enjoy attacking a whole lot more. Imagine them dragging every “fundamentalist Dominionist” panic attack piece out of the closet.
  • Most historians, including many conservatives, have been extremely critical of Barton’s history. Greg Foster at First Things (hardly a hotbed of liberal thought), writes of a Barton piece on Locke that it “contains a number of incidental factual errors that don’t even advance his thesis, indicating that his inability to write reliable history stretches beyond ideological cheerleading and into outright incompetence.”
  • Barton strikes me as a figure that would be divisive among Republicans (much less among regular voters) for all the wrong reasons. He also strikes me as the only name floated as a possible Republican challenger to Cornyn who could actually lose to a Democrat in 2014.

    Update: A day late and a dollar short. Barton announced yesterday he’s not going to run. D’oh!

    LinkSwarm for October 21, 2013

    Saturday, October 19th, 2013

    Busy weekend, with lots of non-political stuff, so here’s last week’s LinkSwarm this week:

  • The Tea Party helped launch the shutdown because the GOP establishment failed so utterly to limit bloated government.
  • Well, that’s a scary chart. (Via Instapundit.)
  • Is ObamaCare increasing premiums in all 50 states? Nonsense! Only in 45.
  • “If you like your health insurance, you can keep it suck it when it’s cancelled due to ObamaCare.”
  • They’re tracking a huge amount of ObamaCare enrollment data over at
  • Number of people who have bought private insurance through ObamaCare in Oregon: 0. You’d think there would be more than that, what with the widespread dysentery and all…
  • Add New York doctors to those experiencing the Obamacare fail.
  • And the ObamaCare situation is worse than you thought.
  • Who won the shutdown? Ted Cruz.
  • Cruz wins Values Summit Presidential straw poll.
  • Also receives a warm welcome coming home to Texas. “After two months in Washington, it’s great to be back in America.”
  • Young people in Japan just can’t be bothered to have relationships or children. I wonder if any Guardian readers noticed that the declining birth rates in such a society must inevitably doom their European-style cradle-to-grave welfare states…
  • Missed this earlier: Australian University bans entire run of student newspaper for cartoon critical of Islam. (Indirectly via Popehat.)
  • Tea Party members have a better than average grasp on science. And of course, we all know liberals don’t understand debt…
  • Jews start leaving France.
  • Dilbert creator Scott Adams on success: “Goals are for losers.”
  • Heard a grapevine report that “the Austin American-Statesman has offered early retirement to 34 reporters and editors.” No linkable source yet.
  • The man who stole Christmas sentenced to prison.
  • Remembering the dark years of the Jennifer Plague.
  • A look at the strange goings-on of the Grambling football team. Honestly, unless the university is completely and utterly broke, it sounds like someone in the administration was embezzling funds and is now trying to cover their tracks…
  • U.S. does Mexico a solid in that game where you kick that round ball.
  • Can Anyone Successfully Primary John Cornyn?

    Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

    There’s been a lot of criticism of John Cornyn in Tea Party circles over his failure to back Ted Cruz in procedural votes on the ObamaCare defunding fight. Given that, the muttering over someone primarying Cornyn have grown much louder.

    Can anyone take Cornyn? It’s something of a tall order. He had some $6 million on hand as of the July reporting period, and any potential candidate will have a much latter start than Ted Cruz had when he beat David Dewhurst.

    I queried a few people more tied-in than I, and three names of possible Cornyn challengers came up:

  • U.S. Congressman Louis Gohmert was the most popular choice. Gohmert is a solid conservative, and Mark Levin has even put up a Draft Congressman Gohmert for U.S. Senate page on Facebook. The drawback is that Gohmert isn’t wealthy enough to self-fund, and his East Texas district puts him far away from the Houston and Metroplex fundraising pools that would be necessary to fund a statewide campaign.
  • U.S. Congressman Michael McCaul was a very close second. McCaul is widely considered to be “conservative enough” (and has an ACU rating of 91%) and with a personal fortune estimated to be around $300 million (his wife is the daughter of the founder of Clear Channel), he could clearly self-fund. McCaul was considering a Senate run in 2012, but ultimately opted against it.
  • Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Willet has also been mentioned as a possible candidate, and he’s well-respected among conservatives. But stepping from the Texas Supreme Court to the U.S. Senate is a tall order (Cornyn did it via a stint as Texas Attorney General), and Willet has joked about not being rich, so self-funding is probably out for him as well.
  • (Unmentioned by anyone, but someone who’s family connections would bring instant media coverage: George P. Bush. But name recognition and family connections only take you so far. Bush would go from an overwhelming favorite for Land Commissioner to a distinct underdog in a Senate race, plus there’s no guarantee he would be any more conservative than Cornyn. And Tea Party opinion of the Bush Dynasty is not exactly one of, shall we say, unrestrained affection.)

    It’s going to be a tall order to take out a sitting U.S. Senator, barring scandal or even more deviation from conservative principles. But of those mentioned, McCaul probably has the best shot to beat Cornyn.

    Cruz Filibuster Fallout

    Thursday, September 26th, 2013

    A roundup of reactions and fallout from Ted Cruz’s mammoth 21-hour anti-OabamCare speech effort:

  • The battle is joined:
    • There is new leadership in the GOP, whether the party wants to admit it or not: Cruz, Rand Paul, Mike Lee, Jeff Sessions

    • The popular reaction to Cruz will be immediate and noticeable; the more the old bulls carp, the more the public will rally to Cruz’s side.
    • conservatives understand that rather than form a third party, their only hope is to seize control of the corrupt, rotting hulk of the GOP.
    • The Cruz faction in the Senate, and its allies in the House (whose leadership is now up for grabs) must now press their advantage. The louder the Democrats squawk, the more they are wounded; the one thing they’ve long feared is a direct assault on their core beliefs as translated into actions, and the deleterious effects of Obamacare, just now being felt by the population, are the most vivid proof of the failure of Progressivism that conservatives could wish for.
    • There is no reason to think the Tea Party, if properly organized and harnessed, cannot be even more potent next year than it was in 2010, especially now that its members know the government really was out to get them.
  • “Ted Cruz spoke on the Senate floor for 21 hours for a simple purpose: to focus the eyes of Washington and the nation on the fact that Obamacare has failed.”
  • Cruz’s basic talking points.
  • The power of conviction.
  • Ted Cruz is making all the right enemies.
  • Four things Ted Cruz accomplished. “Cruz’s talkathon revealed that there was substance behind the sizzle that he represents to the Republican base.”
  • NY Rep. Peter King is furious that Ted Cruz has a spine.
  • “There is a real and genuine disconnect between grassroots conservatives and many in Washington.”
  • Chris Matthews compares Ted Cruz to Father Coughlin and Joe McCarthy.
  • The hypocritical difference between the media’s fawning coverage of Wendy Davis’ filibuster and Cruz’s.
  • The only reason young people would sign up for ObamaCare is if they suck at math.
  • Cracks in Democrat’s resolve are already appearing.
  • A complete transcript of Cruz’s filibuster.
  • Everyone know the real problem in Washington, D.C. is not that the debt limit is too low, it’s that government is too big and spends too much money that it doesn’t have, and meddles in things best left up to free citizens. Just as Ted Cruz did, we need to make those same points over and over again in the ongoing debt limit and ObamaCare battles, because we’re right.

    LinkSwarm for August 6, 2013

    Tuesday, August 6th, 2013

    Still catching up, so enjoy your complimentary LinKSwarm and beverage (minus the beverage):

  • No, the IRS did not target liberal groups like they targeted conservatives.
  • The scary truth about state and local debt.
  • The U.S. government has $70 trillion in unfunded liabilities. I don’t happen to agree with everything in that assessment (a situation in which the FDIC would actually have to make good on all $7 trillion in deposit guarantees would pretty much be tantamount to the complete collapse of civilization), but the rest is scary enough.
  • Powerline’s John Hindraker wonders what the Benghazi cover-up is really about. I still think the secret CIA interrogation center that David Petraeus’ mistress Paula Broadwell claims was there is a strong possibility.
  • Thanks to ObamaCare, insurance premiums will increase in most states.
  • How liberals managed to turn wealthy Connecticut into just another broke Blue State.
  • Obama’s Nixonian scandals just keep churning.
  • The Black Hole in China’s shadow banks
  • Washington Post to be sold to Jeff Bezos. But he wasn’t stupid enough to take over existing pension liabilities. Bezos seems to be a liberal, but isn’t an overly active donor for a billionaire.
  • “Coming this fall on Cinemax: Leathers and Slutbag! They both got nailed by the same slimeball, and now they’re out for justice! Democratic politician not paying you your promised hush money? Call Leathers & Slutbag!”
  • Tawana Brawley finally starts paying for her 1987 rape hoax.
  • Liberal race-hustler Rep. Charlie Rangel takes time out of his busy schedule of defrauding the American taxpayer to suggest Tea Partiers are the “same group” who fought for segregation during the Civil Rights movement. Hey, Rep. Rangel, you know what the name of the group that fought for segregation was? The Democratic Party.
  • Attorney general Greg Abbott nails Texas Planned Parenthood for Medicaid fraud In fact, it was $4.3 million worth of fraud. More from Holly Hansen.
  • More show trails in Turkey.
  • Advocates of “green” energy cronyism seem to have found some Tea Party patsies.
  • On the differences between Austin and Texas.
  • Ace of Spades offers up an epic takedown of movie critic Andrew O’Hehir. “The man masturbates stupid and ejaculates embarrassment.”
  • And then does the same on Amanda Marcotte’s theory that men men hate sex and only use it to procreate.
  • Liberals get firebrand Twitter Gulag Defense Network founder Todd Kincannon’s Twitter account suspended. For all of two days.

  • Heh:
  • The Liberal Myth of Equal IRS Scrutiny

    Thursday, June 27th, 2013

    If you have liberal friends on Facebook or Twitter, you’ve probably seen links to this Salon piece claiming that the whole IRS scandal is a “fiction” because the IRS targeted liberal groups just as much.

    There’s only one tiny, eensy weensy problem with this theory: It isn’t true.

    Obama’s Treasury Department itself now admits liberal groups weren’t targeted like conservatives were.

    A total of 6 “progressive” groups received any level of scrutiny at all. Number of Tea party groups? 292. “Our audit found that 100 percent of the tax-exempt applications with Tea Party, Patriots, or 9/12 in their names were processed as potential political cases during the timeframe of our audit.”

    (Hat tip: Ace of Spades.)

    Another Day, Another Obama Scandal

    Wednesday, May 15th, 2013

    I’ve been joking on Twitter that Tea Party membership would count against people during their death panel hearings. Now comes word that the IRS illegally seized some 60 million medical records from over 10 million people in California, and suddenly the joke isn’t so funny anymore. (Hat tip: Ace of Spades.)

    So we have a powerful and feared government agency, the IRS, which has admitted to targeting Obama’s political opponents, now being accused of illegally seizing confidential medical records. I’m sure there’s no way the information in those records (which included “included psychological counseling, gynecological counseling, sexual/drug treatment”) could possibly be used against Obama’s political opponents. (You know, like sealed divorce records.)

    Funny how often supposedly confidential information just magically appears in the hands of Obama Administration bureaucrats. Like those AP phone records. It just happens, like the waxing of a pestilence.

    So what’s next in the hopper of scandal? Or we going to find out the NSA has been monitoring all telephone conversations in America and providing the records directly to the DNC?

    Stay tuned…

    Paul Burka Discusses Ted Cruz, and Proves (Yet Again) He Doesn’t Understand Conservatives

    Monday, December 3rd, 2012

    So Paul Burka noticed that Senator-elect Ted Cruz picked conservative Chip Roy as his Chief of Staff.

    Sayeth Burka:

    What I find revealing about the choice of Roy is that Cruz–who has been making noise as a potential contender for the White House in 2016–appears to be putting his chips on the tea party as the future of the Republican party. In doing so, he is aligning himself with insurgents like Rand Paul and, of course, the chief insurgent, Jim DeMint, who helped fund Cruz’s Senate race.

    Is this a good bet? I’m dubious. The tea party has a lot in common with the old Ross Perot “United We Stand” bunch. These groups seldom have staying power. Granted, the Kochs’ involvement makes the tea party’s survival more likely, at least in the short run, but in the establishment almost always prevails. It may prove to be the case, though, that Cruz is so appealing that he can transcend the factionalism in the Republican party. The strength of the Republican field in 2016 is that it is filled with big names: Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio, Chris Christie, Mitch Daniels, Bobby Jindal, Paul Ryan, Rick Santorum, and Mike Huckabee. Only Rubio and Cruz qualify as fresh faces, though, and that might be where the rank-and-file look first.

    Wait, let me get this straight: A conservative Republican Senator-elect, who worked at a conservative think tank, ran as a conservative, courted conservatives, and beat the overwhelming favorite establishment candidate while pledging to govern as a conservative, has now chosen…a conservative chief of staff?

    Sadly, Burka misunderstanding conservatives is nothing new. The idea that conservatives truly believe in low taxes, balanced budgets, and limited government seems entirely alien to Burka. When it comes to describing inter-Republican-Party dynamics, he’s like a color-blind man trying to describe The Wizard of Oz.

    And so instead of reaching the obvious conclusion, that Ted Cruz chose a conservative chief of staff because he’s a conservative, Burka prefers to envision imaginary 2016 horse-race jockeying.

    I could try to explain to Burka exactly why the Tea Party exists and what it wants, but I fear it would be like trying to teach the fundamentals of optics to a dog.

    BattleSwarm Blog Endorses Ted Cruz For United States Senator

    Sunday, October 21st, 2012

    Lawrence Person’s BattleSwarm Blog endorses Ted Cruz for United States Senator. I believe that Cruz is the best candidate, that he has a long, strong, and deep commitment to conservative principles, and that he will make a great Senator for Texas.

    I originally endorsed Cruz on April 30, a month before the Republican primary, and gave extended reasons why Cruz was the best candidate of all those running in the Republican primary, weighing the strengths and weaknesses of each. This post reiterates that endorsement, and explains why Ted Cruz is a vastly superior choice for Senator than Democrat Paul Sadler.

    Sadler had a reputation as a “moderate” Democrat in the Texas House, which meant he wanted government to get bigger and spend more at a slightly slower rate than his fellow Democrats, and was reportedly a skilled legislator on education issues. But I don’t want a “skilled legislator,” I want a conservative fighter. I want someone to fight for shrinking the size and scope of the federal government and reign in the insanely bloated federal spending that’s holding down the economy, not manage the bloat. There are quite enough Democrats in Congress who pretend to be moderate until the votes really count (see also: ObamaCare); we don’t need another one.

    Like his party, Sadler has moved steadily left over the years. After failing to win a U.S. House seat, Sadler worked first as an asbestos trial lawyer, and then as head of a Texas wind power coalition putting him in not one but two of the biggest recipient groups for liberal big government crony capitalism largess. This suggests that he would try to roll back tort reform and would make a very poor representative for Texas’ vital oil and gas industry.

    Further, given the positions Sadler has taken in interviews and debates, there seems to be very little of that old “moderate” patina left on him. He’s for higher taxes, bigger government, green pork, public employee unions, illegal alien amnesty, and ObamaCare. He’d fit right in among the big spenders in a Harry Reid-led Senate.

    By contrast, Ted Cruz is not only the unquestioned Tea Party representative for shrinking big government, he has a broad, deep and impressive conservative background. You don’t specialize in 9th and 10th Amendment studies because you want to be rich, and you don’t work at the Texas Public Policy Foundation if you want to be a squishy moderate. Cruz is not only exceptionally sharp, an excellent debater and a gifted public speaker, he’s also a classic fusionist candidate with both strong free market and social conservative credentials. He beat all his Republican opponents despite millions spent to smear him and came out of the runoff not only unscathed, but with a national reputation. He was a great Texas Solicitor General, and I think he will make a great Senator. I urge all my Texas readers to cast their votes for him as the next United States Senator from Texas.