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News & Politics News & Politics

Americans favor Tea Party principles over progressive ideas by 2-to-1 margin

Posted by on Mar. 7, 2013 at 8:44 PM
  • 82 Replies

4:11 PM 03/07/2013

Todd Cefaratti


The left has never really known what to do with the Tea Party. In the beginning of our movement, the left was quick to deny the very existence of our grassroots efforts, calling it “Astroturf” — the product of evil, corporate interests that, somehow, were financing every handmade sign being waved across the country.

The problem was, that narrative never really stuck. How could it? You can only blame the Koch brothers for so long. But just as quickly as liberals had jumped to deny our existence as a movement, they jumped to the other extreme — that there once was a Tea Party movement, but it is, essentially, no more.

And yet, whenever liberals are dealt a defeat, they blame it on the Tea Party.

Liberals bounce back and forth between dismissing our efficacy and blaming us for our role in thwarting their agenda. Recently, former Secretary of Labor Robert Reich discussed at length a supposed Tea Party conspiracy to “eviscerate the U.S. government.” Calling Tea Partiers “plotters” in a conspiracy to “dismantle pieces of [the government],” Reich discussed the far-reaching impact of the movement. While I appreciated the message of, “Watch out, they’re coming,” in truth, the piece made me laugh.

It turns out that while Reich seems to look under his bed each night, fearing he might find a Gadsden flag-waving patriot, he and other liberals are right to worry; the Tea Party is very much alive and kicking and the numbers show as much.

In a recent survey done by NSON Opinion Strategy, Inc., a non-partisan marketing and political polling agency, Americans identified with the Tea Party principles of limited government, free markets and personal responsibility by a margin of 2-to-1 over the progressive principles of big government, higher taxes, more spending, more regulations and more government programs.

In the poll, 47.8% of respondents identified with “Tea Party principles” while 20.6% of respondents identified with “progressive principles.” Another 22.8% responded “Neither/Other/Somewhere in the middle” and 8.8% responded “Don’t know.” The poll did not ask for respondents’ party affiliations, but it did identify their genders and geographic locations. The poll has a margin of error of 4.38%.

In the wake of the November elections, liberals were eager to spread the narrative that the Tea Party was dead, that our message of limited government and fiscal responsibility no longer resonated with Americans. But it turns out that half of America subscribes to those Tea Party ideas.

In January, Rasmussen found that only eight percent of Americans identify as Tea Party members. The poll got a lot of attention in the media. But it’s a misleading result. The question Rasmussen asked implied that in order to be a Tea Partier, one must be an activist, someone who dedicates her weekends to protests and is a card-carrying member of an organization. But the Tea Party is a movement, not a political party. If someone believes in constitutionally limited government and free markets, then they believe in the core tenets of the Tea Party. They may “identify” as whatever they like. They may claim to be “conservative,” “libertarian” or “Republican”— the important thing is that Americans value these vital principles.

Recently, Scottie Nell Hughes discussed the left’s relationship with the Tea Party with Media Research Center President Brent Bozell. Discussing the media’s portrayal of the movement, Bozell noted:

“I’ll tell you how the media look at any conservative organization. It begins by ignoring them. And if you can make them go away that way, you’re done. If that doesn’t work, you go to phase two, which is to ridicule them. And if that doesn’t work, you go to phase three, which is to try to destroy them. And if that doesn’t work, then you’re at phase four, where you have to accept the reality that they’re there.”

Bozell is right. The Tea Party was ignored by the media at first as the leftist mouthpieces on the nightly news hoped that it would quickly fade. It didn’t. Then came the “tea-bagger” jokes and ridicule. That didn’t stick. They then tried to destroy it by accusing its supporters of racism — an old trick from the liberal handbook. We’re “racists,” we’re “obstructionists” and now — apparently — we’re covert agents looking to take down the government.

Liberals can call us whatever they want, but we prefer the term “principled.” We support candidates who support the Constitution — what is so threatening about that? We support our elected leaders doing what’s right. We support people like Rand Paul, who on Wednesday gave an old-school, all-day filibuster, preaching the value of freedom and chastising the government for believing it has the legal right to execute American citizens without due process. The left can attack our message, but we’re not going anywhere.

Americans support our core principles over so-called “progressive” principles by a 2-to-1 margin. This is an inconvenient reality for liberals, who have dedicated so much time, money and energy to demonizing our movement. At what point will they finally accept that we’re here to stay?

by on Mar. 7, 2013 at 8:44 PM
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Replies (1-10):
SallyMJ
by Ruby Member on Mar. 7, 2013 at 8:48 PM
1 mom liked this

Interesting. Discuss the principles, not just the name of the movement.

I don't consider myself a Tea Party "member" either - but I think they have some really good principles on fiscal restraint and smaller government.

Friday
by Platinum Member on Mar. 7, 2013 at 8:58 PM
6 moms liked this

Liberals this, Liberals that, Liberals the other thing'. Just more meaningless generalizations meant to put people in boxes that they don't actually fit in. SSDD.

I'm for limited govt, fiscal and personal responsibility and a market with reasonable regulations. This Liberal liked the Tea Party in the beginning but isn't sure what all they stand for now. Limited govt, except for individuals personal lives, seems a contradiction to me. Too many who identified as Tea Party seem to obsess over social issues over fiscal. I also think that absolutely refusing to ever compromise as some TP people seem to support, is irresponsible governing.

Even so, I prefer not to throw around insulting generalizations at Rep/Con/TP people as some love to do with Dem/Libs, while whining about how mean Dem/Libs are.

 


Thank God......it's Friday!!!

gsprofval
by Gold Member on Mar. 7, 2013 at 9:06 PM
1 mom liked this

This is what matters:

"We support candidates who support the Constitution — what is so threatening about that? We support our elected leaders doing what’s right. We support people like Rand Paul, who on Wednesday gave an old-school, all-day filibuster, preaching the value of freedom and chastising the government for believing it has the legal right to execute American citizens without due process."

Sisteract
by Socialist Hippie on Mar. 7, 2013 at 9:28 PM
1 mom liked this

The Rs need to learn how to pick and cultivate better candidates-

Election results seem to say something different.

SallyMJ
by Ruby Member on Mar. 7, 2013 at 10:21 PM

BUMP!

joey125
by Silver Member on Mar. 7, 2013 at 11:03 PM

Rand Paul said some crazy s*it, all we need is more paranoid people in this country.   I think the drone program should be debated , no question, but to put this type of nonsense in people s minds is just dangerous and stupid. 

SallyMJ
by Ruby Member on Mar. 7, 2013 at 11:11 PM
3 moms liked this

And what do you consider "crazy $hit"?

Returning $500,000 not spent in his budget to the IRS every year?

Insisting that the president abide by the Constitution in conducting drone strikes on US citizens in and out of the US, with no oversight?

Emphasizing cutting increases to spending items?

Those all seem pretty sensible to me.

Maybe there is another policy you have in mind?


Quoting joey125:

Rand Paul said some crazy s*it, all we need is more paranoid people in this country.   I think the drone program should be debated , no question, but to put this type of nonsense in people s minds is just dangerous and stupid. 



SallyMJ
by Ruby Member on Mar. 8, 2013 at 12:11 AM
1 mom liked this

Actually Tea Party principals involve fiscal issues and small government - which is not what the media says.

So, you may actually have similar views.

Of course everyone has a view on other things - but those are not part of Tea Party principles. They take no stand on them.

There is a wide variance of Tea Party folks on social issues - because social issues are not Tea Party principles.  Lots of fiscal conservatives / social liberals.

That's why members of the public involved in Tea Party activities cross party lines - even though there are moreconservatives - because conservatives tend to more often have these perspectives on fiscal and government matters.

I, like most conservatives, don't consider myself a Tea Parthy "members" - because it is not a party, just principles.

But I think they have some really good fiscal and government ideas.  


Quoting Friday:

Liberals this, Liberals that, Liberals the other thing'. Just more meaningless generalizations meant to put people in boxes that they don't actually fit in. SSDD.

I'm for limited govt, fiscal and personal responsibility and a market with reasonable regulations. This Liberal liked the Tea Party in the beginning but isn't sure what all they stand for now. Limited govt, except for individuals personal lives, seems a contradiction to me. Too many who identified as Tea Party seem to obsess over social issues over fiscal. I also think that absolutely refusing to ever compromise as some TP people seem to support, is irresponsible governing.

Even so, I prefer not to throw around insulting generalizations at Rep/Con/TP people as some love to do with Dem/Libs, while whining about how mean Dem/Libs are.



kailu1835
by Silver Member on Mar. 8, 2013 at 12:16 AM
3 moms liked this

But isn't that what the left does with the Tea Party?  Tea partier this, tea partier that.  Generalizations that a ton of people don't actually fit in.  I'm not disputing your point here, just kind of adding this.

Quoting Friday:

Liberals this, Liberals that, Liberals the other thing'. Just more meaningless generalizations meant to put people in boxes that they don't actually fit in. SSDD.

I'm for limited govt, fiscal and personal responsibility and a market with reasonable regulations. This Liberal liked the Tea Party in the beginning but isn't sure what all they stand for now. Limited govt, except for individuals personal lives, seems a contradiction to me. Too many who identified as Tea Party seem to obsess over social issues over fiscal. I also think that absolutely refusing to ever compromise as some TP people seem to support, is irresponsible governing.

Even so, I prefer not to throw around insulting generalizations at Rep/Con/TP people as some love to do with Dem/Libs, while whining about how mean Dem/Libs are.


babiesbabybaby development

SallyMJ
by Ruby Member on Mar. 8, 2013 at 12:45 AM

BUMP!

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