Get ready for a lot more tea-bagging jokes and riled-up right-wingers hoisting fanciful posterboard creations and marching on Washington. That’s right, the so-called tea party movement is here, evidently not queer, and while those opposed to its members’ politics may not “get used to it” as such, they’d better have some smart comebacks at the ready during upcoming election seasons.
As The Christian Science Monitor pointed out Wednesday, Sarah Palin has hitched her quirky Wasillan wagon (contents: lipstick, hunting gear, assorted biblical paraphernalia, etc.) to the tea party cause, and she’ll be a main attraction at next month’s Tea Party Convention in Nashville, Tenn. However, conservatives aren’t united in their support for, or ideas about, the movement and its position vis-à-vis the GOP, as The Atlantic’s Heather Horn illustrates in her roundup of TP-related news and opinion on Thursday. Meanwhile, Horn’s colleague Mara Gay gets a read on whether the tea party could actually become its own, well, party. —KA
The Christian Science Monitor:
On its face, the gig would seem a step down for Ms. Palin, one of conservative America’s most popular and polarizing figures (not to mention major thorn in the side of the Obama White House).
But with an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll ranking a generic “Tea Party” as more popular than either Democrats or Republicans, and Palin herself rivaling the charming Mr. Obama in poll popularity, many experts see the Tea Party event as a potential milestone for a mounting, even transformational, force in US politics.
“[W]ith two wars, a continuing terror threat, huge federal deficits, and a major healthcare overhaul in the works, there is no shortage of disaffection out there … and that could prove to be political dynamite,” writes the Washington Post’s Howard Kurtz. Against that backdrop, writes Mr. Kurtz, “The tea types can either blossom into a Perotista-style third-party movement or be subsumed to some degree by the GOP.”
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