Tea Partiers Get Partisan

I liked the Tea Parties better when they were about issues, not partisan politics.

Yesterday I received the following e-mail:

Defend the Republic Rally

Saturday, December 12th from 1:00 to 2:00pm

Colorado State Capital Building – West Steps
Colfax & Lincoln
Denver, CO 80203

Northern Colorado Tea Party is encouraging all supporters to attend this rally. We are asking for a voice in the debate taking place regarding the 2010 elections. If we want the GOP to listen to us, we need to show them we are a political force to be reckoned with here in Colorado.

As the war between the United State of America and the Progressives in both political parties continues to wage, the Tea Party and 912 supporters have stepped up and answered the call of duty.

Let us stand together at the State Capital on Saturday, united to make one single statement:

Principle Over Party in 2010

Speakers will include:

Mike Holler – Author of The Constitution Made Easy
Lu Busse – Leadership Chair for Co 912 Project
Dan Maes – Candidate for Colorado Governor
Tea Party & 912 Activists

See the Denver Post article by Jessica Fender or the People’s Press Collective review by Michael Sandoval for more background.

So the complaint is that Republican leaders have endorsed a candidate who might actually be able to win. I’m confused as to why this is some sort of grand sin. Anybody who thinks Dan Maes has any chance of winning the Republican primary and beating Bill Ritter is simply delusional.

(For the record, I’m registered unaffiliated, so I’ll have no vote in the GOP primary. I have yet to decide whether any candidate in the governor’s race will get my vote as the lesser of evils. I voted for Ritter last time around.)

As somebody who has attended, written about, and spoken at various Tea Party and related events, I have to wonder about this overtly partisan turn of the Northern Tea Party. I thought this was about issues, not parties. I thought it was about liberty, not personality.

I challenge those organizing the December 12 rally to articulate their ideological differences with Scott McInnis, and their ideological affinity with Dan Maes. I must frankly question the motives of those unable or unwilling to do so. Please leave a comment or respond via e-mail.

6 thoughts on “Tea Partiers Get Partisan

  1. Dave Barnes

    “For the record, I’m registered unaffiliated, so I’ll have no vote in the GOP primary.”

    Ari, you can still vote in the Repub primary. You go to your polling place and register as a Repub and then vote and then complete the form to unregister.

    I have done this more than once. Staying “independent” gives you the chance to pick the primary of your choice for either positive or negative reasons.

  2. Jennifer

    Ari,

    I suggest you listen to the KVOR Podcast interview with McInnis or the Caplis and Silverman interview before that. McInnis can’t even be civil or control himself. Look at the poles. HE HAS NO CHANCE. CO GOP better wake up. HERE COMES TEA AND 912. Even CO GOP knows this; why else would they be implementing such tactics on us small timers??? Can you say 70% at Caucus. BELIEVE IT BABY!

    McInnis is more of the same; he is a progressive.

    MAES IS THE REAL THING and will take it all the way!!!

    That’s ok Ari. WE STILL LOVE YOU!

    -Jen

  3. Ari

    Jennifer,

    I simply do not think it is appropriate to use the Tea Party structure for partisan purposes. From the outset the Tea Party movement was billed as nonpartisan. Now some Tea Party members are claiming that the Tea Parties support a particular Republican candidate. The result of this will be to alienate non-Republicans as well as Republicans who support different candidates. Either the Tea Parties are a broad, idea-based movement, or they are partisan. They cannot be both.

    While all of a candidate’s public statements should be considered, it is wrong to consider only those public appearances at which a candidate performed badly.

    Incidentally, the last poll I saw showed McInnis beating Ritter handily.
    http://rockymountainright.com/?q=node/967

    -Ari

  4. Ari

    By the way, I suspect that the person most happy about the Tea Party’s support for Dan Maes, other than Maes himself, is Bill Ritter.

  5. Jennifer

    David,

    I was a registered unafiliated and I used to think this was showing both parties I knew best. I did not want to assoicate myself with either, and I still do not like or approve of how either parties are operating.

    Then I realized, I could make more of an impact by registering R or D and participating in Caucus. THIS IS EMPOWERMENT. THIS IS HOW TO MAKE AN IMPACT. CAUCUS, CAUCUS, CAUCUS This would turn my 1 vote into as many as 7Who could argue one holds much more weight??

    Ali,

    I agree with you totally. The conservative grassroots groups, especially the TEA Party and 912 groups, have repeatedly gone on record in stating they will not and do not endorse candidates.

    All my associations in these groups are non-partison, based on founding principles, values, and our founding documents.

    All groups I associate with state wide operate under the model to Educate, Empower, and Activate.

    CAUCUS is going to be key for us taking our country back.

    I would be interested to know which Teaparty is claiming support of a candidate? I have not heard such, and if they do, that group does not reside under the Colorado Coalition umbrella, and may be a rogue entity.

    My previous comment was my individual opinion. Members are empowered with information by these groups so they can select the candidate that is best for them. Dan Maes is that candidate for me and my belief system.

    Furhtermore, NONE OF THE GROUPS I BELONG TO OR ASSOICIATE WITH STATEWIDE HAVE ENDORSED ANY PARTY. In fact, Tea Party and 912 groups have BASHED both parties equally; they are equal opportunist!

    Finally, I know for a FACT that the organizers of the only TEA Party Candidate Search forum held to date in Colorado for 2010 election (NOCO Tea Party) openly invited all candidates and provided an unbiased equal platform for each to speak.

    Please site your sources. Such a generic statement is not accurate.

    Please see this poll for comparison to yours: http://www.denvergop.org/polls.php

    Naturally, since most Tea Party and 912 group membership are limited govt/free market people, they would naturally lean right; as such, i chose this GOP pole.

  6. Ari

    Jennifer, I did not claim that a Tea Party officially endorsed Maes. But the capital rally, supported by the Northern Colorado Tea Party and the local 9/12 group, was obviously partisan in nature, and therefore, I believe, an inappropriate use of the Tea Party structure. -Ari

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