Comments about ‘Robert Bennett: What is the future of the tea party?’

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Published: Monday, Feb. 11 2013 12:00 a.m. MST

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Springville, UT

And who tossed you out of office?

Salt Lake City, UT

Mr. Bennett,

After the emergence of the Tea Party, you were not able to even get the nomination for the seat you had previously, running on a Republican ticket, in Republican voting Utah.

After the Tea party, Obama got his 1st & 2nd term.

After the Tea Party, the Republican House has only passed 3% of legislation and has only a 10% approval rating.

The calls from the Tea Party for an uncompromising and 'pure' concepts of conservatism...

is what lead to devastating losses for...conservatism.

Ogden, UT

To MapleDon 11:46 p.m. Feb. 10, 2013

And who tossed you out of office?


Radical far right extremists who didn't give a hoot about the United States and its citizens.

The Real Maverick
Orem, UT

For the future of our country there cannot be any future for the tea party.

Unfortunately, despite the country rejecting the tea party's ideas, I have a feeling that as Lon as they're backed by the Koch bros, they'll stick around. What pests!


Actually, fact checking will show that the first Tea Party sprouts sprung up in 2008, as soon as it became apparent that Obama would be the Democrat candidate. His victory gave it momentum. By time he was inaugurated, it was a full fledged movement - before he even had a chance to sit his seat in the Oval Office.

Additional fact checking will show that there was central leadership and financial support - it was never a truly organic movement.

It did, however, eventually outgrow the control if its handlers and start creating problems for them - some tea party members (think Scott Brown) actually listened to constituents and tried to do things instead of just saying no and grandstanding all the time. This led to divisions within the Tea Party - which affected its ability to win and has thus ended its usefulness to the Republican Party which is now focused on attacking and destroying it.

The problem facing the Republican Party - and leading to editorials like this one - is how to convince those who truly believed/believe in the Tea Party to give that up and return to the fold.

liberal larry
salt lake City, utah

You failed to mention that the "spontaneous movement" was fueled by millions of dollars from the Koch Brothers. The middle class Tea Partiers have been cynically manipulated by these .000001 percenters to campaign against their own self interests.

People are seeing through this charade and the future of Tea Party will be increased marginalization within the Republican Party.

T. Party
Pleasant Grove, UT

@Bailout Bob: "...anti-government..."

Wrong. We want "just enough government."

"Nothing in politics goes on forever."

But we'll be here long after you are gone.

Paul Scholes
Provo, UT

The Tea Party tossed Senator Bennett out of office when they were at the height of their power. Now, that power has decreased as evidenced by their inability to dislodge Senator Hatch as well as other evidence put forth in the article. The Tea Party has two choices, either continue in its ultraconservatism and continue to disrupt any possibility of Republican success in national elections or push more middle ground conservatism with a degree of tolerance for pluralism and have some impact in the national dialogue going forward.

one vote
Salt Lake City, UT

The comments about tossing people out of office and obstructionism indicate it was just like occupy wall street. Karl Rove, the guy with the money, has decided to prevent it from nominating any more weak candidates. All that is left is the yelling and blogging about Beck and Hannity concepts.

Sandy, UT

MapleDon, you're making his case for him. Utah lost Bob Bennett and got a completely ineffective tea party demagogue that has done nothing for the state. And given your own string of electoral losses, it's astonishing to me that you would take aim at someone who won three elections over the course of two decades.

Tyler D
Meridian, ID

Mr. Bennett’s analysis is a bit too “in the weeds.” A more succinct and accurate portrayal might be:

1.Tea Party starts as outrage over bailouts and its early message was one of fiscal responsibility.
2.Glenn Beck jumps on board and those who have never spent any time in “crazytown” begin to get nervous.
3.Small government conservatives get on the bandwagon and they become the movement (and in 2010, the party) of “no.”
4.Movement gets co-opted by social and religious conservatives, and that combined with #3 pushes the message of #1 totally aside causing them to lose all credibility with Independents and Pragmatists (who were on board with message #1).

I recall a radio interview a couple years back that included a Tea Party and an Occupy Wall Street leader (if there is such a thing). Turns out they agreed on about 80% of the issues.

We need a movement (or third party) based on that 80%, and marginalize the wing nuts… then it might be more than just an historical footnote.

one old man
Ogden, UT

Senator Bennett omitted any reference to the influence of BIG MONEY in the rise of the Tea Party.

Big money from the likes of the Koch brothers, et al.

As for me -- I just hope the Tea Party will die. Fast.

Craig Clark
Boulder, CO

Political success in American politics comes from broad-based coalition-building. The tea party attempt to radicalize conservatism only succeeded in dividing it.

Far East USA, SC

The tea party would rather lose with their ideal candidate then to win with one that isn't perfect for them.

Think a womans right to choose is reasonable? You are OUT.

Think trickle down economics has not been shown to work? You are OUT.

Think personhood rights for the unborn are unacceptable? You are OUT.

If the T party would elect fiscal conservative and leave the social baggage alone, they may have something. Same goes with their followers. They dont leave room for even the slightest deviation.

Twin Lights
Louisville, KY

Tyler D

Excellent analysis.

American Fork, UT

The tea party continues to have entertainment value.

Provo, UT

The Tea has steeped too long in its own juices and become bitter and cold.

Springville, UT

Hooray for the radically uncommitted, meandering, milquetoast, moderates who stand and have conviction for nothing. If it weren't for the left-wing media and polls, where would they be?

Durham, NC

I am going to sort of disagree - I think in a moderated way, the tea party and its views add value. The problem is it became the catch all for every anti - something person out there... it became defocused, it became just anti to be anti. It was the conservative cool kids party. Problem is that it did get co-opted. It did become about other things than just fiscal conservatism. It did become about race - like it or not. There were all these fringe agendas pulled into this so call "party".

Now, not to be misunderstood, there isn't much I agree with - when it comes to the Tea Party. But they, or their fiscal conservative parts, play an important part of keeping balance in Washington. If they stay to supporting that policy, there is room for them at the table.

But as we have seen, Tea Party has become to mean something much more than that. They have become the "anti" party - which produces nothing or worth. As long as people like Sarah Palin and Glen Beck try to be the face of the party, nothing positive will come from it.

Anti Bush-Obama
Washington, DC

The Tea Party was good when it was started under Ron Paul. But it became neoconned when Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin infiltrated it.

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