The Tea Party Movement Past and Present

The intention of this study is the Tea Party Movement that appears to have emerged on the scene suddenly. It has found expression in a growing tide of dissatisfaction with the current political regime especially with respect to Congress, the President both of which have rated poorly among the American electorate. Staging angry and enthusiastic rallies across the US, the Tea Party has been credited with influencing the Democrats losing its stronghold in the US House of Representative in the November 2010 elections and the successful seating of a number of Tea Party supported candidates. The Tea Party’s popularity and success among the electorate does not correspond with its negative and often trivial representation in the press. Lepore makes a connection between the Boston Tea Party’s rebellion of 1781 which spearheaded the American Revolution and the Tea Party of the 21st century. Thus the Tea Party today is perhaps just the latest replication of the Boston Tea Party or populist revolutionary thinking in the US. The Tea Party Movement embraces the idea that “individual freedoms and economic liberties” are inalienable rights and “one does not exist without the other”. From the perspective of the Tea Party Movement, economic liberties and fundamental freedoms have been jeopardized by a “government that has grown too large, spends too much money,” and as a result, is “interfering with their freedoms”. …
I. The Tea Party Movement’s Rhetoric and Meaning The Tea Party Movement embraces the idea that “individual freedoms and economic liberties” are inalienable rights and “one does not exist without the other” (Armey and Kibbe 2010, p. 88). From the perspective of the Tea Party Movement, economic liberties and fundamental freedoms have been jeopardized by a “government that has grown too large, spends too much money,” and as a result, is “interfering with their freedoms” (Armey and Kibbe 2010, p. 88). Eaton (2010) informs that the Tea Party is committed to returning America to the vision that the founding fathers had for America. The founding father’s vision was for “individual liberty, free markets,” and a “constitutionally limited government” (Eaton 2010, p. 262). These three paradigms of the ideal nation state are thus the three pillars of the Tea Party Movement and immediately conjures up images of the American Revolution and other acts of civil disobedience throughout US history. Although not as aggressive as the Tea Parties in American history, the Tea Party Movement today purports to defend the three pillars of American greatness. Eaton (2010) identifies three factions of the Tea Party Movement: orientation and promotion of the Republican Party and its ideology. the libertarian anti-tax, pro-liberties faction. and an anti-government faction. The anti-government faction is perhaps the most active and dynamic leg of the Tea Party Movement (Eaton 2010). The anti-government faction typically opposes and rallies campaigns against specific government policies and strategies (Eaton 2010). The Tea Party Patriots formulate political ad campaigns and back specific politicians. The 9-12 Project which was motivated by Glenn