Ted Cruz is beating Rand Paul in the Tea Party movement’s great dunce-off

Sociologist Theda Skocpol once described the Tea Party crowd thusly: They are overwhelmingly older, white, conservative-minded men and women who fear that “their country” is about to be lost to mass immigration and new extensions of taxpayer-funded social programs (like the Affordable Care Act) for low- and moderate-income working-aged people, many of whom are black or brown. Skocpol could have added that the Tea Party folks also overlap with the Religious Right. That overlap, it’s argued HERE, is why Ted Cruz is outflanking Rand Paul...

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Tea Party movement grows weaker amid barbs from Democrats and Republicans alike

The Tea Party movement probably  is far from dead, but it’s drawing more and more criticism from a broad swath of the political spectrum. Molly Ball EXPLAINS: Democrats like to blame the Tea Party for everything because it satisfies their conviction that the GOP is captive to extreme interests; the Republican establishment does so because it allows elites to evade blame for the party’s electoral and philosophical failures. I don’t want to be the latest in the long line of writers to pronounce the Tea Party on its deathbed, only to have...

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Boo-hoo! Pity the plight of the put-upon plutocrats!

When the Tea Party folks invite  a Wall Street maven to preach to them, their pretentions to populism can be dismissed as phonus balonus. Check THIS, for example: One of the actions that the Heritage Foundation has taken recently to cement its shift from conservative think tank to right-wing political bludgeon was to bring on as its chief economist Steve Moore [above], a former Wall Street Journal editorial writer who is fluent in Tea Party dogma. In a speech to the Tea Party Patriots convention today, Moore did not disappoint. He advocated...

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A new political term arises: Vote No, Hope Yes

Republican lawmakers who don’t much like their Tea Party brethren but are afraid of them have unwittingly spawned a term for their craven charades. Joan Walsh EXPLAINS: [T]here’s more to be said about the debacle in the Senate this week, when GOP leaders were forced to vote to move forward with a bill to lift the debt ceiling after saboteur Ted Cruz filibustered it. Having made the world safe for Democrats to do the right thing and vote for the bill, all 43 Republicans then voted against it (two didn’t vote at all). I dislike Cruz as...

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Is the Tea Party caving on the debt limit?

Pragmatism is not a word ordinarily applied to the Tea Party people in the House Republican caucus. But perhaps the situation is changing. Noam Scheiber EXPLAINS: “You’ve got to know when to hold them and when to fold them”—thus spake Michele Bachmann in an interview with The Washington Post last week. Bachmann is, of course, the high priestess of not knowing when to fold them. In 2012, she alleged an Islamist conspiracy at the top levels of the U.S. government. Even after the allegations swept her into a polar vortex of...

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