Thursday, April 8, 2010
Can the Tea Party Movement Take the Next Step?
What's less clear than the group's makeup is the role it will play in November's midterm elections and beyond. "The real test is whether it's an electoral phenomenon or a social-protest phenomenon," says Isaac Wood, an analyst at the University of Virginia's Center for Politics. "They've been very successful at garnering headlines. What they need to do is prove they can garner votes." Yet to do so entails diving into a political process whose perversion has been an organizing principle for the Tea Party. "They are kind of anti-politics, not just anti-government," Wood says. "They don't seem to be enthusiastic about doing politics the same old way." Nevertheless, many Tea Party activists are ready to trade headline-generating protests and bus tours for the unglamorous banalities that make campaigns hum...more