Tea Party Hubris

Right-Wing PACs’ Formula: Lose Races, Rake In the Cash

AFP/Getty

No surprise here…

The Daily Beast

As Tea Party-affiliated Super PACs keep losing elections, their grassroots fundraising keeps going up, up, up. What’s the mentality there?
Despite losing eight of nine GOP Senate primaries and being nearly shut out in a handful of Republican-on-Republican House showdowns in 2014, the three top D.C.-based Super PACs that fueled many of those losing efforts are continuing to rake in donations from supporters across the country.   According to the latest monthly filings with the Federal Election Commission compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics, the groups—the Senate Conservatives Fund, Club for Growth Action, and FreedomWorks for America—all saw one of their best fundraising months of the 2014 election cycle even as conservative losses piled up from North Carolina to Georgia to Kentucky.
The spike in fundraising came as Chris McDaniel, Milton Wolf, and T.W. Shannon, all darlings of far-right activists, prepared for June primaries in Mississippi, Kansas, and Oklahoma, respectively. In the end, all three lost, while once-ballyhooed primary challenges to Sens. Lindsey Graham and Lamar Alexander faded with a whimper in South Carolina and Tennessee.The top-grossing of the three Super PACs was Club for Growth Action, which eventually spent more than $3 million in independent expenditures in its effort to defeat Sen. Thad Cochran, who of course beat McDaniel in Mississippi. Even with expensive defeats in their top two races the month before, Club for Growth Action’s receipts jumped a staggering 173 percent from May to June (detailed in their June and July filings), from $665,843 to $1,154.654.FreedomWorks for America, the Super PAC affiliated with the FreedomWorks grassroots organizing operation, had just spent hundreds of thousands of dollars each for Matt Bevin, who was seeking to defeat Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell in Kentucky, and Greg Brannon, a Baptist minister running against the Republican Speaker of the House in the North Carolina GOP primary. Bevin and Brannon both lost by double digits, but like Club for Growth Action, FreedomWorks for America saw its fundraising go up from $369,757 to $374,361, its third-best month of the 2014 election cycle, as the Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Kansas primaries loomed.

Even the group that concentrated its spending most heavily on early Senate losses, the Senate Conservatives Fund saw its fundraising jump by a whopping 46 percent in June, from $604,879 to $886,338, with an expensive loss in Kentucky in the rear-view mirror. In the end, of the $7.6 million the SCF spent on campaigns going into August, more than $5 million went to Senate challengers who eventually lost. Only Ben Sasse, a former Bush aide and telegenic college president, won his primary, coasting to a victory for Nebraska’s open Senate seat by more than 20 points.

Continue reading here…

GOP Compares People On EBT To Animals- Majority Are Women, Children, And Veterans

annette bosworth

A GOP candidate for the open Senate seat in South Dakota likened foodstamp recipients to animals. Perhaps it’s time to give her a bit of education about the program.

Yet another politically motivated GOP concept proven wrong…

Addicting Info

Dr. Annette Bosworth is a first time Republican candidate for South Dakota’s open Senate seat. She styles herself after Tea Party wackadoodles Ted Cruz and Steve King. She even has a “Ten Point Pledge” on get campaign website that illustrates exactly why she shouldn’t be elected. If her pledge wasn’t enough to turn off  (we hope) voters, a recent Facebook posting where she compares EBT recipients to animals might.

Dr. Bosworth reposted the following anti-foodstamp meme on her Facebook page on Monday.

bosworth

Yep, that’s right, she compares foodstamp recipients to animals. Obviously the good doctor doesn’t know anything about the foodstamp program. Maybe she needs to read my colleague Wes Williams article, What The Right Doesn’t Want You To Know About Welfare: 9 Myths Exploded.

We need to educate Dr. Bozo about the following facts:

No, clearly she doesn’t know anything about foodstamps. She’s just trying to perpetuate myths about the poor to get votes from the ignorant base of the Republican party.

900,000 Veterans are hardly asking for a handout. They went to war for this country. Wars that many of us don’t even support. If they need help upon return, the absolutely deserve whatever we can give them.

For a person who claims to be pro- life, Dr. Bozo has a funny way of showing it. These children who receive foodstamps deserve food to live don’t they? God wouldn’t want these children to starve. It’s not very Christian to compare them to animals.

The working poor are clearly not asking for a handout since they are working. Some of them are working two or three jobs and are still unable to support their families and feed their kids.

Someone should teach Dr. Bosworth the value of research. Being a doctor you’d think she would have learned a few things. She took an oath to help people, to care for people. Yet, she turns around and compares these same people to animals.

She may be more like her heroes, Beavis Cruz and Butthead King, than she may realize.

Tea Partyers threaten lawsuit against the IRS

Tea Partyers threaten lawsuit against the IRS

The irony here is that every tax exemption [501(c)] application “looked at” by the IRS was ultimately approved, so I’m wondering where’s the “injury or damage required to file a lawsuit?  It appears that some Tea Party factions are are not satisfied with the favorable outcome and may possibly seek damages from the IRS…

Salon

“We are looking at it pretty seriously,” said an attorney representing six groups allegedly targeted by the IRS

A group of Tea Partyers is threatening to sue the IRS for targeting conservative groups that tried to file for tax-exempt status, after the agency admitted last week that it scrutinized groups with “Tea Party” or “patriot” in the name.

Politico reports that an attorney representing six groups, including Combat Veterans Training Group and TheTeaParty.net, said that his clients are seriously considering a lawsuit. “We are looking at it pretty seriously,” Dan Backer told Politico. “Given the sheer scope of maleficence at the IRS, there may be a legal recourse.”

The American Center for Law and Justice, which represents 27 other Tea Party groups that allege targeting by the IRS, has written to the agency demanding that 10 of its clients now be approved for tax-exempt status.

From Eric Lach at TPM:

Of the 27 groups represented by the Jay Sekulow-led ACLJ, 15 have been granted tax-exempt status, 10 groups’ statuses are pending, and two groups have withdrawn their applications out of “frustration.” In its letter to the IRS on Monday, the ACLJ demanded that the IRS “approve immediately, and without further delay, the pending requests for either 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) tax exempt status of the following organizations: Albuquerque Tea Party, Allen Area Patriots, Greater Phoenix Tea Party Patriots, Greenwich Tea Party Patriots, Laurens County Tea Party, Linchpins of Liberty, Myrtle Beach Tea Patty, North East Tarrant Tea Party, Patriots Educating Concerned Americans Now (PECAN), and Unite in Action.”

In addition to the IRS’ admission on Friday, an inspector general report set to be released this week will reportedly show that the agency targeted a much broader range of conservative groups than it admitted, including those that strongly criticized the government.

Members of Congress have called for swift action in response to the allegations, and so far the House Committee on Ways and Means has announced that it will hold a hearing on it this Friday, May 17. Sens. Carl Levin, D-Mich, and John McCain, R-Ariz., who sit on the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, said that their committee would also be mounting an investigation.

One Republican member of the House has also introduced legislation that would criminalize political bias in the IRS, with penalties of a a $5,000 fine, five years in prison, or both. And Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., announced that he will be introducing the Senate version of the legislation to stop the IRS from “abusing its powers to violate first amendment rights,” according to a press release.

“A government organization like the IRS discriminating against political organizations is an outrageous abuse of power, and the American people have every right to demand answers and accountability,” said Rubio in a statement. “Those responsible individuals should face all appropriate punishment available under current law, and all organizations and individuals who engage in political speech and expression should be protected against this kind of discriminatory behavior in the future.”

 

Who had the worst week in Washington? The tea party.

It couldn’t happen to a more deserving political group…

The Washington Post

The Gadsden flag is flying at half-staff this past week.

The tea party — that plucky insurgent movement that, as recently as two years ago, began trying to reshape the Republican Party and politics more generally — finds itself flailing as 2012 draws to a close, buffeted by infighting, defeats and a broad struggle to find a second act.

Consider the following:

●Tea party patron saint Jim DeMint stunned the political world by announcing that he would resign from the Senate at the end of the year to take a job as the head of the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank.

●FreedomWorks, a Washington-based political group that is one of the pillars of the tea party movement, has been rent by internal strife. It was announced this past week that former Texas congressman Dick Armey is leaving as head of the group, alleging mismanagement.

●Tea-party-aligned House members, including Reps. Tim Huelskamp (Kan.), Justin Amash (Mich.) and David Schweikert (Ariz.), were kicked off coveted committees after not going along with GOP leaders on several critical votes.

Couple those developments with poll results that suggest the tea party is at, or close to, its nadir in terms of public opinion, and the problem becomes evident. The movement needs to decide whether it can survive as an outside force or whether it can become more aligned with the GOP without sacrificing the principles on which it was founded.

The tea party, for watching a movement turn into a mess, you had the worst week in Washington. Congrats, or something.

Tea Party Threatens Revenge Against Pennsylvania Justices For Not Upholding Voter ID Law

 

Someone please explain this to me:  How in the hell did the Tea Party turn into an intimidation , extortion and revenge organization?

They’re talking about “exacting revenge” on a group of State Supreme Court Justices who didn’t think that voter intimidation was just and decided to send the case back to the lower court and commented that the law should be suspended immediately.

Who are these people and what do they really want from us, in addition to getting the “black guy” out of office?

Think Progress

Earlier this week, every single sitting Pennsylvania Supreme Court justice rejecteda lower court decision allowing that state’s voter ID law to take effect. Four justices joined a majority opinion requiring the lower court judge to look at the case again due to concerns that voters were unable to obtain the IDs they were supposed to have easy access to as a matter of law, and two more justices joined a dissent arguing that the law should simply be suspended right away. Three of the justices in the majority were Republicans.

Nevertheless, a Tea Party group is now threatening to exact revenge upon the state supreme court for refusing to uphold a law that prevents many low-income, student and minority voters from casting a ballot:

A Philadelphia-area tea party group says it will work to defeat two state Supreme Court justices next year if the state’s new voter identification law isn’t in effect for the Nov. 6 election.

The Independence Hall Tea Party on Thursday also criticized the court’s decision to send a legal challenge to the law back for a lower court review.

It called the decision “a cowardly move” to “punt the ball.”

Chief Justice Ronald Castille, a Republican, and Justice Max Baer, a Democrat, are each finishing a 10-year term in January 2014.

These kinds of campaigns of vengeance against justices who place the law ahead of conservative’s policy preferences are increasingly common. Two years ago, a Florida Tea Party group launched a similar revenge campaign after the Florida Supreme Court kept an unconstitutional ballot initiative attempting to nullify the Affordable Care Act off the state ballot. Similarly, anti-gay groups poured hundreds of thousands of dollars into a successful effort to remove three Iowa supreme court justices because they had the audacity to recognize that the state’s constitution does not permit discrimination against gay couples.

As a recent Center for American Progress report explains, corporate interest groups have alsospent big money to stack state judiciaries with friendly judges and justices. In one of the most egregious cases, a West Virginia coal baron spent $3 million to buy a seat on the state supreme court for a justice who later went on to strike down a $50 million verdict against his company, although the U.S. Supreme Court ultimately ruled that the bought-and-paid-for justice should have recused himself.