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Tea Party Patriots

February 26, 2011 | By Robin Abcarian, Los Angeles Times
Two years ago, they got mad. They made homemade signs and attended rallies. They started grass-roots groups. They voted in the midterm election and helped deliver the House to a new Republican majority. Then, suddenly, for many in the "tea party" movement, the question was: Now what? "Fiscal responsibility, constitutionally limited government and free markets," responded Mark Meckler, the Grass Valley attorney who cofounded Tea Party Patriots, a coalition of 3,300 groups. About 2,000 supporters gathered this weekend in Phoenix for what was billed as their first national policy conference.
August 8, 2011 | By James Oliphant
As stocks continued Monday to tumble in the wake of Standard & Poor's downgrade of the United States' credit rating, Democrats are working to place the blame for the move squarely on the shoulders of the "tea party" movement. David Axelrod, a top campaign advisor to President Obama, led the charge over the weekend, calling S&P's action “essentially a tea party downgrade.” “The tea party brought us to the brink of default,” Axelrod said. “It was the right thing to do to avoid that default.
February 9, 2011 | By Lisa Mascaro, Washington Bureau
The Republican-led House failed to pass an extension of expiring sections of the Patriot Act on Tuesday, an unexpected setback for GOP leaders that shows the difficulty they face in controlling their majority and its "tea party"-inspired members. Time is short: Key provisions of the terrorist surveillance law expire at the end of the month. A coalition of veteran conservative Republicans and new GOP lawmakers joined many Democrats in blocking passage of the measure, which many tea party activists see as federal government overreaching into private affairs.
March 8, 2011 | By James Oliphant, Washington Bureau
NPR is distancing itself from remarks made by a fund-raising executive who said the American "tea party" movement is a comprised of "white, middle-America gun-toting" and "seriously racist, racist" people. The comments, apparently made by Ron Schiller, NPR's exiting vice president for development, were recorded in a "sting" set up by conservative activist James O'Keefe, best known for mounting a similar prank on ACORN. They came as part of a recent lunch in Washington Schiller had with two men posing as members of the "Muslim Action Education Center," a fictitious organization the men claimed had ties to the "Muslim Brotherhood of America.
May 14, 2013 | By Robin Abcarian
Finally, a small cadre of busybody bureaucrats has discovered a way to bring this divided country together. Thank you, IRS, for pulling off what no politician has been able to do. Mortal political enemies on both sides of the aisle agree: The IRS badly misstepped when it singled out for scrutiny groups with the words “tea party” and “patriots” in their names who had applied for tax-exempt status. That is a Nixon-worthy no-no. Regardless of whether this practice simply represented a shortcut in the agency's larger effort to evaluate the flood of applications for tax-exempt status in 2010 and 2011, as the agency maintains, it's a ham-fisted way of doing business.
December 17, 2012 | By Melanie Mason and Michael A. Memoli, This post has been updated, as indicated below.
WASHINGTON -- Rep. Tim Scott, a freshman tea party Republican, will become South Carolina's first black senator, Gov. Nikki Haley, announced Monday, appointing the congressman to fill the seat left vacant by Jim DeMint. "It is a great day for South Carolina," Haley said, speaking at the statehouse in Columbia. "It is a historic day for South Carolina. " Haley was joined by Scott and DeMint, as well as the state's senior senator, Lindsey Graham, and members of its congressional delegation.
October 11, 2011 | By James Oliphant
As the Occupy Wall Street movement continues to spread - with massive arrests Monday night in Boston - the tea party wants you to know that the progressive protests have nothing in common with its own grass-roots effort. First, the arrests: About 100 people were arrested by police Monday evening in Boston, according to local news affiliates, after they refused to leave an off-limits area outside of the Dewey Square section of the city. Local representatives of the intentionally disorganized movement said the police overreacted.
November 15, 2010 | By Kathleen Hennessey and Lisa Mascaro, Tribune Washington Bureau
A new class of freshman lawmakers came to Capitol Hill on Monday to learn the ways of Washington ? while the conservative activists taking credit for sweeping them into office warned them not to learn Washington's ways too well. About 100 new lawmakers walked the halls of Congress for the first time since this month's election, many of them conservatives proud of their limited political experience and planning to shake up Washington. Two new members of the Senate ? Democrats Chris Coons of Delaware and Joe Manchin III of West Virginia ?
February 10, 2011 | By David G. Savage and Kathleen Hennessey, Washington Bureau
For nearly two years, the "tea party" movement with its call for limited government has made inroads in the political arena, but a Florida judge's ruling last week declaring the health insurance mandate unconstitutional may be remembered as its moment of arrival in the courts. Another judge in Virginia had made a similar ruling, but U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson's decision gave voice to the tea party's rallying cry that the Constitution put strict limits on the national government.
March 11, 2010 | By Kathleen Hennessey
For most of a year, the small-government advocates of the "tea party" movement have stolen the spotlight from the Republican Party's veteran performers: the Christian conservatives who have long driven voters to the polls for the GOP. Now the veterans are stealing the tea partyers lines. In news releases, mission statements and interviews, prominent social conservatives increasingly are using the small-government rhetoric popular with the tea party activists and long used by economic conservatives -- but with a religious bent.
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