Tea Party Fallout: GOPers Worried, Independents Turned Off

Keep talkin' Rethugs. Keep talkin'!

From Sam Stein:

It's been two days now since angry conservatives hosted a series of tea parties across the country, and the fallout has some Republicans nervous.

While the anti-tax sentiment of the protests may have been sincere, the images pulled from the events have often been offensive, embarrassing, or politically problematic.

It is a development that has tripped up the GOP before. The rallies outside McCain-Palin events included some of the same bile that was seen at the tea parties: charges of fascism, terrorism and other malicious criticisms leveled at Barack Obama. And it did the Republican ticket little good in its efforts to bring moderate voters to the cause.


"My own sense that is I don't see anything going on that is good for Republicans," said Doug Bailey, a longtime Republican consultant who helped co-found the centrist reform movement Unity08. "I just don't get it. It may be, and I don't doubt this, that there is a large segment of the American public that can and is riled up about taxes and can be riled up about one thing or another. But a large segment, in terms of numbers, doesn't amount to a couple hundred people demonstrating in Washington or wherever. That's a non-event ... Nobody likes taxes. So, of course, I'm sympathetic myself. I might throw a tea bag myself. But the fact is, that it is particularly ineffective for the Republican Party when it is Rush Limbaugh and the likes stirring it up. That just doesn't speak to the middle."

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