Tea Parties More Popular Than the GOP

December 7th, 2009 at 11:14 am | 52 Comments |

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Rasmussen released a new poll today that illustrates the enormous political support behind the Tea Party movement, suggesting that Tea Partiers are significantly more popular than the Republican Party.

The results are staggering: in a generic three-party runoff, a hypothetical ‘Tea Party party’ would outpoll the Republican Party by five points.

Results: Democrats: 36%; Tea Party: 23%; Republicans: 18%

Just as fascinating: even among moderates, the Tea Party party seems to be more popular than the GOP.

These results are in alignment with the other features of the right that Rasmussen has been tracking: weak support for the GOP among self-identified conservatives, and disdain for the Republican establishment among self-identified GOP voters.

On the other hand, Republican voters seem to be open to giving Tea Partiers a chance – the poll shows widespread favorability for the Tea Party movement – 70% of Republicans have a favorable opinion of the movement, while only 7% have an unfavorable view.

Indeed, a tide may be cresting in American politics: a substantial minority (41%) told pollsters that the Republicans and Democrats are so much alike that a new party is required to represent American voters.

However, Rasmussen notes that a Tea Party party would likely be unsuccessful:

In practical terms, it is unlikely that a true third-party option would perform as well as the polling data indicates. The rules of the election process—written by Republicans and Democrats–provide substantial advantages for the two established major parties.

This is a wakeup call for GOP leaders: they will need to find a way to capture the energy of the Tea Party movement, or else be deluged by it.

UPDATE: The hypothetical matchup that Rasmussen envisions is not entirely hypothetical – Politico noted in November that a Florida conservative filed the paperwork to register a Tea Party party in the state. The new Florida Tea Party party’s website has since become live – you can find it here.

FLASHBACK: FrumForum at the Bachmann Tea Party on Capitol Hill — Speaking to protesters, they told us: “We’re Not Republicans

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52 Comments so far ↓

  • franco 2

    “But for us here in the USA the biggest problem is the breakdown of separation of church and state. While I like my freedom to find God in my own way in my own time, I dislike the the thrust of the religious right to foist their beliefs into the federal government. This is a dangerous path and should be rejected from both parties for the good of the country and our Constitution .”

    “No one has the right to inflict their beliefs on another without permission, and it is why prosyletizing is wrong to me. Dogma can occur on both extremes….”

    And in the middle too IMO. But I disagree about “rights” people have a right to speak out against what they believe is wrong (or right) and it is entirely your choice to accept it or reject it. Surely you and others are not so feeble-minded that hearing someone else speak will somehow influence you unduly.

    Our government is basically a result of Christian beliefs, like it or not. One of the thing I realized living in a non-christian country (Egypt) is how much we in America; non-believers; agnostics and atheists included, really hold Christian values by default.

    All of our laws are based on the Judeo-Christian tradition. Our country has survived and prospered as a result of our Constitution which is based on religious abstractions from that tradition.

    To get down to the nitty gritty. Notice one of the central laws (commandments) of Christianity is “Thou shalt not kill” We all believe this whether we are athiests or biblethumpers. Yet in Islam for example there is no such law. Laws in Islam actually exist as to who you can kill and what for, but there is no blanket statement saying it is wrong to kill.. The fact that there is some hypocrisy, or convenient exceptions our governmant makes in this Judeo-Christian ethic is irrelevant, since governments can’t be moral, only its citizens can strive for morality and help to create in a Democracy a more “moral” government.

    Therefore people have a right to try to influence their government (and others) as they see fit. I personally don’t believe in global warming I am an agnostic on the subject leaning toward “atheistic” views now. But Al Gore has a right to preach and proselytize all he wants. I have no problem with the “religious right” trying to do this either. Just because they come from a dogmatic place…. doesn’t everyone?

  • handworn

    I hope they do leave the GOP, along with the “Southern fried moralists” as The Economist called them. Moderate independents like myself would move in (as I’m considering anyway) and turn it into a center-right party, which would drag the Democrats toward the middle too, I believe.