Political establishment does not understand tea party movement

You would think the smartest guys in the room of American politics would have figured out the tea party by now.
But you would be wrong. Abundant proof was just provided on the opinion pages of The New York Times in an indignant editorial entitled “The Repeal Amendment.”

The Repeal Amendment is a proposal to amend the U.S. Constitution to enable the legislatures of two-thirds of the states to repeal a federal law they find objectionable. It comes as a surprise to no sentient being who has witnessed the grass-roots rebellion, aka the tea party, against expanding federal power.

But even if only the 40 percent of Americans who identify themselves as conservatives align with the tea party, it is anything but a fringe element.

So how does the Times view the Repeal Amendment and the tea party behind it?

“The proposal is sweeping, expressing with bold simplicity the view of the tea party and others that the federal government’s influence is far too broad. It would give state legislatures the power to veto any federal law or regulation if two-thirds of the legislatures approved.”

Three points:
First, the Times rejects the tea party belief that “the federal government’s influence is far too broad.” A little further on in the editorial, the Times argues that the Founders actually intended the Constitution to “promote economic development that would lift the fortunes of the American people.”

No, the Founders’ purpose was clearly expressed in the Preamble, which described the Constitution’s purpose as to “form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.”

Second, the Times claims the Repeal Amendment’s prospects for adoption are “exceedingly low.” This prediction comes from the same experts who spent much of 2009 reassuring each other that the tea party movement was an inconsequential fringe.

Third, after their November shellacking, the experts now offer more of their standard diminution of the tea party as just another “anger-fueled, myth-based” populist movement. It is an illegitimate movement because its adherents must be moved by passion instead of reason and deceived by a disreputable myth about an American past that never was.

Maybe these people will not engage the Repeal Amendment on its merits because they know it accurately reflects the Constitution.

Mark Tapscott is the editorial page editor of The Washington Examiner and proprietor of Tapscott’s Copy Desk blog at www.washingtonexaminer.com.

Op Edsop-edOpinionTea Party

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

The Medical Examiner's Office van on Tuesday, April 23, 2019. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
San Francisco’s 2020 overdose deaths soar 59 percent to 699

Fatal drug overdoses surged by nearly 59 percent in San Francisco last… Continue reading

Police Commissioner John Hamasaki questions Chief Bill Scott at City Hall on Wednesday, May 15, 2019. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)
SFPD should probe whether officers joined Capitol raid, commissioners say

Chief unaware of any members participating in insurrection

Homeless people's tents can be seen on Golden Gate Avenue in the Tenderloin on Wednesday afternoon, Dec. 16, 2020. (Photo by Ekevara Kitpowsong/S.F. Examiner)
Statewide business tax could bring new funds to combat homelessness

San Francisco could get more than $100 million a year for housing, rental assistance, shelter beds

The Museum of the African Diaspora in San Francisco (a mural by artist Jamie Treacy is pictued) has a lineup of free online programming including activities for youngsters scheduled for Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Jan. 18. (Courtesy Demetri Broxton/Museum of the African Diaspora)
Stanford, Museum of the African Diaspora host MLK Day activities

Online offerings include films, music, discussion

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi presides the US House of Representatives vote on the impeachment of US President Donald Trump at the US Capitol, January 13, 2021, in Washington, DC. - The Democrat-controlled US House of Representatives on January 13 opened debate on a historic second impeachment of President Donald Trump over his supporters' attack of the Capitol that left five dead. (SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images/TNS)
House votes 232-197 to impeach Trump a second time

Focus shifts to Senate, where McConnell has signaled he may not stand by president

Most Read