Home > Political Animal > (Tea) Party in the 3rd CD
(Tea) Party in the 3rd CD
Fort Wayne Reader
A lot has been said — nationally and locally — about the influence of that loose, amorphous phenomenon called “the Tea Party” on the 2010 elections.
The results seem to be mixed: a few candidates somehow affiliated with the movement were successful (Rand Paul, for instance); a few failed miserably (Christine O’Donnell). So, in other words, not much different from any other political movement, organized or not.
The sun had barely risen on November 3 when commentators and elected officials were either pronouncing the mid-terms the end of the beginning for “the Tea Party” or the beginning of the end. Is the movement a brave new force in conservative politics, or — now that they did all the tough work of riling up the base, etc. — will those the movement helped elect simply be co-opted into the GOP in order to avoid irrelevancy?
Those are the questions, at least, but defining what the “Tea Party” is has been difficult. There is, of course, no official “Tea Party” party; like we said, it’s a movement.
But a poll released the last week of October by SurveyUSA for the Mike Downs Center for Indiana Politics, coupled with the results of the mid-terms, goes a long way to defining what the “Tea Party” is in our part of Indiana.
The poll found that in the 3rd Congressional District, 52% of the respondents said they had a favorable view of the “Tea Party” — a higher percentage than anywhere else in the state, by the poll’s numbers. 39% said they identified with the “Tea Party” movement.
Statewide, 82% of respondents who viewed the “Tea Party” favorably and 82% of the respondents who identify with the tea party movement liked Republican Dan Coats for Senator.
In the 3rd Congressional District, 85% of the respondents who view the “Tea Party” favorably and 86% of those who identify with the “Tea Party” movement liked Marlin Stutzman for US Representative.
So, judging from the poll numbers and the election results, most “Tea Party” people in Northeast Indiana seem to be… well, Republicans. And pretty darn loyal ones at that.
As of this writing, we don’t know if the full press release or the findings are up on the Mike Downs Center website yet, but we do know it’s posted on Stephen Parker’s “Around Fort Wayne” blog, among other places.