Written by Lloyd Marcus
A recent article predicted the Tea Party Movement will fail and fade away because it does not have an official leader promoting a single agenda. I disagree.
After attending a Florida tea party, Rhonda Lochiatto, an elementary school teacher decided to run for school board. In her own words, "I am tired of the mismanagement of funds that goes on in the school district and of the current policies and procedures that are taking place when it comes to grading, etc".
Rhonda epitomizes what the Tea Party Movement is all about; concerned citizens, true patriots, stepping up to the plate and doing whatever their passions and gifts lead them to do.
In my travels across America on Tea Party Express tours one and two, I met many patriots young and old who were running for office for the first time. Seeds planted by the tea parties have harvested a cornucopia of new organizations. Their common goal: Take Back America!
No, we do not have a single person as our grand puba. We are blessed with several great leaders; Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, Congresswoman Michele Bachmann and Dick Armey to name only a few.
Any attempt to rein in all Tea Party Patriots under one leader and strategy would be a mistake, not to mention impossible. Unquestionably, the power and force of the tea party phenomena grows daily as more and more Americans awaken from their Obama (he sure is pretty, black and speaks well) trance. They rub their eyes, see the craziness of his agenda and shutter, "Oh my gosh, what have we done!"
The Tea Party Movement is bigger than any one person. Patriots driven by their individual passion and talent are needed on all fronts local and national.
The only thing I would advise against is the formation of a national third party. It would split the conservative/libertarian vote thus insuring democrat victory. Remember the phrase, "Not your dad's Chevrolet"? Obama, Reid, Pelosi and company have an agenda far different than our parent's perception of the democrat party. The party has become a haven for far left radicals, socialists, secular progressives and plain old America haters.
While I admit the republicans are guilty of embracing a "liberal lite" agenda to win votes, (which did not work, John McCain case in point) they lean the closest to our values. Not one republican voted for Harry Reid's Health Care Horror. Frustrated, many of you yell, "There is no freaking difference between either party". That simply is not true. Thus, our efforts are best served getting the Republican party back on track rather than forming a third party.
I realize the idea of "We The People" starting a third party is romantic, seductive and feels empowering. But it is living on Fantasy Island rather than the real world. Running third party candidate Ross Perot against George Bush Sr. is how Bill Clinton, the long shot, won the election. Perot took votes from Bush, not Clinton. Attempting to form a third party again would be like a movie sequel, "Ross Perot Two: This Time its Devastating".
Now, while I am against forming a national third party, running third party candidate Doug Hoffman in New York was a good thing. The republicans betrayed us by selecting and heavily funding ($900,000) far left candidate, Dede Scozzafava for New York's 23rd congressional district. We Tea Party Patriots around the country just said, "No!" We rallied around Hoffman sending national support and funds for the local race. Despite both parties ganging up on Hoffman, (outrageously Scozzafava, the republican, dropped out and endorsed the democrat) our Conservative third party candidate nearly won. Hoffman's near victory sent a powerful message to both parties. They now realize we are a force with which to be reckoned. There's a new sheriff in town whose name is the Tea Party Movement.
I would be extremely leery of any self appointed leader of the Tea Party Movement. If we are to have a leader, his or her emergence will happen spontaneously via the people.
With great optimism and anticipation, I enter 2010. This is the year politicians who have ignored our voices and betrayed their duty to uphold the Constitution will experience the shock and awe of our wrath at the polls in November.
As to the theory the Tea Party Movement needs a leader; like the line in the Mel Brooks movie, Blazing Saddles, "Badges? We don't need no stinking badges", I say, "Leader? We don't need no stinking leader!" We the people are doing just fine.
Lloyd Marcus (black) Unhyphenated American, Singer/Songwriter, Entertainer, Author, Artist & Tea Party Patriot