But seriously, folks. A new CNN/Opinion Research Pole (typo on purpose) has some facts you never wanted to know about a group you have scant knowledge of. Check it, from CNN Politics:
Activists in the Tea Party movement tend to be male, rural, upscale, and overwhelmingly conservative, according to a new national poll.
We’re shocked. Shocked! More:
The poll indicates that about 24 percent of the public generally favors the Tea Party movement but has not taken any actions such as donating money or attending a rally. Adding in the 11 percent who say they are active, a total of 35 percent could be described as Tea Party supporters. That larger group is also predominantly male, higher-income, and conservative.
Again, a stunner. Continuing:
The poll indicates that in a two-way race on the so-called “generic ballot” question, GOP candidates have a 47 percent to 45 percent edge. Throw a Tea Party candidate into the mix, and that two-point advantage becomes a 12-point deficit. That’s because virtually everyone who would vote for a Tea Party candidate in a three-way contest would choose a Republican in a two-way race. The Democratic candidate gets 45 percent in both scenarios, but the GOP candidate’s share of the vote drops from 47 percent in a two-way contest to just 33 percent with a Tea Party candidate on the ballot.
“Historically, that’s the problem many political movements have faced if they try to become a full-fledged party. They often wind up ensuring the victory of the candidate they dislike the most,” Holland added.
Hence Ross Perot and the election of Bill Clinton. Twice. And we know how Republicans — and by supposition, Teabaggers — feel about that guy.
Look, we’re not saying don’t run a third-party candidate. We’re just saying be careful what you wish for.