January 3rd, 2013
11:11 AM ET
1 year ago

Calls from tea party for 'consequences' of fiscal cliff vote

(CNN) - Prominent tea party voices are calling for action following the fiscal cliff votes this week in Washington.

Amy Kremer, leader of the group Tea Party Express, said Thursday she is "outraged" over the deal, which was struck between Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell and Vice President Joe Biden. It allows tax rates on wealthy earners - families earning over $450,000 and individuals earning over $400,000 - to expire while extending the tax breaks passed under President George W. Bush for earners below those thresholds.

"We elected the House of Representatives - we have the majority, the Republicans have the majority there. We still control part of the government and the House controls the purse strings," Kremer said on CNN.

"At some point we're going to have to come together and do what's right for America, but do the Democrats have a mandate to go and just do whatever and just spend into oblivion? No," she said. "And that's evident because the Republicans still control the House."

President Barack Obama made increasing the tax rates of the wealthy a central part of his re-election campaign, and a series of polls have shown Americans support his view.

In the November House elections, Republicans posted a net loss of 8 seats.

Another conservative group, Tea Party Patriots, urged the new House to select their speaker through a secret ballot "so members can vote their conscience without fear of retribution from leadership."

"Through this 'fiscal cliff' crisis Congress has demonstrated once again its incapability of actually cutting government spending and preventing tax hikes," the group's head, Jenny Beth Martin, said in a statement. "Republicans who stood on principle, and did not cave to political pressure instead should not be impeded from voting for a speaker with whom they have confidence will help take the country in the right direction."

While negotiations between House Speaker John Boehner and the White House were often at a stalemate, Boehner did offer a compromise on taxes, laying out a plan which included tax increases for earners of over $1 million in exchange for GOP-backed elements, including a change in entitlement benefit calculations.

Rep. Steve LaTourette, R-Ohio, who is seen as a moderate in the GOP, said on CNN tea party conservatives have held "a feeling after the 2010 election that leaders of both parties weren't doing enough to rein in the deficit and the debt."

"So as a result, they have laid obstacles in front of the speaker for the last two years," he said, including the "fight on the fiscal cliff" and over a bill with appropriations for the states impacted by Superstorm Sandy.

The final fiscal cliff compromise passed the House 257-167. It was supported by 85 Republicans and opposed by 151 Republicans.

After the vote, Kremer posted on Twitter, "I'm extremely disgusted with what happened in the House tonight. There will be consequences."

It passed the Senate 89-8 with a majority of Republicans - 42 of them - casting yes votes.

In particular, Kremer has singled out Sen. Saxby Chambliss, the Georgia Republican who has spoken out against the Grover Norquist-backed pledge against raising new taxes.

"I care more about my country than I do about a 20-year-old pledge," Chambliss said in a post-election November interview with WMAZ, a CNN affiliate. "If we do it his way, then we'll continue in debt and I just have a disagreement with him about that."

Kremer has promised the two-term senator will face a primary challenge in 2014.

"I live in the state of Georgia and Saxby Chambliss is going to be 'primaried,' our own senator," she said in the CNN interview. "It's unacceptable to have somebody who votes with the Democrats more than they do with the conservatives, and he has proven time and time again he is all about the spending. And we're a red state, we deserve a conservative senator."

The Washington publication National Journal rated Chambliss as more economically conservative than 78% of the U.S. Senate, based on 2011 votes. Overall, they ranked him the 26th most conservative senator; from the other angle, they found 73 members to be more liberal than he.

Ted Cruz, a Texas Republican and tea party favorite, was elected this year to the seat held by retiring Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison. He said Thursday morning that he was disappointed with the agreement.

"I think it was a lousy deal," he said. "I think it raised taxes by $620 billion, which is going to hurt the economy, it's gonna kill jobs. And to combine that not with spending cuts but with spending increases, $330 billion in additional spending - that doesn't solve the problems we've got."

Besides raising revenue through increased taxes on wealthy earners and limiting tax exemptions for the wealthy, the law spends by extending long-term unemployment insurance and averting a scheduled pay cut to doctors who provide Medicare services. The Congressional Budget Office said the deal would spend $332 billion over ten years.

– CNN's Jim Acosta and Rachel Streitfeld contributed to this report


Filed under: Fiscal Cliff • Tea Party • Tea Party Express
soundoff (254 Responses)
  1. chuck

    Kremer is epitopy of ignorance-how about FOx news hiring her, she will fit right in.

    January 3, 2013 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  2. chris

    funny how some of you here seem to think the "fiscal cliff" problem has been solved. Yes, you saved americans the "here and now" immediate tax hike but you also just added 4 TRILLION in debt and the deficit will be around $330 BILLION higher than if congress did nothing!

    January 3, 2013 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  3. Tutuvabene

    The Tea Party needs to split from the Republican party. That would be no great loss to Republicanism since the Tea Party appears to be vehemently opposed to any moderate/centrist thought. With the Tea Party gone, normal people could feel comfortable in joining the Republican party.

    January 3, 2013 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  4. AvgGuyinKS

    I'm no longer amazed by the goofy rhetoric spewing forth from the mouths of the imbeciles who make up the Tea Party. One thing is clear about their simple-minded movement: It has become a bright and noble bastion of hypocrisy. What a bunch of goons...

    January 3, 2013 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  5. Eric

    Why say the tea party? why not just say the Koch Brothers?

    January 3, 2013 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  6. Sandra

    Amy Kremer...go away...you are getting boring.

    January 3, 2013 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  7. TX Dann

    Let them continue to oust moderate Republicans in the primaries in favor of their preferred candidates. There's a reason MO and IN have Democratic senators. Continuing down this path will ensure Democrats regain control of the House.

    January 3, 2013 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  8. Rudy NYC

    Lando – "...this was never part of deal!"
    Vader – "Do you think you're being treated unfairly?"
    Lando – "No."
    Vader – "Good! I'd hate to leave a garrison here. Pray I do not alter it any further."

    Lesson to be learned. Never make deals with bad guys. Be especially wary of deals that offer nothing of value for the bad guy because it means that he will invariably cheat you in the end.

    So. The Tea Party feels that they've made a deal with the bad guy and got cheated in the end. They feel that they are rebels, fighting for the freedom of all beings who've been oppressed by an evil government. Now, they're standing up in Vader's face, telling him that there will be consequences for what he just did. They have neither lightsaber nor swordmaster.

    This is typical of the battles that the Tea Party endures as they fight for freedumb in their fantasy worlds.

    January 3, 2013 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  9. eagerliving

    All these liberals and democrats screaming about red states and blue states and how red states shouldn't get blue state money anymore are simply arguing FOR the Tea Party platform of smaller federal government and keeping state money within the states. So please, carry on...

    January 3, 2013 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  10. The Real Tom Paine

    -Roadkyng

    "The Real Tom Payne"

    Texas has a budget surplus and has sent more money to the FEDS than it draws for years. In fact there is a big movement here for secession due to the control NY, CA and other liberal states have over the federal government.

    Embracing the Tea Party has cost the Republicans dearly. The The Party wants to use a scorched earth policy to balance the budget with little regard of how it actually effects the country and the people in it. The end cannot justify the means.

    But through it all I would not live any other place in the world. Shut down all the world policing we do and the deficit could be cleared in 18 months.
    ********************************
    Your governor used stim money and block grants to pay for teachers and public works projects he could not otherwise afford. Once the oil becomes too expensive to produce, what do you have? Barbeque? New York is not your problem, your addiction to federal money is, along with your unwillingness to pay for the goodies you want and need. If you don't want it, ask the feds to close the bases, and turn over maintenance and construction new roads to the state. Your taxes will shoot through the roof in a week, Sunny Jim.

    January 3, 2013 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  11. GSL

    llydapdicter – Federal dollars do come from all states. However, some states, like New York and New Jersey, put in more than they take out. Other states, like the majority of the red states, take out much more than they put in. That's not "Dem logic." It's just a fact. And yes, California is often considered a red state, and they are in a lot of trouble. They've also had only one Democratic governor since 1983, and that was only for 3 years.

    I also love this notion that increasing taxes on the wealthy is by 2-3% is going to ruin the economy. Right, because the 1980's, when the huge tax breaks for the wealthy started, was such an amazing time of unchecked job creation in this country.

    January 3, 2013 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  12. 2cents4free

    LOL!!! About as relevant in politics as Donald Trump.

    January 3, 2013 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  13. Mike Texoma

    Okay,so the Tea Party is angry. The tea party got elected in the first place on a platform of job creation, then did absolutely nothing in the two years to create jobs. They passed two baloney budgets and who knows how many anti=-abortion bills, all of which went nowhere. In the process they have damaged the Republican brand to the point where if you are a Republican and you are not from one of thse gerrymandered safe seats, you've probably got a problem. Now, to survive as a national party, able to elect national candidates, they have got to move toward the center. This woman can gnash her teeth all she wants, pretty soon her crowd will wander off.

    January 3, 2013 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  14. Paul

    Hopefully, come 2014, the consequences will be another reduction in the number of destructive know-nothing Tea Party zealots in the House

    January 3, 2013 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  15. JOHN HERLING

    The Tea Party reaction closely resembles a group of spoiled brats having a temper tantrum after not getting their way.

    January 3, 2013 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  16. democratsrule

    Tea party, hah. I prefer coffee.

    January 3, 2013 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  17. CaesarXIII

    Actually the real consequences are gonna be the fallout and the sky high inflation rates that are gonna smack us from the continuing printing of money. I don't understand why no one is paying any attention to this matter.

    January 3, 2013 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  18. Mo

    Although I wish spending cuts and not additional spending were added to the bill ....I still wonder what's on the minds of these tea party people. For 2 years the congress could not get a deal mainly because the tea party wanted taxes to go down and cuts to go up...thats idoitic! You can not cut the government down to nothing and keep the rich richer because a top heavy systems always crumbles. And if jobs was so important then why weren't the rich "creating" jobs when the tax rates were favorable? Unemployment was high then and the economy was in a recession. That arguement has long died off....but yet they continue to use it.

    January 3, 2013 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  19. rinsac

    We are going to dump you all in Boston harbor with the rest of the tea....

    January 3, 2013 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  20. Tuna

    Can you imagine living with or being around this woman??? It makes you never want to join the tea party!!!

    January 3, 2013 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  21. mhub

    jjoet – the Tea Party is the self-centered bunch that are so miserly, they can't see helping Americans in need. As most have said, the Tea Party is on the way out – let them whine all they want. Their theories of what is good for the country are short sighted.

    January 3, 2013 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  22. jk in MN

    The sad thing is the consequences will be for the American Economy as well as "mainstream repulicans" (if they still exist) if the Tea people gain more traction in Congress.

    January 3, 2013 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  23. Fair is Fair

    The Real Tom Paine

    "Because that fat, bloated middleman pig is the only thing that keeps the GOP's geographic base from slipping into banana republic status. All those bases, public works projects, all paid for by that fat, bloated middleman pig you described. Did you mind when they gave Halliburton all those no-bid contracts?"
    ------–
    Tell you what, Tom... I'd accept a"dollar-for-dollar" deal if the federal government returned ALL federal lands within the states back to the individual states. Deal? If not, why not?

    January 3, 2013 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  24. yogi

    The Tea party is outraged about the cliff deal...You will see how the outrage of many Americans will translate in 2014 and show you the door. Enough of your way or the highway, enough of your outrageous rigidity!

    January 3, 2013 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  25. Roscoe Chait

    This is a fine moment in history. We are witnessing not only the demise of the GOP and emergence of a saner party (we hope), but also the end of the wacko Tea Party and its strident, tourette syndrome screaming of ME, ME, ME... look at me, Mom, I'm nuts.

    January 3, 2013 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11