September 15th, 2009
03:54 PM ET
13 years ago

Movement 'coming from the soil of America,' conservative says

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/09/15/art.perkins0915.cnn.jpg caption="Tony Perkins said Tuesday that recent conservative outrage directed at the Obama administration isn't necessarily going to be a 'windfall' for the GOP."]
WASHINGTON (CNN) - Three days after conservatives converged on the nation's capital to express their concerns about a number of the Obama administration's policies, a leading social conservative has a warning for the Republican Party.

"The public is not saying they're for Republicans," Family Research Council president Tony Perkins said Tuesday at a gathering of conservative bloggers and online activists, "they're saying they're against big government and this is not necessarily going to be a windfall for Republicans."

As bipartisan negotiations over a health care bill in the Senate Finance Committee appear to be reaching a conclusion, Perkins said it would be a "disaster" for congressional Republicans to give their support to "anything that has any element of the public [health insurance] option."

And Perkins rejected the notion that the growing outpouring of concerns expressed by conservatives – during the recent August congressional recess and during last Saturday's event in Washington – had been contrived by groups like his.
"I don't think it's something that can be directed or controlled. This is not the work of organizations. I think organizations can fan it and channel it but they can't build it and direct it. I think this is coming genuinely - this is not astroturf. This is coming from the soil of America."

The Value Voters Summit, an annual Washington gathering of social conservatives put on by the lobbying arm of Perkins' group, is set for September 18-20. Carrie Prejean, a former beauty pageant winner who became embroiled in controversy after she supported traditional marriage, is set to join a number of other prominent conservatives at the event.

"She was just unmercifully attacked," Perkins said of the former beauty queen in a separate interview with CNN. Perkins added that his group is going to "stand up" for anyone in Prejean's position "and we're going to give them a platform."

Perkins also told CNN that "there's a natural overlap" between social conservatives, fiscal conservatives, and foreign policy conservatives. "Americans don't draw the lines . . . like we do in Washington." Perkins estimated that 9 out of every 10 social conservatives are also fiscal conservatives.


Filed under: GOP • Tea Party movement
soundoff (68 Responses)
  1. Duck Fallas

    No.. this is coming from the MANURE of America.

    Social conservative = morally bankrupt. Shame on all of you. Christ-less fools.

    September 15, 2009 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  2. Ellid

    I will never, ever understand why someone who calls himself a Christian can so willfully ignore Jesus' call for his followers to visit care for the less fortunate and eschew wealth. Perkins and his ilk, from James Dobson on down, remind me of the rich young man who could not bring himself to follow Jesus because he had great possessions and loved them more than he loved the Son of Man's message of love, peace, and concern for the less fortunate.

    What a selfish, sad excuse for a human being.

    September 15, 2009 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  3. centerfielder1

    I respectfully disagree. The rallies against "healthcare reform" are by and large a reslult of a collaboration of our "mainstream (yes conservative) media" and " our corporate (protect the almighty machine) controllers".

    September 15, 2009 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  4. elliott

    IMPEACH OBAMA!!!!
    We have enough info!!!!

    September 15, 2009 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  5. trying to be reasonable in WV

    Where are the THOUGHTFUL conservatives??? Carrie Prejean, Tony Perkins? Ummmmm, not so sure about that . . . Limbaugh, Hannity, Coulter??? Laughable . . .

    Oh, I see PLENTY of conservative ideologues and legions of their very vocal (sometimes rabid) followers. But who are the conservatives advancing solid ideas aimed at solving problems and not just obstructing? I would listen to them, REALLY, I WOULD!

    Of course, Perkins warning to the Republicans is as sincere as it is misguided. Knee-jerk conservatives WILL abandon the GOP if it is not as rigidly ideological as Perkins et al want it to be. Of course, that will leave the GOP with almost no base, and the right-wing ideologues themselves stranded even further in the wilderness. I guess I should relish that prospect, but I think we actually NEED thinking conservatives. Too bad there aren't many of any stature to be found.

    September 15, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  6. The Dude

    Soil of America my foot. These things are organized by well funded conservative groups.

    September 15, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  7. sharon

    will you be giving the platform to C-Street members??????????

    September 15, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  8. Don

    Perkins analysis of this movement omits the millions of Americans who a.don't have the time or the money to go to "tea parties." (Where does all that money come from, anyway?); b. believe that public option is necessary; and c. don't buy into the competition keeping the insurance companies, et al., in line.

    I recall some 50 some years ago reading of several wrist watch manufacturers meeting at a plush hotel in Florida to set the prices on their products. And so it's been for, lo, all these years. So much for the mythical competition between industries in this country.

    September 15, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  9. Pat Riot

    This movement isn't about "social" conservatives it is about freedom. Freedom for Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians and Independents. Our government bails out their friends, over taxes and overregulates. They trample on our freedoms and ignore our Constitution. They want our health care, our salary and our children. The promote war, statism and corruption. The system has been broken by crooked politicians and mob rule. It is time to go back to respecting the individual. It is too late to just vote these people out. They have fortified the establishment. The Federal Reserve is target #1. Time to get our money back. END THE FED.

    September 15, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  10. Ryan

    There's no such thing as a "conservative activist" – They're more accurately called d-bags. Or t-bags in this case. Reason being: They only scream and holler when there are laws and spending proposed to help the people who need it the most and under particular circumstances. These people don't give a rats ass if you can't afford a cup of coffee but man won't they scream and holler in a starbucks if they don't get their complicated order perfect! That's the best analogy to describe these people. Corporate wastes are their gain and they do it on the back of uneducated blue collar workers trying to say they're for the people and they aren't by any stretch.

    September 15, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  11. Chris

    I wonder what this guy thinks about dinosaurs and global warming.

    September 15, 2009 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  12. Jeff in Virginia

    The Republican party and conservatives in general have had their movement co-opted (or hijacked, your preference) by the racist wackos in this country.

    Until conservatives distance themselves from the racists, there is no reason to pay attention to anything they have to say. The lack of condemnation is a tacit approval.

    September 15, 2009 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  13. debbie

    You mean he's saying teabaggers are dirtbags? LOL

    September 15, 2009 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  14. Renee

    "Movement 'coming from the soil of America,' conservative says"

    Is the GOP recruiting dead people again?

    September 15, 2009 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  15. Shelly

    Yep, they have risen from the dark wells of the ground with their DIRT-Y politics. They are creepy and disturbing!

    September 15, 2009 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  16. John from California

    If these conservatives hate the public options so much, they should all refuse to accept Medicare and pay for their own medical care in the "private sector".

    Put up or shut up!

    "Soil of America" – I think not – more likely the "Garbage Dump of America".

    September 15, 2009 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  17. rightsaid

    More like the cesspool.

    September 15, 2009 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  18. Kevin from Philly

    Yeah, you can see the "soil of America" in all the mud they're slinging. Do these people not see that they're stooges for the HMO's, or do they just not care?

    September 15, 2009 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  19. Frank S.

    The overlap with social conservatives and fiscal conservatives is the basic hatred of poor white people and all Black and Brown people, rich or poor, (they don't hate Asian people because they prescribe to the stereotype that all Asian people are super intelligent). If the social conservatives and fiscal conservatives had their way, America would have nothing but white, born-again Christians with MBAs. They would have Mexican nationals as nannies, waiters, cooks, farmworkers and construction workers and would have them on temporary viwork visas with no civil rights and all making $3.00 an hour. The conservative movements are about conservatives having the world to themselves. They have no sense of decency, no sense of fair play, and their version of justice is "Just us." Lastly, if an American loses a job or his home then it is his fault and he becomes a loser poor person and should never consider any help from anyone but himself. Welcome to the New America!

    September 15, 2009 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  20. Anonymous

    the soil that contains manure..yep

    September 15, 2009 04:43 pm at 4:43 pm |
  21. reresparks

    he meant to say coming from the manure in the soil of America.

    September 15, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  22. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    " This is coming from the soil of America."

    More like the scum of America. I saw no diversity of Americans, just a bunch of white Obama haters. These people are a minority. They need to start their own party if they are so concerned about government spending because republicans spend just as much as democrats.

    September 15, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
  23. Stan

    What's the big surprise here? All of these "protestors," like their counterparts at town hall meetings, are older white conservatives and to a person they were McCain voters. Why didn't they protest against big govt. during the Bush years, when we were spending billions of dollars a month in Iraq? Why didn't they cry "I want my country back" when we were wiretapping, torturing, and manufacturing intelligence that has left over 4,000 American soldiers dead? When Darth Vader Cheney was shredding the Constitution? When our standing in the world went down the toilet? Where were their protests when a president who didn't even win the popular vote tallied up a huge deficit and sent us spiralling toward economic ruin? Silence. And now we're supposed to take them seriously. Please, when did conservative old white people ever, ever, ever support reform of any kind? They opposed abolition, they opposed women voting, they opposed civil rights, and now they oppose Obama and everything he does. Big, big surprise.

    September 15, 2009 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  24. Eric

    If it's coming from soil of America it's coming from the polluted lies you sowed. Polluted by corporate greed and lobbyist power.

    September 15, 2009 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  25. single mom

    This is a growing grassroots movement aided and organized by swift communications via the internet. Gee, sort of like so many liberal leaning groups.

    At least it doesn't seemed organized like moveon.org or run by someone like George Soros!

    September 15, 2009 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
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