February 5th, 2010
10:35 AM ET
12 years ago

A Tea Party litmus test?

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/02/05/art.teaparty.file.gi.jpg caption="The Tea Party Convention organizers are preparing a set of 'first principles.'"]Nashville, Tennessee (CNN) - Tea Party Convention organizers tell CNN that they are proposing a set of "first principles" for candidates seeking support from the one year-old small-government movement.

Organizers of what is being billed as the first national Tea Party Convention are expected to announce the principles at a news conference Friday afternoon at the event, which is being held at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel and Convention Center in Nashville.

Mark Skoda, a businessman and founder of the Memphis Tea Party, who is also serving as spokesman for the convention, refused to term this as a litmus test but said that candidates would have to adhere to the principles to be eligible for tea party fundraising and support.

The principles include fiscal responsibility, lower taxes, states' rights and national security.

Organizers say the convention has attracted a sell-out crowd of around 600 attendees from across the country.

Among the sessions scheduled for Friday are workshops on how to conduct voter registration drives and where to find conservative votes, women in politics, how to organize a Tea Party group, how to involve youth in the conservative movement, grass-roots "on the ground," how to unite state Tea Party groups, technology in the Tea Party movement, and why Christians must engage.

- CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report

Filed under: Uncategorized
soundoff (163 Responses)
  1. Brendan H., San Antonio, TX

    They should be called "Tea-Baggers" because that's what they are, really!

    February 5, 2010 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  2. Ryan-TX

    Does anyone remember that before Obama took office, defense spending on the wars was not even included in the yearly budget? Yeah our deficit is big, it's not that much bigger than Bush... maybe we should wind down our war spending?

    February 5, 2010 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  3. Rich

    oh my lord, 600 attendees! It's a revolution!! There are more people than that at an Imax screening of Avatar.

    February 5, 2010 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  4. Wonderful

    Are there no ethnics amongst the Tea Party Movement. . . ? My, how interesting. . . .

    February 5, 2010 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  5. Cosmo

    I wonder how closely these Tea Party principles will resemble those of the KKK and the Nazi party.

    February 5, 2010 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  6. Ranze

    It’s amazing that in a nation which was founded on principles of democracy and equal rights for ALL by founding fathers who were immigrants themselves there should be a question about the current Mr. Obama’s legitimacy to the presidency. This is a nation which should be proud of it’s historical struggle to attain democracy and equality of all nationals black, white and anything in between. Many people have died for that to happen. This is a nation where people from other nations come to for protection from unjust persecution and totalitarianism. America is NOT a socialist nation, and is not headed in that direction either. Those who’ve lived there, like myself can attest to that.
    Now the irrational anger and outbursts coming out from this group who call themselves the ‘tea party coalition’ is absolute nonsense. Listening to a delusional member like
    Tom Tancredo who can only get his message across by making insulting remarks that are totally unfounded and without proof, just shows what level of rational and intelligence is comprised in the group as a whole. The fact that members of this group can only express themselves by insulting a person and trying to damage his character says something about their integrity.
    I wish somebody would remind them that everything they are complaining about is a RESULT of all the damage planted, watered and cultivated by Mr. George W. Bush and his cronies. It’s amazing how Tea Party members conveniently try to ignore this fact. This mess is not Obama’s mess, and it’s unfair he’s getting blamed for 8 years of stupid administration that led to all this.
    Hey, it’s so easy to find a scape-goat and outlet for all the pent up anger, but it’s not going to solve anything. Working together in unison and harmony should be the way forward.

    February 5, 2010 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  7. Mike

    This country needs the tea party and its principles. The demorats and nobama are destroying the economic fabric of this country in trying to make us like the Europeans. We are not the weak kneed Europeans except for out bed wetting, panty wearing liberal members.-

    February 5, 2010 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  8. Liz

    Here's a test the Tea Partiers can give their disciples. since you hate government and taxes so much, you need to renounce all rights to Medicare, Social Security, Unemployment benefits if you lose a job, food stamps, etc. if you continue to blast government but avail yourself of its benefits, you're nothing but a raging hypocrite!

    February 5, 2010 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  9. SocialismBad

    Finally the American people have awaken to take back their Republic from the never ending growth of the Fedral government, the never-ending insane spending, the intrusion on personal freedoms of Americans by the federal government and the BLATANT DISREGARD for the Constitution.

    February 5, 2010 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  10. sensible Cape coral FL

    As a litmus test, how about an I.Q. test. That should take care of everything.

    February 5, 2010 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  11. Wisconsonite

    "Organizers say the convention has attracted a sell-out crowd of around 600 attendees from across the country"

    Let's do the math. That would be . . . 600 divided by 50 . . . . wow 12 people from each state on average. Yeah. Color me impressed.

    February 5, 2010 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  12. The Other Michael in Houston

    Tea Party hmmm, is that what the Nazi Party has changed their name to. Why are you decent Republicans not removing yourself from this modern day KKK party is the question. The Tea Partiers are nothing more than a bunch of racist, scum, bottom feeding, idiots who have nothing better to do with their time but hate. I imagine you have to a white homophobic religous radical to be endorsed by the "Tea Baggers". Yeah you might win a few state and local elections, but never nothing National, especially in the 2012 Presidential election. President Obama will get a second term if he chooses to have another term, we will see to that as we did in 2008. Nothing you can do to stop that. And if President Obama elects not to run for a second term, then we will nominate Hillary Clinton or Maxine Waters to replace him and again, nothing you can do about it. So have fun at your convention.

    February 5, 2010 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  13. shamgar50

    Technology in the Tea Party movement?
    Would that include teaching Teabaggers about the benefits of indoor plumbing?

    February 5, 2010 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
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