April 14th, 2010
08:18 AM ET
10 years ago

CNN Poll: 1 in 10 say they're Tea Party activists

Ten percent of Americans say they have actively supported the Tea Party movement.

Ten percent of Americans say they have actively supported the Tea Party movement.

Washington (CNN) - Ten percent of Americans say they have actively supported the Tea Party movement, and those Tea Party activists are older, better educated and more religious than the general public, according to a new national poll.

O the Tea Party activists questioned in a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Wednesday morning, seven of ten call themselves conservatives. Nearly eight in ten would vote for a Republican candidate for Congress if the midterm elections were held today. Six in ten activists are male.

But the Tea Party movement, now in its 14th month, is not well-known to nearly half the country. Forty five percent of all Americans say they do not know enough about the Tea Party to say whether they support it or oppose it. Those who are familiar with the movement are divided right down the middle - 27 percent support the Tea Party movement, and 27 percent oppose it.

Full results (pdf)

One out of every ten people says they have donated money, attended a rally, or taken some other active step to support the Tea Party movement.

The poll indicates that 60 percent of this core group of Tea Party activists are male, six in ten are over the age of 50, two-thirds attended college, and half say they attend church services weekly or almost every week. By comparison, 48 percent of all Americans are male, 45 percent are age 50 or older, 54 percent attended college, and four in ten go to church every week or nearly every week.

Tea Party activists, known for their vocal opposition to government spending and taxes, are set to hold rallies in the nation's capital and across the country on Thursday – the day federal tax returns are due.

The CNN/Opinion Research Corporation national poll was conducted April 9-11, with 1,008 adult Americans questioned by telephone. The survey's overall sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.

CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report


Filed under: CNN poll • Tea Party movement
soundoff (94 Responses)
  1. sonsarchangel

    Old Angry White Males..exactly what MOST of the GOP leadership looks like....and Also the Group that's held Power in this nation for a LONG LONG LONG Time. No suprise we see the horrid hate filled activism around this nation. Militias and threats.....they are losing Power as minorities gain in status and numbers – woman rise in power- gays demand rights...all of this infringes on the Control this group has had. They won't give it up easily...I'm Bi racial and my white mother Intesnsly feels the same way

    April 14, 2010 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  2. dudh

    Ten out of ten Tea party members listen to right-wing talk radio and watch right-wing cable TV.

    April 14, 2010 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  3. cspurgeon

    In case you havent noticed CNN and Fox are the main reason they get any attention at all. All in the ratings boys no matter what happens to the country right! I am finding the local news more impartial and in Ocala, Fl that is saying something. MSNBC too far left and CNN and Fox too far right....Very disapointed in CNN who has brought some real right wingers up....

    April 14, 2010 09:31 am at 9:31 am |
  4. I Can't Stand It

    I'd say the Tea Party polling is pretty impressive given the mainstream media's daily assaults and intentional mischaracterizations of its motives and its supporters. I understand the liberals' plight – it's hard to demonize someone for advocating fiscal responsibility, which is really all the Tea Party is all about. So they play the only card in their deck, calling their opponents racists, sexists, homophobes, etc. Why don't liberals ever engage in an intelligent discussion of the issues? I'm sorry, silly question.

    April 14, 2010 09:32 am at 9:32 am |
  5. jo

    10%, I am terrified, you know 4 out of 10 Americans believe in ghost and UFOs, what does that tell you?

    April 14, 2010 09:35 am at 9:35 am |
  6. forty

    Sounds like a sweeping movement to me! Rush, Hannity, and Glenn Beck are almost done making millions destroying the GOP. They will emerge with a new small Party. They should call it the Fascist Party of Hate. FPH....

    April 14, 2010 09:37 am at 9:37 am |
  7. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    1 in 10 is pretty lame.

    April 14, 2010 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  8. inofritzn

    And if "news" outlets like CNN would stop the smear campaign against it, more people would probably support/understand it.

    April 14, 2010 09:39 am at 9:39 am |
  9. jim

    re: the picture ... the displayed sign says "this is america how dare they ignore us!"

    who says anyone is ignoring them? the article says they have had support by 10% of the population. last time i checked, 10% was not a majority. or even close to a majority.

    April 14, 2010 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  10. Larry

    I'd like to go to the tea party but I should I bring Lipton tea or the healthier choice....green tea?

    April 14, 2010 09:43 am at 9:43 am |
  11. Francisco Cardenas

    you think maybe some of them lie to the pollsters? looks like a false image to me

    April 14, 2010 09:44 am at 9:44 am |
  12. jerri

    These people are scary. They are very mean spirited.They come off as radicals.

    April 14, 2010 09:45 am at 9:45 am |
  13. awaitingliberalizationbyCNN

    Wait till they see their shares of taxes from the "porkulus" bill that Obozo and the libertards gave to the unions and all of the TARP money that he and his slimy, corrupt administration gave away, again to the unions. Fox News breaks it down per individual taxpayer. I am sure the unions will soon erect a shrine to worship Obozo (if they have not already) using taxpayer money of course.

    April 14, 2010 09:49 am at 9:49 am |
  14. Bob

    I'll see you tomorrow in DC! Let's stop this out of control government!

    April 14, 2010 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  15. ARob

    That's nothing...1 in 5 people you ask say that they've been abducted by aliens. And 1 in 4 believe the earth is only 6,000 years old, having been magically conjured into being by a suicidal narcissist

    April 14, 2010 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  16. kyle from ohio

    Yes that sounds about right 10% of the population, the same 10% that is loud on constitutional and liberty, yes older, better educated and more religious than the general public, on the antics of just their opinion matter. There was an Election (2008) that was not questioned by the states or federal laws, meaning it was constitutional, If they are so smart how do they expalin the TAX CUT they received this year everyone has seen it if they have done their Tax return? Tax Enough Already..... indeed. And if they got their way and everyone aggreed. what actually do you want to change or return to, Tax Cuts, no-regulation, opression of the people from Goverment Entitlements. And nothing in between.

    April 14, 2010 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  17. Anonymous

    " How dare the Ignore Us" It's easy, watch...........................................

    April 14, 2010 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  18. Dennis

    I'm not a Tea Party member, but I understand the impetus behind the movement. There needs to be some accountability by government. Government needs to live by the same rules as individula citizens, such as don't spend money you don't have.

    April 14, 2010 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  19. Ramses

    Tea party is partisan Republican stupidity & non sense. People around the world think that America is the greatest country in this world. Non sense. Wake up world, wake up America, it is about time to do good & great things for people in America. Move on.

    April 14, 2010 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  20. Mark

    I don't think I would consider a CNN poll to be accurate.

    Non political polling shows over 50% of Americans agree with the Tea Party message.

    April 14, 2010 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  21. Mike

    Come November, we will ignore them on election day and vote for their opponent. Now that is CHANGE we can believe in.

    April 14, 2010 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  22. Redneck

    So the Tea Party is 10% of the country... and we live in a country where the political majority rules... so can they all shut up about being "ignored" and forcing the government to do what they say? They're the political minority, so they're not going to get everything they want, simple as that. Come back when you've got 51% and we'll talk.

    April 14, 2010 10:06 am at 10:06 am |
  23. Jeff Brown in Jersy

    Misery loves company!

    April 14, 2010 10:07 am at 10:07 am |
  24. Donatella

    As their racist agenda becomes more visable they will lose even more support, I can't stand those old washed up depends wearing losers.

    April 14, 2010 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  25. geecee

    Last time I checked, the majority rules in this country, as in most other countries, unless the country is a dictatorship. Is that what you want? You dictate and we have to listen, regardless of the fact that we outnumber you 10 to 1?? You lost the election in 2008. Get over it. The South lost the Civil War, get over that too!!

    April 14, 2010 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
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