The Atlantic has an article up claiming that Ron paul isn’t loved by Tea Partiers. The basis for this story is a recent loss of a call-in tele-conference poll to every other candidates except Utah Governor John Huntsman. The candidates got to speak their piece, and then the listeners voted.
The article goes on at some length about what this means about how Paul’s views are too out there for security conscious tea party voters. You can quibble with a lot about this article. Who are the Tea party Patriots? Who gets on their lists for these tele-conferences? The writer asserts that the poll was scientific, mentioning a sample size of 23,000 but mentions nothing about how those people were selected. It could easily have been some kind of poll specifically geared towards making Paul look bad. You can argue that, but you’d be easily dismissed as a kook or a crank.
The article was posted at 1:18 PM ET. Just in time for lunch hour for most of the country. The article got most of it’s 11,447 views as of this writing. Tea party folks who read it thought again about what they saw at the debates. “The rest of the tea partiers are worried about Iran, maybe I should be too.” Some Paul supporters read it and may have gotten a little discouraged. Some Republican donors brushed off what little enthusiasm they had gotten for Paul’s straight talking. All in all a little depressing.
And all completely manufactured.
Sometime between the all important lunch hour and 6:46 PM ET a small clarification was entered:
“Clarification: Ron Paul, Rick Perry, and Jon Huntsman weren’t on the conference call.”
So Michele Bachmann, Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, and Rick Santorum — advocates of the Bush doctrine that brought our country so much foreign policy success — got on a conference call and talked to a group of 23,000 hand-picked people. I would love a transcript of this call. Somehow, with no opportunity to respond, Paul managed to lose this conference call. Absolutely extraordinary.
The Tea Party Patriots should be ashamed. The candidates involved should be ashamed. Jon Huntsman, and shockingly Rick Perry are too decent to be involved in something like this. The Atlantic should be ashamed. The rest of us should be disgusted. This sort of thing is to be expected from candidates, and whatever the Tea Party Patriots are. The Atlantic, a publication I love, should be disgusted with itself. Talk about tarnishing a legacy. Incredibly disappointing.
UPDATE BY STEPHEN VANDYKE: Tea Party Patriots has a post on this as well (sorely lacking in details and no transcripts). It seems to me like the Tea Party Patriots is having a serious identity crisis, just contrast their supposed core values of “Fiscal Responsibility”, “Constitutionally Limited Government” and “Free Markets” with the winning candidates’ values. Well, Michele Bachmann’s history of government aid just makes me shake my head: