While most prominent Republicans were lavishing praise on the Tea Party at the influential Conservative Political Action Conference, Arnold Schwarzenegger had another message: "The Tea Party is not going to go anywhere," the California governor said, dismissing the grassroots movement as merely "an expression of anger and dissatisfaction." Will he pay a political price for his comments even if he's right? (Watch Arnold Schwarzenegger diss the Tea Party)
Why should Swarzenegger be censured? He's right: The Governator is shrewd to predict the Tea Party will be a short-lived political "fad," says Mark Schmitt in The American Prospect. Just look back at every other fit of "right-wing populism." McCarthyism? The 1994 Gingrich revolution? Both came to nothing. "Hot populism" always burns itself out "quite quickly."
"The end of the Tea Party"
Schwarzenegger doesn't understand the Tea Party's goals: If Arnold means the Tea Party won't become a formal third party, says Allahpundit in Hot Air, that's "both true and beside the point." Tea Partiers just want more limited government, and they have been quite successful at getting Republicans to back their cause. The Tea Party is on the move — if anybody's "going nowhere," it's Arnold.
"Schwarzenegger: The tea party’s going nowhere"
Schwarzenegger may come out a winner: Yes, Schwarzenegger committed the "sin of sins for a registered Republican" by criticizing the Tea Party, says Joe Gandelman in The Moderate Voice. But that's "Ahnold" — "an independent thinker, generally part of that vanishing breed called 'Moderate Republicans.'" His future with the GOP is probably vanishing, but maybe there's room for one more RINO in Obama's cabinet.
"Schwarzenegger criticizes Republicans for stimulus hypocrisy and shrugs off Tea Party movement"
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- China's leader is telling the People's Liberation Army to prepare for war
- Diagnosing the Home Alone burglars' injuries: A professional weighs in
- How to save money: 12 great personal finance tips
- Why Pakistan won't hunt down the terrorists within its borders
- How I lost all my money
- 'Tis the season for archaic English
- How academia's liberal bias is killing social science
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- The religious right isn't retreating — it's reforming
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
Subscribe to the Week