The most interesting dynamic in the race for the GOP’s nomination for president is Tea Party-minded voters. They switched around from one candidate to the other just as quick as Mitt Romney changes on positions on issues. Frankly, it’s irritating given that a couple of the candidates they’ve gotten behind have supported big government programs and have intervention in the market.
Polls show that the Tea Party voting bloc is largely getting behind Newt Gingrich, who has emerged as their latest “hero.” My understanding of the Tea Party movement was that we were trying to fight against cronyism, corporatism, and big government; so that begs the question: Why is the Tea Party lining up for someone that epitomizes statism? Conor Friedersdorf explains that Gingrich encouraged Republicans, including George W. Bush, to betray taxpayers:
On December 7, 2003, Newt Gingrich appeared on NBC’s “Meet the Press” opposite Tim Russert, who asked about the beginnings of conservative discontent over President Bush’s profligate spending impulse:
MR. RUSSERT: Let me turn to the domestic front. Here’s the headline of yesterday’s paper: “Conservatives Criticize Bush On Spending.” You ran in 1994 with a Contract with America, pledging a balanced budget. Deficit’s now $500 billion.
MR. GINGRICH: Right.
MR. RUSSERT: You supported the president’s Medicare bill, another $400 billion entitlement. What happened to balanced budgets and Republicans?