The anger-driven, screw-them-all cacophony of the Tea Party is now costing embattled conservative Republican Congressman Scott Garrett votes.
Facebook post: "Didn't Garrett support the gas tax? Really hurts Sussex County residents."
How misinformed! But these are the kinds of conclusions drawn when you are functioning on high-octane hate. Facts don't matter. All that matters is rage and targets for that rage.
Scott Garrett is a Sussex County native who has represented New Jersey’s fifth congressional district since 2003. This year, he’s locked in the most difficult race he's ever faced. Garrett is an unabashed social conservative with an almost perfect conservative voting record.
The American Conservative Union rated him 100 percent last year. His lifetime ACU rating is 99.38. Garrett is a founding member of the House Freedom Caucus and has the support of the Club for Growth.
Still, many in the Tea Party find him suspect because he didn't rise from their ranks and his politics predates 2009 -- Year Zero for the Tea Party. Unlike many Tea Party leaders, Congressman Garrett is an old-fashioned conservative gentleman who eschews the kind of foul-language on display from Tea Party Facebook warriors and at Tea Party rallies. He is definitely out of step with the movement's manner of communicating.
This has earned Garrett problems from the Tea Party in the past. He was challenged in a Republican primary by a Tea Party member who will be playing a big part at the October 22nd Rally on Newton Green. Despite his 99.38 lifetime rating from the American Conservative Union, that Tea Party leader described Garrett as a far-left liberal. Violence and threats have been directed at the Congressman's office.
In the past, the Tea Party has often let their emotions get the better of them. At times, they behave as if they are disconnected from our shared reality, rejecting fact for feeling. Too often, violence is on their lips. They fail to forgive long time allies and friends, and instead heap the most vicious invective on them. Here is a chilling post, by a Tea Party leader from Sussex County, that expresses the kind of desires that can grow when you fail to keep hold of your humanity, humility, and common decency:
"All 545 sitting in DC right now are guilty of treason. And all those living who have sat over the past 2 decades, since the signing of NAFTA are, too. That is our reality, they should all be indicted, dragged out in chains, the evidence a matter of congressional record and unimpeachable. And all should be subject to all the consequences the law provides up to the firing squad."
What this Tea Party leader is describing is a lynching. Let's hope that's not what happens on the 22nd. People don't need any more reasons to vote for our mutual opponents.
Bill Spadea... you have a lot to answer for.