The loud Tea Party summer of 2009 was the visible, audible manifestation of a seismic event: the birth pangs of a huge network of grassroots activists from coast to coast.
It was the sound of unconscionable government growth and spending careening out of control, crashing against the consciences of stalwart citizens. It was the sound of a multitude of Americans suddenly and unexpectedly experiencing in unison an “Aha!” moment, as they finally began to grasp in a very real and experiential way what Thomas Jefferson meant when he said, “No government can continue good, but under the control of the people.”
The reason you don’t hear much about Tea Partiers on the nightly news nowadays is because they are hard at work, focused like laser beams on a broad spectrum of causes and tasks. The thirteen percent of voters who self-identify as members of the Tea Party movement (Rasmussen), together with a host of other fiscal and social conservatives, have rolled up their sleeves and have gone to work.
The very blue State of Maryland is a great case in point, demonstrating the gamut of Tea Party-inspired activism. For years, Maryland conservatives have been pushed to the margins and had pretty much adopted the white flag as their banner. They are now fighting their way back to relevance with renewed vigor and are making a difference on many fronts. This story of Tea Party success is being repeated in state after state.
– In the run-up to the November 2010 election, Tea Party members jumped at the chance to assume long-vacant Republican precinct chairs and have energetically dispensed their duties ever since. Local Republican Central Committees also experienced an influx of Tea Party members, bringing a stronger voice to true conservatism within the Party.
– Realizing that local elections are crucial for the future direction of their local communities and the state, conservatives have focused on winning campaigns for school boards and county and city elected offices. David Ferguson, executive director of the Maryland GOP, said that Republicans “now control the majority of elected offices (including commissioners, state’s attorneys, sheriffs, and county clerks), 158 to 157, and we control fifteen of the 24 county councils. We had great success in 2010, and we look forward to building on that success in 2014.”
A further indication of the rise of conservatism in the Free State is that two counties, St. Mary’s and Calvert, have just crossed the line from a majority of registered Democrat voters to a majority of Republicans.
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