I presume someone actually pays Matt Dowd to come on television and utter this drivel. Dowd first of all pretends that there wasn't anyone out there protesting the invasion of Iraq early on, which is not true. There were millions of people protesting and the media refused to cover them. And to add insult, to injury he calls anyone who was protesting extremists.
He also wants us to think that the Republican re-branding operation called the "Tea Party" hasn't already been co-opted by big business. Thankfully, CBS reporter Terry Moran was there to point out that there is some very big money already behind the "movement," but that didn't seem to faze Dowd.
Dowd: All movements in this country start out with people on the extremes and the success of those movements over time are either... are when one of the parties co-opt that movement and the tactics and the messages, then moderate it.
It started with, Barack Obama who sits in the White House was the beneficiary of a very extreme movement that started after the Iraq war, which was very few people were protesting the war. In the end that became a majority in this country and Barack Obama got elected based upon that movement.
The conservative movement, Ronald Reagan was not considered a moderate when he ran against Gerald Ford in 1976. He ran against moderates. He then ultimately mirrored the country and got elected. All movements start out that way.
Amanpour: So you think then that what they're saying right now is not going to be what they say if they get elected?
Dowd: No, what I'm saying is that if somebody co-opts this movement, which is an anti-Washington, anti-federal government movement and then takes that movement and then puts a brand of politics on that that moderates and can appeal to younger voters it will have a huge amount of successes. […]
Moran: But as far as co-opting the party, and that is important, a lot of the money behind the Tea Party is not mom and pop money.
Amanpour: It's very wealthy money.
Moran: Very wealthy money. People definitely purchasing or trying to purchase the Tea Party movement and a lot of those issues, free trade, the kinds of issues the Chamber of Commerce and some of the other big money behind the Republican Party this year is trying to co-opt the Tea Party movement. I'm not sure quite how many of those Tea Party activists would agree with that.
Dowd wraps things up by saying the Chamber of Commerce and big business should fear this movement. That might be true -- if they hadn't already co-opted it.