While protesters gather on their state capitals across the country to show their support for the workers in Wisconsin, CNN thought they'd take some time out letting us all know that their astroturf tea party Republican re-branding effort just turned
While protesters gather on their state capitals across the country to show their support for the workers in Wisconsin, CNN thought they'd take some time out letting us all know that their astroturf tea party Republican re-branding effort just turned two.
TRAVIS (voice-over): Meet the woman who is considered, by many activists, to be the godmother of the Tea Party movement.
MARY RAKOVICH, TEA PARTY ACTIVIST: You should know what you believe in and stand up for it.
TRAVIS: She's an anti-abortion rights, pro-environment vegetarian, with two bad hips, cared for Medicare. She may have been the first to publicly protest the stimulus in early February, 2009. It was outside an event in Fort Myers, Florida, where President Barack Obama was promoting his plan.
(on camera): Critics might actually blame you, say, hey, this woman, Mary Rakovich, is responsible for the Tea Party movement.
RAKOVICH: Well, I think they should look at Rick Santelli instead.
TRAVIS (voice-over): He's the CNBC host who, days after Rakovich, ranted on the president's plan to help struggling homeowners. RICK SANTELLI, CNBC: How many of you people want to pay for your neighbor's mortgage that has an extra bathroom and can't pay their bills? Raise their hand. We're thinking of having a Chicago Tea Party in July.
TRAVIS: That went viral. Then Tea Party groups formed and the protests spread. The movement has seen political success, like helping Republicans take back the House, and setbacks, like being accused of tolerating racism and losing key elections.
As we look toward the presidential election and the Tea Party's impact, Sarah Palin may greatly benefit from her Tea Party ties if she runs. She's even warned Republicans.
(on camera): Governor, what if the Tea Party movement winds up splitting the Republican Party in two? Who will you stand with?
SARAH PALIN (R), FMR. ALASKA GOVERNOR: You know, I don't think that it will, because I think more of the machine within the GOP is going to understand that this "We, the people" message is rising because it's just so full of common sense and time-tested truths that can put the economy on the right track, that heaven forbid that the GOP machine strays from this message. If so, the GOP is through.
After two years of watching CNN and Fox play up these "tea party" rallies as some huge grass roots political movement that's taking over the country and doing live wall to wall coverage of these events when they had some decent crowds show up, now Read more...
I'm still not sure what's more pitiful. The fact the CNN along with our other cable news networks decided to largely ignore the fact that we had massive protests going on in Wisconsin this weekend, or that when they finally devoted a few minutes to Read more...
The Kissers perform "Scotty, We're Coming For You" at a rally in support of workers' rights at the Wisconsin State Capitol in Madison, Wis. on Mar. 19, 2011. Iraq Veterans Against the War marched to the Capitol, accompanied by firefighters Read more...