The conservative coup in New York’s special election shows just how little control the GOP has over the ascendant tea party movement—it's a mutiny, and it's just gaining steam, activists say. The folks who helped push Republican Dede Scozzafava out of the race in favor of conservative Doug Hoffman tell Politico they’re itching for the next showdown. “The Hoffman campaign was the beginning. It was not the climax. There are going to be other conflicts,” promised one protest organizer, citing Charlie Crist as the next big target.
RedState.com is calling for the heads of party leaders for backing Scozzafava. “Republicans are going to have to come our way,” the site's founder tells Politico. Many feel betrayed by Republicans after the big-government Bush years, when Tom DeLay asked them to accept earmarks for the good of the party. “I don’t give a crap about party,” declares another tea party organizer. “Grass-roots activists don’t care about party.”