Tea Party's First Victim Offers Advice to Tea Partiers

It takes compromise, not just slogans, to govern
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 22, 2010 5:15 PM CDT
U.S. Senator Bob Bennett, R-Utah, speaks at the 2010 Utah GOP Convention on May 8. It didn't help.   (AP Photo/Steve C. Wilson)

(Newser) – The Tea Party loves its slogans, namely "Send a message to Washington" and "Take back America," writes soon-to-be-gone Senator Bob Bennett of Utah. "I know both very well because they were the main tools used to defeat me," he writes in the Washington Post. Such slogans "are more powerful than most pundits inside the Beltway realize," but if tea partiers want to be more than a fleeting political fad, they'll need more than catchy chants.

Raising the specter of Jimmy Carter, who rose to office on anti-Nixon sentiment but didn't back it up with "good government," Bennett urges them to imitate Ronald Reagan instead. "Will they stand firmly on partisan sidelines continuing to shout slogans? Or will they reach across the aisle in the interest of the country?" Our problems are solvable, so stop the "gloom talk," he writes. "We must not follow the siren song of those who are in a frenzy of despair."

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