The e-mail said Tea Party Patriots had spent “in excess of a hundred thousand dollars flying in local Tea Party coordinators and arranging the facility for this meeting.” The Patriots mocked the event by Claremont, a California-based group that promotes a return to what it calls the founding principles of the nation; the Patriots said Claremont was being run by lobbyists and “members of The Ruling Class,” and noted that its keynote speaker was Bill Bennett, a former secretary of education and now a prominent pundit in Washington.
And then there is the retreat today led by FreedomWorks, the Washington group that has helped the Tea Party movement grow, and that is led by Dick Armey, a former Republican House majority leader, lobbyist, and, yes, D.C. insider. About 40 new House members are attending that orientation at the Inner Harbor Hyatt in Baltimore. FreedomWorks was providing new lawmakers with briefing books on policy. The general message from Mr. Armey was: don’t be co-opted by the Establishment. But lawmakers might be forgiven if the lines between establishment and antiestablishment are seeming increasingly unclear. [emphasis added]
They. Have. Noooooooo. Idea.