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Tea partiers losing support in Illinois

Wednesday, Nov 9, 2011

* The Paul Simon Public Policy Institute polled tea party support last month. As you’d probably expect, support is dropping in Illinois

* From the pollster

Likelihood of voting for or against a Tea Party-affiliated candidate fell fairly predictably along party lines: 72.1 percent of Republicans said they would be more likely to vote for a Tea Party candidate, while 89.7 percent of Democrats said they would be less likely to do so.

More interesting, however, was the response of Independent voters: 30 percent said they would be more likely to vote for a Tea Party-affiliated candidate, while 57.5% of Independents said they would be less likely to cast a Tea Party vote.

Pro-Tea Party and anti-Tea Party voters view the political world quite differently. Only 11.6 percent of those who said they would be more likely to vote for a Tea Party candidate approved or strongly approved of the job President Obama is doing, while 87.8 percent disapproved.

By contrast, 80.3% of the anti-Tea Party voters approved of the job the president is doing and only 18.5 percent disapproved.

* More questions

* Back to the pollster

Over a majority, 51.4 percent, said they were much more likely to vote for a political candidate who is willing to compromise, and another 28.2 percent said they were somewhat more likely. Those who said they were much less likely to vote for such a candidate constituted only 5.3 percent of the sample and those who chose somewhat less likely were only 4.9 percent of the total.

“It is interesting to note that a total of only 10 percent of Illinois voters regard the willingness to compromise to be a negative quality in their candidates, while almost 80 percent understand that the democratic process cannot function without compromise,” Jackson added.

The poll also posed a related question regarding who was to blame for the lack of civility, Republicans or Democrats. Almost four in ten (37.2 percent) blamed the Republicans most, while about two in ten (18.2 percent) blamed Democrats. Another 35.6 percent blamed both parties equally and 3.5 percent blamed neither party. There were 5.5 percent who said they did not know which party to blame.

However, the pro-Tea Party voters blamed the Democrats over the Republicans by a margin of 46.7 percent to 7.0 percent. The anti-Tea Party respondents blamed the Republicans over the Democrats by a margin of 67.2 percent to 3.6 percent.

Even Tea Party backers said they’d like to see candidates willing to compromise. A total of 71.5 percent of the pro-Tea Party respondents said they were much more or somewhat more likely to vote for a candidate who is willing to compromise, leaving 16.3 percent who were somewhat less or much less likely to vote for such a candidate. The anti-Tea Party group produced 85.9 percent who were much more or somewhat more likely to vote for a candidate willing to compromise, compared to only 8.8 percent who were less likely to vote for a compromise-oriented candidate.

* The tea partiers may be losing support because one of their national icons is kinda on the goofy side. Don’t watch if your office has super-strict rules on bad words, but Congressman Joe Walsh held his usual “Cup of Joe” constituent event Sunday at Gurnee’s UNO Bar & Grill and then totally went off on some constituents

“I need more coffee,” he said. Joe, take their advice and drink decaf from now on.

The full video is here.

* Walsh’s response via e-mail…

I do these cup of joe’s every wkend, I show up at a coffee shop or restaurant anywhere in district and anyone can come meet with me and talk to me about anything. They are fun, engaging sessions, I often get people who disagree w me on issues at these events and the conversation can be very spirited.

I am very passionate at these events as well as at my town halls. This was no different except I was working on an empty stomach and had a quicker fuse than normal.

The woman I had the heated exchange with was great and she appreciated how open and unusual these events are. I apologized to her for getting a bit to passionate and she smiled and didn’t mind at all.

Regarding the substance rich of what I was trying to say - I’m no pal of the big banks and I wouldn’t have voted to bail any of them out. If they’ve abused their charters they need to be prosecuted fully. But they didn’t get us into this mess - goverment policy which has dictated for years that everyone should own a home got us here. The banks only followed the rules government set. And further government meddling will only exasperate the problem.

* By the way, Walsh says that the Family Research Council candidate support statement I linked to the other day was outdated. The PAC isn’t backing a candidate as of yet, he insisted.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:01 am:

    –But they didn’t get us into this mess - goverment policy which has dictated for years that everyone should own a home got us here. The banks only followed the rules government set. And further government meddling will only exasperate the problem.–

    And, as we all know, the banks had no influence whatsoever in setting government policy.

    They were victims, dragged kicking and screaming to making fortunes originating loan after loan after loan.

    And when it all went south, the poor banks were all alone, the government turned their back on them, and they had to eat all their losses.

  2. - wndycty - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:02 am:

    The longer version is classic. I can only imagine the response if some other politician talked to voters this way.

  3. - shore - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:05 am:

    The old saying in chicago journalism was if your mother dies or something check it twice. The entire hour long video of that morning event was posted online and if you watch it, that looks entirely different. All of the people there seemed to know him and like him and it seemed like a mostly high spirited rolling q and a with the guy who he got heated with strongly supporting him later on. The guy had been going at him for 7 minutes about something and no one really got upset and they continued on. It would be like watching a rex grossman game in 2006 against the lions and concluding he was joe montana.

    here’s the hour long video

    I don’t think in 6 years jan schakowsky or melissa bean or mark kirk or stroger or madigan or durbin or daley for that matter ever put themselves out there and let their constituents have a free for all like that. A public official with guts to let his constituents actually meet him and hear him out. Good heavens!

  4. - wordslinger - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:08 am:

    –The old saying in chicago journalism was if your mother dies or something check it twice. –

    City News Bureau: “If your mother says she loves you, check it out.”

  5. - shore - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:10 am:

    He also buys his constituents booze at the end, says john mccain should have quit 20 years ago and calls for getting rid of the postal service, but hey lets just run with the clip put out there by huffington post which has a sterling reputation.

  6. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:14 am:

    shore, enough. Any congressman who goes off on a constituent like that is gonna be in for some grief. The full video is linked. His full response is included, unedited.

    Stop playing the victim.

    Also, shore, that clip was from Fox News. Not your usual leftie types.

  7. - Chris - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:15 am:

    “further government meddling will only exasperate the problem.”

    Who is this “the problem” fellow? Seems an interesting chap.

  8. - Carl Nyberg - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:17 am:

    Congressman Walsh, I suspect she was smiling because her goal was to catch you on video making a fool of yourself.

    I actually had a soft spot in my heart for Walsh. I thought that he was independent enough of the traditional GOP bosses (the ultra rich) that he might have potential to be a vote for reform from time to time.

    The video shows Walsh to be ignorant of the financial sector and the economy. He spews incorrect information and reacts with hostility to people who have the facts.

  9. - Grandson of Man - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:18 am:

    Overreach rubs a lot of people the wrong way. That was proven last night in Ohio. Polls show that voters support public workers having to make concessions, but voters also favor collective bargaining, and when voters feel that basic rights are eliminated, Ohio is what can happen.

  10. - MrJM - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:30 am:

    The entire hour long video of that morning event was posted online and if you watch it, that looks entirely different *** but hey lets just run with the clip put out there by huffington post


    That would be like judging Richard Nixon on the basis of one little burglary.

    – MrJM

  11. - OneMan - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:30 am:

    To call the banks blameless in this is just wrong, plenty of blame to go around. But saying the banks are blameless is just….

  12. - Judgment Day - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:31 am:

    Word, the banks (sorry, personally I prefer “crooked, thieving Banksters”) were not alone in all of this, and the federal government did us (maybe not 99%, but a high percentage) no favors.

    And they still haven’t - witness the highly efficient performance by the US Treasury, certainly the Fed (FRB), the SEC (that toothless old hound), and the US DOJ (talk about being asleep and hopelessly ineffective).

    I can at least deal with Walsh because he’s facing his constituents, warts and all - and he’s putting it out there.

    Btw, the only thing the Tea Party needs to re-generate support is another financial debt ceiling fight. Wait for it, it’s on the way (The the second interim debt ceiling target is about to be breached after two more Treasury auction weeks).

    Oh, and the USPS currently has no further borrowing authority (as of the September, 2011 Federal Financing Bank report) and will be insolvent by summer, 2012. Bailout time - Part Whatever. Another probable Tea Party issue.

    Don’t count the Tea Party out.

  13. - just sayin' - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:33 am:

    Totally obvious about the death of the tea party in Illinois. They make the IL GOP look effective and professional by comparison. That’s saying a lot.

    Look no further than that recent TeaCon thingy. Supposedly for 6 or 7 states and had maybe 600 people to hear Andrew Brietbart use the F word.

  14. - MrJM - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:35 am:

    Over at the Atlantic, James Fallows takes a look at some evidence of the rapid decline of the Tea Party:

    – MrJM

  15. - Dave - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:41 am:

    **He also buys his constituents booze at the end**

    Maybe he should pay his missed child support first.

  16. - 60657 - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:42 am:

    “Exasperate,” eh?

  17. - so... - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 11:45 am:

    Yeah, the word he was looking for was exacerbate.

    The only thing exasperating about this situation is Congressman Walsh.

  18. - 47th Ward - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 12:06 pm:

    For anyone interested in trying to understand the systemic breakdown in the mortgage lending industry, and the larger financial meltdown, start with the obvious fact: it isn’t an either or question. Banks, government policies, rating agencies, investors, borrowers, regulators, there are a lot of places to find blame.

    Bottom line as far as I’m concerned: nobody forced the banks to make bad loans, and nobody forced investors to buy the collaralized debt. Government policies encouraged banks to make riskier loans and Fed policy made a lot of money available on the cheap, but again, nobody forced banks to lend to anyone. And when the banks sold off their bad loans, nobody forced investors to buy those bad loans. Buyer beware and all that.

    Andrew Sullivan has had an interesting conversation going about this very subject.

    Talking points aren’t going to win this argument. There is plenty of blame to go around.

  19. - Louie - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 12:22 pm:

    Why would you even report the results of this poll, without including the information pertaining the pary make up of those polled?

  20. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 12:28 pm:

    Yes, Louie, because the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute is SUCH a fly-by-night organization.

  21. - mokenavince - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 12:45 pm:

    Joe Walsh looks like the last rat on a sinking ship. Joe’s 15 minutes of fame are up.And your poll seems right on.

  22. - CircularFiringSquad - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 12:46 pm:

    Gotta love it when DeadBeat Dad Walsh tries to blame government for the sleazy predatory lenders and their allies.

    The govt did not invent “no doc” loans, phony appraisals, robo signing foreclosure, rolling over HELOCs, credit default swaps, CMOs, etc. The hustlers took a govt effort to encourage home ownership and turned into the start of the 2nd lost decade in this century for investors’ returns

    The deadbeat should be proud

  23. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 1:02 pm:

    I love it when Walsh interrupts and shouts down the woman, and says to her, “people don’t listen.” Classic.

  24. - Sir Reel - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 1:09 pm:

    I love it when Walsh interrupts and shouts down the woman, and says to her, “people don’t listen.” Classic.

  25. - VanillaMan - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 1:30 pm:

    Joe Walsh doesn’t represent any party, any constituency, any demographic, any idea, any state or any one single thing except Joe Walsh.

    That is why he will not even be renominated and why he receives almost zero support.

    Tying him as a representation to anything is an insult.

  26. - Chevy owner/Ford County - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 1:37 pm:

    Someone needs to give him an organization chart, pronto. If I yelled at my supervisors in that fashion, I’d be fired.

  27. - Anon - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 1:45 pm:

    The personal context to this Walsh blow-up is perhaps the most interesting element here.
    Walsh walked away from his 200K+ Evanston condo, let it fall into foreclosure, and at the same time rented a big house in an even richer suburb. That’s a fact he has admitted to.
    It is hard to fault him for doing what he felt he had to do to give his family a good life.
    But given that reality, his arguement here is interesting.
    Walsh blames government for setting up guidelines were he could get a home loan on his condo without 20% down, thus making it easier to end up underwater. But he doesn’t blame the reason everyone went underwater — the banks gave out trillions of dollars in risky no-check loans, then sold the actual risk to investors and paid a third party to tell those investors there was little risk.
    Last point: People tend to yell most when they are losing an arguement, and that is why this is such a damaging video. It isn’t that he is yelling - it is what that yelling infers.

  28. - Segatari - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 1:52 pm:

    The Tea Party’s biggest mistake was, resting on their laurels and becoming less visible while the Occupy protests were going on. I cannot believe they didn’t step forward to counterprotest these guys.

  29. - Grandson of Man - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 2:05 pm:

    What would the Tea Party counterprotests look like? Would they have signs like, I haven’t had a raise in eight years, I lost $7,000 in my retirement fund, but doggone it, it’s these hippies’ fault? Or, I have no health insurance or secure retirement benefits, but leave the 1% alone? How about trickle down economics now!

  30. - Chicago Cynic - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 2:37 pm:

    Joe Walsh is a classic bully. Short on facts. Long on yelling. Even longer on hypocrisy. Is he really trying to tell us that he’s mad at the government because the government let the banks loan money to deadbeats like…Joe Walsh?

    Paging Dr. Freud…

  31. - TheGuessWho - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 3:19 pm:

    The Tea Party is losing their support???…would someone tell that to Rich Brahler and the 9/12 Tea
    Party in Jacksonville.and Sam McCann in Macoupin!!!

  32. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 3:20 pm:


    Dem: 44.5%

    Ind: 19.4%

    Rep: 31.2%

    Other: 4.9%

    Party ID includes the “leaners.”

  33. - Flamining Liberal - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 4:02 pm:

    Don’t underestimate the tea party. Certainly, Illinois is not fertile ground and we better watch our step or someday it may be.

  34. - formerpolitico - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 4:07 pm:

    Nobody forced homeowners to refinance and thus suck the equity out of their homes so they could spend, spend, spend. That’s why so many are underwater - refinancing is sustainable only if home value continues to rise. That assumption nailed a lot of people, like every other ‘bubble’ in history!

  35. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 4:32 pm:

    In the Trib article, the woman says he didn’t apologize and she smiled at one point because he was making such a fool of himself.

  36. - Cheryl44 - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 5:10 pm:

    There are a tiny minority of men out there that are under the impression that’s how you communicate with women. I tend to just walk away when confronted by one of them. There’s no point listening to them and they are certainly not going to listen to a woman.

  37. - too obvious - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 5:22 pm:

    The tea party label is the kiss of death for any candidate in Illinois. Joe Walsh is the only one who embraces the label and he’s going to lose badly.

    I’ve never seen a “movement” crash and burn as fast as the tea party. Too many whackadoos.

  38. - Wilson Pickett - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 6:27 pm:

    I (usually) vote Republican. I respect the Tea Party and their reason for coming into existance. However, there is “no way” that I would want to be linked or associated with Joe Walsh. I would be inclined to believe that many in the Tea Party organization feel the same way about Mr. Walsh as I do. Mr. Walsh is simply “an opportunist” that is taking advantage (cleverly, I am afraid) of the Tea Party movement by intentionally leading others to believe that he is part of the Tea Party effort. Joe Walsh is part of the Joe Walsh Organization. He is “too much flame and very little heat”. A self-promoting “showboat” is the term that best describes him.

  39. - oz - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 7:02 pm:

    If you think that the full hour video vs the widely used and edited media version gives the viewer a completely different impression of the events — then try comparing the unedited video of the Occupy Wall Street vs Gov Walker breakfast meeting in Chicago a few days ago with the media outtakes.

    I’m just sayin’

  40. - wishbone - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 7:21 pm:

    “I cannot believe they (the Tea Party) didn’t step forward to counterprotest these guys.”

    Yeah, somebody has to speak up for Wall Street and the billionaires.

  41. - Anonymous - Wednesday, Nov 9, 11 @ 8:55 pm:

    Jack. Ass.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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