In 2010 an amazing thing happened, the people of America said enough and formed a fledgling movement called the Tea Party. Yet, since then their voice has been stolen and twisted into the modern Tea Party, which bears little resemblance to its origins. Much like the left with “Liberalism” the hard right has taken the term Tea Party, along with its grassroots origins, and turned it into something far more divisive than it was meant to be. Groups and PACs have surfaced throughout the country infiltrating local and state committees and have been turning them hard right; Like democrats did with Liberalism. The classic idea of liberalism is now considered conservatism or Conservatarian. Conservatism is now considered mainstream or establishment and demonized daily by those further to the right who are supposed to be our allies.

Reagan’s big tent is more like a lot of small tents pushed together, from former blue dogs democrats pushed out of their party to libertarians who understand they won’t win as a 3rd party to classic Reagan conservatives who believe in individual rights and responsible taxing and spending to the modern “Tea Party,” formerly classic Reaganites now hard right no tax, no spend, no individual rights. What no individual rights, yeah I said that – when you begin to tell people they can’t do this or that then you are infringing on individual rights. I personally like the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, you DO NOT have to like the personal choices that people make, just respect them.

This divergent faction system in the GOP will absolutely turn Virginia deeper blue as well as the entire country. We can continue to lie to ourselves, but if we continue to allow the alienation of outsiders and encourage hatred toward opposition then the GOP fails. We need to promote unity, inclusion and a better branding scheme. The boomers are getting older and the millenials are growing, we need the youth vote. The most important age group moving forward is 18 to 35 as they will be the donors and leaders of tomorrow.

We should consider the Obama outreach in ’08 and ’12. Frankly the Tea Party, at it’s origin, figured it out and reached out to a lot of people and asked for less.  The classic GOP idea is 100 people at $10k each, but I’d rather reach out to 100k people and ask for $25.

Simply put, the in-fights must end, we must unify and we must find a common ground and message to win not only in the odd years but the big ones in the even years.

David P. Southall

Senior Member of