Karl Rove thinks the Tea Party is "not sophisticated."
SPIEGEL: Is the Tea Party movement a repeat of the Reagan Revolution?Rove: It's a little bit different because the Reagan Revolution was driven a lot by the persona of one man, Ronald Reagan, who had an optimistic and sunny view of what the nation could be. It was also a well-organized, coherent, ideologically motivated and conservative revolution. If you look underneath the surface of the Tea Party movement, on the other hand, you will find that it is not sophisticated. It's not like these people have read the economist Friedrich August von Hayek. Rather, these are people who are deeply concerned about what they see happening to their country, particularly when it comes to spending, deficits, debt and health care.
I shouldn't have to point out how unhelpful this attitude is. I assume Rover wants to help the Republican Party, but I don't understand how he hopes to accomplish his goals by alienating legions of Tea Party conservatives with insulting generalizations.
Moreover, it's quite perplexing to hear a professional political analyst talk smack about millions of "unsophisticated" political amateurs when he himself is incapable of understanding how unwise it is to attack members of his own party during the time between the primaries and the general election.
When and if Rover tries to backpedal away from his "unsophisticated" statement, I won't be inclined to believe whatever he says. Ordinarily I might try to give the benefit of the doubt with a more charitable assessment, but Karl Rove has a brilliant mind and he knows well power of his words. He meant what he said, belittling connotations included.
Unfortunately, this deeply ingrained, destructive establishment attitude is all too pervasive in the GOP. Consequently, a great number of Republicans, "conservatives" and libertarians apparently would prefer to lose elections to statist Democrats than to be embarrassed by unsightly Tea Party rabble.
Rush is right. The ingredients for a third party revolt are already brewing and the GOP is adding fuel to the fire.
Update: The unenthusiastically anticipated walk-back/non-appology from Rover:
They are unsophisticated in the ways of DC, and they demand 100 percent of what they want and now.”He continued: “Most of them are generally proud they are not from Washington — or wise in its ways...
Rover clearly thinks tea partiers are petulant rubes who are too stupid to take his sage, progressive Republican advice, but Rover has put his own immaturity on display. I think he's still sore about Tea Partiers in Delaware ignoring his pleas. Rover stooped to grace Delaware Tea Partiers with his glorious presence in a private meeting, but the Tea Partiers stubbornly refused to get behind his liberal Republican buddy, Cap-n-Trade Castle.
Has Rover's ego been bruised beyond all recognition? Let this video tell the story:
"NO ONE is going to tell us how to take care of business."
Update II: Rush provides his opinion on the matter:
I got a note today from a friend, "Why would Karl be saying this, Rush? You know Karl. Why would he be saying this? Why doesn't Karl learn to keep his mouth shut?"I said, "Karl means to say this. Mike Murphy, all these guys, they think this."It's not easy for me to say here, folks, it really isn't. But it's what ought to be a euphoric period still indicates that on the Republican side there are divisions and jealousies and egos and competition. And the simplest explanation is that the Tea Party cannot be claimed as credit by anybody. Nobody can say, "I am the Tea Party." Nobody can say, "I started the Tea Party." Nobody can say, "I saw the Tea Party coming, and I steered it." Nobody who makes a living generating political support, generating political donations, nobody in that business can point to the Tea Party and say, "I did it." So it's a threat.It's a genuine effervescent, grassroots effort. Nobody has any control over it, nobody can honestly claim any credit for it, and therefore it's a threat.Folks, I could give you the greatest analogy I ever could, but I would probably end my career doing so in talking about this program in its early days. None of the experts -- and they were all very nice people -- none told me it would work. They all told me it wouldn't work. Therefore when it did, none of them can say they had anything to do with it. So there was ambivalence about it while people were happy about it at the same time.Same thing with the Tea Party movement. Any time people that are considered unprofessional or outside the professional realm enter somebody else's professional realm and shake it up, you have a bit of a threat there. And I think it's partially what's going on here.