Dumping on the Tea Party isn’t just a Democratic hobby, though some take it to an art form, as when former Democratic Party boss Howard Dean recently called the movement “the last gasp of the generation that has trouble with diversity.” Republicans do it too, especially those facing a Tea Party challenge. Long-serving Indiana Republican Sen. Dick Lugar, whose reelection bid is under Tea Party attack, offers this review of the movement: “I think there are a great number of Americans, not just in Indiana, who are genuinely angry about how things have turned out for them. Sometimes they are unemployed or they have family members who have been unemployed or they are in situations in which they feel a heavy governmental restriction of their activities. In essence, they are unhappy about life in America and they want to express themselves.” Lugar says most just want to be heard, but really can’t focus on what’s bugging them. “We want this or that stopped or there is spending, big government—these are all, we would say, sort of large cliché titles, but they are not able to articulate all the specifics,” he says.
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