The Tea Party Patriots group, one of the largest of the hundreds of right wing factions claiming the tea party mantle, lashed out at Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) this week.
According to The Hill blog, the groups are furious with the House Speaker for daring to speak out against the conservatives that are paralyzing Congress and portions of the entire U.S. government.
Earlier this week, Boehner brushed off a question from a reporter about conservative groups’ resistance to the tentative bipartisan budget bill that would prevent any further government shutdowns for at least two years.
“They are using our members and they are using the American people for their own goals,” Boehner said of tea party and other right wing pressure groups. “This is ridiculous. Listen, if you’re for more deficit reduction, you’re for this agreement.”
He also criticized the groups for appearing to be more interested in raising money than achieving any actual policy goals.
Never shy about expressing their outrage, tea partiers around the country have been sounding the alarm that Boehner is stabbing them in the back. The Hill reported on a particularly angry fund-raising letter from the Tea Party Patriots.
Boehner, they wrote, has “declared war on the tea party” with his “smug and pretentious rant.”
“The last time we checked, we are the American people,” they fumed.
The Speaker is a “ruling class politician,” the letter said, who is really just another “tax-and-spend liberal.”
They called the tentative political compromise a “back-room budget deal which increases discretionary spending, does nothing to reform entitlements, and fully funds Obamacare.”
The deal and Boehner’s actions, they said, amount to “an out and out betrayal of the American people.”
It isn’t just in Congress that the tea party is seeing its influence wane. Public opinion about the angry edge of the Republican Party has been on a steady decline since the group’s successes in the 2010 mid-term elections. Gallup said Friday that public opinion about the tea party has plunged to it’s lowest recorded level, results that are borne out even by right-leaning Rasmussen polling.
[image of John Boehner via Flickr user Donkey Hotey, Creative Commons licensed]