Last week, ThinkProgress noted that GOP presidential candidates Rick Perry, Mitt Romney, and Michele Bachmann are all courting Maricopa County, Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio in the hopes of securing an endorsement. As “America’s toughest sheriff,” Arpaio is also one of the country’s most radical, especially when it comes to undocumented immigrant, whom the sheriff sweeps up by the dozen and forces to wear pink underwear and live in tents.
The lawman is also a birther, it seems, and one willing to use official resources to pursue the bogus conspiracy theory.
Tea party Rep. John Fleming (R-LA) used himself as an example Monday while arguing against President Barack Obama’s plan to make sure millionaires pay about the same tax rate as the people that work for them.
“In my own case, I own LLCs,” Fleming told MSNBC’s Chris Jansing. “The income flows to my personal tax return and whatever is left over after taxes are paid, I feed my family on the one hand and on the other hand, I reinvest in my business.”
“With all due respect, The Wall Street Journal estimated that your businesses, which I believe are Subway sandwich shops and UPS stores — very successful — brought you last year, over $6 million,” Jansing noted.
The audience Monday night’s CNN Tea Party Express Republican primary debate was eager to see the death of a hypothetical man who was in a coma and also did not have health care insurance.
CNN’s Wolf Blitzer posed this question to Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul: “A healthy young, 30-year-old man has a good job, makes a good living but decides, ‘You know what? I’m not going to spend $200 or $300 a month on health insurance because I’m healthy, I don’t need it.’ But something terrible happens, all the sudden he needs it. What’s going to happen if he goes into a coma? Who pays for that?”
“What he should do is whatever he wants to do,” Paul replied. “That’s what freedom is all about, taking your own risks. This whole idea that you have to prepare to take care of everybody…”
“Are you saying society should just let him die?” Blitzer asked.
The audience responded with shouts of “Yes!”
Manufactured outrage was turned up in unison yesterday evening as the right wing of the Internet became aware of the existence of an online video game called Tea Party Zombies Must Die. “DON’T GET TEA-BAGGED!” reads the game’s description. “The Tea Party zombies are walking the streets of America. Grab your weapons and bash their rotten brains to bits! Destroy zombie Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, Glenn Beck, the Koch Brothers, and many more!” The game is free to use here; design and playability are surprisingly slick. But none of that is of concern to partisans, who don’t often get to use threats of violence and weapons-related outrage against the left. “I thought Liberals didn’t like guns?” reads one comment on the game. Conservative blogs were not as gentle, even comparing the game to — you guessed it — Nazis.
After a two-week long vacation in which, among other things, the East Coast experienced an earthquake and hurricane, Jon Stewart returned to a surplus of mockable news, paramount among these Teamsters head James Hoffa‘s allegedly violent rhetoric against the Tea Party. Stewart challenged the outrage with clips of many on the right (and from Fox News) using similar war metaphors, and gave voice to his own with a ventriloquist act.
It’s no secret that President Barack Obama has taken some serious hits to his popularity that are chiefly due to the poor economic situation. But that doesn’t mean that the public has changed its mind about his predecessor or embraced the ideas of his opponents. Consider this recent evidence.
In the latest AP/Roper/GfK poll, 51 percent still say George W. Bush deserves almost all or a lot of the blame for the country’s current economic problems. That’s followed by 44 percent who blame Republicans in Congress, 36 percent who blame the Democrats in Congress, and just 31 percent who blame President Obama.
Rep. Frederica Wilson (D-FL), a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, blasted the tea party movement on Monday night at a jobs fair in Miami.
“Let us all remember who the real enemy is,” she said. “The real enemy is the Tea Party. The Tea Party holds the Congress hostage. They have one goal in mind, and that’s to make President Obama a one-term president.”
Another members of the Congressional Black Caucus who also attended the jobs fair, Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), said Sunday that “the tea party can go to hell.”
“We’re not afraid of the Tea Party,” she said Monday, according to The Hill. “In this struggle, we have to define who we are, what the president is doing and not let our voices be overshadowed by the Tea Party.”
Watch video below: