As we know, the energy of the Tea Party is fueling the energy within the Republican Party. Support for Tea Party-aligned candidates helped the GOP retake the House in the 2010 midterm elections. But a poll released today by Pew Research Center shows the bloom appears to be off the rose.
According to Pew, while the general public hasn’t been enamored with the Tea Party for a while, there is almost an even split among those who agree and disagree with the right flank of the Republican Party in the districts represented by 60 House members in the Tea Party Caucus.
Now, here’s the bad news for the GOP. Its unfavorable rating among the general public has always been higher than its favorable. Back in September 2010, it was a 49 percent-43 percent split. Today, it’s 55 percent-36 percent. More ominous for the Republican party is that even its standing in Tea Party districts has gone underwater. In September 2010, the GOP was viewed favorably in those districts by 51 percent and unfavorably by 43 percent. Today, the party is viewed favorably by 41 percent and unfavorably by 48 percent.
Basically, the cranky electorate that threw the bums out in 2008, in special elections in 2009 and in the midterms of 2010 remains so. And why shouldn’t they be? The dysfunction in Washington, especially over the last year, has given them plenty to be angry about.