Since the establishment conservative movement never stops trying to co-opt the Tea Party mantle for itself, I guess that means I have to keep covering their efforts as well.
I’ve written about the Conservative Action Project before, noting that it is one of the many right-wing coalitions that exist to establish the party line of the issue of the day, often though “Memo for the Movement” statements that it releases. These memos tend to be mostly meaningless collections of bullet points and links, but apparently members of the coalition feel they serve some purpose, which is why they keep issuing them.
The latest memo carries the names of a wide variety of right-wing leaders – including Ed Meese, Wendy Wright, Grover Norquist, Gary Bauer, Mat Staver, Curt Levey, Andrea Lafferty, and Louis Sheldon – who have joined together to commend the Tea Party Movement for its “fidelity to the Constitution.“
And after the memo’s standard pointless bullet points, this paragraph appears:
Earlier this year, many Tea Party Movement leaders and conservative leaders found common ground at a meeting and ceremony at the Collingwood Library & Museum in Alexandria, VA– part of the original Mount Vernon Estate owned by President George Washington. The Mount Vernon Statement, issued on February 17, 2010, restates the ideas of the American founding as articulated in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. It was signed by over 100 leaders-including Tea Party Movement leaders–representing tens of millions of conservative activists nationwide and re-enforced the principles of Constitutional Conservatism for the 21st Century.
Do you remember the Mount Vernon Statement? It was the attempt earlier this year by these very same activists to co-opt the Tea Party movement by merging it with the establishment conservative movement.
But it was all for naught, as a short time later the Tea Party movement released its own “Contract From America” manifesto which explicitly excluded any and all social issues.
The Tea Party movement’s consistent refusal to adopt the Religious Right’s agenda as part of the Tea Party agenda has infuriated establishment conservatives to no end, which is why they have continuously worked to co-opt the movement for their own ends … leading to situations like this where the conservative establishment drafts and signs a document proclaiming its own agenda while unilaterally claiming that it represents the Tea Party movement – and then later, using that same document as an excuse to commend itself for its “fidelity to the Constitution.”