A Tea Party leadership conference in Dallas on Saturday urged the conservative movement’s activists to adopt old-fashioned, get-out-the-vote tactics, including driving people to the polling booth.
“This is something ACORN has been doing,” said Dallas Tea Party activist Lorie Medina, referring to the left-leaning group that conservative Tea Party types love to hate.
Medina’s presentation — one of several at the weekend conference — focused on retooling the protest movement into a well-oiled political machine that can deliver the vote in primaries and general elections for candidates that subscribe to its view of limited government, low taxes and “national sovereignty.”
Much of what Medina said mirrored tried-and-true strategies employed by both Republicans and Democrats, including organization by zip code, voter registration drives, neighborhood walks and signing up members for affiliates.
The conference was a sign the movement — it grabbed headlines last year as it channeled conservative opposition to President Barack Obama’s policies into nation-wide protests against bank bail-outs, the drive to overhaul healthcare, and other aspects of the White House agenda — is becoming more focused.