The New Tea Party Challenge: Stay on Message

The Tea Party has obviously hit a nerve in the political bedrock. First, Karl Rove got in a tizzy over O'Donnell besting the establishment Republican in Delaware. Rove blamed Tea Party candidate O'Donnell for a failure that hasn't even occurred. "We were looking at eight to nine seats in the Senate. We are now looking at seven to eight in my opinion," Rove said.  Then, Bill Clinton accused the Tea Party of wanting to weaken the government and leave big business unsupervised -- maybe Clinton supposes that big business might go wild making profits, manufacturing new ideas, and hiring people without the government there to regulate and tax it to death. A few days later, President Obama wants the Tea Party's expertise in cutting the national debt and creating jobs.

The Tea Party would be wise to avoid these distraction tactics put on by triangulating politicians. There are very simple ways to answer all these critics, particularly Clinton and Obama, without taking the bait of getting off message on the heels of the November elections.

To answer Mr. Clinton, the Tea Party members certainly want a strong government. Tea Partiers want a government strong enough to secure our borders, build up our military, and govern based on the Constitution. Where our government has atrophied and gone astray, the Tea Party would like it to work the muscles of defense and fiscal responsibility again. As it relates to big business, I think most members of the Tea Party are willing to take the risk of big business gone wild.

The Tea Party has no beef with the private sector, as Clinton would have us believe. Just who does Clinton think the private sector is? It isn't just Wall Street and big automobile manufacturers and their mogul friends like Warren Buffett and George Soros. 

The private sector is your neighborhood eatery just barely scraping by charging for extra salad dressing these days. They are your stay-at-home moms working Mary Kay or running an online business part-time. The private sector is full of unemployed Americans struggling to find a business willing to hire them. The private sector is full of Americans with great ideas hoping to turn a small business into a big business someday. Besides this, the government is doing a fine job all on its own in revolting against the private sector.

In an effort to deflect attention from his responsibility President Obama was next to breathe down the Tea Party's neck. "The challenge, I think, for the Tea Party movement is to identify specifically, what would you do? It's not enough just to say, 'Get control of spending.' I think it's important for you to say, 'You know, I'm willing to cut veterans' benefits,' or 'I'm willing to cut Medicare or Social Security benefits,' or 'I'm willing to see these taxes go up.'"  

The lady at the town hall last week spoke eloquently for everyone when wondered if she was returning to the days of beans and weenies. "Is this our new reality?" She asked President Obama to answer this most of all, and of course, he did not. Obama rambled diffusely about having two kids to put through college and how the government would make it easier for her and others to borrow money to achieve this goal. The problem in this answer is twofold: borrowing money and getting student loan grants for the government is yet another overreaching program spending money out of our very own thinning pockets. Secondly, this lady didn't stand up and ask President Obama for a handout. She wanted to know how she would be able to have control over her own destiny -- pocketbook -- again.

The Tea Party would be wise to sit tight on responding to the challenges Clinton and Obama posed. The Tea Party is a philosophical movement designed to restore us back to our small-government roots.

What is so effective about the Tea Party and so very frustrating for the good ol' boy network of Democrats and Republicans is that the Tea Party is truly a movement of the people. Without a leader to call by name or a platform to criticize based on rhetoric, the Tea Party leaves the Democrats and Republicans flat-footed in their triangulation efforts. The minute the Tea Party responds to these notions by changing its fundamental platform, it will fall into a political trap of petty finger-pointing in place of action.

Obviously the Tea Party is close to accomplishing goals that neither Democrats nor Republicans thought possible: raising money and getting seats. The Tea Party activists and supporters are doing just what they need to do: call Americans back to the safety of our Constitution and shine a light on the government's overreaching and overspending hand. Voting values November 2 will tell Clinton and Obama all they need to know.

Lisa Fritsch is a writer and national television and radio commentator who appears regularly on Fox News Channel and radio programs all over the country.