Will the Republican Leadership Face a Tea Party Rebellion?


The Tea Party movement emerged as a powerful force in the 2010 election cycle, helping elect members of Congress across the country, from Tim Scott in South Carolina to Mike Lee in Utah. Even though the election is over, leaders of the Tea Party movement say their work is not yet done.

"We are their probation officers," Kremer said of newly elected members of Congress.

"We've heard these people talk the talk for the past 12 months or however long during campaign season while they were running for office," Kremer said. "Now it is their time to walk the walk and we want to see it happen. And if they don't do what they said they were going to do we will remember in 2012, and it's not that far away."

In fact, preparations for 2012 have already begun in earnest. Red State's Erick Erickson published a list of potential Tea Party targets in 2012 on his popular blog. The conservative blogger advises his readers to not get all giddy about people like Sen. Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, or Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., who hail from moderate states, but instead target more middle-of-the-road Republicans like Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., and Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah "as we have a much greater certainty of both beating them in primaries and also winning the general election."

There is still a lot of "house cleaning" to be done in 2012, Meckler warns.

"We don't consider this to be an electoral cycle movement. This is a long-term approach to taking the country back to its founding principles. We expect it will take us a long time to clean up the mess," he told ABC News.

FreedomWorks, an umbrella organization for Tea Party groups, launched www.StopPorkSpending.com where people can monitor their senators' and representatives' votes on spending bills.

Tea Party Patriots is planning to launch next year an index rating of how members of Congress voted, in an effort to continue serving as the "watchdog" for the American people, Meckler said.

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