Tea party activists from across the nation are rallying around the House special election in upstate New York, viewing it as the first electoral test of the nascent conservative movement’s political muscle.Video Hat Tip: Robert Stacy McCain.
Organizers up and down the East Coast report that activists are making their way into the campaign offices of Conservative Party nominee Doug Hoffman, with the volunteers focusing their efforts in Oswego, Madison and Jefferson counties. While tea party organizers say the election is a unique opportunity to hold the Democratic and Republican parties to account, much of their energy is being directed against Dede Scozzafava, the GOP establishment-backed nominee whom they view as a squishy moderate who represents all that is wrong with the Republican Party.
“I went here from Washington, D.C., saying, ‘Now what?’” said Jennifer Bernstone, an organizer for Central New York 912, a Syracuse-based tea party group that so far has about 300 members getting out the vote for Hoffman. “Well, here’s the ‘Now what.’”
Numerous anti-Scozzafava websites have emerged across the blogosphere. Dana Loesch, a St. Louis-based activist, has launched “Dump Dede,” a site that tracks nationwide conservative opposition to Scozzafava and urges viewers to “throw your support behind conservatism, ladies and gents; the clock starts now.”
Michael Patrick Leahy, a Nashville, Tenn.-area tea party activist, has turned his Drudge Report-like TCOT Report into a constantly updated bulletin board of news and rumors slamming Scozzafava.
“Breitbart’s BigGovernment.com, Washington Times, National Review, RedState Join Growing Avalanche of Other Conservatives Calling for Scozzafava to Withdraw from Race in NY 23rd,” blared the site’s headline Thursday afternoon.
“They’re all making a concerted effort for Doug Hoffman, and they are making New York 23 a last stand,” said Erick Erickson, who has been urging tea party activists for months to ramp up electoral efforts against the Republican Party on his influential conservative blog RedState. “New York should be a hill to die on for conservative activists.”
See also, Dana Loesch, "My Latest for Big Government: NY23, GOP, Tea Parties."