Agree or Disagree with the statement in two small paragraphs. COLLAPSE
Has the Tea Part Caucus helped or hurt the GOP?
The economic collapse of 2008, where dubious practices of large banking firms involving sub-prime mortgage lending and speculating caused the housing bubble to burst, resulted in a significant amount of anger among the electorate. The average tax-paying American was felt indignant at having to bail out these companies while their CEO's took "golden parachutes" worth millions of dollars. Not only was the bail out odious to the average American, but also the fact that their savings, investments, and retirement funds were decimated by the folly that was perpetrated by Wall Street. There was a revolt coming.
The revolt took place in the landslide election of Barack Obama for the presidency of the country. The electorate had repudiated the previous party's perceived culpability in the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. However, the honeymoon wouldn't last long for the newly elected president. In February 2009, just one month after his inauguration, the Tea Party Movement began in earnest. Taking their name after the Boston Tea Party, the grassroots demonstration cropping up around the country protested the "Bail Out" as well as other programs that President Obama and the congress were poised to enact in order to combat the recession that the country was in. The protests soon began to protest the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP), American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (also known as Obamacare), cap and trade, and the perceived attacks on the Second Amendment.
Capitalizing on the growing number of disaffected voters that were identifying with the Tea Party Movement, there were several Republican candidates that rode the wave of this populist movement to election and helped the Republican Party control both houses for the first time in several decades. Forming a Tea Party Caucus that was lead by Michelle Bachmann, the members of the caucus are known primarily for obstruction and the wholesale destruction of political norms. One of their biggest "accomplishments" was to shut down the government in a failed attempt to defund Obamacare. They are also infamous for coining the term "primarying". This term refers to their supporting like-minded candidates in the primaries to challenge moderate Republicans, Republicans that were deemed not ideologically pure from a conservative standpoint, and any Republican that compromised with either the president or any member from the Democratic party.
Their legacy is grid lock and divisiveness that has done nothing, in my opinion, but hurt the Republican party. Though not as influential as they once were, the Tea Party Caucus members have continued to help foster the perception of the Republican Party as an obstructionist party with no solutions or ideas. Even as their prominence was waning, their coup de gras was the removal of John Boener as the Speaker of the House for compromising in getting a budget passed.