Tea Party Voters More Likely to Vote For Clinton Than Republicans
There’s a large disconnect between the narratives created by the news media and the much more complex realities of the political world. According to two recent polls, more than 20 percent of the Tea Party, the group considered the most conservative and anti-establishment in US politics, are planning to vote for Democrat Hillary Clinton in 2016 – a larger percentage than Republicans who plan to vote for Clinton.
One such poll comes to us courtesy of Marist/McClatchy, which finds that in a 2016 matchup against Kentucky Senator and Tea Party favorite Rand Paul, Clinton would receive 28 percent of the Tea Party vote. By comparison, 24 percent of Republicans say they would opt for Clinton over Paul. The differences are even more stark when looking at other candidates.
Against Texas Senator Ted Cruz, another Tea Partier, Clinton would get 24 percent of the Tea Party vote. By comparison, just 15 percent of Republicans say they would opt for Hillary over Cruz. A recent Fox News poll found a similar result, showing that 27 percent of Tea Party voters would go Hillary over Cruz, compared with 13 percent of Republican voters.
Against New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, a Republican who has not endeared himself to the Tea Party, Clinton would receive 30 percent of the Tea Party vote compared to 19 percent of the Republican vote. The Fox News poll shows a slightly different result with 23 percent of Tea Party voters opting for Clinton, compared with 14 percent of Republicans.
The story repeats itself with the other candidates as well. Against Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan, Clinton would get 24 percent of the Tea Party vote compared to 11 percent of the Republican vote. Against former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, Clinton would get 27 percent of the Tea Party vote and 20 percent of the Republican vote. Against former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, Clinton would get 21 percent of the Tea Party vote and 15 percent of the Republican vote.
As we can see, while the Tea Party has been portrayed through its loudest voices, the sign-carrying, American flag color-wearing conservatives pushing to impeach a “dictator”, the “party” actually has more independent swing voters than the mainstream Republicans who pride themselves “more moderate.”