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The Tea Party Movement in the United States and Women

Joyce Gelb
City University of New York
Joyce Gelb
City University of New York
Open Panel

Abstract

This paper will address the tea party movement: its birth, leadership membership and aspirations. The gender component of this party will be highlighted as well as other demographics. What are the ideology and goals of the movement – connections to existing political parties in the United States and abroad , as well as conservative groups? The paper will analyse the structure of the Tea Party, as well as its role in elections to date. Are a significant number of members , activists and candidates women ; do they have a particular focus and role in the group ? What is the connection between former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin and the Tea Party; is it likely to provide a base for herfuture political office seeking ? As the Tea Party is viewed favorably by about 40% of Americans polled, it is not to be taken lightly as a new social movement/party. The Tea party was born on February 27 2010 . There is controversy as to whether it is a real populist movement or a front for big business. To date there seems to be no one leader, and the party claims a decentralized organization and disavows connections with any political party . Many members also profess prior apolitical status . Some view the Tea Party as creating a “cult of personality” around Sarah Palin, who has addressed the group – this paper will explore that connection more fully.