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TEA PARTY EXPRESS WINS AGAIN – HOORAY FOR AMY KREMER – YOU GO GIRL

‘Tea party’ favorite O’Donnell storms Castle in Delaware primary

In one of the most stunning results of the midterm season, marketing consultant Christine O’Donnell, backed with endorsements from tea party activists and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, became the latest “outsider” candidate to knock off an establishment-backed Republican by defeating Rep. Michael N. Castle in Delaware’s Senate primary.

The “tea party” partied hearty on the last big night of primaries Tuesday.

In one of the most stunning results of the midterm season, marketing consultant Christine O’Donnell, backed with endorsements from tea party activists and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, became the latest “outsider” candidate to knock off an establishment-backed Republican by defeating Rep. Michael N. Castle in Delaware’s Senate primary.

In New Hampshire, another tea party-backed conservative, Ovide Lamontagne, held a steady lead over the establishment favorite, former state Attorney General Kelly Ayotte, in the state’s GOP Senate primary with about a quarter of the votes counted. No winner had been declared in the vote at presstime.

In yet another tea party-engineered upset, businessman Carl Paladinowas declared the winner over former GOP Rep. Rick Lazio in New York’s gubernatorial primary, and will take on Democratic state Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo.

The biggest shock, on a night when the District and seven states held primaries, came in Delaware. Once considered an underfunded fringe candidate with no chance to win, Ms. O’Donnell prevailed with 53 percent of the vote, compared with 47 percent for Mr. Castle.

HUGE VICTORY FOR THE TEA PARTY EXPRESS and AMY KREMER – YOU GO GIRL

Murkowski Concedes, and the Tea Party Advances – Now on to Delaware

Late last night, after a tense, all-day count of absentee ballots, Sen. Lisa Murkowski conceded her Republican primary race against Joe Miller. Though a few thousand votes are left to be counted on Friday, Joe Miller’s lead of 1,630 was enough to convince Murkowski not to wait it out.

According to the New York Times, Murkowski told supporters at her rally last night, “I’m so proud of the campaign that we conducted. … We stayed on the high road. We talked about how we move the state of Alaska forward.”

This comment is a clear jab at Joe Miller, who benefited from ads ruthlessly attacking Murkowski, claiming that she supported the stimulus (she in fact voted against it) and did not want to repeal health care reform (she has said she does). Miller also went after Murkowski’s mixed record on abortion, targeting anti-abortion-rights voters who were drawn to the polls by a parental notification initiative.

These attacks were largely funded by Tea Party Express, a Sarah-Palin-allied group responsible for Sharron Angle’s success in the Republican Senate primary in Nevada. Miller’s victory makes him the fifth Tea Party candidate to win a GOP Senate primary, following Angle, Rand Paul in Nevada, Ken Buck in Colorado, and Mike Lee in Utah. Murkowski is now the seventh incumbent to lose a primary this election season.

Joe Miller’s Tea Party Express backing was vital to his success, largely because his coffers paled in comparisons to Murkowski’s. As of August 4, Murkowski had raised nearly $3 million, while Miller had a mere $283,000. Then the Tea Party Express kicked in for the win.

Tea Party Express Makes Its First Endorsement Of The Post-Mark Williams Era

By Evan McMorris-Santoro |

The Tea Party Express promised to soldier on in the wake of the Mark Williams saga, and today it made good on the pledge. For the first time since Williams — a former chairman and spokesperson for the group — resigned from the Tea Party Express, the TPE has endorsed a candidate in a Republican primary. The beneficiary of the TPE’s return to the campaign trail? Christine O’Donnell, the tea party-style conservative challenging Rep. Mike Castle for the GOP Senate nomination in Delaware.
As has so often been the case with TPE-endorsed candidates this year, the group says Castle must be defeated because he’s not conservative enough.
“We long ago announced our intention to hold Mike Castle accountable for his failed record in Congress, and now we have an excellent shot to make sure he is defeated by a solid conservative candidate,” TPE coordinator Joe Wierzbicki said in a statement.
For her part, O’Donnell seemed to welcome the endorsement from the group other tea partiers love to hate.
“This endorsement may prove to be a pivot point in the campaign,” O’Donnell’s campaign says on its website. A game changer perhaps.”
So who exactly is the TPE showing the love to today? A political commentator, right-wing activist and “marketing and media consultant,” O’Donnell ran against Vice President Biden for Senate in 2008 (he ran a reelection campaign for Senate concurrent to his vice-presidential bid). She’s also no stranger to prominent wingers with a penchant for making offensive statements in public (like Williams). On her website, O’Donnell lists career highlights, including her time as a marketing consultant for Mel Gibson’s The Passion of The Christ.
Politically, O’Donnell’s stock seems to be rising with the conservative crowd. In a long profile published this morning, the American Spectator’s Robert Stacy McCain writes that O’Donnell “has gained new momentum in recent weeks,” as conservative Republicans — no great fans of Castle in the best of times — have started to worry that his lock on Biden’s old Senate seat might be slipping. As evidence, they point to recent polls that show the gap between Castle and likely Democratic nominee Chris Coons narrowing.
Other national conservative groups like the TPE may soon hop aboard the O’Donnell train as well. O’Donnell told Politico last week that she’s “she’s been courting support” from tea party megastars Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) and Sarah Palin. A spokesperson for DeMint told the website DeMint was “extremely impressed” with O’Donnell.
Still, most agree that an O’Donnell victory in the Sept. 14 primary would be still be quite the long-shot. But by throwing in with O’Donnell just as her stock starts to rise, the Tea Party Express may be hoping to shake the week of scandals that left the group, in the opinion of other national movement leaders, on the outside of the tea party looking in.

The Tea Party Express

The Tea Party Express and its place in the larger Tea Party movement: High profile: The Tea Party Express is one of the best-known groups in the movement because of its three high-profile bus caravans and rallies. Sarah Palin spoke at the beginning of its third caravan, which began in Searchlight, Nevada, and its next-to-the-last stop in Boston, Massachusetts, before it ended with a Tax Day rally in Washington.
Political impact: The Tea Party Express has become a major player in Republican politics, spending hundreds of thousands of dollars on ads for Republican Senate candidate Scott Brown in Massachusetts who upset Democrat Martha Coakley to fill the late Sen. Ted Kennedy’s seat.
More recently, the organization helped little-known Sharron Angle win the Republican primary in Nevada to face Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, endorsing her and spending about a half-million dollars on ads for her. The organization says it plans to spend more to help her get elected.
The group also targeted incumbent Sen. Bob Bennett in Utah for his vote on the Troubled Assets Recovery Program and helped defeat his bid for a fourth term. It then backed underdog Mike Lee’s successful primary campaign and Lee now appears to be a shoo-in to win the general election in November and join the Senate next year.
Political action: The group runs the “Our Country Deserves Better PAC-Tea Party Express.org” political action committee, which was formed in 2008 to help raise money to oppose presidential candidate Barack Obama. It was created by Republican political consultant Joe Wierzbicki, who appears to have come up with the original Tea Party Express cross-country caravan.
What’s next?: The Tea Party Express is targeting GOP Sen. Lisa Murkowski in Alaska and has endorsed her little-know primary challenger Joe Miller. It plans a Monday event to announce its support.

Amy Kremer

Director of Grassroots and Coalitions for the Tea Party Express
Amy Kremer considers herself a true Southern Belle. She was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia and attended Auburn University. She is a former Delta Airlines flight attendant who has traveled all over the world.

Prior to the Fall of 2008, Amy had never been involved in politics. During the campaign season, she found she had a real interest in politics and began blogging. Amy became politically active early in 2009 through social media. She was one of the original founders of the Atlanta Tea Party and was also the nationwide event coordinator for the first round of tea parties that took place across the country on February 27th. After the February 27th tea parties, Amy worked very closely with the Don’t Go Movement, Smart Girl Politics, and TCOT (Top Conservatives on Twitter) as the Nationwide Event Coordinator for Tax Day Tea Party. She was instrumental in coordinating the efforts for Tax Day Tea Party 2009. During the first week of March 2009, after realizing through all of her hard work with activists across the country, there was a movement being born out of the tea parties, she founded the organization Tea Party Patriots.

In August of 2009, Amy joined the Tea Party Express bus tour and traveled across the country. After the first Tea Party Express tour, Amy was thrilled to be asked to be a part of the second Tea Party Express tour. Earlier this year, Amy joined the Tea Party Express PAC as the Director of Grassroots and Coalitions. In her position of Director, Grassroots and Coalitions, Amy is working with other organizations and individual activists across the country to build the grassroots movement.

Amy has spoken at many tea parties and rallies across the country. She was a speaker at the 9/12 March on D.C. and was a keynote speaker at the Tea Party Convention in Nashville. In the Fall of 2009, Amy also participated as a panelist at the Value Voters Summit in Washington, D.C. She has appeared on Fox News Channel, as well as CNN, NBC, and MSNBC and other media outlets as one of the original grassroots coordinators within the movement.

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