Tea Partiers are livid at Newt Gingrich for his remarks Sunday dismissing Rep. Paul Ryan’s Medicare plan and promoting the individual mandate.
Dick Armey, the chairman of Freedomworks who co-wrote the Contract with America with Newt Gingrich, told National Review Online that most in the Tea Party movement “were a little bit astounded” by Gingrich’s comments.
Citing Gingrich’s support of Dede Scozzafava in the 2009 congressional election in New York’s 23rd district, his backing of Medicare Part D and TARP, and his commercial with Nancy Pelosi about climate change, Armey observes that “Newt entered the race with serious ground to make up with these 2 million tea party activists.”
“I would have thought he would have wanted to mend fences with these folks,” Armey says.
“I never met a single Tea Party activist that supported Newt Gingrich for president,” he adds.
Robin Stublen, who founded a Tea Party group in Florida, said that Gingrich has “too many flip flops about what we consider to be conservative values” to be a viable candidate for Tea Partiers.
Beyond Gingrich’s recent record, Stublen sees his past history as problematic.
“We had a golden opportunity in 1994 … and quite honestly, I think they blew it,” he says.