Hot on HuffPost:

See More Stories

Not on Tea Party Guest List? Orrin Hatch Invites Himself to Townhall Meeting

3 years ago
  0 Comments Say Something  »
Text Size
Sen. Orrin Hatch isn't going to miss this party. Hatch, who is two years from facing reelection, says he plans to attend a Tea Party Express townhall meeting in Washington Tuesday night, even though he's not listed as a participant in an official announcement of the event.

Tea Party Express head Amy Kremer told CNN that Hatch (R-Utah) had apparently "invited himself." That's all right, she said, and "obviously Senator Hatch wants to get reelected." But, she warned, "he needs to be ready to answer the tough questions."

Hatch's one-time colleague, former Sen. Robert Bennett, was ousted by tea party-organized activists at a Utah state GOP convention last year. Bennett's sin? Voting for the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) -- the so-called bailout bill that was an initiative of then-President George W. Bush. Hatch, too, voted for TARP. And although his conservative credentials are solid, he has a reputation for working well with Democrats, including the late Sen. Ted Kennedy.

The Tea Party Express, one of the more active groups in the grassroots anti-Obama, anti-government-spending movement, has given no sign at this point that its members will oppose Hatch. But he isn't taking any chances. "I'll be joining @OurCountry PAC for the Tea Party Express town hall meeting tomorrow night," Hatch said in a Twitter post.

But another Republican facing reelection next year, Sen. Richard Lugar of Indiana, told
WANE NewsChannel 15 that the tea party and others criticizing him for supporting the START arms treaty need to "get real." Lugar, in an interview with the Fort Wayne station, said he voted for the agreement in December because he wanted to take Russian nuclear warheads out of circulation. Lugar could face a primary challenge from the political right in 2012

At the event at Washington's National Press Club Tuesday night, other conservatives already in the embrace of the tea party, such as Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), are on the agenda and are expected to field questions from the floor.

Folo Tom Diemer on Twitter http://twitter.com/tomdiemer

Our New Approach to Comments

In an effort to encourage the same level of civil dialogue among Politics Daily’s readers that we expect of our writers – a “civilogue,” to use the term coined by PD’s Jeffrey Weiss – we are requiring commenters to use their AOL or AIM screen names to submit a comment, and we are reading all comments before publishing them. Personal attacks (on writers, other readers, Nancy Pelosi, George W. Bush, or anyone at all) and comments that are not productive additions to the conversation will not be published, period, to make room for a discussion among those with ideas to kick around. Please read our Help and Feedback section for more info.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum Comment Moderation Enabled. Your comment will appear after it is cleared by an editor.

Follow Politics Daily

  • Comics
robert-and-donna-trussell
CHAOS THEORY
Featuring political comics by Robert and Donna TrussellMore>>
  • Woman UP Video
politics daily videos
Weekly Videos
Woman Up, Politics Daily's Online Sunday ShowMore»
politics daily videos
TV Appearances
Showcasing appearances by Politics Daily staff and contributors.More>>