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Faculty expert: Rapoport discusses Tea Party influence in advance of election

In advance of the 2010 mid-term elections, Government Professor Ron Rapoport talks with the W&M News about the national Tea Party movement and its roll in the upcoming election.

{{youtube:medium:center|oxmiUZs-dk0, Rapoport on Tea Party}}

Rapoport, a specialist in third party movements said the group – despite what their name implies- is not a third political party, but more of a factional movement designed to influence a major political party.

While primary wins for several of their candidates yielded the group national attention, Rapoport says he sees the group’s success differently.

“Their success is not only in the Sharon Engels and these other people they have gotten nominated,” he said. “I think their success is at least as great in the John McCain’s  - who has now turned his back on immigration reform, which he championed, and come to the Tea Party.”

In fact, Rapoport noted that numbers of Republicans have shifted their rhetoric and/or behavior because of the influence of this movement.

“Certainly in the short run they have had success [reshaping the Republican Party], not total, but they have certainly had success,” he said. “The question is sort of what happens after 2010?”

Member’s of the media wishing to interview Prof. Rapoport should contact Suzanne Seurattan, director of news marketing at scseur@wm.edu or 757.221.1631 – Ed.