How the Tea Party Could Get My Vote

There's got to be a way to push back on big government without blaming Obama for everything.

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There's plenty of real criticism to be directed toward Obama. If all tea partiers want is lower taxes and spending cuts, they should just say that -- instead of trying to tag the president as a ''socialist'' who's ''taking away their freedom.'' These amped-up cheap shots are what's keeping the uprising, however formidable, from becoming a mature political movement.

He railed against government-backed debt relief and got the reaction he wanted, asking: ''How many of you want to pay for your neighbor's mortgage?'' What he never asked was if they wanted the government to stand by while mortgages dragged banks, markets and everyone's 401(k) under with them. Even at its genesis, the party was plagued with ''tea-pocrisy.''

Tea partiers are fond of resorting to the ''some of my best guest speakers are black'' defense. But the fact that there are people of color in their ranks doesn't prove they're not racist, just as posters with Obama dressed up like Hitler don't prove that they are.

For now, the NAACP should get out of the Tea Party-condemnation business, and the Tea Party should spend some time figuring out why, if they're not racist, so many people think they are.

David Swerdlick is a regular contributor to The Root. Follow him on Twitter.

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David Swerdlick is an associate editor at The Root. Follow him on Twitter.

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