Thursday, August 04, 2011

Who Are The Tea Party Supporters

CBS News and the New York Times surveyed 1,580 adults, including 881 self-identified Tea Party supporters, to get a snapshot of the Tea Party movement. The Tea Party supporters were most white, southern, and over 45 years of age. More than a third were college graduates. As you would expect, most saw themselves as conservatives.
They also have a higher-than-average household income, with 56 percent making more than $50,000 per year.
This last point merits some thought. People older than 45 should be at their peak earning power, and white college graduates of that age should be fairly well paid. Moreover, this is household income, which would often include two earners. According to Wikipedia, $50,000 per year would be in the middle quintile of American family incomes.

Thus these Tea Party members are pushing their representatives to cut their social security and medicare benefits rather than increase taxes for people who are much, much richer than they are themselves. It is hard to see why they are supporting the legislators who are so likely to hurt their interests.

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