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Senator Mike Lee: Tea Party Kingmaker?

July 6, 2011 by  

Senator Mike Lee: Tea Party Kingmaker?

Many politicians seeking the Tea Party’s vote in 2012 are making an unusual stop on their campaign trails: the office of Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah). A founding member of the Senate’s Tea Party Caucus, Lee quickly made a name for himself as a Tea Party scion in his first six months in office, and perspective lawmakers are taking note.

“Lee has already met personally with more than a half a dozen candidates, made endorsements in two Senate primaries and set up a pair of leadership political action committees to aid those who share his constitutionalist brand of conservatism,” POLITICO reported.

Lee has committed himself to finding candidates that support the Tea Party agenda and helping those candidates find the grassroots support to win big, difficult elections.

“I am convinced that we need new Guards to protect our future security. Leaders in Washington have proven that they will invariably pursue a path of reckless and unsustainable spending that will reduce every man, woman, and child in this country to the despotism of debt. After spending my first six months in Washington in a fight to save our country from a looming and predictable fiscal disaster, it seems that too many of the leaders here are ‘disposed to suffer,’” Lee wrote in a blog on his website, quoting from the Declaration of Independence.

“I, for one, am forever grateful that the signers of the Declaration of Independence didn’t suffer from ‘pledge fatigue.’ When I see their signatures on the Declaration, I am convinced that theirs is the brand of leadership that we desperately need,” Lee wrote.

Lee, who never held a political office before, defeated a powerful Republican incumbent, former Senator Robert Bennett, six months ago. He used grassroots movements and very little funding to grab the GOP nod.

“He defeated an incumbent in a primary and that gives him some name I.D. that he wouldn’t have otherwise,” Representative Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), a Senate candidate who earned Lee’s backing to replace retiring Senator Jon Kyl, told POLITICO. “He’s highly regarded among conservatives, seen as a constitutional conservative and in a Republican primary, that’s a good label to have.”

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  • s c

    As long as Lee knows the difference between a conservative and a Republican – and never forgets it – then he has positive potential. Maybe he can help get rid of the two-faced deadwood in the Senate, and then make waves in the House.
    We need people who have standards and aren’t afraid to stand up to pretenders and thereby restore our republic.

  • benrush

    Correction. It’s not “perspective lawmakers” it’s “prospective lawmakers”. Please make a note of it.

    • Old Henry


      Prospective lawmakers WITH perspective.

      • Bruce

        We can only hope.

    • FlaJim

      Perspicacious prospective politicos?

      By the way, the dates and times on the comments seem to be off unless this is a retread.

      • Bruce

        Each thread stays up for weeks (months). People comment in divers order over those months. Its not that tricky. We don’t all start at the same times and comment from beginning to end. Also, it is true that the time-zone of the publishers of the news-letter is probably different from your own. There may even be some delay as comments get from your computer to the message boards. (It happens.) The degree of delay may not always even be consistant from one day to the next. I don’t work for the newslatter, but I have a background in computers.

  • Tim L.

    Well, I’m sure he can count on the support of the KKK.

    • FlaJim

      And you base that asinine remark on what?

    • Janice M Cullen RE Broker

      A men with realistic views! My hate is off to you and I bett he has friends in the KKK

    • Bruce

      I live in Dixie (TN) and I have known some Klansmen over the years. They are generally uneducated, fundamentalist, blue-collar types who oversimplify any given subject. They tend to be Conservative and Christian, but with no understanding of the underlying philosophical principles. Archy Bunker would have fit in well in the Klan. He isn’t Evil; he just knows no better. I think that slap-stick (the 3 stooges) would go over well in the Klan. They have good and patriotic intentions; they just don’t understand the complexities involved. They legalisticly obey the laws (to the letter) without any awareness of the context in which the laws were originally passed.



  • benrush

    It’s certain he won’t get the support of the communists anytime soon.

  • Scoot

    Just another DC insider who has spent his career working in the government. I don’t like the idea that anyone running for office needs his approval to be considered legitimate. We don’t need anymore priviledged rich boys who feel entitled to ascend to the throne.

    • Janice M Cullen RE Broker

      That seems to be a big problem with this group as they all seem to need someone to promote them. Guess they are not capeable of doingit themselves. That is very scary!

  • Thor

    ‘Lee, who never held a political office before, defeated a powerful Republican incumbent, former Senator Robert Bennett, six months ago. He used grassroots movements and very little funding to grab the GOP nod.’

    Translation: Generic Republican takes the office from non-performing, equivocating, compromising centrist, moderate who doesn’t uphold conservative values.

    No compromise!

  • KG

    Senator Lee has thus far been a refreshing change from the same ol’ – same ol’ go-along-to-get-along career politicians we have been cursed with in both the senate and the house on both sides of the aisle. How can he be considered “just another DC insider” when he has never held any political office before and has only been there for six months? As far as being a “rich boy” goes, if one wants to see rich boys just look at those that truly have spent their careers inside the beltway. Just curious about where those assumptions come from.
    If he continues to stand firm on the Constitution and remembers the conservative values that got him elected to begin with then perhaps he will be able to effect some positive changes and influences in the way the REAL DC insiders have been ripping us off and usurping our power, not to mention feathering their own nests for decades. He has an up hill battle that is for sure.

    • Scoot

      KG, you and Thor need to do a little research. All of his previous positions were political appointments which in my book are even worse than elected officials.
      Lee was born in Mesa, Arizona on June 4, 1971. His family moved to Provo, Utah one year later when his father, Rex E. Lee, became the founding dean of Brigham Young University’s J. Reuben Clark Law School. While Lee spent about half of his childhood years in Utah, he spent the other half in McLean, Virginia, a suburb of Washington, D.C. His father served first as an Assistant U.S. Attorney General (overseeing the Civil Division of the U.S. Department of Justice during the Ford Administration) from 1975 until 1976, and then as the U.S. Solicitor General (charged with representing the United States government before the Supreme Court during the first term of the Reagan Administration) from 1981 until 1985.

      Growing up Lee went to school with Senator Strom Thurmond’s daughter and lived three doors down from Senator Robert Byrd. He was friends with Harry Reid’s son Josh. Senator Reid was the Lees’ home teacher, a spiritual leader in the Mormon faith. Lee recalls as a child how Senator Reid once locked him and Josh in their garage as a practical joke. [1]

      After graduating from Timpview High School (Provo, Utah) in 1989, Mike attended Brigham Young University as an undergraduate student, receiving a B.S. in Political Science in 1994. He served as BYU’s Student Body President during the 1993–1994 school year.
      After graduating from BYU’s J. Reuben Clark Law School in 1997, Lee served as a law clerk to Judge Dee Benson of the U.S. District Court for the District of Utah. The following year, he clerked for then-Judge Samuel A. Alito, Jr., who was serving at that time on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit Court in Newark, New Jersey. After finishing his clerkships, Lee joined the Washington, D.C. office of Sidley Austin, where he specialized in appellate and Supreme Court litigation. Several years later, Lee returned to Utah to serve as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Salt Lake City, preparing briefs and arguing cases before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. He served as general counsel to Utah Governor Jon M. Huntsman, Jr. from January 2005 until June 2006, when he returned to Washington to serve a one-year clerkship at the U.S. Supreme Court with Justice Alito.

      Lee returned to Utah (and to private practice) in the summer of 2007, joining the Salt Lake office of the Washington, D.C.-based law firm of Howrey LLP. Lee focused on courtroom advocacy and constitutional law.

      As an attorney, Lee also represented Class A low-level radioactive waste facility provider EnergySolutions Inc.

      Lee’s legal background has led some to consider him a potential candidate for the Supreme Court. Adam J. White of the Weekly Standard has written that “Mike Lee ought to be considered a potential candidate for the first Supreme Court vacancy to be filled by a Republican president – especially with the traditional rule of ‘senatorial courtesy’ weighing in his favor.”[

      • KG

        Quite enlightening Scoot, thanks.

      • KG

        It is obvious that whatever your reasons were you have spent considerable time doing a background check. Presuming what you say is accurate, when he was growing up he did not choose where he lived, who his neighbors were or even who his home teacher was. BTW, h. reid is not considered by very many if any as a “spiritual leader” of the church. He is nothing but a politician that has used his affiliation with the church to keep getting re-elected and has definitely been around far too long. Just like Robert Bennett.
        I still say if Lee will hold to conservative principles and the Constitution he may be able to effect some positive changes. What he does or does not do from now on is what counts, not who his neighbors were or where he went to school, etc.

        • Scoot

          The Reid affiliation means little to me, i was presenting the article without cuts. I don’t see a dimes worth of difference between the two parties; I guess this article provides some confirmation.
          My concern is our elected leaders are fast becoming an aristocracy and this guy just exemplifies that. A priviledged upbringing, not having to earn his way and sees his position as a birthright.

          • Jennie

            I think your problem is that you are more than a little bit envious of Lee’s “privileged background”. No child is responsible for their background. What makes you think he “sees his position as a birthright”? Do you know him? Have you ever had a conservation with him? He learned his values from his family. He has chosen to serve his country. I hope he does well. Why don’t you give a person a chance to show what good they can do BEFORE you criticize them? Get that burr out of your bottom and see what you can do for the country.

          • Bruce

            Regardless of “Jennie”‘s responce, I agree with you. If you can get into BYU, or ANY Law School at all, for that matter, you’re a lot more privileged than are most of us. To have your parents cover the tuition and required fees, .. I would give some valuable body parts to have that chance. Jennie’s comment about how “no child is responsible for their background” ignores later comments that she (herself) made about how one is formed by one’s background (which makes a person’s background part of who he is). Its not just the money; there are a lot more connections involved than purely $$. Based on other posts that Jennie left, her point isn’t “fairness” for poor Mr. Lee: She’s trying to advance her political perspective for which she’s at least as partisan as we are for ours. Rock on!

      • Janice M Cullen RE Broker

        Thank you for the truth. Think he is “being Groomed?” These people are believing thier own hype!

  • reenie512

    Why would they stop by to see him?Maybe they need tips on how to grovel in Israel when they go there to get permission and approval to run for office as he did.Never would I vote for any of them.

  • Jake

    It seems there are some uninformed genius’ here or maybe some Cass Sunstein disinformation specialists. They seem to be everywhere these days. The Tea Party Caucus has been very quiet in light of the forgery comlaint filed with the FBI on Obama over the long form BC. The documented SS fraud has made the radio airwaves in a few places too but we hear nothing from Cesspool Hill. Is the TPC scared of the media? Are they scared of being called conspiracy nuts? What about the laundry list of impeachable offenses by the Obama WH? Inquiring minds want to know.

    • Scoot

      Instead of spouting insults ala Hannity and Limbaugh, perhaps you could correct my disinformation. Quite honestly it’s people like you who support anyone with an -R beside their name that is half the problem.

      • Christin

        So you would support ‘The one” who has a -D in front of his name running our country now??

        Please don’t even make Mike Lee out to look disgusting like your WH hero.

        Though your info about Mike Lee is new news to me, we will have to keep an eye on all that take office.

        It seems those that want to run for a political office in Congress are seeking help from Mike Lee like they did from Conservative Jim DeMint -R in 2008… now we have two Constitutional Conservative men who will help others to get financial backers to get them in the race.

        • Scoot

          Wow, another hater insulting anyone who doesn’t support 100% every Republican and every word they utter. I like to think for myself unlike many of the sheeple here. I’ve made several comments on this thread and many others on this site and I challenge you to find one where I supported Obama or any other Democrat. I voted for Bob Barr in 2008 after Ron Paul failed to get any support from his own party.
          I’m quite sure I havn’t criticized Jim Demint in any way and he is nothing like Mike Lee except for party affiliation which is all that counts to folks like yourself. I currently reside in SC and agree with most of Demints positions though I disagreed with his support of the illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq. I feel the same about our meddling in Libya.
          I am an American who supports his country always and his government & party when they deserve it.

          • Jennie

            There you go again!! Who put you in charge of deciding who “deserves it”. Give a person a chance to perform before you judge them. Try to be just a little open-minded. You might just like it.

          • Bruce

            Addressing “Jennie” (who had no “reply” button after her post) and her reply to your post: It is a citizen’s RESPONSIBILITY to decide who is worthy of said citizen’s support. The Constitution of these United States gives a person the right to decide who’s worthy of said person’s vote (support). Your (Jennie’s) mind being so open may be why some strange things wandered in and took root. I discriminate between what IS and what ISN’T worthy of my endorcement.

      • Janice M Cullen RE Broker

        I concur these people eat the pablem theyare fed and insult us by expecting the rest of us to believe it. I will vote for Oboma rather then any of these people who need someone to tell them who they are and what to think



  • jopa

    It seems as though the Tea party or is it the Republican party seems to be getting many of their candidates from Utah affiliation lately.What’s going on are they going to start a Mormon Tabernacle choir on the East coast also.

    • JLC

      jopa — Better Mormon than Muslin !!!

      • Janice M Cullen RE Broker

        And which would you be? Bert it is not Muslum

  • jopa

    JLC Perhaps you may be right but we have the best yet, a true Christian in the White House now.

  • aaron johnson

    i’m one of the service connected and disabled veterans that Mile Lee help put out of business in Utah. who says mormons are not unchristian and mean? Lee was John Huntsman’s Jr’s legal chief of staff. form there, i was put out of business two more times until i just fled the state of utah to work in a more stable place – iraq and Afghanistan in 2008. after literally flying over 170,000 miles doing somethign real like supporting my country not making campaign speeches to a bunch of syncophant mormon leeches in utah county – i returned to Utah to be put out of business once and for all. tell me, having been to Afghainstan 9x – how are mormons better than muslims? yes, they are better at suspending the reality of anyone who oppose thier brand of BS. Lee represents a brand of f*cking idiots riding roughshod over personal liberties and protections form those like himself while he wipes his *ss with the constitution of the United States.

    then for those of you beleiving on the sanctity of a broken justice system, when i brought one of the cases into federal court – the judge recused himself and was replced with Dee Benson who Lee clerked for.

    for all you Mike Lee supporters out there – serving a mormon mission does NOT count as service to your country! yes, Mike Lee as the leader of the christ-taliban in america where the service of veterans is waterboarded by a culture of mormons who began thier debut into american culture by being driven out of the US. get a clue!

    • Janice M Cullen RE Broker

      Thank you sir for your service! I hope others will see the truth of what you say!

  • James

    If the Tea Party was not an arm of the Republican Party it would be more effective, it also needs to support the ending of the Wars, The Republican Party is responsible for the fiscal mess through the Bush Tax cuts, the lack of oversight of the financial/mortgage industry and the Waging of 2 wars. Trillions of Dollars have been spent while ignoring the responsible notion of paying for the war. I will say both parties share equal responsibility in this current economic recession. All of the politicians were guilty of being bought off through Wall St campaign contributions. We need to pass a balanced budget amendment with no exceptions. This will put an end to Wars of aggression and require the Military to spend its funds wisely. This would put an end to weapon systems being developed with the Federal purse.

  • allioo89

    JAMES your trying to sound so profound unfortuanatlly your lack of intellegance and incapacity to comprehend the current situation is too funny to ignore I actually feel very sorry for you. yes yes Its true you figuered it out James the Republican party is responsible for it all and the murder of Jesus Christ too never mind Nancy Pelosi was in charge of congress for the last 7 years she is not responsible at lets ignore the facts and lets spit back the democrate talking points with out fact checking them I hate to tell you you have been used like the trained monkey you are.No You do not have to respond to me I cant hurt my brain anymore with people like you who dont have time to FACT CHECK before they repeat Socialistic views of OBAMA

    • Thinking About

      I am glad to see you have a high degree of comprehension but I don’t see your level of math skills showing through. History by the books tells us Gingrich was speaker of the house from 1995 to 1999. It further gives Hastert speaker from 1999 to 2006. Pelosi was speaker from 2007 to 2011 which even in modern math is only 4 years. In 2011 Boehner has been speaker. Now from your post it appears republicans and democrats might share responsibilty and even further to apply responsibility there was a republican president from 2001 to 2008 so brush up on your comprehension levels and don’t try your “spin” on tabloid facts.

  • Janice M Cullen RE Broker

    Thinking about it has the right idea. Ignorence is bliss though and we see hoe self satisfied with misinformation these folks are. Must be what they have been told to do!

  • sean murrey ILLInio

    All i can say is time will tell who gets the consertive nod.


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