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Tea party, Republicans try to find common ground

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By Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Tea party activists and the Republican establishment are quickly joining forces for the fall elections as fresh cash and energy flow to the upstarts.

Separate tea party groups still squabble over roles for Republican insiders within the movement, but the conservative activists and GOP stalwarts have reached a truce for the common goal of defeating Democrats, heeding calls for unity from Republicans including Sarah Palin.

One group — the nonprofit Tea Party Patriots — on Tuesday announced a $1 million donation from an anonymous donor, a shot of cash to be spent before the election on voter mobilization efforts. The Tea Party Express is preparing to assist specific candidates, building on its targeted advertising campaigns during primary races in Delaware, Alaska and Nevada.

Meanwhile, the Republican Party and GOP-allied outside groups are already helping some tea party-backed candidates, most notably Sharron Angle who is seeking to unseat Senate Majority leader Harry Reid in Nevada.

"Ultimately, that's what we all hope happens, as citizens," said Tea Party Patriots co-founder Mark Meckler. "The political parties support the candidates that the people support, not the other way around."


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