Friday, September 04, 2009

"Tea Party Leader" To Run For For U.S. Senate

If the Republicans are looking for a good candidate to challenge Sen. Evan Bayh (D) for re-election in 2010, they won't find him in the candidacy of Richard Behney, the owner of Attaboy Plumbing. "The man who helped launch the protest-oriented Tea Party in Indiana is now running as a Republican in the race to beat Democrat Sen. Evan Bayh, the Star's Mary Beth Schneider writes. Actually, citizen activist Melyssa Donaghy first launched the Tea Party protest movement in Indiana in 2007, a movement that played a key role in Greg Ballard's upset win over Bart Peterson and the Republicans recapturing control of the City-County Council. She won a "Sam Adams Award" for her outstanding efforts. Behney hijacked the Tea Party label this year for what was obviously his own political self-interest. I see from the Star story that he's ripping off former Sen. Birch Bayh's original campaign theme from when he first ran for the U.S. Senate back in 1962, "Hey, Look Me Over." Ironically, virtually all of the original backers of the Tea Party movement from 2007 have been alienated by the Republican Party. Admittedly, I have a bias against Behney because of litigation I pursued against his company on behalf of a client a few years ago. Behney's company once boasted the seal of approval of Angie's List, at which Donaghy just coincidentally works. A company website listing provides no business address, only a phone number. I found some less than flattering customer reviews of Behney's company posted here, along with some positive comments.


Wilson46201 said...

That "Tea Party" label for this year's events is a national label used all over the country, including Indiana. True, it might have been used earlier in Indianapolis but there's no necessary connection between the two.

I'm surprised you even fell for this obvious stooge of Evan Bayh's. He's such a clown that Evan can comfortably stay in Washington and send back here a cardboard cutout as a campaign surrogate. Just having that raving loonie as the GOP candidate will guarantee another easy coasting to victory by Senator Evan Bayh.

Gary R. Welsh said...

Uh, Wilson, Behney acquired the domain name from the Indiana Tea Party movement started by Donaghy.

Wilson46201 said...

"Tea Parties" were done all over the country this year, coordinated by Fox News and other entities. Did all those events everywhere purchase anything from Melyssa? Didn't think so!

CharlesFosterKane said...

The teabaggers are going to split the republican party primary voters and will guarantee that the worst possible republican will get the nomination. The result? another term for Evan Bayh.


Gary R. Welsh said...

There was a separate Indiana Tea Party movement that existed two years before the national tea party movement came into existence, Wilson.

Gary R. Welsh said...

If splitting the GOP leads to a loss of another Senate race, then so be it. At some point, Republicans have to decide they are going to stand for the principles of limited government, less taxation and personal responsibility. The rank and file are sick and tired of politicians who speak in platitudes and obfuscations. That's what Evan Bayh represents. The GOP has failed miserably in every single race against Bayh and that's largely because the people who control the Republican Party in Indiana don't have a desire to defeat him.

artfuggins said...

Evan Bayh votes with the republicans so much that he is probably a better republican than anyone the GOP will nominate.

Gary R. Welsh said...

Evan Bayh also pocketed about a $1 million over a 2-year period before going to the Senate from the law firm of Baker & Daniels, a job that allowed him to campaign virtually full time for the Senate while he was supposedly employed full-time as an attorney by the firm. That law firm is the same one that employs our Republican Party Chairman Murray Clark. Rex Early warned in his book about the danger of giving the big law firms in town control of our political parties, but that is exactly what we've done. Ice Miller controls the Marion County GOP. Baker & Daniels controls the Indiana GOP. Bose McKinney controls the Marion County Democrats. And the Simon family bought and paid for the Indiana Democratic Party.

Unknown said... why isn't Melyssa Donaghy willing to put herself into the nasty business of politics and do more than whine that these new tea parties had more impact than she could ever hope for? I say "Awesome" to the Behney announcement. I attended the 4/15 and the 7/4 Tea Parties. What I saw at those events were citizens who cared and people who wanted to make a difference. I am tired of holding my nose in the voting booth. If Richard Behney has the guts to take this on and stand in the gap for Hoosiers, I will back him.

Paul K. Ogden said...

Uh, Jeffrey, Melyssa, played a huge role in helping elect Greg Ballard Mayor, which is more than anyone can say about the other tea parties.

Of course, she and others who supported Ballard now deeply regret that.

Sean Shepard said...

As always, I have concerns that any candidate has not been properly vetted in their positions, understanding of foreign policy, economic theories, etc... I always worry that we'll just get more candidates who believe what they do because their preferred party has told them what to think or what Sean Hannity (or Alan Combs or Barack Obama) suggested everyone think or do.

I think most of us are sick of so-called 'conservatives' just as much as we are the current crop of left wing extremists.

Blog Admin said...

Jeffrey, I'm betting the "citizens who cared" probably couldn't name their council representative. And that's assuming they even live in Marion County.

M Theory said...

Just a couple of clarifications. I do own the domain name The Behney's came along later and bought and they use that site.

I gave the Behney's password access to post on the domain I own, but they never exercised it.

I don't deeply regret helping Mayor Ballard get elected. While I take issue with how he handles the CIB, I do think the city has improved since he took office. It's still better than Bart, especially concerning crime. However, I'm not satisfied that the job he's doing is good enough for our city. I also don't think that Ballard treats the Libertarians with the level of respect and inclusion he should, considering that, but for the Libertarians, he would not be where he is today.

Gary is right about the Behney's not being exactly welcoming to the Libertarians who helped organize the 2007 Tea Party movement and helped me lead it. They preferred not to deeply engage or consult with our band of patriots.

I believe that the tea party movement across the country morphed into a real grass roots thing and I think it is great. I love watching Americans at town hall meetings stand up for their rights that God gave them.

Freedom is not free.

Finally seems that a genuine movement is shaping up with Liberty groups colliding into large masses throughout the country in spite of the fact that the current movement began as an astro turf arm inside the Republican Party.

dcrutch said...

I sympathize with Sean's comments on vetting, particularly based on our current Presidency. However, I also concur, "...Republicans have to decide they are going to stand for the principles of limited government, less taxation and personal responsibility. The rank and file are sick and tired of politicians who speak in platitudes and obfuscations."
I didn't go to Bloomington today to protest because I have time and money to burn, have pledged allegiance to the Tea Party, march in lockstep to talk radio, or have a profound belief in any political party. I'm publicly protesting bipartisan, excessive goverment spending and expansion (with many other co-"loonies"), because I fear for our children's future and our old age. I've found no active public option besides the Tea Party.
I'm not ready to believe Mr. Behney would be a perfect senator, any more than revel in everything Mayor Ballard has and hasn't done, or the prospective merit of an elected President McCain. But, given the alternatives and some hindsight- I think Ballard, Behney and particularly McCain look like great choices.

Unknown said...

I find it quite ironic that the Behney's April Tea Party rules did not allow any politicians speak -- except for him.

No wait, that's not ironic. It's hypocritical, if not deceptive. He surely was mulling a run at this point.