But wait, it gets better...ugly, authoritarian, and fake-populist pseudo-movement directed from above and early on, by and for elite Republican and business interests. Its active membership and leadership are far from "grassroots" and "popular," far more affluent and reactionary than the U.S. citizenry as a whole, and even than the segment of the populace that purports (at the prompting of some pollsters) to feel "sympathy" for the Tea Party.
Beneath the failure to fully exclude such noxious elements lies a deeper problem: Most Tea Partiers do harbor racist opinions--though often in a more subtle, implicit and outwardly "color-blind" way than the more extreme racists at their rallies. And Tea Party racism--largely implicit and "color-blind" in relation to blacks and Latinos--is explicit and full-blown when it comes to Muslim Americans. (emphasis in original).Read more in the book by Paul Street and Anthony DiMaggio entitled Crashing the Tea Party: Mass Media and the Campaign to Remake American Politics.