The Last of The Pistol Packin’ Mamas?

By Peter Galuszka

Part buffoon, part populist, state Sen. Amanda Chase, R-Chesterfield, has for years represented white resentment against modern times, Tea Party-style.

She’s picked up on every bad feeling out there and amplified it, including pent-up anger against minorities, immigrants, government workers, women’s rights and gun control advocates and more.

She’s had a weekly radio show, “Cut to the Chase” in her home Chesterfield County where she vented her views.

When the Senate considered ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment passed decades ago, she strapped on a .38 revolver on her right hip, sashayed to the podium and pronounced it “My personal ERA.”

To be sure, Chase did some things right. She blocked Dominion when it tried to push its way to dispose of coal ash waste on its terms. Then she stumbled. She got into a pointless verbal battle with a Capitol police officer, who happened to be African-American, about where she can park. She annoyed female voters by implying that rape can somehow be their own fault. Her campaign material said she’s not afraid to “shoot down gun groups” in a state where worries about gun control are the No. 1 concern. Then she insulted Sheriff Karl Leonard, a fellow GOP candidate, by saying he had let Chesterfield become “sanctuary” for illegal immigrants. The untruthfulness of the comment was too much for the county GOP, which booted her on Sept. 30.

Chase is still running for the 11th Senate seat against Democrat Amanda Pohl who has seriously out-raised her in political funds. Chase could still win in November, but the events represent a turning point.

The Tea Party reaction in Virginia and elsewhere reached a high point around 2010 when Tea Partiers held a “PATRIOTS CONVENTION” at the Richmond convention center where it was attended by fiscal conservative wonks, gun rights people covered in holsters, guns, Velcro body armor and buttons and a Patrick Henry impersonator or two.

Soon, license plates sanctioned by the Department of Motor Vehicles showing the familiar orange “Don’t Tread on Me,” flag were everywhere, especially, it seemed, on pickup trucks with oversized tires.

The movement was fascinating. Was it white reaction against Barack Obama, our first African-American president? Frustration with endless wars in Central Asia? The real estate and 401-(k) meltdown that the bipartisan bad policies of Bill Clinton and George W. Bush brought?

I found an article in The New Yorker from about a year ago. It offers this observation:

“Harvard political scientists Theda Skocpol and Vanessa Williamson noted that ‘The generational perspective of most Tea Partiers is unmistakable, Many people in the movement were over fifty, and fixed in their certainty that immigrants and young people are scamming benefits from the welfare state, their entwinement with an earlier generation of conservative media misinformation, and the intensity of their dyspepsia. Tea Partiers were even more likely than other conservatives to attribute the struggles of members of racial minorities to ‘their own personal failings but, the authors point out, they were were also likely to believe the same of whites.’”

The Tea Party seemed to have reached its high point with the election of Donald Trump, who is not really a Republican or a Democrat, but rather a showman with no particular worldview other than himself.

U.S. Rep Dave Brat used Tea Party muscle to nail Eric Cantor and keep him from being speaker of the house. That was national news but Brat turned out to be even more out of touch with his constituents than Cantor was and he was booted out by Abigail Spanberger, a striking, young and unusually articulate rising Democratic star.

Was that the real end of the Tea Party movement? One different between Spanberger and Chase is that Spanberger has actually carried a gun in the line of duty and didn’t use one for fun and show. She was a federal postal agent and then a clandestine officer of the Central Intelligence Agency. One of Spanberger’s sister Congressional Democratic freshmen is Elaine Luria, a retired Navy commander who graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy. She also knows how to handle pistols, not to mention Tomahawk missiles, and doesn’t somehow need to brandish those facts in a clownish way like Chase. Maybe Luria actually understands what such weapons are for.

It seems that the time for people like Chase has passed. What’s needed are sensible, mature adults who don’t harbor resentments and are willing to fix up the mess that Donald Trump continues to make.

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23 responses to “The Last of The Pistol Packin’ Mamas?

  1. following………

  2. I don’t know Amanda Chase and haven’t followed her actions or listened to her radio show. I am a libertarian who proudly displays my “Don’t Tread on Me” license plates on my truck; and no, I don’t have oversized tires. Though I don’t believe in his every action I believe Donald Trump is taking the country in the right direction. I support Donald Trump and encourage everyone I meet to do the same. I am a proud American.

  3. TEA = Taxed Enough Already. What’s so hard to figure out? And the 2nd Amendment defenders have been around since, oh, I don’t know, Jefferson, Madison and Hamilton maybe? The “TEA Party” is just a convenient umbrella for folks and positions I’d seen in the party for decades. Chase’s current alienation of so many of her fellow GOP members in the county is ironic because she beat Steve Martin in part on that basis, his alienation from so many in the county party structure….Important Person Disease can flare in anybody down at the Capitol, either party.

    Movements come and go but the resentment against taxes and other elements of the Liberal Establishment (including the GOP establishment types) will abide. There is a tide in the affairs of men….whether it is ebbing, 2020 may tell.

    When Trump wins a second term, don’t stand too close to some folks, because heads will explode. The only person at this point who can beat Trump is Trump himself. I think Biden now crashes, and Bernie had his heart event. So it’s E. Warren. That’s great news for Trump. But Trump can still beat himself and he’s working hard at it. The fate of Chase will be determined in four weeks.

    • strangely and sadly, I have to agree with much of what Steve says with some select caveats.

      The thing about taxes is the penny-wise pound-foolish problem when we say we want to (for instance) refuse to pay to fully educate problem kids then decry the costs of Medicaid and TANF. Can’t have it both ways but simpleminded don’t seem to get that.

  4. I’ve always thought of myself as a moderate conservative. I grew up in a totally democrat family with several family members in various local and state elected positions. Meanwhile I was chair of the teenage republican club in high school and joined the young republicans in college. For me, the TEA party was a step in the wrong direction that damaged the party. I’m all in on keeping taxes reasonable, containing the size of government, and supporting a strong private sector.

    But I also support stricter gun legislation within the limits of both DC v. Heller and McDonald v. Chicago. I think a woman is entitled to and capable of making their own choices. I believe people can and ought to make their own choices about who they love. I would be happy to see governing, in the conservative sense of securing individual rights, take a front seat again in the republican party.

    • Only a strong candidate with a strong vision can put the governing coalition back together again, and that may yet be a while off. No one wants to claim the middle from either direction. Trump and Warren think they are the middle. 🙂

    • Thank you Phillip. Now – you are no longer wanted in the GOP – that’s the party of folks like Steve who says it’s the Dems that have moved LEFT!

      Oh and then he twaddles about “vision”!

      RINOs and CINOs they are… sad….

      • Don the ripper. I left russia in 1996 and have not been back. I did know and interview the first round of post soviet oligarchs. In the 1980s and 1990s i visited ukraine many times. But the Burisma and other stuff is well after my time. My question is what does Hunter Biden have to do with Ananda Chase?

  5. Obviously, Galuszka’s view of “modern times’ is the will of the The Squad-Warren-Sanders-Schiff-Pelosi-Nadler -NBC-CNS-ABC-WP-NYT -DNC…
    Message to Peter. If these are your “modern times”

    Some out there base their convictions on actions as opposed to inferred intentions from parsed phrases and tweets, mischaracterizations, lies, and ad hominem partisan calumny;.

    Some out there see a near miracle economy the beloved Obama said was forever gone

    Some out there see a military strengthened and repaired after willful sabotage by the previous administration.

    Some out there think that the “mess” of the Trump Presidency is Democrats’ abandoning all civic responsibility and decency by declaring a 4 year “resistance” to an elected President, employing seditious lawfare tactics to intimidate, harass, smear, and destroy the President and anyone they don’t “support”..

    Some out there see this administration
    • Fighting Democrats to establish trade policies which benefit the American worker, keep jobs, and create wage growth;
    • fighting Democrats to stop the continuing disintegration of our schools and cities under Democratic leadership and liberal ideologies and practices;
    • fighting Democrats to restore and strengthen our police and laws and courts badly damaged by the previous administration and Democrat leaders in our cities and governors;
    • fighting Democrats increasingly vicious attacks on our religious institutions and beliefs which some out there see as a fundamental right;
    • fighting Democrats to limit those who come to this country to numbers the USA can absorb, heal and educate without bankrupting the country and the urban and educational experiences of our citizens and won’t blow us up;
    • Fighting Democrats against monetizing Federal and state employment to enrich their children, build phony trust funds, and buy votes.

    In short, there are some who think the Democrats. not Trump, have and are creating a metastasizing mess in just about every aspect of American society.

    Yes, some old whites do resent these “modern times”. Galuszka would apparently be amazed to learn that some Blacks, some Hispanics, some Asians and even young people who most universities are trying to remove and suppress also have “resentment against these modern times.”

  6. Musings…this is a joke, right?

    • Heads will explode, I’m telling you….Peter’s and Larry’s for two.

      • Steve: $1 says trump will be in prison first

      • Steve – I vote in Virginia and my bet is that the majority of Virginia voters are abandoning the GOP … for a variety of reasons not the least of which is their stance on health care.

        However, I am also pragmatic and it definitely is in the realm of possibility that Trump would win again but not because he has strong majority support from voters but for the same reason he won before that too many stayed home and refused to vote for the Dem candidate (who still won a majority of the popular vote).

    • I don’t see Musing’s comments as a joke. While I have serious misgivings about the Republicans at the state level I have equally deep misgivings about the Democrats at the national level. You often talk about your time in the Soviet Union. Very interesting. I have some time in Ukraine. I can assure you, without a doubt, that Burisma only hired Biden’s druggie son to “help them with governance’ for one reason – to curry favor with Uncle Joe. Biden has been trying to get his son into the billionaire class for decades and using every bit of his position to do so. Said he never discussed Burisma with Hunter. Then a photo emerged with Joe Biden, Hunter Biden and another Burisma board member golfing in the Hamptons. Joe said he never talked to his son about Burisma, Hunter said, “only once”. In other words, they’re lying.

      Harry Reid, Gerry Connolly, Joe Biden, Hillary Clinton – the list goes on (with the Republicans too). I think the reason Congress is all balls afire about this Ukraine deal is that most of them are neck deep in foreign corruption – either them, their family of their friends. Remember the economic development for visas deal that McAuliffe and Rodham were going to use to bring golf cart manufacturing to impoverished Mississippi. How much did that dynamic duo take out of that failed deal?

      The FISA warrants were faked to spy on Trump.

      There’s a lot of corrupt rot in Washington. Not sure that most of it is coming from the White House.

  7. Here’s the issues:

    cost of health insurance
    cost of prescription drugs
    global warming

    Now , check the polls… where are people on these issues?

    Now the big question:

    Does anyone think the current Trump-enabler GOP would
    do anything about these if Trump wins again?

    How do Virginia voters poll on these issues and how many
    in Virginia think the Virginia GOP will deal with these issues?

    I think the GOP has hitched their wagon to the TEA party and TRUMP and I’m not at al convinced that a MAJORITY of voters
    are okay with it.

    Personally, I’ll take the so-called “socialist” Dems over the GOP who have just totally prostituted themselves to Trump and the evangelical right and anti-science conspiracy nuts…

    And if you work as a govt employee and you think Trump is an idiot – you are “deep state”!

  8. I never said VA would be in play in 2020.

  9. And if you work as a govt employee and you think Trump is an idiot – you are “deep state”! — WRONG

    If you want to debate facts then do do. Leave the emotional smears to another forum.

    If you work for the government and passively or actively resist and work to undermine or sabotage or otherwise defeat the policies, directives or the existence of the President and his appointees, you are seditious and the deep state.

  10. “And if you work as a govt employee and you think Trump is an idiot – you are “deep state”!”

    . . . AND if you work for the intelligence agencies of the United States consider yourself Democrat . . . and THEN spy on his administration from the inside so you can pass on information to Trump’s enemies in Congress.

    Yes, that is “Deep State.”

    • Yes it is and yes it does seem to be what happened. Comey needs to be indicted. That weasel will sing like a canary in no time. Time to get to the bottom of those FISA warrants.

  11. “Deep State . . .
    . . . or more correctly the use of the Federal Intelligence and Law Enforcement agencies for partisan political purposes; something which used to concern so called “moderates.”

  12. ” . . . Sen. Amanda Chase, R-Chesterfield, has for years represented white resentment against modern times”

    Wow, Left wing racist jab in the very first line.

  13. It is always interesting to read familiar history from a new perspective, so now I’m on a book on the American Revolution, “The Glorious Cause,” part of the Oxford History series. Just finished the section on the Stamp Act crisis and Prof. Middlekauff’s description of the paranoid conspiracy theories – the enmity towards the English — common in the Colonies a decade before Lexington, and how the attitudes fed the mobs, could easily apply to many in the modern Tea Party with their fear of Big Government. The only thing new in the world, Truman said, is the history you don’t know.

  14. Please re-read the Declaration of Independence. Even more interesting is the first draft of such. Then read Thos. Paine’s Common Sense. And if you really want a great view of this subject, check out Frederic Bastiat’s little article Government.

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