After Virginia victory, tea party sets sights on Lamar Alexander - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

After Virginia victory, tea party sets sights on Lamar Alexander

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U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander. Photo by Paul Efird/News Sentinel U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander. Photo by Paul Efird/News Sentinel
WASHINGTON (News Sentinel) - Steve Osborn thinks there are a lot of messages to be found in House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s stunning defeat by a tea party challenger in Virginia’s primary election on Tuesday, but the most jarring one for politicians just might be this:

“The grass-roots can actually swing an election, regardless of the money the GOP throws at them,” said Osborn, chairman of the Sevier County Tea Party.

Cantor’s loss to political novice David Brat — a virtual unknown who had tea party backing but just a fraction of Cantor’s bank account — confounded the nation’s campaign cognoscenti and left many wondering whether it should be interpreted as a warning sign to other establishment Republicans facing their own re-election battles.

Cantor’s downfall, coupled with U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran being forced into a primary runoff against a tea party challenger in Mississippi, could energize Tennessee’s tea party movement, which has set its sights on another high-profile target, U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander.

Read more from our news partners at the Knoxville News Sentinel.
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