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Fruits And Nuts: The Five Battiest Tea Party Candidates

Kevin Douglas Grant |
October 13, 2010 | 10:43 a.m. PDT

Executive Editor

We know the Tea Party Movement has unleashed a wave of pent-up energy across America, sending politicians on both sides of the aisle scrambling to adapt as the midterm elections approach in less than a month.

This despite the fact that Tea Party supports make up only about 10 percent of the U.S. population.  No matter: Tea Party candidates tend to be larger than life.  A list of the five craziest Tea Partiers:

The Homophobe - Carl Paladino, GOP candidate for New York governor

Paladino, a surprise victor in the NY primary, has quickly become known for his mouth.  It never stops flapping and there's always something hateful coming out. One of his favorite targets is the gay community.  

One gem: "We must stop pandering to the pornographers and the perverts who seek to target our children and destroy their lives. I didn't march in the gay pride parade this year. My opponent [Dem. Andrew Cuomo] did."

And another: "They wear these little Speedos and they grind against each other and it's just a terrible thing."

Some strong words from a man who reportedly rented to a gay club in Buffalo in 2004 and 2005, owned by his son

The Witch / The Prude - Christine O'Donnell, GOP candidate for Senate, Delaware

O'Donnell "dabbled into witchcraft" in high school, and has taken plenty of heat for admitting it.   But that's nothing compared to her masturbation hating and evolution denial.

On masturbation: "It is not enough to be abstinent with other people, you also have to be abstinent alone," she reminds us. "The Bible says that lust in your heart is committing adultery, so you can’t masturbate without lust."

On evolution, appearing on Real Time with Bill Maher: 

"O'DONNELL: You know what, evolution is a myth. And even Darwin himself -

MAHER: Evolution is a myth? Have you ever looked at a monkey?

O'DONNELL: Well then, why they -- why aren't monkeys still evolving into humans?"

The Nazi - Rich Iott, GOP candidate for Congress, Ohio

This is a man who likes to dress up in a Nazi SS uniform with his friends and reenact World War II.  That's almost enough said right there.  But thankfully, Iott has done the talking himself:

"I've always been fascinated by the fact that here was a relatively small country that from a strictly military point of view accomplished incredible things. I mean, they took over most of Europe and Russia, and it really took the combined effort of the free world to defeat them. From a purely historical military point of view, that's incredible."

Yep the Holocaust was pretty incredible, Rich.  Iott has claimed his group performed historical reenactments for educational purposes, though on this one it appears he chose the wrong side.  He's since apologized to the Jewish community, but has now got (vandals') swastikas on his campaign signs.

The Ice Queen  - Sharron Angle, GOP candidate for Senate, Nevada

Senate majority leader Harry Reid has made some terrible mistakes to be neck and neck in the polls with Angle.  

Angle is staunchly anti-abortion, including in cases of rape and incest.  Her rationale: "I think that two wrongs don't make a right. And I have been in the situation of counseling young girls, who have had very at risk, difficult pregnancies. And my counsel was to look for some alternatives, which they did. And they found that they had made what was really a lemon situation into lemonade."

Sound out of touch?  Angle has also advocated for an armed overthrow of the American government and the murder of her opponent Reid:  

"You know, our Founding Fathers, they put that Second Amendment in there for a good reason and that was for the people to protect themselves against a tyrannical government. And in fact Thomas Jefferson said it's good for a country to have a revolution every 20 years. I hope that's not where we're going, but you know if this Congress keeps going the way it is, people are really looking toward those Second Amendment remedies and saying my goodness what can we do to turn this country around? I'll tell you the first thing we need to do is take Harry Reid out."

The All-American Bigot  - Trent Franks, GOP candidate for Congress, Arizona

Franks represents a solidly Red district and won't be leaving office anytime soon.  He is however, something of a hater.  

On Obama: "He has no place in any station of government and we need to realize that he is an enemy of humanity."

This comment could be taken in a couple different ways, but it turns out Franks also longs to return to the days of slavery: "Far more of the African-American community is being devastated by the policies of today, than were being devastated by the policies of slavery."

With such a wealth of hate and intolerance, it might sound like Tea Partiers are more just bad people and not so crazy.  But is it not crazy for a self-proclaimed anti-elite, grassroots movement to take a significant part of its money from Big Oil?

We'll see who's sane on Nov. 2.



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