By Craig Schneider
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
A big loss for the T-SPLOST was a big win for the Georgia tea party, whose leaders didn't shy away Tuesday night from claiming giant-slayer status.
"We took on the governor, the lieutenant governor, the mayor, big business and slick political consultants. We emerged victorious," crowed tea party leader Debbie Dooley, celebrating with other T-SPLOST opponents at Hudson Grille in Midtown.
Looking ahead, some pundits read the T-SPLOST leaves as foretelling increased tea party clout on other state and local issues; others said the loosely knit group still lacks the muscle — and the money — to achieve sustained influence.
Many agreed, though, that the tea party, more than anyone else, placed its stamp upon the effort to tear down the $7.2 billion transportation referendum. With Tuesday's resounding victory, the group made liars of critics who had months ago written it off as as a passing fad whose power had peaked. .................(more)