10 tea party moments – The tea party movement began with loosely knit activist groups, and has become a major player in American politics. It's primarily focused on fiscal issues, but also embraces a range of issues important to conservatives. Click through the following images to learn more about key tea party moments.
10 tea party moments – Congressional lawmakers were met with a fierce response from constituents in 2009 over Obamacare. Shouting matches and even physical altercations were not uncommon.
10 tea party moments – The tea party's first big win came in January 2010 when Scott Brown won a special election to fill out the term of the late Sen. Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts. He was ousted from the seat in 2012 by liberal Democrat Elizabeth Warren.
10 tea party moments – Sarah Palin headlined the first national tea party convention in Nashville in 2010. Though she criticized President Barack Obama for reading from teleprompters, she was quickly called out for the speech notes written on her hand.
10 tea party moments – The tea party helped Republicans retake control of the House of Representatives in 2010. In the Senate, Rand Paul won in Kentucky with tea party support. He has since become a critic of Obama administration policies and is considered a possible 2016 presidential candidate.
10 tea party moments – Tea party favorite Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann made headlines in 2011 with her Iowa straw poll win, besting eight other Republican candidates. Her presidential bid faded, and she's now retiring from Congress.
10 tea party moments – Republicans lost five Senate races in 2010 and 2012 that were largely blamed on tea party candidates who flamed out in the general election. Democrats held onto the Senate and won the presidency again with Barack Obama's reelection.
10 tea party moments – Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul conducted a 13-hour filibuster in March 2013 against the nomination of John Brennan as director of the CIA. He's viewed as a possible presidential candidate in 2016.
10 tea party moments – Texas Sen. Ted Cruz launched a 21-hour filibuster in October 2013 in a bid to link defunding Obamacare to federal spending. The standoff over the issue led to a government shutdown the public largely blamed on congressional Republicans.
10 tea party moments – House Speaker John Boehner said in December 2013 that conservative groups aligned with the tea party have "lost all credibility."