417: This Party Sucks

417: This Party Sucks

Oct 29, 2010
A show for this year's midterm elections. Two best friends in Michigan, both political novices, get tired of yelling at their TVs and take matters into their own hands. They form a Tea Party chapter to effect political change. But when push comes to shove and they have to choose a candidate, their ideologies, their principles and their friendship explode.
In the original broadcast of this episode, reporter Ben Calhoun incorrectly stated Glenn Wilson's age. At the time of the 2010 election, Wilson was 46.
  • Rich Carlson and Tom Swenor, two best friends in Michigan, got so fed up with the political process in the country, they decided to form their own Tea Party chapter in Petoskey, Michigan. But as election season revved up and push came to shove, Rich and Tom had very different ideas about how to advance a conservative agenda. In the end, their idealism, their jobs and their friendship have suffered the consequences. This American Life producer Ben Calhoun tells the story. (34 minutes)FriendshipPolitics

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Rich Carlson and Tom Swenor, in 1981, with Rich's girlfriend Mary and Tom's wife Leslie.

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