There has been a long-running controversy, in the Dope and more broadly, as to whether the Tea Party is mainly an economic-libertarian, small government organization, or a social conservative/religious-right organization. And one notes that RR messages as such rarely appear on their rally-signs or in their literature. (Neither does anything about immigration, IME.)
However, WRT Arizona Gov. Janet Brewer’s recent veto of the “religious freedom” bill, while the matter certainly touches on economic libertarianism, this is not the reaction of a secular economic libertarian.
The TP is, perhaps, more than one thing – one other thing it is, is a movement of “local notables” – anti-elitist only in the sense that the billionaires on Wall Street are an elite compared with the millionaires on Main Street, but plenty elitist in its own right; what the latter want is the autonomy to dominate local economies and exploit local workers, etc., without any do-gooding federal interference. But, that dovetails well enough with the social conservatism, apparently.
Actually, it is answered when people note that it is a loose umbrella name for a whole range of groups and beliefs, many of them contradictory.
Refusing to identify a non-existent exemplar is not a stall game.
A good analogy, actually, is atheism. We frequently encounter various posters demanding to know what “atheists believe” who are never satisfied by the actual answer. There are probably one or two ideas that are common to all Tea Partiers–lower taxes is the only one that I recognize as common to all–but there have been Tea Party groups who were clearly opposed to President Obama because of race while other Tea Party groups could not care less, simply opposing his economic policies. (The first Tea Party groups were formed from among groups who had spoken out against President G W Bush for his financial recklessness and who had already formed their views before Obama and Clinton were duking it out in the primaries.) There are Tea Party groups who were recruited from the dissatisfied Religious Right and who bring with them all the concerns and prejudices of that group, but there are other Tea Party groups with no religious affiliations who are concerned only with financial issues.