"Tea Party people have realized that you cannot change the system by protesting on the outside," said Richard Viguerie, author of 'Conservatives Betrayed: How George W. Bush and Other Big Government Republicans Hijacked the Conservative Cause.'
The movement is also debating whether to remain independent -- or stage a conservative takeover of the Republican Party. And some, a tiny minority, favor becoming a third party.
An Ipsos/Reuters poll shows that although a majority of Democrats and a plurality of independents voters would support Tea Party candidates, less than one third of Republicans would support them as a third party.
Regardless of the debate's outcome, Tea Partiers are targeting not just prominent Democrats in the midterms but also key moderate Republicans like Charlie Crist in Florida and former presidential candidate John McCain in Arizona. United as never before by the internet and weekly conference calls, conservatives are eyeing a few "national" primary races.