‘Father of the Tea Party’ Rick Santelli takes part in CNBC Election Coverage

By Chris Ariens 

CNBC’s Rick Santelli has left his usual spot at the Chicago Merc and is instead at CNBC World Headquarters this election day. Santelli, whose Feb. 2009 on-air rant gave birth to the tea party movement, will take part in CNBC’s midterm coverage.

Calling him “the father of the tea party,” Joe Kernen welcomed Santelli to “Squawk Box” this morning. Speaking of the Tea Party movement, Santelli said “I don’t think it’s going to morph into a party, but I think it’s going to morph into a political force that will have input into the system.” Talking about the extremes in this election, specifically Christine O’Donnell, Santelli said: “You need the extremes to bring the discussion in. She’s not going to win this time, but she’s going to alter the discourse, that’s good. We need extreme people.”

One-time presidential candidate Howard Dean joined Santelli on set and when the conversation turned to Pres. Obama, Kernen held up today’s New York Post (left):” “This is Rupert Murdoch… if this is not a repudiation…” “That is propaganda,” said Dean, “I think it’s a repudiation of the promise of the notion that he was going to change the way business is done in Washington and that did not happen.”

Santelli, a self-described Independent, will be on CNBC all day contributing commentary as well as his commodities reporting. When asked this summer in a TVNewser interview whether he believed he was the father of the tea party, Santelli said, “If that’s what they put on my tombstone, they can bury me with a smile.”