When the Tea Party burst onto the political stage in 2009 the country was on the brink of financial disaster with a trillion dollar deficit growing by the minute.

The movement was a direct response to the Bush bailouts and the exorbitant spending policies that President Obama, Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Harry Reid (D-Nev.) were pushing under the thinly veiled guise of economic stimulus. The small-government crusaders drew a line in the sand. As noted in the Daily Signal:

The Tea Party, more than any other political organization, sprang into action, with the single-minded purpose of forcing an end to this spending orgy. Spending has fallen over a three-year period from 2011-2014 for the first time since Joe DiMaggio roamed center field for the New York Yankees.

While they were on the frontlines of the movement, the Tea Party would not have succeeded without the help of House Speaker John Boehner.

Given Speaker Boehner’s abrupt retirement announcement, and the ensuing drama to replace him, the narrative surrounding his legacy has far from done the Ohio Congressman justice.

Criticism of his leadership has come from both the media and members of his own party, but Speaker Boehner played an integral role in the Tea Party effort to keep the nation from nose diving off the fiscal cliff.

He held the line on tight spending caps during the budget deal and refused Obama’s proposed tax hikes, despite resistance from House Democrats and the administration.

Americans for Tax Reform president, Grover Norquist, praised the joint effort to limit spending as a part of Boehner’s legacy as Speaker:

Under Boehner’s leadership, the House passed the Budget Control Act, which successfully restrained spending by $2.5 trillion and instituted numerous budget caps. He also led a push for major entitlement reform, further reducing government spending.

It is vital that the new Speaker, whomever he or she may be, continue the fight to shrink spending by keeping the BCA caps in place. If he or she does not remain diligent, the new party leadership will be saddled with the legacy of undoing the great progress made by Speaker Boehner and the Tea Party who unwaveringly fought for reduced spending.