February 5th, 2010
04:21 PM ET
5 years ago

Tea Party Convention organizer says Tancredo gave fantastic speech

The National Tea Party Convention kicked off Thursday night.
The National Tea Party Convention kicked off Thursday night.

Nashville, Tennessee (CNN) – The organizer of the Tea Party Convention says he agrees with Tom Tancredo's description of President Barack Obama as a socialist.

The former congressman from Colorado and 2008 Republican presidential candidate blasted President Obama, saying "people who could not even spell the word 'vote', or say it in English, put a committed socialist ideologue in the White House. His name is Barack Hussein Obama."

Tancredo made his comments Thursday night as he gave the kickoff speech for the convention, which is being held at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel and Convention Center in Nashville.

Judson Phillips, a Tennessee lawyer who formed Tea Party Nation and who organized what's being billed as the first national Tea Party Convention, told reporters Friday that "Tom Tancredo gave a fantastic speech last night. I think he is an amazing politician."

Asked if he agrees with Tancredo's description of Obama, Phillips said "the word socialist is a word you don't want to be labeled with in the American Political system. It's got a lot of negative connotations, but it also has a very specific political meaning. It refers to a specific political ideology. I think it is very clear that that is the political ideology of Barack Obama."

Phillips added that he thinks "Tancredo doesn't feel like a lot of people who supported Barack Obama understand the basics of this country."

In his speech, Tancredo also slammed the 2008 Republican presidential nominee, saying "thank God John McCain lost the election.

Phillips agreed, adding, "I think a McCain presidency would have been far worse that Bush one or Bush two. I think it would have been a total disaster. I think we would have gotten the worst of what we are getting in the Obama administration and really nothing positive from what would have been allegedly be a conservative party, or allegedly be a conservative leader."

Phillips also announced that he will hold another Tea Party convention in July. He declined to name a location for the event.

The other major news to come out of Friday's news conference: some of the organizers are forming a tax-exempt non-profit corporation called the Ensuring Liberty Corporation and a soon to be established affiliated political action committee.

Mark Skoda, a businessman and founder of the Memphis Tea Party, who is also serving as spokesman for the convention, says the formation of the corporation and the PAC is a way that the Tea Party movement can participate in politics and termed it "a conservative effort in support of candidates."

Skoda predicted this would be an outlet for people who took part in Tea Party protests to get involved in campaign politics. He listed six congressional races in the Southeast where endorsements may be made.

Along with the corporation and PAC, Skoda announced that candidates seeking backing would need to agree with a list of "First Principles": fiscal responsibility, lower taxes, less government, states' rights and national security. He said he did not consider the "First Principles" a litmus test for candidates.

Skoda also said he does not support a third party movement.

– Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @psteinhausercnn


Filed under: Tea Party Convention • Tom Tancredo
soundoff (160 Responses)
  1. JP

    When the Las Vegas mayor called Pres Obama a "slow learner", why did Palin not take issue with that, I believe that is an insult to all people with disabilities.

    February 5, 2010 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  2. Matt

    We as Americans have become very very gulible...to the point of becoming dangerous to ourselves. We deserve everything that will be coming our way for falling for yet another Reppublican ploy.

    February 5, 2010 05:59 pm at 5:59 pm |
  3. bethie

    We voted for change but yet we fall for everything thrown at us by the GOP. We're our own worst enemy and deserve what will be coming to us........another 8 years of Republicans rule will be coming our way....we fall for anything!

    February 5, 2010 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  4. JLM

    If you have heard one Klan speech, you have heard them all.

    February 5, 2010 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  5. Sir Craig

    Oh, yeah, Tancredo is the very voice of sanity.

    A few of his choice quotes:

    "Well, ... what if you said something like - if this happens in the United States and we determine that it is the result of extremist, fundamentalist Muslims, you know, you could take out their holy sites.” (Domestic terrorist Eric Rudolph is a Baptist – does this mean we should take out Liberty University?)

    "Activist courts have ignored the principal legal argument that the state’s interest in marriage is procreation. The mere fact that two people are in a loving relationship does not matter to the state. Society supports traditional marriage because it is the only union which, in the ordinary course, leads to children, without the intervention of a third party. " (So all you childless couples are actively trying to undermine this great country...)

    "English is America’s 'native tongue' and always has been..." (Take THAT, you evil Native Americans!)

    And so on...

    February 5, 2010 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  6. hobart

    Yet another Republican reveals his true colors. They will stop at nothing, lies, historical revisionism, slander, carrying weapons to their rallies, attending churches that pray for the deaths of anyone in power with whom they disagree, and making threats to cram their neo-Nazi, neo-fascist, theo-conservative agenda down everyone's throats.

    Why do Republicans so hate America?

    February 5, 2010 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  7. MikeTo

    If they are really against Socialism, then lets abolish all these programs that are Socialist in nature. Abolish medicare/medicaid, let these people go to the the free market and see how expensive it will be to get medical insurance. Abolish social security and let them invest their money in the banks and see of they will have enough to survive when they retire.

    Its high time for us progressives to tell all thesse whack jobs that we proudly voted for BARACK HUSSEIN OBAMA!

    February 5, 2010 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  8. Anne E.

    Note to Sue: What color is the sky in your world?

    Note to Tom Tancredo: Your words are nothing but sour grapes because you never had a chance at winning any nomination, much less getting to the WH. How can anyone miss you if you won't go away?

    February 5, 2010 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  9. AmFem

    Sue – I got so worked up when I first read your comment. Then I read several comments meant for you... and I actually felt sorry for you. You are just another one of the unenlightened sheep that follow the baggers; ignorant of the truth, full of racial hatred, and only will spit into the hand of the needy.

    I'm not really worried about the baggers. With so many different factions, they have no real leadership. If Palin and Tancredo represent their leadership... HA!

    February 5, 2010 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  10. Dean in PA

    I believe in the freedom of speech. I spent ten years in the military defending it. But all I can say about these bigoted, self-righteous, sanctimonious holier-than-thou idiots and the morons here who support them is... Shut the **** up.

    February 5, 2010 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  11. Rosco

    Now thems are real 'mericans! How do I become one of them Tea Baggers?

    February 5, 2010 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  12. Ellen

    I am a white woman who can trace my people here in America back to the 17th century and I proudly voted for Barack Obama, who is more centrist amd middle of the road than the wackos who attend the Tea Party Comvention.

    February 5, 2010 06:16 pm at 6:16 pm |
  13. An 8 year old ELEPHANT dung heap, does not transform into compost in just 1 year!

    Saint Sarah, the High Priestess of racism will be the headline speaker.

    She will appear with a roguish tilt to her "gimme" hat with McCain inked out, giving testimony to the fact she is still torqued that she did not remember to grab appropriate head gear when the Reds were paying the bills at Neiman's!

    Her cammo two piece swim suit, she must keep those favorable male polls up, will have a German Luger tucked discreetly into the waist band, next to her "Jesus Saves:" tat. She will the waist band high out of modesty and so we cannot see the list that accompanies the tat!

    She will have "peek-a-boo" newborn bunny fur ankle boots, which she herself designed after helicoptering in and shoving a double barrel shot gun into the warren. The boots will include 4 inch heels, again for the male poll numbers, but also so they can double as stakes should she encounter any witches when she is not traveling with her beloved "witch doctor".

    Her speech will consist of defining each of the 10 "purity" commandment of the Reds.

    The crowd will respond with full throated "Sieg Heil" although the flailing about of 1200 extra long arms may prove problematic, not to mention the deafening sound of the whistling sound coming from 600 sets of missing front teeth!

    The conferences will consist of a day long KKK rally on Sunday so folks can show the skills learned, such as burning crosses, how to store white sheets and tying knots.

    February 5, 2010 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  14. Lisa P

    Wow. If anyone needed any further evidence that the Tea Baggers are out of touch with reality...

    When I was doing my holiday traveling this year someone commented that when you know nothing you'll believe anything. Guess that's true.

    February 5, 2010 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  15. Shelly

    "He is a Socialist" OMG, I am scared!
    The tea baggers are clueless and ridiculous.
    No one can take them seriously when their show stoppers are Tancredo and Palin. These two have no REAL understanding of the world around them except to use big useless words to their ignorant and gullible auduence.

    February 5, 2010 06:19 pm at 6:19 pm |
  16. Republicans is smart in the head area

    Tancredo is a certified nutjob as are every single member of the tea party movement.

    February 5, 2010 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |
  17. Ellen

    And now that I've read Sue's comments, let me guess – you get all your 'facts' from Glenn Beck... Really, you are the ignorant one!!!!!!!! I know lots of poeple who voted for Obama and not a one of them was illegal. And if you think Socialism is bad, don't collect your Social Security check when you retire, ok? You can send it my way....

    February 5, 2010 06:22 pm at 6:22 pm |
  18. The Voice

    And the racitst white supremistt continue to throw the kitchen sink at Obama.

    First they said he was not born in the U.S
    Now they are saying he got elected by illegal aliens. What, we have 55 million + illegal aliens in America now and they all voted??

    Tancredo is a racist! And so are the tea baggers!
    Tea Party is a white, racist, movement.
    The Bushies loyals still can't accept they lost the election in November. Sad to see so much anger.

    February 5, 2010 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  19. Fla Pat

    I do not see a socialist ideologue in O'Bama. He bailed out the banks and kept wall street from crumbling which in effect saved what was left of millions of American's retirement funds (many have actually regained much of what was lost). The Tea Baggers say "let them fail" – OK , you happy going down with them? O'Bama allowed the Chrysler & GM to stay afloat saving the jobs of many more thousands of Americans and all those in related industries such as auto parts. The Tea Baggers say let them fail (Big hearted people those Tea Baggers).
    Don't have health insurance because you lost your job? Tea Baggers and good Republicans say there is always your church or neighbors who would probably help (see Eric Cantor Town Hall).

    What I see is a I've got mine and the Hell with you mentality from the Tea Baggers. But let them lose their jobs or health insurance and see if they sing the same tunes.

    Individual Rights are great but all of us who live in this society are only as strong as the least among us. We need to do all we can to improve the situation for all.

    February 5, 2010 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  20. bb

    Dems! Reid! Obama! Let's push everything through this year with 50 + 1 vote and By Execuitve Power. We should be able to get just about everything we want done by August, this is the same way Bush and the Rethugs pushed their Agenda through!!! Once the Rethugs and these wacky tea bag loons see we are not messing around, then maybe, just maybe, the Rethugs will finally vote in a Bipartisan way. If not, oh well....50 + 1. Use the control and the power you have!!!!!!!!
    Just do it!!!!!

    February 5, 2010 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  21. short-changed (CNN doesn't post my comments...what's up with that??)

    Get a clue Dimowits and liberal left-wingnuts!
    The issue isn't whether the Tea Party folks are fruitcakes or not.
    That is completely irrelevant.
    What is extremely relevant is the fact that NONE OF THEM WILL BE VOTING DEMOCRAT!!!
    Whether your a loon or not, your vote still counts and these people are fired up and guess who they won't be voting for...

    February 5, 2010 06:27 pm at 6:27 pm |
  22. Helena

    This only confirms what I always suspected – the Tea Party are really anti-President Obama, ignorant, racist and uneducated non-thinking Americans. President Obama is not a socialist. John McCain came out during the campaign and had to apologize for Sarah Palin every time she misspoke.

    February 5, 2010 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  23. Ray in Nashville

    Tancredo's speech sounded familiar, like maybe something George Wallace would have said when he ran for president in 1968.

    As for Sue, get back on the meds, girl, your inner Nazi is showing.

    February 5, 2010 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  24. Indy

    Sue:
    You are a retard, plain and simple and your lies will not be believed by anyone with a grade five education.Tancredo and Palin should be put in jail for this scam they are pulling on the un intellegent. The Tea Party is simply a cult, and you pay them to lie to you, they get rich and you get stupid.

    February 5, 2010 06:31 pm at 6:31 pm |
  25. Rival Church

    Teabag dictionary:
    Superbowl: Commode that seats two

    February 5, 2010 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
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