April 15th, 2009
11:54 AM ET
14 years ago

Tea Party: Will you be drinking or dunking?

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/04/15/art.teaparty1.gi.jpg caption="Activists nationwide are holding gatherings on Tax Day, April 15."]WASHINGTON (CNN) – Finger sandwiches won't be served, but there will be a lot of frustration brewing about the current tax system at "Tea Parties" being held Wednesday across the nation.

Activists are holding these events on tax day to voice their opposition to the current tax system and the federal government's spending decisions, such as bailing out the banks and the auto industry.

So, what do you think? Have President Obama and Congress taken the right steps to help the ailing economy? Have Republicans been smart to oppose his fiscal policies? Does the tax code need an overhaul?

Tell us your thoughts in the comment section below.

Here are some CNN stories about the nationwide "Tax Day Tea Party":

Activists gear up for national 'Tax Day Tea Party'

GOP uses tax day to raise money

GOP encourages supporters to send virtual tea bags to top Dems

Listen: CNN Radio analyzes the politics of Tax Day

Filed under: Uncategorized
soundoff (670 Responses)
  1. Lynn

    Why are these children in school???

    April 15, 2009 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  2. John

    Where were these fools when George Bush was blowing half a trillion of our tax dollars on an unnecessary war in Iraq?

    April 15, 2009 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  3. Harvey Weewax

    Dunking, of course!

    April 15, 2009 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  4. Sniffit

    Just goes to show you how badly our country needs to insist that American history and CIVICS, i.e., how the government was formed and is organized and works, be prioritized in our schools. The Tea Party was about taxation without representation. Not one of these morons, nor any of the GOP leadership who are rabble-rousing them, can claim with a straight face that they are being taxed without representation. The nonsense about future generations is a red herring. Those future generations might not have had a USA to live in if we simply sat back and allowed the economy to tank while eviscerating the federal government's budget by giving the wealthy tax cuts. The GOP is just mad because it saw this entire economic crisis as an opportunity to kill the federal gov't, kill programs like social security and medicaid, and roll back the Constitutional protections of the federal Constitution by handing states the decision on things like abortion. It's a farce and they don't seem to realize (or perhaps they do) that they're playing with fire. Maybe they'll be satisfied when some McVeigh-worshipping moron finally goes ballistic as a result of all their veiled "revolution" and "secession" talk.

    And @ Matt, who asked "Where can I "virtually teabag" a Republican?"

    From what I heard, airport bathrooms are your best bet.

    April 15, 2009 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  5. Gina - PA

    ALEC – I couldn't say anything better than this. Well written!
    Alec, Washington DC April 15th, 2009 12:11 pm ET

    The original Boston Tea Party was caffeinated by a very simple injustice: American Colonists refused to be taxed by a government that lacked any popular representation. That was remedied a few years later in a heroic struggle that stretched from Boston to Yorktown.

    These tea parties are organized by a disillusion group of Americans that need to take a few courses in Economics. The Obama administration is cutting taxes for all except the very richest of Americans. Reduced withholding is already showing up in millions of paychecks.

    Then again, this rash of tea parties is being organized not only by the pseudo-journalists at Fox News (with Glenn Beck, Neil Cavuto and Sean Hannity actively stoking the flames) but also by FreedomWorks, a conservative lobbying outfit headed by former House Majority Leader Dick Armey. I suppose it was Armey's constitutional if morally dubious privilege to have built an entire political career out of defending the wealthy.

    Nobody I know is very pleased with the billions ladled out to teetering banks and corporations. Yet a clear majority of Americans are sophisticated enough to know that these bailouts are a necessary evil and are intended — unlike the lollipop Bush tax cuts — not for personal profit but rather as a radical, emergency measure to help Americans keep their jobs, their homes and their retirement.
    But are common folks actually going to dump Earl Grey into Santa Monica Bay because they are outraged, simply infuriated, by the marginal tax rate rising 3% for millionaires?

    Or maybe they'll do it for some other reason. The FreedomWorks site says the Tea Party movement began in reaction to President Obama's corporate bailouts and ensuing yawning budget deficits. These same conservatives, however, were mum when George W. Bush erased our budget surplus and put us deep in the red by drunken spending on a pointless war in Iraq and by, yes, granting massive tax rollbacks for the loaded country clubbers who fund the GOP (and Armey's FreedomWorks).

    Another bothersome detail: The bailouts were also initiated by Bush.

    April 15, 2009 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  6. denise

    It's not just about taxes. It's about spending trillions of hard-working Americans' money to bail out banks and businesses that probably should fail and let more ethical, smarter entrepreneurs start new ones. It's about Americans paying billions in hand-outs for illegals. It's about making our representatives listen to us instead of laughing at our emails and phone calls. It's a small way that every American who is fed up can try to make somebody listen and get real no matter which side of the political fence you are on.

    April 15, 2009 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  7. Unshrub


    April 15, 2009 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  8. John

    These 'protestors' say they're being robbed by bailouts and such? You mean the 10 billion being paid back already by one bank...and others lining up to soon pay back their TARP funds doesn't count anymore? These people need to have an understanding of the issues before they can protest.

    April 15, 2009 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |

    to 'worriedmom'

    Honey, I hate to tell you this but, your kids, grandkids, greatgrandkids, and greatgreatgreatgreat grandkids will be paying for the LAST 10 YEARS as well as whatever President Obama has to do TO FIX what the LAST PRESIDENT DID to this NATION.

    I'm soooooooo sick of the REPUBLICANs trying to BLAME EVERYTHING on President Obama when he's only trying to CLEAN UP what the last 'FAITHFUL' leader did.

    Whaaaa, Whaaaa, Whaaaaaa,..............the Republicans sure know how to WHINE.

    April 15, 2009 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  10. Kevin

    government is government the r's do it to us and then the d's do it to us!!!!!! the fact of the matter is that NO AMERICAN SHOULD STAND FOR ANY OF IT!!! look around you!!! we are just pawns in a freaking game of unrealistic, out of touch people who think they all know best. as an american we should all be protesting!!! shame on us for letting it happen to us. r's and d's are still letting indiot ceo's get paid for poor performance. what ahppened to good old fashioned free market. if the gov't in this country and the poor performing "captains" of industry worked a day in the world of the rest of us. they would know that poor performance ='s no bonus, no pay raise and certainly no job to go to!!!

    April 15, 2009 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  11. Dumb

    The tea party was a demonstration against being taxed by someone that did not represent them politically. They are now protesting being taxed by their duly elected representatives. Protest all you want, but don't soil the true reason for the Boston Tea Party.

    April 15, 2009 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  12. Beth

    I love tea. What kind are they serving : ) !!!!

    April 15, 2009 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  13. U.S. Grant

    Hey liberals – if you want to support an ever expanding federal government and higher and higher taxes – be my guest. You send in all your money to Barney Frank and Barry Obama...assuming that any of you actually have jobs.

    April 15, 2009 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  14. Tough Lady, NC

    Some of these people have no idea what taxes pay for. If we don't have local, state and federal taxes we are up the creek without a paddle. I don't have school age children, or use athletic fields, library, bike paths, parks,(local taxes). I do use streets, interstates, (local, state, federal taxes). I do not use a lot of services but I help pay for them. If I was charged for what I use I would pay very little in taxes.
    They did not have a problem when our money was being spent in other countries. Some of these people are being led around like sheep, and used by the republican party. They need to get a dictionary and find the meaning of socialism. As we say in the South Bless their Hearts.

    April 15, 2009 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  15. Va Womyn

    I came from a tea party. There weren't GOP bigwigs. There were average people like myself who are sick of federal, state, and local govts screwing us over. This isn't about a political party. It's about me being able to voice my outrage in a public forum. Those of you who want to chalk this us to fringe elements need to think again. I am a mother of three who has had enough!

    April 15, 2009 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  16. Tulsa L

    Pay your taxes and shut up, that is the American thing to do......

    April 15, 2009 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  17. Johny

    It is not about just taxes, it is about what tax money is being spent on. That is what I have a problem with. We cannot spend our way out of this economic mess. I was against Bush when he approved the bank bailouts, and I am just as against Obama with his approved bailouts.

    April 15, 2009 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  18. Pete

    This is an obvious Republican scam to get people incited so that they donate more money to the GOP. They pray upon the weak.

    April 15, 2009 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  19. Robin in SC

    Yep...protest and feel good about yourselves while 1% of the population sits back and watches the middle class not only work to make them wealthy, but then protest the taxes they should pay on that wealth thereby increasing their personal wealth even more. Brilliant...

    April 15, 2009 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  20. Doubly Troubled

    troubled : "Who pay the most taxes? Those who work. Those who work are mostly Independents and Republicans. Most of the obammy supporters are on the dole. That's the truth!"

    Ignorance can only be countered through education – I am really trying to be nice here, but the racism and bigotry still abundant in this country is staggering. I have to remind myself that Darwin's theories can also apply here – those who refuse to learn and grow and change with the times are those who will fade away as the rest of us thrive and adapt. Do you understand, Troubled?

    April 15, 2009 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |





    April 15, 2009 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  22. FedUp

    I love to hear these comments about the rich not paying their "fair share". Obama just got a 3.6 trillion dollar budget passed, there are 300 million people in the country, so that's about $12,000 per person per year. How many of the people posting on this board paid that? $60,000 for a family of five. I paid triple that in taxes, so I paid for my family plus 10 more people who paid nothing and are probably the ones complaining about the rich not paying their "fair share". Let the government seize half your income and then let me see how you feel. What is your definition of fair? Anything as long as someone else pays for it.

    April 15, 2009 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  23. april

    I am so glad to see people uniting for FAIR treatment under our tax code. It is ridiculous that tax evaders get high paying goverment jobs, running the Tax agencies and doling out the money that the honest hard working Americans PAY in taxes.Obama shows how clueless he is by coming out with a speech about simplifying the tax code, when that is not what Americans are mad about. We don't want our money thrown around as if it is play money, that money is taken out of taxpayers pockets. Many times that money sent to the government, means people have to go without essentials, that's what these rich elitists in DC don't understand.It is beyond disgraceful, it's disgusting!

    April 15, 2009 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  24. Lori, Houston Texas

    Some of these comments are hysterical. I am so enjoying my COFFEE this morning while reading along.

    April 15, 2009 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  25. tooteaching

    Conservatives and/or tea bag protestors:

    It's a free country. Protest whatever you want. Even the delusions in your own heads that don't exsist yet. Of course there's no universal health care so getting those head of yours checked might be expensive!

    Yet, I really have no idea what you people are protesting. Some facts:

    1. The original Boston Tea Party was about protesting taxation without respresentation. We have represenation! Take a civics class. All states have congresspeople based on population and 2 senators (except Minnesota at the present time, but the GOP is responsible for that one). The analogy doesn't hold up.

    2. There has been no raise in takes under Obama's leadership. None. Nada. Not one raise in taxes. You are protesting Bush era taxes.

    3. Many conservatives are claiming that it's really about spending. Then why are the protests on Tax Day? Why weren't you complaining when Bush spent trillions on a war we didn't need? Bush spent us into almost oblivalion! Where was your concern for fiscal responsibility.

    4. The last two Presidents who balanced a budget were Clinton and Truman. Both Democrats. If you Republicans want fiscal responsibility, you're in the wrong party.

    4. All you conservatives were saying that the stimulis bill had "too much spending." Duh! That's what stimulis is!

    I pay my taxes and I don't complain. I know that taxes are the price of a free society and that taxes provides necessary government services. All you conservatives who hate government should voluntarily give up police and fire protection and not drive on public roads or highways. What? You can't? Really! So we do need taxes!

    I'm patriotic because I'm willing to pay my fair share to move my country forward. I'm not saying you conservatives aren't. Others can draw their own conclusions, however.

    April 15, 2009 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
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