October 31st, 2009
10:00 AM ET
13 years ago

Tea Party Express takes on Oregon

PORTLAND, Oregon (CNN)– The Tea Party Express rolled into Portland, Oregon, Friday and took aim at the city's left-leaning image.

"It's great to be in a capital of liberalism," Tea Party Vice Chairman Mark Williams told a crowd of several hundred supporters who milled around the organization¹s two large tour buses. The event was held in a parking lot owned by a local Italian sausage sandwich shop.

Before the invitation to host the rally there, organizers had spent several days trying to find a venue who would have them. Almost everyone they contacted, organizers said, voiced concerns that holding an event on their property would be bad for business.

But the crowd that showed up nearly filled the small parking lot, cheering on criticisms of Democratic health care proposals and calling for a more conservative Republican Party.

Holding a cardboard sign that read "No Obama Care," retiree Jack Millay said, "The Democrats don't support my positions, the Republicans don't support my positions so here I am."

Millay said huge deficits run up under the past two administrations infuriated him.

"Somehow we need to reform the Republican party so they return to conservative values instead of being how they are which is not that different from Democrats," Millay said.

Across the street from the rally, Noah Heller and four other protesters held a counter rally calling for higher taxes on large corporations in Oregon. "People there are being fooled," Heller said of the tea party. "There's a lot of anger but it's misdirected."

He blamed the low turnout for the anti-Tea Party rally on the lack of publicity about the event.

The Tea Party Express is a third of the way through a 19-day tour of the country with stops in 38 cities.

Filed under: Tea Party Express
soundoff (59 Responses)
  1. cbc

    ...several hundred? I fully support the Tea Party gang's right to gather, but, several hundred? I'm sure local high school football games get more. Of coure, talk radio guys will have the figure closer to 20 million.

    October 31, 2009 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  2. B

    Watch out Oregon, the wackos are coming !

    October 31, 2009 02:23 pm at 2:23 pm |
  3. JF

    TEA-BAGGERS ON TOUR ....oh goody ...!

    October 31, 2009 02:31 pm at 2:31 pm |
  4. T Mckinley

    I think it's a shame that these so-called "tea parties" are being used as a cover for people who can't stand the fact that we elected an African America to the White House.

    October 31, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  5. sarah

    These people claim not to be republicans, but they are just patsy's for fox news and the republican party. Hilarious that they can't see that.

    October 31, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  6. Nunya

    Try reading for a change. Liberals aren't objecting to their right to protest – they're characterizing them as a loony fringe group with extreme views.

    Sadly, I think they're wrong in that characterization – they definitely have extreme views but they're more than a simple fringe group.

    As far as them or the people wanting to elect only 'true Democrats', we don't need extremists from *either* end of the spectrum. There are many people in this country who want the best for the country and who disagree sincerely over the best way forward. Stop denigrating those who happen to hold a different opinion. Try talking with and listening to someone who disagrees – *actually* listening and trying to understand them. You will find that they are real people with good motives and in all likelihood what they want for the country is 90% the same as what you want.

    October 31, 2009 02:51 pm at 2:51 pm |
  7. Lost in Texas FOREVER

    at least this time it seems some things have changed......

    1. Some admit now that all this spending is not just the Democrats but the Republicans as well.
    2. That this spending did not start under Obama but began with Bush.
    3. Some counter protesters though small numbered did show up to say how some of these folks have been misdirected and mislead by falsehoods.

    If this trend continues the ones who start the groups and protest might become discouraged because they are not as rowdy as the past ones and give it up all together.

    October 31, 2009 02:54 pm at 2:54 pm |
  8. NC

    Teabaggers give back your government benefits.

    October 31, 2009 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  9. JonDie

    Tea Party = Wealthy Americans with time and money to spare and who don't want to pay their share for the services they receive.

    October 31, 2009 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
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