Tea party says OFA remake of its symbol is trolling
March 25th, 2014
12:00 PM ET
8 years ago

Tea party says OFA remake of its symbol is trolling

Washington (CNN) - So what do some leaders in the tea party think about a group that supports President Barack Obama's agenda using a key symbol of the grassroots conservative movement to advocate for the health care law?

"Imitation is the highest form of flattery and in this case, it is no different," Amy Kremer, chair of the Tea Party Express, one of the largest and most politically active national tea party organizations, told CNN.

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"I laughed when I saw it," said Judson Phillips, founder of the Tea Party Nation, which commands a large following in the movement.

And FreedomWorks, the national grassroots organizing group that's supported the movement over the past five years, appeared to describe the move as sophomoric.

"It's not pledge week, these are peoples lives we are talking about," said FreedomWorks Communications Director Jackie Bodnar.

Organizing For Action, which was formed in early 2013 out of the remnants of Obama's 2012 re-election campaign, started Monday to mail to supporters bumper stickers that spoof the Gadsden flag, which has been informally adopted by the tea party movement. The historic flag, which dates back to the American Revolution, depicts a rattlesnake in a position ready to strike over a yellow background, with the words "Don't tread on me" at the bottom.

OFA's bumper sticker, which replaces the rattlesnake with a coiled stethoscope with the words "Don't tread on my Obamacare" below, is being mailed to those who have connected with the group through Facebook.

The OFA promotion is part of a bigger push to boost enrollment in the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare, ahead of the March 31 deadline. Tea party activists have long opposed the health care measure.

"While OFA is mocking the tea party and American people who proudly fly the Gadsden Flag, they need to realize We The People will not surrender to this administration's attack on our freedom and liberty, through the overhaul of our health care system. Let their little stethoscope sticker supporting Obamacare be a reminder of that," Kremer told CNN.

"OFA is so desperate for a message of any kind, they want to troll off of one of the Tea Party's main symbols. There is an old truism, when you enemy is self destructing, don't get in their way. I think they wanted to provoke a reaction from the Tea Party. But Obamacare and Obama are sinking the Democrats, OFA and the left, I say just stay out of the way and watch them fail," Phillips added.

"I'd like to see some real solutions from the Democrats and the White House, rather than twerking GIFs and ironic bumper stickers," added Bodnar.


Filed under: 2014 • Health care • Healthcare • Obamacare • OFA • Organizing for America • Tea Party • Tea Party movement
soundoff (125 Responses)
  1. Lucas

    The Obamacare crowd is desperate for anything positive, even if they have to make it up.

    March 25, 2014 01:48 pm at 1:48 pm |
  2. Originaldiscokid

    Wait. The snake doesn't belong to Tea Partiers. It belongs to all Americans. The US Men's National Team used the symbol as a rallying point during the last World Cup. Hundreds of political groups have adopted the Gadsden flag. How, exactly, is the Dems' appropriation of the symbol any different than the wingnuts'? People who support the Affordable Care Act are Americans...dare I say, patriots...just as much as someone who hates the bill.

    March 25, 2014 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  3. rs


    In Mother America, Obamacare Treads on YOU!
    Yeah! Getting affordable health care insurance is the WORST! oh, wait.....

    March 25, 2014 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  4. smith


    March 25, 2014 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  5. Sniffit

    "Kinda like how the Tea Party stole both the name "tea party" and the flag, without the creativity to augment either of them whatsoever."

    Now now, they were saving up all their arts & crafts activity for making the signs depicting Obama as Hitler or Stalin or Mao or an African Witch doctor...and, clearly, all of their creativity went into the way they decided to spell everything on said signs.

    March 25, 2014 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  6. canniwander

    They are correct; the Tea Party will not surrender.
    They will instead be beaten into submission like any other enemy of the United States of America.

    March 25, 2014 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  7. rs

    Silence DoGood

    "they need to realize We The People will not surrender to this administration's attack on our freedom and liberty, through the overhaul of our health care system."

    Seriously...these people are, literally, mentally unstable.
    And they are dangerous to the rest of us! "I hope that's not where we're going, but you know if this Congress keeps going the way it is, people are really looking toward those Second Amendment remedies and saying my goodness what can we do to turn this country around? I'll tell you the first thing we need to do is take Harry Reid out." —Nevada GOP Senate candidate Sharron Angle, floating the possibility of armed insurrection in a radio interview, Jan. 2010
    The TEA Party and it's assault on the government. President, and the symbols of America is simply an enemy of the nation- it is time it gets treated as such.

    March 25, 2014 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  8. canniwander

    Please don't let them surrender. It would be much more gratifying to watch them burn like all other enemies of the United States. Traitors get that special room down below.

    March 25, 2014 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  9. vidal808

    Please Teabaggers – go back under a rock and stay there – so tired to hear your complaining – you did more harm to this country and the Republican Party than the left ever did.

    March 25, 2014 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  10. Cynthia

    Hogan's goat you are so correct. The Tea Party only came about since President Obama was ELECTED President and once he leaves office there will be no more Tea Party. My only prayer is that the American People vote the Tea party candidates, i.e., Paul Ryan, Mitch Oconnell, John Boehner and the likes of those out of office, so President Obama can get something done in terms of jobs for the economy. Although passing ACA, capturing Osama, Saving the Auto Industry, and giving tax breaks to the 99%, isn't too shabby, he could do a whole lot more if he just had cooperation. I can honestly say, these racist individuals that are having a nervous break-down because a black man lives in the white house is so annoying me. I have been a strong advocate for voting this November, these Tea Party, Ultra Conservative Repubs gotta go.

    March 25, 2014 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  11. Matt

    @ EatRunDive

    "Here in Texas, Tea Partyers pay an extra fee for "Don't Tread on Me" license plates. They want me to know how much they hate taxes by paying an extra one!!!"

    It's a shame you don't know the difference between a mandatory tax if you don't purchase something and the ability to decide if you want to pay for something without penalty.

    March 25, 2014 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  12. Bob

    You would think a pro Obama group would change it to"anyone want to tread on us,please"

    March 25, 2014 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |

    Can't wait to see Grover Norquist and the GOBP stuff Jeb Bush down the tea potty's throats 2012 Mitt the twit style.

    March 25, 2014 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  14. Bill, Bloominton IL

    no ghostwriter you are wrong. Romney lost because of republicans like me who wouldnt vote for him just because he was the candidate. Unlike liberals us conservatives have some principles and morals and will not back a candidate just because.

    March 25, 2014 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  15. Hogan's Goat

    I expect the Tea Party to go out like the Haven's Gate cult six months into the Hillary Clinton administration. Bags over their heads and an empty bottle of Limbaugh pills beside them.

    March 25, 2014 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  16. Ray

    Lefty Obama lovers make anyone with an IQ over 69 laugh, laugh and laugh some more! These 'whiners' were asked for a reaction to a left wing group that is doing anything in its power to revive the ACA which fails miserably at any and all of its objectives. The Tea Party is a true grass roots movement unlike the big labor 'movements' we have seen on the left. And while it is true that there are wealthy individuals that have aligned themselves with this cause that never seems to bother you lefties when its Soros or Tom Steyer. One last point – not one Tea Party member wants to stop women from obtaining birth control. We just don't want to pay for it or the other measures the ACA is now covering that we were told it would not, such as 'abortive contraception' or abortions. If you lefties cry that any person has the 'right' not to be offended or any employee has the right to any religious freedom in the workplace then how can you argue that business owners should be forced to pay for services that are considered mortal sins by Christians as well as many other religions? Sorry I realize lefties are incapable of logic and consistent ideology but its worth a try...

    March 25, 2014 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  17. Demigod Vadik, CA

    Uhhhh, that symbol is NOT a Tea Party symbol to begin with...

    ...it was a symbol colonials used in the late 1700's during the independence war...so when it comes to Tea Party making comments about it all I have to say is:


    March 25, 2014 02:08 pm at 2:08 pm |
  18. Mike in Dallas

    The Tea Party is unquestionably the DUMBEST political movement of my lifetime, and I'm nearing 60 years of age. Bully for anyone that can make a positive use of their mindless, reactionary hate and stupidity.

    March 25, 2014 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  19. cahockeygirl

    “I’d like to see some real solutions from the Democrats and the White House, rather than twerking GIFs and ironic bumper stickers,” added Bodnar.

    Yea, and I'd like to see real solutions from the Tea Party and the Republicans. They have yet to offer ANYTHING.

    March 25, 2014 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  20. StevenR

    "These are people's lives we are talking about" said Ms Bodnar. ABSOLUTELY. People need health care. THESE ARE PEOPLE'S LIVES WE ARE TALKING ABOUT. These tea baggers are TRAITORS. They are so ignorant they don't even realize they are TOOLS of the big CORPORATE INTERESTS. They are fighting against the good of the country AND their own self interest. How stupid is that?

    March 25, 2014 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
  21. joeintucker

    Wow! this article sure brought out the whining leftis trolls!! Is MSNBC down today or something? ...or is it just spring break and all the kiddies have nothing better to do?

    March 25, 2014 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  22. Wake Up People! Many Rivers to cross.....

    Good grief! This party has been in constant itch mode for the past 5 years. All they do is whine, complain and criticize. And these are the people that want to be back in power? How anyone could vote for one of them is beyond me. And once THIS POTUS is out of office watch how fast the baggers disappear. They were only around to say what the GOP was too cowardly to say themselves.

    March 25, 2014 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  23. rl

    They love Romney Care, but hate Obama Care. t is pretty obvious why. On is a rich white guy and the other is not.

    March 25, 2014 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  24. GreyMan

    "I'd like to see some real solutions from the Democrats and the White House, rather than twerking GIFs and ironic bumper stickers," added Bodnar

    That's rich. Remind me again, what solutions are the GOP touting?

    March 25, 2014 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  25. S.E.

    That is not a teabagger symbol.It is an american symbol.The tea party is about as UN-AMERICAN as they come!

    March 25, 2014 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
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