Of Tea and Elections

I have had my eyes on the tea party movement protesting government spending since the beginning of the movement.  On Saturday a huge national tea party protest was held in Washington.  Estimates of crowd size range from 500,000 to 2.3 million.  Some organs of the mainstream media are attempting to downplay the significance of this event.  Politicians on both sides of the aisle are not so gullible.  They realize that a political storm is brewing.  Perhaps even more significant than this show of strength by the forces opposed to the drunken sailor spending of the Obama administration are the state tea parties taking place each week.  For example in the completely blue state of Illinois, my home state, there was a tea party at New Lennox near Joliet last week that drew 10,000 people.   This weekend a tea party at Quincy, Illinois drew 12000 people.   Receiving scant coverage from the national media, these parties are are becoming a real factor in the 2010 elections.

Charlie Cook is one of the best political prognosticators in the business.  Here is what he is seeing:


“Even in the best of times, Congress is unpopular. And now voters see Obama as having sent suggestions rather than proposals to the Hill, staking his future and reputation on a body that they hold in low regard. (On foreign-policy matters, where Congress plays a small role, Obama’s job-approval ratings remain quite good. It’s on the domestic side that his numbers are dismal.)

With 14 months to go before the 2010 midterm election, something could happen to improve the outlook for Democrats. However, wave elections, more often than not, start just like this: The president’s ratings plummet; his party loses its advantage on the generic congressional ballot test; the intensity of opposition-party voters skyrockets; his own party’s voters become complacent or even depressed; and independent voters move lopsidedly away. These were the early-warning signs of past wave elections. Seeing them now should terrify Democrats.”

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Donald R. McClarey

Cradle Catholic. Active in the pro-life movement since 1973. Father of three and happily married for 35 years. Small town lawyer and amateur historian. Former president of the board of directors of the local crisis pregnancy center for a decade.


  1. To be sure, this movement is about liberty and the founding principles. Every hour we work to fund unconstitutional government boondoggles is an hour we are enslaved to it. The founding fathers never envisioned that so much power would be centralized and would trample the rights enshrined in the founding documents.

    It should also be noted that this is not a Republican movement, and many Republicans should fear it, but for the Democrats it should be terrifying.

  2. Estimates of crowd size range from 500,000 to 2.3 million.

    No they don’t. The D.C. Fire and Emergency Department says 60,000-75,000. Most places are reporting 70,000. It is impressive but protests many times larger (Iraq War, immigration, March for Life) go ignored. After the world-record setting Iraq War protests, Bush was reelected. Obama is not invulnerable but this rally is hardly terrifying.

  3. Restrained Radical the pictures of the events speak for themselves. This was clearly an event with at least 500,000 people in attendance.

    I would also note this comment from a participant:

    “Eric, September 13, 2009 2:20 PM
    The 70,000 number came from the original estimated size of the march, and the Fire Dept. safety estimate of the capacity of Freedom Square. This was the projected estimate of the expected crowd at 1130. The Capitol police ordered the march to begin at 0930, because Freedom Square had REACHED IT’S MAXIMUM SAFETY CAPACITY two hours before the event. The crowd filled the west lawn and spilled into the National Mall, where the Capitol Police tried to prevent overflow into the mall, but for safety reasons they permitted the attendees to fill the Mall ALMOST AS FAR AS 9TH STREET. I was there. You can try to prevent the truth from escaping, but every single person that was there is fired up,and you can’t stop first-person eyewitness accounts from leaking out.”


  4. I was there and there were clearly more than 70,000 the number is closer to 1+ million. I saw an estimate, using a statistical analysis of the area covered from aerial photographs and crowd density that puts it at 1.7 million, that is 1,700,000!!!

    It was peaceful, zero arrests, polite, chanting of USA, USA, chanting of we own the dome and we own the Mall, and singing of the national anthem. This is far more than a protest (and it isn’t necessarily against Obama or event the Demopublicans or the Republicrats) this is a pro-government movement — pro CONSTITUTIONAL government under God that is.

    Even the atheist from the so-called Objectivist Ayn Rand institute made some good points. The media, political establishment and the trans-national banking cartel known as the Federal Reserve want to downplay the numbers because they don’t want us to know that most of the people of the states and commonwealths of America, united, are of the same fundamental mind-set:

    ONLY USE THE POWERS ENUMERATED in the CONSTITUTION and never forget that the so-called separation of church and state is to PROTECT the church from the government — not the other way around.

    This is the beginning of the end (it will take time) of the decay of America (and probably Western Civilization) God willing. If not, it will be over — perhaps the second coming maybe just the downfall of civilization as we know it. The moral decay of a civilization always precedes the ultimate decay.

    Most of the people I met, from all over the country and one guy from Australia, were moral, God-fearing people who are sick of the decay, both moral and the rejection of God and the true American principles (based on Christian principles).

    We need not fail, we cannot give in and without seeming too much of an American exceptionalist [well maybe a little too much:)], the downfall of America is the downfall of civilization and the ascension of Communist/fascist/collectivist slavery.

    Sure the Church universal will not fail until Christ returns, but the Church in America has no such guarantee.

    My favorite sign, other than the one my wife made, was simple. It was white, with blue writing and it stated:

    Ephesians 6:12

    Mary of Sorrows, ora pro nobis.

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