(Rebekah Rast/ALG) – What do Representatives Betsy Markey (CO), Martin Heinrich (NM), John Spratt (SC) and Rick Boucher (VA) all have in common?
They all support bailouts, and are all at risk of losing their Congressional seats in the upcoming election — with the help of tea party activists.
In opposition to a $26.1 billion states bailout, tea party groups around the nation held rallies this past weekend to publicly show their frustration towards their members of Congress and also the federal government.
Rep. Nancy Pelosi called all House members back to D.C. this week for a special session to decide on the states bailout, which includes a $10 billion bailout for teachers unions as well.
The overarching theme from Tea Party members: “Vote No or Don’t Go.”
“It is amazing that Nancy Pelosi and her followers in Congress still don’t understand that America cannot afford to bailout any more public employee unions,” says Bill Wilson, president of Americans for Limited Government (ALG).
Joe Thompson, president of South Carolina District 5 Patriots, shares the same concern.
He helped to organize a rally in front of Rep. John Spratt’s office. The rally was held yesterday and more than 100 people attended.
“The main concern is Pelosi is calling people back to vote for this mini-stimulus bill to help certain states,” Thompson says. “Why don’t these states cut their own budgets and take care of their own problem?”
The protest caught the attention of FOX News’ Neil Cavuto who interviewed rally attendees during his Monday Aug. 9th broadcast.
Cavuto talked with Code Red organizer William Stallings about the rally. Stallings’ main point was that the people of South Carolina are upset. They have found out about yet another bailout from Budget Chairman Spratt, their representative, who couldn’t even come up with a budget for House Democrats. He stated that the states bailout is only benefiting a few American people and yet South Carolinians are forced to foot the bill.
As American families are forced to make tough decisions with their own finances when things are tight, tea party members wonder why federal and state governments aren’t forced to do the same.
“There should be no more bailouts of any kind,” says Therese Cooper, founder of the East Mountain Tea Party group in New Mexico. Cooper had a rally on Sunday in front of Rep. Martin Heinrich’s office to oppose the states bailout where about 70 Tea Party members gathered. She goes on to say, “There is so much corruption in government — so much they need to cut out from their budget rather than taking from the taxpayers.”
The rally in New Mexico also targeted Rep. Heinrich politically. Cooper says, “He votes with Pelosi 97 percent of the time and we absolutely do not agree with that. He doesn’t take into consideration what we want here in New Mexico.”
This tea party group offered voter registration during its rally, giving Rep. Heinrich something more to worry about come Nov. 2nd.
Colorado also had a rally yesterday afternoon in front of Rep. Betsy Markey’s office and on nearby street corners. The tea party rally last summer gathered about 300 to 400 people, and Lesley Hollywood, director of the Northern Colorado Tea Party and state coordinator of the Tea Party Patriots, hoped for a similar turnout at yesterday’s event.
“This bailout mentality that the government has taken on has got to stop,” Hollywood says. “My husband works in construction and nobody says they are going to bail them out. Teachers just don’t want their jobs to be cut.”
Despite the pressure the tea party group has applied to Rep. Betsy Markey, Hollywood says the fact that she still voted for Cap-and-Trade and ObamaCare is very frustrating. Tea partiers from Colorado’s 4th district are hoping for a big change come election time.
Pressure was applied to Virginia’s Rep. Rick Boucher on Saturday as well, when about 70 members of the Tea Party rallied in front of his office. “We are a coal-producing economy,” says Adam Light, member of the 10th Amendment Foundation. “After Boucher voted for Cap-and-Trade that was it.”
Light says their rally got a lot of attention from those driving or passing by. “We had a lot of folks honking their horns and showing us support,” he says.
The biggest issue of concern for Light’s group is where all this bailout money is coming from and who is going to pay for it. “Enough is enough,” he says. “These bailouts are going to come to an end at one time or another, but at what expense? At what cost? Who pays for it? It is time that our generation sucks it up and starts paying for it.”
Tea parties around the nation understand the importance and significance of this vote. Why in the middle of August recess would Pelosi call everyone back together for a vote? Couldn’t it wait?
No. Not according to the teachers unions. If this bill doesn’t pass then teaching jobs will be lost, right?
Thompson sees it differently. “It is upsetting that Congress would come up with a bill to fund their re-election campaigns,” he says. “They are just trying to buy votes.”
Americans around the nation are echoing that same way of thinking. If they are right, then the sign held during the rally in New Mexico quoting Thomas Jefferson couldn’t be truer, “The two enemies of the people are criminals and government.”
(Rebekah Rast is a contributing editor to the Americans for Limited Government (ALG) News Bureau)