"If you look throughout history, the closest thing you'll find to the tea party of today is the revolution of 1776," he said.
Several protesters and event speakers focused on the fact that the proceedings were not violent, and completely civil. Virginia Delegate Bob Marshall took it one step further.
"The fact that they're calling you names means that you've already won the argument," he said.
Perhaps two dozen counter-protesters made a big splash during both the morning and evening rallies by holding a 12-foot long sign that said “’Thanks for the tax cuts’ – The other 95%” implying that only the richest 5% were actually paying high tax rates. But most of the tea partiers there that I spoke to didn’t seem like they were better-off than any other subset of Americans.After trying to infiltrate the morning rally, the counter-protesters were ordered out of Freedom Plaza by police, who insisted they hold their signs across the street. That didn't happen until the same counter-protesters asked that the police intervene when several tea partiers booed at them.
Townhall contributor Rep. Michelle Bachmann, as well as Grover Norquist, the head of Americans for Tax Reform, were part of the morning events.
The evening events went from 5:45 until 9pm at the Lincoln Monument, and featured Rep. Ron Paul (TX), Congressman Tom Price (GA), and Tucker Carlson, among others.