Tea Party Convention Dissenters Have Cost & Management Concerns

Jillian Bandes
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Posted: Feb 06, 2010 3:30 PM
 "We couldn't afford to come," said Anthony Shreeve, a tea party activist who is critical of weekend's official Tea Party Convention. Shreeve, along with three others, came into the hotel where the convention is being hosted and spoke to media in a tempered, but direct statement of dissent.
The point is, for a tea party convention, we wanted regular people there. We love Sarah Palin — or at least some of us do, most of us do — we don't have any grief with her, and we don't have any grief with Judson Phillips. But we do want to say that we've laid the groundwork for a grassroots movement.
He seemed to be alluding to the fact that Palin's rumored $100,000 speaking fee caused the cost of the convention to be out of reach for many activists. Shreeve and his friends represent what they call the Tennessee Tea Party Coalition — a group, they say, that is comprised of activists from across the state. Judson Phillip's Tea Party Nation is made up only of elites, they say.

They emphasized that they were not interested in bickering. But it seemed to be just that. They were bothered when Phillips announced a platform of sorts for Tea Party Nation, and proudly handed out copies of their own platform, printed in cursive script on heavy cardstock, and written just weeks earlier.
Because of the statements made yesterday by Mr. Phillips that he was going to unify the tea party... we want him to know that it's already been done.
Most attendees were, as expected, barely aware of the goings-on. I hate to beat a dead horse, but like every other scandal that has come out of this event, the media are fond of reporting that Everything Is Crazy, but in reality, people are just kind of milling around and having a good time.