The Morristown, NJ, TEA Party holds a monthly meeting. I go to all the events, but I haven’t attended the regular meetings because, as a fledgling entrepreneur, I attend a business meeting which almost always falls on the same Thursday. Considering the events of the last week, I decided to adjust my priorities slightly. After all, if the politics in this country doesn’t stabilize in favor of the individual and the small businessman soon, there won’t be a reason to go to the entrepreneur meetings anymore.
Apparently, this time last year, the first meeting in Morristown could have been held in the corner booth of a Jersey diner. Last night, the group packed the inside of a Masonic lodge, fixed and portable floor seating. The venue was packed. Three hundred people easily, and the biggest group they’ve ever had. The demographic was from 30’s to 80’s, men and women equally, heavily caucasian, but quite a few exceptions, the average age being 50, I’d say. One thing was clear, <I>everyone there was a registered voter, ready to do anything they could to remove from power any politicians on any level who weren’t doing the people’s business.</I> From what I saw, there was no indication that this was going to change before–or after–the upcoming November elections.
300 people doesn’t sound like a lot. It isn’t, but then there’s the Pass at Thermopylae…
My guess is that this group is a slim fraction of the number of new/turned voters, people preparing to both vote and campaign against anyone and everyone that helped enact the National Health Care Plan into law. At 5%, that’s 6,000 people out there somewhere, a conservative estimate, and that’s just in Morris County, NJ, which isn’t particularly populous. That’s enough of a groundswell to remove any local official from power in the state. Collectively in NJ, I’d say that’s 100,000 new and turned voters, and let’s not forget that turned voters count twice at the ballot box, one you get and one the other guy didn’t get! I have no doubt that these people have a mission that very closely resembles an ideal conservative agenda. They should be embraced wholeheartedly by both the Republican Party and the Conservative movement.
They are galvanized in their unified frustration with the government in Washington and Trenton, and they are guaranteed for November; every last one of them will not forget what happened this week. You can take it as a form of denial and gross underestimation that a left-leaning press is claiming that voter discontent will fade. Let them keep making that mistake.
As with every meeting, they started off with the Pledge of Allegiance, and read their mission statement (which again rang true as a purely conservative statement, not at all libertarian. These people want accountability, fiscal responsibility and representation, hardly radical notions. This particular group in Morristown, I suspect like many others, are a strictly not-for-profit organization. They do not endorse candidates, although there is one candidate involved in the TEA Party movement here that will be running against a Republican incumbent Rodney Frehlinghuysen. That didn’t go over well. But people were very interested in the local level, school boards, assemblymen, that sort of thing. Between now and November, these people have lots of thing to do, and lots of spare time, to ressurrect the connection between the people and elected officials. They announce they had local lawyers and politicians at their disposal that could help a motivated person run for election.
A speaker gave a speech about acknowledging the anger and frustrations of last week’s events, complete with suggestions about how to constructively channel them. He also gave suggestions about how to organize household meetings where each person there might have the potential to invite a group of interested friends and neighbors over to talk about the local meetings and the state of affairs federally. This went over quite well. There were already 20 applicants to that idea before this meeting started.
We were introduced to a number of people that are an integral part of the local movement. The team of people who will organize the April 15 Tax Day rally in the town square was there. The counselor who secured the first step in making it possible to recall US Senator Menendez (D, Corzine flunkie-NJ) was there. The “flag guy”, the semi-famous gentleman that donates time money and effort to put American flags on all the overpasses leading to NYC was there. Some radical meeting, eh?
Finally a general call from the audience was announced, designed to vent frustrations, find connections between compatible talents, and make strategy suggestions. Overarching plans, to local ideas were discussed.
No crying, no yelling, no arguing, no violence, no incitement.
One profane word, during a discussion about illegal immigrants and moochers. And it was used in the following context: “…let them buy their own damn insurance!” Thunderous applause.
The Left couldn’t be more wrong about what’s going to happen in November.