'Tea party' rally today in Sandusky to protest government spending

SANDUSKY There's a tea party coming to Sandusky this week -- but you can leave your kettle and
Tom Jackson
May 24, 2010



There’s a tea party coming to Sandusky this week -- but you can leave your kettle and your tea bags at home.

The event, slated for 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Washington Park Gazebo, is meant as a political protest against “big government” and excessive government spending.

Tea parties have been hosted across the nation for weeks, organized on the Internet, and inspiring much discussion among political bloggers, who have been attacking and defending the rallies.

The climax of the protests will be on Wednesday, when federal income tax returns are due.

One of the Web sites for the movement, www.taxdayteaparty.com, shows the schedule for rallies across the nation, including many in Ohio.

Another local tea party is scheduled for noon Wednesday at U.S. 250 and Main Street in Norwalk.

The tea parties take their name from a famous moment in American history — the Boston Tea Party, a tax protest organized in 1773 by colonists who threw British tea into the harbor.

Young people in their 20s in the Sandusky area took the lead in organizing the Washington Park protest.

They sent e-mails out to their friends, urging people who support the protest to forward the messages to other friends. They also used Facebook and word-of-mouth advertising, said Bridget Harrington, 26, a BGSU Firelands student who plans to become a kindergarten teacher.

“It’s been quite easy because people are quite interested in it,” Harrington said.

While the tea party protests have been widely publicized by Fox News and generally have drawn support from right-tilting Internet sites, organizer Ryan Harris, 24, a banker who lives in Huron, says the protest is not partisan.

“That’s the biggest thing I’ve wanted to stress,” said Harris, who said the rally is drawing Democrats, Obama supporters and libertarians as well as Republicans.

“This is every citizen who is angry who has been angry with the last decade of wasteful spending.”