LP Monday Message: Are you coming to the Tea Party, Paul?
Your Monday Message from the Libertarian Party:
Will you be attending a Tea Party this Wednesday?
Many Libertarians will, and millions of Americans will be joining them.
I’m, of course, referring to the thousands of “Tax Day Tea Parties” that will be held across the nation on April 15, to coincide with the filing deadline for individual income tax returns.
The Libertarian Party of Illinois got the idea to hold an April 15, 2009 anti-tax “Boston Tea Party” in Chicago way back in December of 2008. On February 10, 2009 they started a Facebook page and began promoting the website throughout the Illinois media.
The idea caught on like wildfire 10 days later, when CNBC personality Rick Santelli, speaking from the floor of the Chicago stock exchange, blasted the Obama administration’s tax and economic policies and urged all Americans to hold their own “tea parties.”
Of course, for the Libertarian Party every day is a Tea Party. We’ve been the only consistently pro-taxpayer party since our founding over 30 years ago.
Compare that to the Republicans. After 10 years of Republican control of Congress, inflation-adjusted spending on the combined budgets of the 101 largest programs they vowed to eliminate in 1995 has grown by 27 percent, according to the libertarian Cato Institute. Eight years of a Republican president, six with a Republican-controlled Congress, resulted in bigger government, the biggest expansion of entitlements in 40 years and a $700 billion bailout of Wall Street that continues to grow.
Or the Democrats, who are just as awful. One simply needs to look at Obama’s explosive growth of government and economy-busting deficits to see they’re simply peddling a different brand of Big Government.
But Libertarians are different. Not only do we believe in reducing the size and cost of government – it’s basically a condition of membership.
It might explain why our monthly new membership numbers, that is, the number of people each month who become Libertarian Party members for the first time, has grown each of the last three months. The number of new volunteers to the Libertarian Party is also up 151 percent.
That’s amazing, but that’s not nearly enough to win. We must continue growing by reaching out to the tens of millions of libertarian-leaning voters. It starts by making sure our members are at their local “tea party,” and participating respectfully and listening their neighbors. This is our opportunity to reach out to millions of voters by respectfully listening to them, and letting them know the Libertarian Party fights for lower taxes and less spending, not as a matter of political expediency, but, as a matter of core principle.
Americans are fed up with taxes, fed up with spending, fed up with borrowing and fed up with the Republicans and Democrats. Despite the unpopularity of Obama’s policies, the Republican Party is mired in bottom-basement poll numbers. Tens of millions of libertarian-leaning Americans are “politically homeless.”
When you get right down to it, with our bedrock principles of fiscal responsibility and social tolerance, the Libertarian Party is America’s only mainstream political party.
This Wednesday, we have an opportunity to find those voters a home. If you haven’t already, make sure to attend a local “tea party.” You can even do it on your lunch hour. You can find a list of them promoted by state LP affiliates at http://www.lp.org
But it doesn’t end on Thursday. You can bet the Libertarian Party will continue to reach out to tens of millions of Americans fed up with rising taxes and government sprawl.
I’m counting on you to do your part by supporting your local Libertarian Party, attending your local Tea Party and welcoming home the vast, untapped libertarian electorate.
Director of Communications
Libertarian National Committee