From “Astro Turf” to “Terrorists”?
WASHINGTON, D.C.— As reported by POLITICO on Monday, Vice-President Joe Biden behind closed doors described tea party Republicans as having acted like “terrorists.” Biden later told CBS News, “I did not use the terrorism word.”
In any case, the Obama administration has held the tea party movement in utter contempt since its inception, as shown by this timeline of White House statements dating from mid-April 2009:
Apr. 14, 2009: Asked about the Tax Day “tea parties” being held the following day (attended by hundreds of thousands of people across the country) White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said: “I don't know if the President is aware of the events.”
Apr. 19, 2009: Asked about the April 15 tea parties on Face the Nation, Obama senior advisor David Axelrod said: “I think any time you have severe economic conditions there is always an element of disaffection that can mutate into something that's unhealthy”
Apr. 29, 2009: Speaking at a town hall meeting in St. Louis, Obama directly addressed tea party attendees: "Those of you who are watching certain news channels on which I'm not very popular, and you see folks waving tea bags around, let me just remind them that I am happy to have a serious conversation about how we are going to cut our health care costs down over the long term, how we are going to stabilize Social Security…But let's not play games and pretend that the reason [for the deficit] is because of the Recovery Act."
Aug. 4, 2009: Asked by reporters about the growing concern expressed by town hall attendees, Gibbs said: “I hope people will take a jaundiced eye to what is clearly the Astro Turf nature of so-called grassroots lobbying”. Questioned further, Gibbs said: “This is manufactured anger”
Sept. 13, 2009: During an interview on Face the Nation, when asked what his message was to those at the previous day’s rallies, Axelrod said: “My message to them is they’re wrong”
Americans for Tax Reform is a non-partisan coalition of taxpayers and taxpayer groups who oppose all tax increases. For more information or to arrange an interview please contact John Kartch at (202) 785-0266 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.