Aerial view of Alamo tea party protest in San Antonio, Texas (photo: Texas Tea Parties)
An estimated 1 million Americans participated in at least 1,000 tea parties, according to reports by organizers tabulating the nationwide numbers, with documented protests held in 50 states.
Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform told WND, “The Obama administration has awakened a sleeping giant.”
Tax Day Tea Party national event coordinator Amy Kremer told WND she has confirmed that more than 850 parties took place. She has at least 100 more reports in her e-mail inbox that have not been posted.
Asked how many people attended the events, she responded, “I would estimate it at over 1 million. I’m waiting on more numbers to come in from organizers right now. I can tell you it is absolutely over 750,000 right now.”
The largest protests occurred in Atlanta, Ga., with 15,000 participants. As many as 10,000 protesters participating in Sacramento, Calif., and Overland Park, Kan., according to data compiled by Americans for Tax Reform on more than 207 tea parties.
Americans for Tax Reform has established an Internet page on the group’s website where organizers of tea parties can submit attendance estimates to be included in the running tally.
Michael DePrimo, special counsel to American Family Association President Tim Wildmon, told WND that AFA’s tea party website, Tea Party Day, had 2,031 confirmations that tea parties were to be held in as many cities.
“Since yesterday, we have had 394 cities give us reports, many with photographs, about the tea parties that were held,” he said. “We have not been able to get all the information up. We expect more to come in as the days go by.”
Glenn Beck reported yesterday on his Fox News program that official estimates of the participation in the Tea Party held in San Antonio, Texas, reached as many as 20,000 people.
The Glenn Beck show broadcast on Fox News live on April 15, from the Tea Party held at the Alamo in San Antonio.
Tea partiers in Sacramento, Calif. ( WND photo / Chelsea Schilling)
“The establishment in Washington, D.C., is terrified,” Norquist said. “There were no such demonstrations four months into the administrations of Democratic presidents Carter or Clinton.”
Norquist told WND that the Obama administration was taken by surprise by the nationwide protests because the administration had calculated increased government spending was supposed to be the popular part of President Obama’s economic stimulus plan.
Instead, Norquist said, the tea parties held in every state on Wednesday proved Americans nationwide are demonstrating in anger and disappointment against Obama administration plans for massive deficit spending.
Tax Day protester in Kansas City, Mo., holds sign (photo: Posted to Tea Party Day)
“Imagine what happens when President Obama, House Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Reid begin to pay for their ‘spend-fest’ with higher taxes and inflation,” Norquist said.
Kremer said the mainstream media have completely neglected their duty to accurately report on this nationwide movement.
“It’s amazing that the mainstream media is reporting it the way that they are,” she said. “It’s just crazy. It’s basically just going to come down to us. We’re now reporting it ourselves because they are not reporting it accurately.”
Many say the mainstream media attempted either to ignore the protests altogether or characterized tea partiers as disgruntled Republicans unable to accept that “they lost” the 2008 presidential campaign or as “rich taxpayers” unwilling to pay their fair burden of taxes.
However, Kremer said she is constantly receiving reports from organizers about the movement’s resounding success.
“I think it was an absolute success,” she said. “We want to send a message to them: We hired them; we can fire them. They work for us. They seem to have forgotten that.”
She continued, “If it means we have to go after every incumbent in office from now until 2012, we will do that. But the American people are tired of sitting by, and they are starting to step forward and take notice.”