With only days left before the midterm elections, the question in many people’s minds is whether the elections will produce change that matters or change what matters. This may sound like a semantics game but it really goes much deeper. You see, the BarackObama.com website boasts that Obama will bring us “change that matters.” Yet it seems to this writer that the Obama administration, along with the Democrat-controlled Congress, actually “changed what matters.” I believe this is why the tea party movement was born. Many organizing these grassroots movements feared that Congress had been quickly changing what matters to the average American.
The president recently said in front of an audience at a $900,000 West Newton, Mass., fundraiser that he blamed the recession for Americans’ inability to “think clearly.” The president went on to say, “we’re hardwired not to always think clearly when we’re scared.”
This statement is code that the folks in the tea party movement aren’t thinking clearly, that they are kooky or nuts. The president is right about Americans being scared. They are scared of the president and the Democrat-controlled Congress.
If the president really believed his statement, then why would he continue to scare the public by spending an estimated $60K per hour of taxpayer money criss-crossing the country on Air Force One.
In contrast, the Tea Party Express has been criss-crossing the country over the last two weeks at a cost of $0 to these scared Americans. Their “Air Force One” is a duo of buses and their whistle stops don’t contain belittling statements about the American public. Instead, these stops are upbeat and patriotic, with many themed around honoring those who paid the ultimate sacrifice for their country in war. All of these stops are sprinkled with motivational and inspirational speeches.
Embedded Central Florida conservative radio show host and blogger Andrea Shea King is spending the entire two weeks on the Tea Party Express bus. She spoke to the chairman of the Tea Party Express, Amy Kremer, about what message she wanted the Tea Party to express. Kremer said this: “When Americans go to the polls, they should go with a smile on their face because we are making history — we’ve worked tirelessly to change people’s minds in Washington, DC. We haven’t been able to do so … now we will change their faces. It’s a testament to the power of the people.”
Note to the president: Your presidency and the Pelosi/Reid Congress became the leader of “change in what we believe in.” Come November 3rd, you will see that the Tea Party Express and others like them are the “change we can believe in.”
Elizabeth B. Letchworth is a retired, elected United States Senate Secretary for the Majority and Minority. Currently she is a senior legislative adviser for Covington & Burling, LLC and is the founder of www GradeGov.com.