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'Tea Party' protest planned in Glenwood

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Area residents fed up with high taxes have organized a "tea party" in Glenwood this Saturday.

The Pope County Tea Party Committee (PCTPC) is hosting the event in conjunction with a motorcycle run/rally at the Glenwood City Park Bandshell from 1 to 5 p.m.

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Organizers describe the tea party as a peaceful demonstration against:

•Government spending at the federal, state and local levels.

•Taxes.

•The current economy.

•Cap and trade energy policies.

•Health care reform and other issues.

The tea party reference traces back to the historic Boston Tea Party of 1773, which arose from the financial problems of the British East India Company and an ongoing dispute about the extent of Parliament's authority over people of the British American colonies without proper representation by elected officials.

American activists from different political affiliations have long used the concept of a "tea party" to protest government actions.

The events have been used by Democrats, Republicans, conservative and liberal groups over the course of time to make their points.

A rash of "tea parties" began this year on "tax day," April 15, and has continued across the U.S. and within Minnesota.

Politicians, guest speakers, motorcyclists, musicians and taxpayers are expected to attend the Glenwood event.

It will kickoff at 1 p.m. with a motorcycle ride around the scenic sights of Pope County, ending back at the city park around 2 p.m.

Following the return of the motorcyclists, guest speakers have been invited to share their thoughts, including former and current lawmakers and 2010 Minnesota gubernatorial candidates.

An open-mic session for the public will be featured, along with the musical talents of Luis Moreno Jr., a well-known musician from the local band, "57 Chevy."

The highlight of the event will take place around 4:30 p.m. when organizers will perform a reenactment of the historic Boston Tea Party with a ceremonial "tea dumping."

Scott Formo, chair of the Pope County Republicans, noted that White House budget chief Peter Orszag announced last week that U.S. unemployment will reach 10 percent this year and the budget deficit is projected to increase to more than $9 trillion by 2019.

"At a time when the U.S. is facing such drastic bouts of unemployment and a deficit that is growing faster than I can ever remember, why do our elected lawmakers continue to pass spending bills that American taxpayers cannot afford?" Formo stated in a news release announcing the tea party. "This just doesn't make sense to me and as a taxpayer and single father of a teenage son, I am concerned. Should we, as children, parents, and grandparents be doing more now and be more concerned about what future generations will face because of these actions?"

Formo said the tea party is a chance for citizens to tell lawmakers that there should be more scrutinizing and accountability in government spending before bills are passed.

The PCTPC believes that reducing the size and scope of government is the best safeguard to ensuring individual productivity and prosperity for all Americans.

For more information, visit www.mnteapartypatriots.ning.com and choose the September 5 "Pope County Tea Party" link from the "Events" tab or contact Scott Formo at (320) 239-3897.

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