Protest bus stops in New Lenox

September 7, 2009 (CHICAGO) An enthusiastic crowd greeted the caravan of buses in southwestern suburban New Lenox on Monday. The caravan of buses is scheduled to arrive on the steps of the U.S. Capitol on Saturday for a rally and protest.

On Monday, the patriotic chants were frequent, the signs plentiful and the crowd was big and fired up.

"We are here to encourage all of you to tell the government to get their hands out of lives," said Deborah Johns, Tea Party Express.

Thousands of flag waving protesters came out to greet the Tea Party Express. The California-based group protests big government and high taxes. For many there, the anger was aimed at one man- Pres. Barack Obama. Many held signs calling the president a socialist and a liar. Health care reform and stimulus money were the hot topics.

"I'm concerned about big government. I'm concerned about a takeover of our industries. I'm concerned about our health care. I know there are things that need to be fixed. But there is a way to do them and the way it's happening is not correct," said Joleen McCarty, protestor.

"I ask you, Mr. President, where are the jobs? And why hasn't America gone back to work yet?" said Johns.

Vice President Joe Biden addressed that question at a Labor Day event in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

"I love my Republican colleagues saying, 'Biden why are you pushing a stimulus package? Why are you out there spending this money?' I'll tell you why. Because there are millions of Americans today who are getting unemployment insurance who wouldn't get it but for that recovery act. Millions," said Vice Pres. Biden.

In New Lenox, the protest passed disagreements in policy. Many said they didn't like the direction the country is going.

"We are passionate about this country. We are passion about freedom. We are passionate. But I see it being jeopardized," said Eileen Atwell, protestor, who said she is worried about the freedom to call the U.S. a Christian nation.

"I'm fired up about the loss of freedom, little by little," said Irene Napier, protestor. Napier could not name which freedoms she was worried about losing.

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