Local Tea Party activists hold Tax Day rallies

April 15, 2010 4:38:06 PM PDT
The Tea Party movement in the Chicago area marked April 15, Tax Day, by holding protests in the city and the suburbs.

Tea Party activists held several Tax Day rallies from Daley Plaza to west suburban Geneva.

The activists are protesting against government spending and the policies of the Obama administration.

Lorraine Fidonik and Cate Harvey, friends for the past 25 years, waved protest flags while standing outside the Will County courthouse. They decided to take off work Thursday to express their disgust at what's happening in Washington.

"I think it is time we take back the government, go back to our basic principles in this government of honesty and fairness and people who work hard should get to keep what they worked for," said Fidonik.

The women were among several hundred people who attended the Tea Party inspired Tax Day rally in Joliet that happened on the same afternoon as four other area demonstrations including the largest event at noon on the city's Daley Plaza.

"We want the federal government and state government off our backs, out of our pocketbooks," said Ashley Danis, Winnetka resident.

The Tea Party movement took root barely six weeks after Barack Obama's inauguration. Talk to members about what they believe and the conversation quickly turns to their disapproval of the president.

"He's taken us down a socialistic path that this country was not made on or for," said Harvey.

Eunice Jones who lives a few blocks away from the Joliet demonstration was unimpressed.

"This tea party ain't going nowhere," said Jones. "Wait until the election come. You'll see who the majority is."

In the crowd of several hundred Will County protesters, ABC7 counted only two African-Americans. Black tea patriot George Pearson conceded the tea parties have attracted some racist members but he insists it is not a racist movement.

"There are people that will come in and embed themselves in without the best intentions. But that's one of the things we have to stress, what the good intentions are of this movement," said Pearson.

An 11th District Republican candidate for Congress worked the crowd worked the crowd in Joliet. Kinzinger hopes the anti-Obama energy will propel him to victory in November.

"I think the engery is more intense now. And I think it's actually going to be even more intense in six or seven months," said Kinzinger.