Green Party Reaches Out to Tea Party Activists

Via IPR, On the Wilder Side reworks a Green Party press release reaching out to tea party activists:
Green Party leaders and candidates said that many Tea Party activists might be in the wrong party and urged them to consider going Green. Carl Romanelli, former Green candidate for the US Senate and a member of Health Care for All Pennsylvania ( said:

Not all Tea Party members are befuddled rightwingers screeching that President Obama is a socialist, fascist, pro-terrorist, or all of the above. Many Tea Partiers have legitimate concerns about how the Democratic Party’s health care reform plans will reduce Medicare and about trillion-dollar taxpayer-funded giveaways to Wall Street firms. They are as outraged as Greens are about how both Democrats and Republicans are coddling CEOs, major stockholders, and other wealthy elites while preaching sacrifice for the rest of us.

Greens said corporate royalists like Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, and Sarah Palin who pose as populist leaders have hijacked the Tea Party movement. Rodger Jennings, Green candidate for Congress in Illinois, District 12 ( said:

Republicans and rightwing ideologues in the media are thrilled with a Tea Party movement that will channel votes and money towards extremist GOP politicians. Their idea of the Tea Party has nothing to do with the 1773 Boston Tea Party. They prefer a movement full of people who would have denounced the original Boston Tea Party as leftist terrorism against the British East India Company. They would have criticized Thomas Jefferson and Thomas Paine for wanting to rein in what Jefferson called ‘the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations.‘* To these Tea Partiers, and to most Republican and Democratic politicians, restraints on corporate power are a symptom of ‘big government.’ Many of the Tea Partiers who vented their rage against health care reform at town hall meetings in 2009 were in effect defending the power of health insurance companies — the modern equivalents of British tea companies — to drive people who need medical care into financial ruin.

Green Party leaders noted that media coverage of health care reform gave a megaphone to the anti-reform Tea Partiers at town hall meetings, while mostly ignoring advocates of Medicare For All (Single-Payer national health care), including many Green Party members, who protested vociferously against the plans offered by President Obama and Democrats in Congress. Examples of such protests include Medicare For All activists disrupting Congressional hearings and burning insurance forms outside meetings of insurance company lobbyists.

Greens, like true fiscal conservatives, oppose subsidies for health insurance companies in the Democratic plans, including proposed ‘mandates’ that would require enrollment. The Green Party has warned that, whether Obamacare is enacted or Republicans succeed in blocking reform, the real winners will be the health insurance, pharmaceutical, and other industry lobbies.

Greens also compared the invasive homeland security measures favored by Republicans and Democrats to the bullying tactics of the British Army and requirement that colonists house British troops on demand.

“We need a Tea Party movement that opposes warrantless surveillance of American citizens, torture, invasion of other countries, and other violations of the US Constitution. We need a Tea Party that calls the ‘general welfare of the people,’ including the right to medical care, more important than the right of insurance and pharmaceutical companies to shake down patients and deny treatment. We need a Tea Party against predatory private prisons, the war on drugs, and mass incarceration of Americans. We need a Tea Party that defends future generations of Americans rather than corporate polluters,” said Lynne Williams, Green-Independent candidate for Governor of Maine. (

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