Tea Party Protest at Capitol

By: Katie Kim Email
By: Katie Kim Email

Tea party activists, numbering more than 1,000 strong, marked tax deadline day in a loud way.

"In michigan, we are already taxed to death," says Joan Fabiano of Grassroots in MI.

Tea partiers blame government overspending for Michigan's high unemployment and foreclosure rates. Protestors say the biggest government grievance is the new federal healthcare reform law.

"This is my health and the health of my fellow Americans," says protestor Joanne Jacobson. "I consider it to be very private. I don't want bureaucrats in Washington telling my doctor what he can and can't do."

Across the capitol lawn, anti-tea partiers protested in a quieter way, stationing this billboard near the rally.

"No one likes paying taxes just like a 16-year-old doesn't like doing chores. But it's a way of contributing to the family. And like that, taxes is a way we are contributing to the family of America," says David Holtz of Progress Michigan.

Holtz tells us Americans are paying less in taxes this year than in years past. But activists say mounting debt means trouble for future generations.

"Forty percent of the budget being borrowed, you can't run a household that way, so you shouldn't be able to run a government that way," says protestor John Kirsch.

Tea party activists rallied against new taxes and healthcare reform, but mainly they came hoping politicians would listen come November.

"We need to get back to conservative financial roots and try to turn this train around," Kirsch says.

Attorney General Mike Cox got the crowd roaring with his charge that the federal health care changes are unconstitutional. The Republican gubernatorial hopeful has joined in a lawsuit challenging the laws.

Protestors say this is only the beginning of a long road to the 2010 elections.

Tea party protestors held other rallies across the state in Jackson, Pontiac, Grand Rapids and Port Huron. Last year, about 4,000 tax protesters gathered at the Capitol.

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