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Libertarian Party of Illinois: We gave Rick Santelli the idea for the Tax Day Tea Parties

Email from Libertarian Party of Illinolis chair Dave Brady:

Let me share with you quite a story.

In December of 2008 the LP Illinois formulated the Boston Tea Party Chicago concept and advertised it through the LPI yahoo and meetup groups, Ron Paul Meetup groups, Campaign for Liberty groups, national tax groups and well as other various peace groups and local / national new sources.

January 09 we organized 100 people and created a meetup group and facebook group. Myself (LPI & LP McHenry), Mike Folgelsanger (LP DeKalb), Chris Jenner (LP McHenry), Josh Hanson (LP DuPage) and John Kramer (Fox Valley LP) are the original organizers.

Santelli got wind of this and went public on the floor of Chicago stock exchange.

This all is kind of frustrating because LP Illinois gets no credit for this project. Eric Odom, a member of LP Illinois, and our original group, created his own website and facebook group and aligned directly with Santelli. We have kept our facebook page active to reflect the initial start date of this whole movement weeks before Santelli.

After much negotiation back and forth our original group has joined Eric’s group since they seemed to have been better at publicity because of his association with some national freedom organizations.

Welcome to politics 101. Santelli, like Ron Paul, allowed ego and self to take first place in the libertarian movement. Eric “Mancow” Muller has received three invites from us via certified mail and has never replied back to any but there he is on the radio yesterday claiming all this involvement. Rick Sanetlli is still missing in action and has not RSVP’s yes to LP Illinois invite or Eric Odom’s invite.

The only thing I find humorous about this whole thing is with the rise of Campaign for Liberty and their annoying approach of joining Libertarian Committees all over the county then once getting voting rights vote to disband the LP group and form them into a C4L groups, the Chicago Tea Party movement is now trying to take over the C4L groups by the same means.

Formed February 10th, 2009 (9 days before Santelli and 18 day before Eric Odom). Even Julie Johnson the “national coordinator”, knowing all the facts refused to give anyone else but themselves in her national press interviews and credit.


Dave Brady
Chair, LP Illinois

Posted to IPR by Paulie

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  1. JeffTrigg JeffTrigg July 16, 2010

    The below newspaper article is from 2002. Do I get credit for starting the Tea Party? I don’t deserve it. Many Libertarians before me did the same thing. Robin Miller and Matt Beauchamp are among those who inspired me. I’ve got more and earlier proof than Dave Brady did when releasing this, however.

    Protester: Americans are ‘overtaxed’
    April 16, 2002
    Peoria Journal Star

    It didn’t rise to the level of the Boston Tea Party as far as taxpayer revolts go, but Monday’s “Tax Day” protest had its own simple charm.

    Armed with red, white and blue signs with messages such as “Taxes Suck,” local Libertarians marked the “infamous day every year when state and federal income taxes are due.”

    “We are overtaxed. The government is spending too much. I could go on and on,” said Jeffrey Trigg, secretary of the Libertarian Party of Illinois, who helped organize the group of protesters at Peoria post offices and, briefly, at University Street and War Memorial Drive.

    “Taxes have gotten too high, and in the spirit of the Boston Tea Party, we want to let people know that there are people fighting to get their money back to them,” said Jeffrey Trigg of the Libertarian Party.

  2. seeliberty seeliberty May 11, 2009

    In my county we’ve had tons of interaction with the local C4L group and they offer to unofficially volunteer for us. In fact, none of them have even joined our group. Instead, they offer to help.

    Not to mention the fact that NO LIBERTARIAN has the ability to spread the word about tea parties more than Santelli would…i would shut up and take the free publicity.

  3. HumbleTravis HumbleTravis April 14, 2009

    Another group who referenced the Tea Party concept was the “Black Tea” anarchist group that protested the 2004 Democratic National Convention in Boston.

  4. paulie paulie April 14, 2009

    For anyone interested in pursuing that question:

    Dave Brady
    Chair, LP Illinois

    All of this is publicly listed elsewhere, so I don’t think there’s anything wrong with me posting it here.

  5. Thomas L. Knapp Thomas L. Knapp April 14, 2009

    I’d like to see some corroboration of that “Campaign for Liberty people taking over/disbanding LP groups” thing, too.

    My experience has been exactly the opposite in St. Louis County, Missouri. Last summer we did some lit-dropping for the LP with help from a local CFL activist. A couple of weeks ago, we ran an LP table at a CFL event and they seemed happy to have us.

    I was somewhat apprehensive about CFL at first, but so far I’ve seen nothing that looks like that quote.

  6. Michael Seebeck Michael Seebeck April 14, 2009

    Kermit the Newt, not Kermit the Douche! 😀

  7. Michael Seebeck Michael Seebeck April 14, 2009

    Now that they have the turd sandwich, where’s the giant douche? 🙂

  8. Louella Louella April 14, 2009

    Dave Brady is confused: “…Campaign for Liberty and their annoying approach of joining Libertarian Committees all over the county then once getting voting rights vote to disband the LP group and form them into a C4L groups…”

    That is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard.

  9. John C Jackson John C Jackson April 14, 2009

    The idea of “tea parties” is hundreds of years old, obviously. Someone remarking about throwing a tea party is hardly an original idea. I’ve known people to say it casually my whole life.

  10. paulie paulie April 14, 2009

    We’re all rowing the boats in the same direction…

    Depends on who “we” are.


    These protests serve do a purpose, despite what pseudo-libertarian talk show host, Neal Boortz, says or believes. They show that everyday Americans want less spending, less government and personal responsibility. However, they are at risk of being co-opted by Republicans who either stood silently or only gave passive criticism to the spending spree of George W. Bush.

    Republicans do not realize the serious credibility problems they have when it comes to criticizing the economic policies of Barck Obama. According to a recent study from the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, George W. Bush was the biggest spender in the last 30 years. The table to the right shows the massive increases in non-defense discretionary spending.

    Sean Hannity, who will be attending the Atlanta Tea Party on April 15th, says he has criticized Republicans on spending. He has been more vocal of late about Republicans getting back to the supposed small government roots, but even he was only passive while the gross expansion of government was taking place.

    Newt Gingrich and his group, American Solutions, recently announced that they were endorsing and supporting the protests. Gingrich has supported and lobbied for a $9 trillion expansion of Medicare and more recently, the Trouble Asset Relief Program (TARP or Wall Street bailout), which has resulted in trillions of taxpayers dollar being put at risk by a completely incompetent government. This is exactly the sort of spending that these protests are against. An argument can also be made, after reading Buck Wild: How Republicans Broke the Bank and Became the Party of Big Government, that Republicans began to lose whatever principles they claimed to have while Gingrich was Speaker of the House, something can be verified by the table above by looking at the growth in spending in the second term of Bill Clinton.

    The involvement of politically polarizing figures will ruin and destroy the credibility of a good movement. Accusations of astroturfing surfaced immediately after the events on February 27th. This makes those accusations have substance.

    Despite all this, concerned taxpayers should show up to these events to voice their disapproval at these economic policies that have lead us down an unsustainable path.

    (See URL for hyperlinked version).

  11. Eric Odom Eric Odom April 14, 2009

    FYI… there have been many “Tea Party” protests type events since 2007. Do you want to take credit for those as well?

    We need to knock it off with the “who gets credit” nonsense and go take our Government back.

    We’re all rowing the boats in the same direction…

  12. Keith Keith April 14, 2009

    Does anybody have any corroborating information regarding this statement:

    “The only thing I find humorous about this whole thing is with the rise of Campaign for Liberty and their annoying approach of joining Libertarian Committees all over the county then once getting voting rights vote to disband the LP group and form them into a C4L groups …”

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