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Tea Parties Richard Falknor on 09 Oct 2010 12:49 pm

Tea Party Meet: Co-option Concerns — But Tough Proposals

“‘Is the governor going to fight for limited government, or is he going to be soft on limited government? You hear a lot of chatter about it. But let me just say this: The governor was elected for limited government and lower taxes. He needs to follow that,” said Ron Wilcox of Fairfax County, founder of the Northern Virginia Tea Party. ‘There’s been some troubling signs. I won’t deny that. But there’s still time.'”  – – The Washington Post

The Washington Post’s Anita Kumar highlights a growing concern among grass-roots conservatives in her report late yesterday evening  “At Va. tea party gathering, insurgents worry GOP will ‘co-opt the movement’ ” – –

“‘Some number of elected officials make sense, but we don’t want to come off like this is the establishment,’  said Dan Arnold, chairman of the Manassas Tea Party, which formed in April and boasts more than 200 members. ‘Our job is to hold the establishment accountable.’

The tea party, still in its infancy in Virginia, includes many members who supported McDonnell and fellow Republicans Lt. Gov. Bill Bolling and Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli II last year but still consider themselves independents or libertarians. Some even voted for Democrats in past years.

‘Some in our group are worried it will be too much of a Republican show and they are letting Republicans control it,’ said Robert Alexander of Newport News, one of the organizers of the Peninsula Tea Party, which was created on tax day in 2009. ‘Everyone is concerned the Republicans are going to co-opt the movement.'” (Underscoring Forum’s.)

Faithful readers will recall our recent post on this concern Who’s Excluded from VA Tea Party Convention Top Lineup?

Virginia Tea Partier Ideas for their Maryland Brethren?

The Richmond Times-Dispatch‘s Tyler Whitley this morning in his “Scrap taxes, tea partiers say as convention opens” details some of the gathering’s legislative recommendations – –

“Virginia tea-party groups proposed a constitutional amendment to scrap both corporate income tax and individual income tax.

Virginia tea-party groups yesterday proposed a constitutional amendment to scrap both the corporate income tax and the individual income tax in Virginia.

Conservative activist John Taylor [link added by Forum] said elimination of the two taxes would do far more to attract businesses to Virginia than the incentives that the General Assembly passed this year at the behest of Gov. Bob McDonnell.”

. . . . .

“In addition to the tax repeals, the tea party will sponsor a proposed constitutional amendment to make it harder for governments to use eminent domain to seize private property.

Taylor said the Virginia Department of Transportation, the Virginia Association of Counties and the Virginia Municipal League are trying to loosen an eminent domain law that the General Assembly passed in 2007, so a constitutional amendment is the only way to prevent weakening of the law.

‘This is going to be a slugfest’ he [Taylor] added.

Legislative proposals that the tea party will get behind include a bill to encourage education tax credits that would make it easier for parents to send their children to a private school, a bill that would bar localities from establishing sanctuaries for illegal immigrants, and a bill that would free Virginia products from federal regulation if the products are produced and sold solely within the state.” (Underscoring Forum’s.)

We would encourage Tea Partiers across Virginia systematically to hold the feet of their Republican state lawmakers to the fire to discuss these proposals in a public arena – – with the realistic understanding that doing so may be seen as a grave challenge to the state GOP establishment.

Unfortunately, without Tea Partier pressure, we just don’t see many Virginia GOP county committees racing to arrange question-and-answer sessions with their local GOP state legislators and candidates on these recommendations.

As Angelo Codevilla writes in his America’s Ruling Class — And the Perils of Revolution – –

“Because, in the long run, the country class will not support a party as conflicted as today’s Republicans, those Republican politicians who really want to represent it will either reform the party in an unmistakable manner, or start a new one as Whigs like Abraham Lincoln started the Republican Party in the 1850s.“ (Underscoring Forum’s.)

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