Birmingham TV Misses Mark on Trussville Tea Party Attendance

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Television stations across Birmingham reported only a few hundred people showed up for Wednesday's Trussville Tax Day Tea Party. Organizers report a turnout in excess of 1500.

We've got a network of patriots now, and we plan to use it to change the political landscape. If you're a big spending politician who's not representing the will of the people, you should probably go ahead and dust off your resume and get registered with Monster.com

Television stations across Birmingham reported only a few hundred people showed up for Wednesday's Trussville Tax Day Tea Party.

Their numbers were a gross underestimate of the crowd that came out on the Mall in downtown Trussville according to event organizers.

"We did not release attendance figures to the media until after the event," said organizer Natalie Schmidt, president of the Republican Women of Trussville. "The numbers that were reported by the local network affiliates were completely inaccurate."

Ken McKibben, who also helped organize the tea party, said more than 1000 hot dogs were served. McKibben also said more than 1,000 cups were used at the event and more than 900 people signed up to receive emails and updates for possible future events.

"Our early estimates were 1,000 people, but we have since revised that to be more than 1,500 people," McKibben said. "We used hand stamping to ensure that people only went through the food line once. We went through 1,000 cups and had to open another box, and we know that not everyone at the event got a drink. The Jefferson County deputies also did a tremendous job with parking, and their estimate was in line with ours."

Despite the crowd and the amount of free food given away, McKibben was moved by the lack of trash left behind.

"The most striking thing about the event was that after everything was finished and the stage was packed up and loaded out, there wasn't a piece of trash to be found on the mall," he said. "When the representative from the city parks department showed up, he couldn't believe how clean everything was. It wasn't because our volunteers picked it up, and that's a testament to the character of the patriots that came to have their voices heard."

Schmidt said the large turnout is a clear signal to Washington.

"The massive turnout in a small town like Trussville in the middle of a Wednesday is a clear sign that people are upset," she said. "What we witnessed was a unifying moment in history, and the politicians in Washington need to understand that we aren't going to be silent anymore."

McKibben also emphasized the tea party is only the starting point for this movement. He said organizers of the event are working together to do another event, possibly on July 4. He said information for future events can be obtained at the group's Web site (http://www.trussvilleteaparty.com), and the group would be using E-mail and social networking Web sites such as Facebook and Twitter to form a formal organization and begin researching real action people can take in local politics.

"We're just getting started," McKibben said. "We've got a network of patriots now, and we plan to use it to change the political landscape. If you're a big spending politician who's not representing the will of the people, you should probably go ahead and dust off your resume and get registered with Monster.com"

About the Trussville Tea Party:
The Trussville Tax Day Tea Party offers American citizens an opportunity to join with others to send a message to our elected leaders that the policies of over-taxation, government waste, and run-away entitlement programs will no longer be tolerated. The April 15th event was the first of many planned events to advance a grassroots effort to educate American citizens on the issues and proactively change our government's policies.

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