There has been much disagreement in recent days over whether the tax day tea party movement is grassroots or astroturf, a right-wing crusade or a spontaneous outburst of nonpartisan popular fury over government spending and taxes. However it got started, it's clear where it's headed: to an honored place within the mainstream Republican party.
The Republican National Committee, via its website, GOP.com. has officially endorsed the protest movement with a page where tea partiers can sign up to send a "virtual teabag" (e-bag?) to President Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Joe Biden, or Harry Reid.
Here's what your e-bag to the president would say:
I do not believe that it is patriotic to pay more taxes. And I do not approve of the $1.4 trillion in new taxes, $636 billion in higher energy taxes, the staggering redistribution of wealth and wasteful spending you are prescribing as a cure for the economic crisis.
To hold the Democrats in Washington accountable for their record tax, spend and borrow schemes, I am sending a virtual tea bag to protest your plans to raise taxes on every American this Tax Day.
RNC chairman Michael Steele may have been denied a speaking spot at the Chicago Tea Party (he says he never asked for one), but that hasn't stopped Steele from embracing the cause. He blasted an email to supporters with the subject line "Enough is Enough: Send a Tea Bag." Here's the letter:
Vice President Joe Biden said during the 2008 campaign that it is patriotic for Americans to pay more in taxes. Since taking over control of Washington, the Obama Democrats have decided we should all be more "patriotic" having passed or proposed more than $5 trillion in new spending and $1.4 trillion in new taxes.
I don't know about you, Jim, but I don't believe there is anything patriotic about giving more of your hard-earned money to the government to bankroll the liberal Democrats' agenda to increase spending to record levels, change the tax code to redistribute the wealth of working families, and destroy the savings of millions of middle-class Americans.
So on this Tax Day, April 15, the Republican National Committee is asking you, along with hundreds of thousands of grassroots activists across our country, to assert a real patriotic act by sending a virtual tea bag to Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid and the rest of the tax, spend and borrow Democrats. Let them know enough is enough and you don't approve of their plan to pass the largest tax hike in American history.
And when you send your virtual tea bag today, I hope you will also take this opportunity to make a secure online contribution of $25, $50, $100, $500 or $1,000 to the RNC today to help fund our efforts to resist the massive tax and spending increases Barack Obama and the Pelosi-Reid Democrats are attempting to ram through Congress.
The $1.4 trillion in higher taxes is just the tip of the iceberg for the Democrats. The proposed cap and trade program on carbon emissions Obama wants would impose at least $646 billion in new energy taxes -- $3,100 for every American family a year. And the President wants to raise taxes on small businesses -- the very engine that provides 75% of our economic growth.
Jim, Americans will pay more in taxes this year than they will spend on food, clothing and housing combined and it is still not enough for Barack Obama and the liberal Democrats. Let them know you already pay enough in taxes by sending them a virtual tea bag by clicking here.
And when you do, please also make a secure online contribution of $25, $50, $100, $500 or $1,000 to the RNC today to fight the Democrats' efforts to take advantage of America's present economic difficulties to force through their reckless agenda.
Your participation in this project is vital to holding the Obama Democrats accountable for their destructive higher tax and spending policies. Please send your virtual tea bag today. Thank you.
Chairman, Republican National Committee
P.S. Jim, let Obama and the liberal Democrats know enough is enough. Send them a virtual tea bag this Tax Day to protest the liberal agenda to raise your taxes and those of every American. And please take this opportunity to make a secure online contribution of $25, $50, $100, $500 or $1,000 to the RNC to support and elect Republicans who believe in the principles of lower taxes, limited government and personal responsibility. Thank you.
Hat tip: The New Argument