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Right Now: The Tea Party Protests

EconWatch will be covering the San Francisco and New York City "tea party" protests in person – click here for background on the protests – but in the meantime we wanted to get you up to date on some of the protests that have already gone on or are going on now.

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Photo Essay: Tax Day "Tea Parties" Across The Country. (AP)

In Cumberland, Md., "peaceful protesters braved a steady early-afternoon drizzle out of their concern for current governmental policies and the well-being of future generations," according to the Times-News. The protesters reportedly carried signs proclaiming "Do Away With the IRS" and "Stop Spending Our Kids Money."

In Lafayette, Ind., "a large box of tea bags was dumped from a Lafayette bridge into the Wabash River" as hundreds of protesters cheered.

In Champaign, Illinois, about 400 people watched keynote speaker Randall Stufflebeam say "We don't need a flat tax or a fair tax. We need no tax, the way it was in 1913," according to the News-Gazette.

In Madison, Wis., "Speakers at a sometimes angry rally Wednesday accused Gov. Jim Doyle and lawmakers of smoking crack cocaine, said government spending was ruining the country and called for the ouster of all elected Democrats. One sign in the crowd compared President Barack Obama to the anti-Christ."

More than 3,000 people showed up to protest in Cincinnati, the Enquirer reports; the protest organizer said he was looking "to adopt the legal and effective tactics of the Left Wing."

CNN reports, meanwhile, that protesters have wielded signs that read "You can't put lipstick on socialism" and "Stop generational theft."

According to the Associated Press, some Boston protesters dressed like Revolutionary War soldiers and carried signs that said "Barney Frank, Bernie Madoff: And the Difference Is?" and "D.C.: District of Communism."

Reports the AP: "There were several small counter-protests, including one in at Fountain Square in Cincinnati, where about a dozen people protested the protesters, one carrying a sign that read, 'Where were you when Bush was spending billions a month "liberating" Iraq?'"

More: "In Lansing, Mich., outside the state Capitol, another 4,000 people waved signs exclaiming 'Stop the Fiscal Madness,' 'Read My Lipstick! No More Bailouts' and 'The Pirates Are in D.C.' Children held makeshift signs complaining about the rising debt."

The AP also notes that the Montgomery, Ala., protest featured "We're Not Gonna Take It" blaring from loudspeakers, while in Atlanta, thousands are expected to gather on the steps of the Georgia Capitol to protest and watch a special broadcast of Sean Hannity's Fox News show.

The protest in Washington did not go as planned, according to the Washington Post; protesters were kept from dumping tea bags into the Potomac River and kept from unloading one million tea bags into a park after being told they lacked the proper permits.

They also had to abandon their plans for a formal rally in front of the Treasury because they lacked the necessary permits; still, hundreds gathered in "dreadful weather," and, according to one booster, the atmosphere was "electric."

Over at the White House, meanwhile, "a robot was inspecting a suspicious package on the North Lawn…after tax protesters threw what appears to be a box of tea bags over the White House fence," according to the AP. "That prompted officials to clear Pennsylvania Avenue."

Click here for a first-hand account from the San Francisco protest. And come back to EconWatch tomorrow for a first-hand account from New York.

Click here for more photos from across the country.

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