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National 'Spending Revolt' tour joining up with Tea Party rally under the Arch

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Sept. 10, 2010 - The Spending Revolt National Bus Tour, which is financed by a number of conservative groups, will stop by the Gateway Arch at noon on Sunday -- just as area Tea Party activists arrive for their 9/12 rally aimed at energizing the movement for the coming Nov. 2 election.

Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder, a Republican, is to headline a Clayton town hall that the Spending Revolt tour will be holding at 6 p.m., Sunday at the Sheraton Clayton Plaza hotel, 7730 Bonhomme.

The earlier 9/12 rally, called "Gateway to November," will feature almost three dozen speakers and singers from noon until 4 p.m. The headliners include consultant and commentator Dick Morris, and U.S. Reps. Steve King, R-Ia., and Tom Price, R-Ga.

The national names will join local Tea Party regulars, including radio hosts Dana Loesch and Gina Loudon, as well as local Tea Party co-founder Bill Hennessy and local blogger Jim Hoft (also known as "Gateway Pundit").

Republican 3rd District congressional candidate Ed Martin is scheduled to speak at the rally and at the later town hall.

Rally organizers are hoping for their biggest turnout yet, sending a message to candidates of all parties that local Tea Party activists plan to flood the polls on Election Day.

The event should get a boost once word gets out that some of the planned downtown highway construction work slated for the weekend has been postponed. But the reason -- predictions of rain -- also could put a damper on the rally.

Hennessy said in an interview this afternoon that he's expecting at least 10,000 people to show up for Sunday's rally, based on registrations received on the St. Louis Tea Party's Facebook site.

Hennessy also emphasized that Tea Party activists won't be advocating for particular candidates, but instead are focusing on issues.

The rally's message, he said, is to encourage Americans "to rebuild society,'' to shift away from relying on government, to seek lower taxes, and take more personal responsibility to make life better for the next generatiion.

National Park Service officials have waived their usual restrictions barring signs on sticks or polls, he said.

Back to the bus.

The Spending Revolt National Bus Tour has been underway for weeks, traveling the country to highlight how, in the sponsors' view, "the mounting federal spending crisis is jeopardizing America’s future."

More from their release:

" 'Spending Revolt' is a new coalition of taxpayers, families, business owners, and policy organizations committed to educating and engaging citizens about how the mounting federal spending crisis is jeopardizing America’s future."

"The red and blue emblazoned Spending Revolt Bus is bringing speakers, events and a mobile activist hub to cities across Missouri, and hundreds of other locations nationwide, to demonstrate how the federal government’s escalating spending spree is bankrupting American taxpayers. Participants will be encouraged to sign the bus and show their opposition to reckless government spending."

The tour already is targeting a film festival in Warrensburg, Mo., that is being funded with federal stimulus dollars.

The coalition's members include Americans for Prosperity, the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste (CCAGW), Concerned Women for America, and 60 Plus Association.

Leaders from several groups are to join Kinder at the Sunday evening town hall in Clayton, which a spokesman said will be open to the public. People also can watch a tele-conference of the town hall, live, on the "Spending Revolt" web site, the spokesman said. 

Local spokesman Jim Gwinner emphasized that speakers -- including candidates such as Martin -- will not be allowed to discuss their campaigns or distribute their campaign materials. Such activities would violate the Spending Revolt group's non-partisan status, he said, adding that all area candidates for congressional officials have been invited to attend and speak, regardless of party.

Jo Mannies has been covering Missouri politics and government for almost four decades, much of that time as a reporter and columnist at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. She was the first woman to cover St. Louis City Hall, was the newspaper’s second woman sportswriter in its history, and spent four years in the Post-Dispatch Washington Bureau. She joined the St. Louis Beacon in 2009. She has won several local, regional and national awards, and has covered every president since Jimmy Carter. She scared fellow first-graders in the late 1950s when she showed them how close Alaska was to Russia and met Richard M. Nixon when she was in high school. She graduated from Valparaiso University in northwest Indiana, and was the daughter of a high school basketball coach. She is married and has two grown children, both lawyers. She’s a history and movie buff, cultivates a massive flower garden, and bakes banana bread regularly for her colleagues.

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