Tax Day rally in Newnan draws crowd again this year
It was a year ago that a small group of Coweta County residents organized an April 15 Tax Day Tea (Taxed Enough Already) Party rally outside Newnan City Hall. Last week, one year later, they were back. This time the rally was held at Greeville Street Park. Unlike many citizens’ movements, the local Coweta County Tea Party Patriots and the 9/12 Patriots that sponsored the rally are still here and don’t plan on ceasing their efforts.
Denise Ognio and Wendy Bloedt, two of the rally organizers, said 278 people attended the noon rally that featured a number of local residents along with state Sen. Mitch Seabaugh and Rep. Billy Horne.
Ognio began the rally by welcoming the audience to the event.
“The event here today is to show our stand and remind our elected officials that we will never stop defending the liberties and rights that are set for the in the Constitution of the United States,” Ognio said.
Speaking after the rally, Ognio recalled some of the emotions she felt during the event.
“I stood up there and cried when Sheri Henley sang America the Beautiful. And so did some of the others. The message of the song reflected my thoughts on America and what we’re working so hard to save,” Ognio said.
Bloedt last week noted her opening words to the group of nearly 300.
“All of you took the time out of your day to show up and be heard. Being a patriot is not an easy task. It takes money and it takes time. Your time,” Bloedt told the audience. “We know that and we appreciate that. Without your involvement there would be no ‘movement.’”
Bloedt’s remarks to the crowd included her reflection on the event that occurred one year earlier, just up the street at Newnan City Hall.
“When I stood here one year ago today, I had no idea what I would do next. I feared for my country and I worried for my children’s future, I knew then that my time of acceptance and complacency was over. I learned that day that I was not alone. Today I am going to challenge you because we need your help. We need you to be the grandfather that attends city council meetings. We need you to be the dad that sits in on school board meetings. I want you to be the mom who learns to be a lobbyist and the neighbor who works on a political campaign,” Bloedt said. “We all need to start doing things like that and I want you to talk to people about what you learn. If we are serious about taking back America we need to be very serious about working to make that happen.”
“It was most encouraging to see how many people signed up for the newsletters from the Tea Party and the 9/12 group,” Bloedt said after the meeting. “The people that we’re reaching that we didn’t reach before keeps us going.”
Referring to the April 15 rally, Bloedt recalled an older man at the rally who brought an American flag attached to a flag pole.
“He was an older gentleman who was dressed nicely. He stood there the entire time holding the American flag,” Bloedt said. “People do care and what we’re doing is important to people.”
Ognio agreed, adding that it is important that all citizens get to know and understand where the country is headed.
Both Ognio and Bloedt thanked the growing number of volunteers who continue to donate their time for a cause. They attend Coweta Tea party meetings, make signs, make phone calls and assist at functions like the April 15 rally, the two said.
“There was an older couple in our group. She got trained to do voter registration for the rally,” Ognio explained. “One of those who registered to vote said he hadn’t vote in years, but after hearing the speeches he knew he needed to register.”
Also speaking at the April 15 event were local musicians and producers Stan and Sheri Henley, Murray’s Minuteman Press (Newnan) owner Rob Bass, Americans for Prosperity Georgia representative Virginia Galloway and Fair Tax advocate and Congressional candidate Jim Duffie.