Mitt Romney spoke at a Tea Party rally in Concord, N.H., on Sunday night. (New York Times)
More than 35 protesters turned out today to protest Mitt Romney at a tea party rally.
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More than 25 protesters turned out before a Tea Party Express rally this evening to protest not President Obama, but Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney.
“We do not need leadership that puts their finger up, sees which way the wind’s blowing and then all of a sudden changes their mind and goes back in that direction,” Tim Carter, a leader of the Lakes Region Tea Party in New Hampshire. “If you look at Mitt’s past voting record, I think that’s what you’re going to see.”
“When you come to less government, which the Tea Party stands for, how could you possibly explain that with Romneycare?” Carter said. “It doesn’t even compute. “
The FreedomWorks rally was held before the larger Tea Party Express rally, where Romney was scheduled to speak. FreedomWorks had been active with the Tea Party Express, but pulled its staff member off the Express bus to protest Romney’s inclusion in today’s event. After holding the anti-Romney rally, it urged participants to join the Express event, held in the same place.
The Tea Party Express tour, which is crossing the country in the lead-up to a Tea Party-sponsored Sept. 12 presidential debate, invited all Republican presidential candidates to speak at rallies along the route. With the entrance of Texas Governor Rick Perry into the presidential race, Romney has showed signs that he will be reaching out more to Tea Party activists.
While some Tea Party leaders in New Hampshire say Romney has reached out to them and appeared at their events, none of his outreach has been as overt as today’s appearance at the Tea Party Express rally, followed by an appearance tomorrow at a Labor Day forum in South Carolina with Tea Party leader and Senator Jim DeMint. Some factions of the Tea Party have reacted angrily to Romney’s recent outreach, claiming Romney is not a true Tea Partier.