Of Sean Hannity, CNN and the tea party in Atlanta

So Sean Hannity, hero of Fox News, comes to Atlanta tomorrow to tug on CNN’s beard.

The streets around the state Capitol will be closed for one of the largest of 1,600 “tea party” protests across the country — juiced by news that Hannity will host his 9 p.m. show from the site.

Politicians, mostly Republican — perhaps even Joe the Plumber — will flock to the Atlanta event, which begins at 7 p.m. and runs concurrent with the Braves-Marlin game. A session with former U.S. House majority leader Dick Armey is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. or so at the Capitol.

Weather is expected to be clear and in the mid-60s. Organizers are expecting several thousand to show. “I wouldn’t be surprised to see 8,000 to 10,000,” said Randy Lewis, one of the many organizers. See the official web site here.

Fox has embraced the protests, and has scheduled its evening programming — coast-to-coast — to fit the anti-tax demonstrations.

On Monday, the move prompted CNN media commentator Howard Kurtz, who also writes for the Washington Post, to note that Fox has practically become “a co-sponsor.”

Kurtz acknowledged that CNN has been restrained in its coverage. Heavy Fox promotion has caused Atlanta organizers to worry that local TV affiliates might also be wary.

“We’re talking to all the affiliates. We’re trying to make sure they know Fox isn’t a sponsor,” said Randy Lewis, a publicist and organizer. “They’ve chosen to wrap their programming around the event. They’re not officially sponsors or anything. I suppose CNN could do the same thing. They’ve been behind the curve.”

Jared Thomas, head of the Georgia chapter of Americans for Prosperity — which is one of the sponsoring organization — holds out hope for some CNN love. “Certainly, we’d welcome a large cable network that’s based in our fair city,” Thomas said.

Some media have already made the commitment. Huffington Post, the left-leaning news aggregator, is soliciting “citizen journalists” to attend the event. “We’ll contact you shortly with further instructions,” the web site announced — oh, so ominously if you are of certain political leanings.

Said Fox’s Neil Cavuto, who will be attending a tea party in California:

“Only eight days before a nationwide tea party, some over-caffeinated crashers aiming to lay waste to it. Reports of very well-organized infiltrators trying to mix in and rain on this parade.”

Friends of the event could also be a problem. Thomas Wheatley at Creative Loafing reports that renegade Libertarians — the state party is a sponsor of the event — intend to pass out signage that takes issue with a certain celebrity’s position as hero of the American right.

The kindest message is an image of a screw (flat-edge, not Phillips) with the continued phrase, “Hannity and his Republican stooges. They’re the ones who started this train wreck.”

Seriously, traffic could be a concern. Below is the note sent to state employees by the Georgia Building Authority, with specific info on street closings:

Please be aware of increased traffic congestion and road closures on Wednesday evening due to a special event – the Atlanta Tea Party – at the Capitol. Washington Street, Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, Mitchell Street and Courtland Street (two block radius of the Capitol) will close at 6:30 p.m. The roads are slated to reopen about midnight.

There is no street parking immediately around the Capitol (Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, Washington Street, Capitol Square and Capitol Avenue) after 5 p.m. and the Steve Polk Plaza/Depot Parking lot will close at 3 p.m.

In addition to the Atlanta Tea Party, which is expected to draw several thousand attendees, the Braves host the Florida Marlins at Turner Field at 7 p.m., bringing sports fans downtown. Both the Atlanta Braves Shuttle and commuter buses are scheduled for regular operations on Wednesday.

For instant updates, follow me on Twitter.

266 comments Add your comment

Cynthia Tucker McKinney

April 14th, 2009
2:25 pm

Does anyone even watch CNN anymore? They have fallen behind the seldom watched PMSNBC in the ratings race.

Bnice

April 14th, 2009
2:51 pm

This tea party and Hannity is just like the GOP, lame, dried up, and not worthy. It’s a gimmick. No one has Tea parties anymore!

Deborah

April 14th, 2009
2:53 pm

Do people actually think all this through? I mean, really, how would we have policemen, firemen, roads and infrastructure, etc. without paying taxes?

Jim

April 14th, 2009
2:55 pm

Your nomenclature says it all “pooper”. Most Americans are fed up with taxing and spending without regard to the wishes of the people who elected them. Your inability to grasp that simple concept is proof to all who might read this comment blog that you are of questionable value as a commentator on
this or any other issue. I am a gay man and your “homophobe” comment is just plain stupid. Wake up…and quite playing a whiny victim and become part of true change that starts with the citizenry.

The Snark

April 14th, 2009
2:57 pm

Yea, no more taxes! Let’s run the government on soda crackers and warm air!

Jim

April 14th, 2009
2:58 pm

Deborah: It is about our tax dollars being spent without regard to our consent or approval as the provider of those funds. Pork barrel spending, ear marks, bail-outs, printing money like it is…well…paper. THAT is what this is about. Appropriate and responsible use of our taxpayer dollars.

Do not let my more liberal friends paint this as a Republican movement. It is an AMerican taxpayer movement.

Old Dawg

April 14th, 2009
2:58 pm

Sean Hannity and FoxNews are a joke. News organizations report and/or comment on the news, they don’t create it. When was the last time you saw any of the news anchors of the major networks or CNN pulling a stunt like this? Never. True, CNN’s ratings have fallen, but it’s because the network maintains some level of journalistic ethics.

Fox simly doesn’t have them.

When will conservatives wake up and realize they are being taken for a ride? Just because Fox claims to be fair and balanced, but it’s like any propaganda plan and many conservatives can’t tell the difference!

Liberal Atlantan

April 14th, 2009
2:59 pm

I can’t believe there is another liberal in Ga. I thought I was the only one. I also can’t believe the conservatives keep insisting on using the phrase “tea-bagging”. It’s just so ripe for satire.

Nancy

April 14th, 2009
3:02 pm

Tea party my foot…. How about a glorified Klu Klux Klan get together. Notice there are no black people involved in these “parties”. Nobody boycotted all the money Bush spent, Katrina (no representation for where all the billions went, trillions overseas in Iraq, blow the place up, rebuild it, blow it up again…how is that for representation…bank bailout…)

The Oddball

April 14th, 2009
3:02 pm

Let’s reduce taxes some more. After all, we made those drastic cuts in early 2001, and we’ve hardly had any problems since.

Der

April 14th, 2009
3:03 pm

Ahahahhahaha! Teabagging is so kinky. But seriously, where were you guys during the tax and spend Bush years?! Didn’t hear a squeak out of you then as Mr. Bush and his rich tax-exempt friends drove our economy into the ground and left middle-class Americans to clean up the mess. I guess if you make over $200,000 a year, then you should be sore about President Obama’s plan to cut middle class taxes. Otherwise… hehehehe “teabagging” is a scream! Look it up on the internet!

metoo

April 14th, 2009
3:04 pm

Why hasn’t Hannity enlisted in the Army yet. Chicken Hawk!

Watta Load

April 14th, 2009
3:04 pm

So aside from being a huge way for the tea-baggers to vent some frustrations, what exactly are these events supposed to accomplish?

Will

April 14th, 2009
3:05 pm

yeah, an American taxpayer movement that conveniently coincides with republican fiscal policies.

Copyleft

April 14th, 2009
3:05 pm

Have they figured out exactly WHAT they’re protesting yet?

Because half of the supporters are taking great pains to pretend “this isn’t a partisan thing, it’s not about Obama”… and the other half are screeching with glee over the chance to “finally stick it to that damn Obama! Viva la Revolution!”

I’d encourage the tea-drinkers to get on message, if they have one. If it IS really about reining in reckless and wasteful spending, they may want to come up with a prepared answer to the likeliest question: Where were you for the past eight years?

Liberal Atlantan

April 14th, 2009
3:09 pm

Haha….”tea baggers”. God…that word has endless possibilities….

I guess this is a way for the tea baggers to show Washington that after 8 years, they’ve had enough of the incompetent president we elected! Oh wait…. no….I’ve gotten confused.

I guess there really is no reason to do this.

timthebrave

April 14th, 2009
3:09 pm

Tea parties for these idiots(no problem with being conservative but these idiots got us in this mess) and keg party for me. The only party that is going to really be going on is the Braves beating up on the fish at turner field. Tea or beer…..Your choice….

Come one, Come All!

April 14th, 2009
3:10 pm

Everyone is welcome, insane liberals, right-wing nutjobs and anyone in between—we’re all Americans. If you’re concerned about out-of-control spending by our GINORMOUS (and growing) government by ANY party in power, you should go. If you want your elected officials to actually READ huge spending bills before passing them, you should go. Seriously, could you do something like that at work and still keep your job???
Cradle-to-grave dependency on Uncle Sucker is NOT the liberty our nation’s founders had in mind. FREEDOM! INDEPENDENCE! INDIVIDUALISM! It’s what makes America great. Government does not. Stand up and be counted as an AMERICAN tomorrow.

Gary

April 14th, 2009
3:10 pm

Why the hell didn’t Sean Hannity and the rest of these Morons give a damn about this while it was happening over the past 8 years? This nothing more than sore losers at their very worst! This is why I will never again in my lifetime vote for a Republican candidate of any position even if their opposition was Octo mom! I was a Republican voter many years ago and the way the party acts today nauseates me. They have no business even having a political affiliation or rights of any kind in modern society.

Deborah

April 14th, 2009
3:12 pm

>Appropriate and responsible use of our taxpayer dollars.<

Who will decide?

Jim

April 14th, 2009
3:13 pm

Typical liberal sound bites. I think there is MORE than enough blame to go around ALL of Washington as to how “we” got “here”. Where is the call for Mr. Frank and Mr. Dodd to explain themselves re: Fanny and Freddie that in great portion created the home crisis our ENTIRE country faces?

(SILENCE) Hmm…didn’t think so.

As for Katrina, a less than stellar response by our FED GOV is apparent to anyone. TO characterize it as a Republicans didn’t care is not only ignorant it is misinformed. You may wish to research all the reports that clearly indicated the levees were NOT sufficient dating back…what twenty years? Money allocated from fed gov. to address such was gobbled up by the crooked Democratic good ol’ boy network in Louisiana ( Huey Long anyone…or his successors ring a bell)?

And for all you would be “wits”, the Tea Party refers to the Boston Tea Party, and how AMERICANS took action against taxation without representation, which is pretty much what we have now, inasmuch as our wishes go unaddressed. Please check the tax rate on over $200,000 per year earners, of which I am not even half of that. They are more than contributing their share already. Perhaps if the bozos on Washington (that this event is to address) were working for us instead of against us, we in the middle class would be receiving what we need without an inordinate tax burden.

john

April 14th, 2009
3:14 pm

That’s fair and balanced.

Kermit

April 14th, 2009
3:14 pm

I love the AJC poll today saying that Americans trust Obama – I guess that’s why the stock market tanked 154 points right after he got done speaking about the economy today. The ones who “trust” Obama must be the welfare queens, bums, and other non-contributers. Those with money, the investors, certainly aren’t trusting him as far as they can throw a portuguese water dog.

Jim

April 14th, 2009
3:15 pm

“Why the hell didn’t Sean Hannity and the rest of these Morons give a damn about this while it was happening over the past 8 years? This nothing more than sore losers at their very worst! This is why I will never again in my lifetime vote for a Republican candidate of any position even if their opposition was Octo mom! I was a Republican voter many years ago and the way the party acts today nauseates me. They have no business even having a political affiliation or rights of any kind in modern society.”

There you go, that makes sense. Just quit thinking for yourself there fella. One party system…oops, that’s SOCIALISM.

Glen Beck

April 14th, 2009
3:16 pm

(Sob) Leave Sean Hannity alone! (sob, sob) We (sob) LOVE (sob) our country (sob, sob, sob). Sean and I will show you all how tea-bagging is done! (sob, sob, sob, choke, sob, sob, sob)

Bdawg

April 14th, 2009
3:17 pm

Ya’ll have fun at your tea parties, but before you go, a quick history lesson. The symbolism with the Boston Tea Party is is really quite off. The Boston Tea Party and the rallying cry “taxation without representation” was because settlers were paying taxes to a foreign government. They weren’t complaining because they thought their taxes are too high, which is what this current movement is all about. Most attendees Wednesday that will whine about higher taxes actually are recieving more money in their paycheck b/c of the Obama stimulus plan. Yes, Obama is proposing higher taxes on some, those that make over $250,000 a year. If you want to go protest that people making more money than you pay too much taxes, go right ahead. But even under Obama’s plan, these folks will still be paying roughly 10 percent less than they did under Ronald Reagan’s presidency. Look, whining about taxes is about the easist thing to complain about. It’s easy. But overall we still pay less taxes than most industrialized nations. People don’t realize govt. spending is vital to our safety, quality of life, economy. I work for a local county govt. I can’t even count how many private businesses, contractors, etc. profit because the county spends money. If a road project can’t be done by us, we hire a contractor, who gets paid, creates jobs, etc. Local car dealerships profit because the county has to buy vehicles. I could go on and on. Yes, govt. spending is high, but I dont remember people holding tea parties when Pres. Bush was spending and increasing deficits. About the only people I can think of that pay no taxes whatsoever are people who live in the slums of third world countries (illegal aliens and low-income people here usually pay at least some sort of sales taxes, if not payroll taxes). So my point is, I’d rather pay taxes and live in the USA than not pay taxes and live in a third world country.

Liberal Atlantan

April 14th, 2009
3:17 pm

God, Jim, I can actually HEAR your condescending voice.

chatarri

April 14th, 2009
3:18 pm

Hmmm……I’m a Republican…..I’m attending the T.E.A. (Taxed Enough Already) party…..I have a lesbian cousin – she and her partner have been together for years and have 2 biological children by AI and an adopted child and I love all 5 of them dearly. I have a gay cousin and his partner who are just awesome and in the last 4 years, 4 of my 2nd cousins have given birth to mixed race babies. I am a white stay at home mom. And, people who are commenting on this column call us racist, bigots, homophobes. I don’t have a problem with people. I have a problem with taxes. I have a problem with people who don’t research what they bash – only follow the pack. I also have a problem with labeling Sean Hannity as the “hero of FoxNews”. He’s a talk show host. I love FoxNews – for the reporters and reports – not the talk shows. I’ll bet that over 1/2 of the people commenting on this site have never watched the “news” part of FoxNews, just as they’ve not talked to common Americans who are tired of watching our paychecks be taxed more and more.

timthebrave

April 14th, 2009
3:20 pm

Go to the braves game tomorrow. It will be a much better use of your time.

Jim

April 14th, 2009
3:20 pm

So Bdawg, what you are saying is we should not save you a seat?:)

Jim

April 14th, 2009
3:22 pm

Great advice Tim. Can see where your…um…priorites are located. Keep fiddling while everything around you burns.

Kermit

April 14th, 2009
3:22 pm

Hey, Bdawg – I feel like I am paying taxes to a foreign government I didn’t elect Obama and neither did the great state of Georgia.

William Thrasher

April 14th, 2009
3:24 pm

Protesters are paying less in taxes today than they did over the past 8 years. So why protest now? Mortgage bailout you say? Why was it okay to build Iraq and pay their mortgages over the past 8 years but you wanna raise hell about helping your neighbour out?

jbgotcha

April 14th, 2009
3:24 pm

Hannity was smart to make this circus run concurrent with the Braves game. That way, Gwinettians, Cobbites, and other OTP counties will be coming to the Atlanta anyway. This is such a lame way for the GOP to try and stay relevant.

atlantalefty

April 14th, 2009
3:26 pm

The only ‘liberal in Georgia’?– In a state of nearly 10 million there are millions of ‘us’ on the left my friends… and together with our more moderate conservative brethern we need to rid this state of the do-nothing, know-nothing, republican party and get some sensible transportation and educational policies in place …

Mark`

April 14th, 2009
3:27 pm

How did 1.5 million people attend the inaguration, but only 14 missed work? As far as I am concerned, this is about stopping Obama and his merry band of LOOTERS from empyting our treasury and putting our GRANDCHILDREN in debt. The Obamanation has to pay off his voters with entitlement and other welfare spending, and pay off big business and wallstreet too – in the form of bailouts. Our nation’s money is being looted from both ends! He keeps talking about taking from the “rich” and giving to the “poor”, but the “rich” apparently are our nation’s small business owners, and people’s GRANDPARENTS who simply tried to live a thifty life and save and invest enough to retire on! Being a millionaire ISN’T what it used to be!

GOD SAVE OUR REPUBLIC!!!

Pompano

April 14th, 2009
3:27 pm

Those commenting about eliminating taxes and ‘where were you for the last 8 years’ are totally clueless about this topic and should go find a blog on Brittany that matches your intellect.

Movements to over-haul our tax code have been building for years – geeez… you guys need to turn off American Idol and actually read some news.

And nothing in the Fairtax proposal advocates eliminating taxes. Of course the simple-minded will never be able to grasp the concept and obvious advantages. That’s why they throw out comments like KKK and play the race card – the typical response from people too stupid to understand a topic and formulate an intelligent comment.

jbgotcha

April 14th, 2009
3:27 pm

Shut your trap, Kermit! Don’t speak for the state of Georgia. My county voted Obama into office. *braces for obligatory racist comment*

Bdawg

April 14th, 2009
3:28 pm

No Jim, I don’t believe I can attend. I wouldn’t want to crash the party.

JB

April 14th, 2009
3:29 pm

Mr Galloway only enjoys gathering like the one in Oakland a couple of weeks ago for killing four police officers or maybe a good ole kill a few babies rally for the pro choice crowd. He is pandering to his bosses at AJC writing an article like this. I guess our system is not good enough for him. Europe and the middle East has all the answers.

jbgotcha

April 14th, 2009
3:29 pm

The sky is falling, the sky is falling!

Fair Tax

April 14th, 2009
3:30 pm

Why not put all of this energy into something that could actually produce results like the Fair Tax. Why instead of whining about the problem and blaming an administration that’s not even 3 months old, you present a solution like the Fair Tax. I’m so sick of the neo-cons and the hot air they blow. FAIR TAX, FAIR TAX, FAIR TAX

Jim

April 14th, 2009
3:30 pm

We keep printing money and selling our debts, pretty soon we will all be pressing “3″ for English, when the Chinese take over the “press one” button.
William, I jumped through so many hoops just to get a mortgage eight years ago. Once again, I remind us that it is ALL of congress steering our train off the track. Quit pointing fingers and use your hands to help your fellow Americans right this ship!

Howard

April 14th, 2009
3:31 pm

The issues is taxes, not racism, homophobia, or the like. Always the name callers, but never the ones to understand the ramifications of being over taxed. Taxes and spending are the issues. Wait until your cell cellphone bill reaches the level of New York taxed bills (one example).

timthebrave

April 14th, 2009
3:31 pm

Jim…..yes…arguing with close minded people is like telling a mormon that muslim is the way to go. A BIG WASTE of time. Your priorities might be how can I waste my time and not make any impact at all. I voted for Obama to be in office and I will trust that he makes good decisions. If we disagree then I will voice my concerns. I guess my choices are vote Republican and pay taxes on a war that won’t change minds or vote Democrat and give money to corporations that can’t run a business. Seems like a lose lose…..I’ll take the Braves

Mike

April 14th, 2009
3:32 pm

Jim, you mean spending money in search of fantasy island WMDs? Is that what you mean about Pork? The Iraq war was one of the biggest Pork projects known to man!

2time

April 14th, 2009
3:32 pm

Blacks will be home waiting for there reperation checks. Obama, One Big A$$ Mistake America!

Liberty

April 14th, 2009
3:32 pm

This rally is to show the government that we’re watching and aware of the wasteful private interest spending that’s been going on for decades. This spending is at all levels of government from federal to local.

This is not an anti-Obama rally. This is not a republican rally. This is not a rally of bigots. This is a rally for the people.

It’s a shame that Hannity and the Fox goons are highlighted.

Bdawg

April 14th, 2009
3:33 pm

Kermit Ga. may not have voted for Obama but the country as a whole did. You can’t stand Obama, well I couldn’t stand Bush. Sometimes your candidate doesn’t win. THat doesn’t mean we need to create faux rebellions against the President. Some of the things people like Glenn Beck have been saying are dangerous, encouraging Americans to take their country back “by any means necessary”. No need to create a militia. Try changing things at the ballot box.

fred

April 14th, 2009
3:33 pm

Funny how the left loves to call people names like, “racist, sexist, bigoted, homophobes they are”. Looked in the mirror today? Be nice if those on the left would get their facts right, heck, it would be nice if the main stream media would get there facts right.

I think Dr. Taiz said it best, “The worst thing you can ever do is be scared in the face of evil,… Never be too scared to stand tall and speak up.”

Since the left-wing has taken control of both houses in 2006 is when eveything went down the tubes. But it took all parties to put us were we are today. The blames goes around.

It is time to stand tall and speak up, support the Tea Party!