The Greenwood Commonwealth writes about opposition to the Tea Party in Greenwood.
The rally cannot be held outside City Hall because a city ordinance bars such events. Instead, it will take place in a portion of Whittington Park, provided Saulter secures the necessary paperwork from the Parks Department.
The planned protesting of taxes drew an immediate response from City Council President David Jordan, who first asked Saulter if former President George W. Bush was responsible for out-of-control Washington spending.
Saulter replied that Bush was responsible for some of the deficit spending that has taken place over the last few months.
Jordan said the state of Mississippi benefits a great deal from federal tax largess.
“Do you know that for every dollar Mississippi sends to Washington we get five back?” he asked.
Ward 3’s Ronnie Stevenson took up where Jordan left off.
“Why are you here now saying the government is out of hand and you weren’t here last year when the government was out of hand?” he asked.
The councilman said the planned Greenwood TEA party was just an excuse to bash the incoming Obama Administration.
“You’ve got a new administration. It’s only been there like two months, you’re not giving him a chance, but you’ve got billions and trillions of dollars being spent on a war . . . bail-outs” under Bush, Stevenson said.
“The national TEA party was organized after December. That’s the reason I was not here,” Saulter said.
The Commonwealth reported last week that Saulter, the organizer, had intended to invite the council to participate.
Saulter picked the date, April 15, tax day. She picked the time, noon until 1 p.m. She even picked the place, the front steps of Greenwood City Hall.
Now Saulter is waiting on one major detail — approval from the Greenwood City Council.
She is on the agenda for Tuesday’s council meeting.
Saulter said she first approached Greenwood Police Chief Henry Purnell about obtaining a permit.
“He said, ‘Go talk to the mayor. See if she had anything going on.’ He said he was going to give me a permit,” Saulter said.
According to Saulter, Mayor Sheriel Perkins told her there was nothing else planned for the day.
Instead, she views the council meeting as an opportunity to enlist city leaders to become part of the populist tax revolt cause.
“I want to invite all of them,” Saulter said.
“This is not a white issue, a black issue, a Democrat issue or a Republican issue. This is a ‘We the People’ issue,” she said.
State Senator and City Council President David Jordan, and Mayor Sheriel Perkins (wife of state Representative Willie Perkins), oppose the event according to Saulter.
UPDATE: You can watch Saulter and the Greenwood City Council discuss the Tea Party here on The Taxpayers Channel (the Greenwood / Leflore County public and government station). Begin watching at 12:30 through 32:05.