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Another Tea Party, another huge success. Not. Last night, in Annapolis, MD there were thousands!, nay, hundreds of outraged citizens demanding change!

That little grassroots group, Americans For Prosperity, marched on Annapolis last night to let their voices be heard that they want smaller govt and less spending, you know, like when Bush was president. The huge success of this event is partially due to former Governor Bob Ehrlich:

Expectations for the rally were heightened last week when former Maryland governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R) used his radio program to promote the event, which coincided with the opening day of the state's 2010 legislative session.

Just how big was the crowd?

The event was certainly not the biggest -- one state law enforcement officer estimated the gathering at about 500 people. But Ehrlich, who arrived in a green winter coat and gloves, said the turnout made a statement - even if most members of Maryland's Democratic majority had long since left the State House.

Holy moly! 500! But, it was 500 highly energized people prompted by Mr. Ehrlich to make their voices heard! So, surely, Mr. Ehrlich spoke the crowd. Nope.

Ehrlich did not address the crowd, and partially distanced himself from the gathering. "This is not an Ehrlich rally. I'm in the bleachers back here. On the radio show, they ...
asked me to give it some press and then [my wife] Kendel and I were saying, 'well we're asking people to come out in a cold tonight, we live two minutes up the road. We better show up, too.'"

We better show up, too. That about sums it up.


Well, of course, the Americans For Prosperity website accurately portrayed this event, right?

AFP-Maryland was a proud sponsor of last night's successful "1-13: March On Annapolis" TEA Party where thousands of citizens filled Lawyers Mall to have their voice heard and demand a change in policy. Joined by other grassroots groups like Campaign for Liberty

OK, we have conflicting reports. Was it thousands or hundreds? The AFP article clears this up. It seems the "mainstream media" got it wrong.

I also want to mention the reports coming from the mainstream media in regards to crowd size. ABC2 News and WBAL portrayed the scene pretty accurately. The Baltimore Sun and other outlets used the Department of General Services (a department filled with appointments by Gov. O'Malley) which reported only "hundreds" in attendance.

Unfortunately, AFP's defense of their crowd size falls flat. The WBL link takes you to the news video, where the title for the video is "Hundreds protest" and the first thing the anchor says is "several hundred people".

What's even funnier is that the news report goes on to say that the event was treated like an Ehrlich pep rally with signs and chants of "Bring back Bob!".

So, the people who did show up were there to see Ehrlich, who did not speak, and support his 2010 run for governor. Nice.

Oh, and of course there were the great signs like "Eat More Spotted Owl". And great quotes like "less government and the market will take of things".

Originally posted to jpolon on Thu Jan 14, 2010 at 09:26 AM PST.

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