Original article by David Williams can be seen here:
Wastewatcher, August, 2010
Fed up with excessive government spending, the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste (CCAGW), Americans for Prosperity, the 60 Plus Association, Concerned Women for America, and AmericaSpeakOn.org have joined forces to create a new website, www.spendingrevolt.com and go on a multi-state bus tour to educate and activate taxpayers. The wake-up tour is intended to arm Americans with facts and figures about government spending so they can change their spending habits in Washington. The bus measures 70 feet long and has space for people to write “personal messages” to their elected officials.
The tour started on July 23 in Las Vegas and Reno, Nevada, the backyard of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and then headed to San Francisco, California, which includes the district of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).
I was glad to represent CCAGW and jumped on the bus in San Francisco on August 2. I rode the bus for four days from northern California south to San Diego. The following is a summary of the trip:
August 2, 2010 – The day started out in the belly of the beast – San Francisco (Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s district). City Hall was not exactly packed, but for a city known for its liberal politics we did not expect a huge turnout.
The bus then headed to conservative Walnut Creek, California, across the bay from San Francisco. The weather was 20 degrees warmer and the city was as different as the weather. We met with some local residents and candidates next to a 12-foot inflatable ATM machine. After an hour of political banter we headed to Danville, California to meet with the East Bay Tea Party. After a short presentation about the bus we went outside and people signed the bus.
August 3, 2010 – The day started out in Sacramento with a phone-in radio interview on KION in Salinas. The host asked if the bus was going to stop by Salinas. We had not planned on it but we did anyway because the whole point of the trip is to go where people want to see the spending revolt bus. Before Salinas we had a press conference at the foot of the State Capitol in Sacramento.
The event started at 11:00 am with California State Senator George Runner (R-17), several assemblymen, and Jon Coupal, President of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association. After a few quick remarks by the bus crew, the politicians and other citizens signed the bus.
After the press conference, we headed to Salinas to meet talk show host Mark Carbonara and some other folks, including a mayoral candidate. The day ended with a drive to Modesto to get ready for another long day.
August 4, 2010 – 4:45 am was our wake up call because the local radio station, AM 840, wanted to do live interviews about the bus from 6:00 am to 7:30 am. Local realtor, Jeff Eichel, allowed the bus to park in front of his business so people could sign the petitions. There was a steady stream of people but we had to leave at 7:30 am sharp to make the 11:00 am appointment. This was difficult because so many people came out to sign the bus.
We headed down to Bakersfield and had a quick event before we stopped in Los Angeles for the night.
August 5, 2010 - We visited Bell, California, a small gritty industrial town just outside of Los Angeles. Bell has been in the news because the city administrator was being paid $787,000 annually, the Police Chief was on the dole for $457,000, which included 20 weeks paid vacation! City Council members were also raking in $100,000 while the median income of Bell (population 38,000) was $28,000. Not knowing how we would be received, we did not stay very long.
All in all, the response to the bus tour has been very positive. Although many people feel helpless they do understand the need to be informed.
After I got off the bus in San Diego, to speak at the annual meeting of the American Legislative Exchange Council, the bus headed to Palm Springs, California and Arizona.
Future stops for the bus include Ohio, Indiana, Missouri, Arkansas, Tennessee, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia.