Tea Party formed in Gilchrist County
By Carrie A. Mizell
A group of Gilchrist County citizens interested in preserving liberty and freedom in the United States of America have formed a Tea Party in Gilchrist County.
A grassroots movement of millions of like-minded Americans from all backgrounds and political parties, Tea Party members support the United States Constitution as the founders intended, through: limited federal government, individual freedoms, personal responsibility, free markets and returning political power to the states and the people.
The first meeting of the Gilchrist County Tea Party will be Tuesday, Oct. 18 at the Trenton Community Center beginning at 7 p.m.
According to Charlie Perez, dozens of Gilchrist County residents have been attending the Gainesville and Lake City Tea Party meetings.
“Several residents got together and thought it might be time for this county to form it’s own group,” Perez explained. “Dixie, Levy and Columbia counties all have their own Tea Parties.”
The group of Gilchrist County residents who are spearheading the local Tea Party consider themselves non-partisan, concerned citizens. A staunch supporter of the Tea Party movement, Charlie Perez, was asked to help start up the group.
A year-long process soon began, Perez explained. The first step was meeting with the president and vice president of the Gainesville Tea Party to see how one would go about forming a Tea Party group. A corporation had to be created, an Internet domain had to be secured, e-mail addresses had to be established, applications had to be submitted, t-shirts and business cards created and a number of other things had to be completed.
“It’s been a full time job since I retired as fire chief,” Perez said. “But the reaction and feedback has been incredible. Everywhere I go, as people hear about the Tea Party, they want to join. Our ultimate goal will be to have about 2,000 members and so far we’re off to a great start.”
The Gilchrist County Tea Party has adopted the national principles, which they use as their focus. According to Perez, the group has also adopted goals of efficient and effective public safety services for law enforcement, EMS/fire rescue, safe roads and excellent schools.
“The Tea Party’s focus will be on helping the electorate stay informed on local, state and federal issues,” Perez said. “We will be encouraging citizens to become active in helping to reform government so that the core principles of our founding fathers become the foundation upon which America stands. We want to return the U.S. to the people.”
There will be a lot of attention focused on local government as well.
“In 2012 there will be numerous elected positions coming open in Gilchrist,” Perez said. “We are going to put a lot of effort into the theory that good government starts at the local level. Marco Rubio is a prime example of that. He began as a city commissioner in West Miami and climbed the ladder. You never know, someday a U.S. president may come from Gilchrist County.”
While the Gilchrist County Tea Party will not endorse candidates for office, Perez said the organization’s members will put forth time and effort trying to recruit people to run for local office.
According to Perez, who is the acting president of the Gilchrist County Tea Party, nationally recognized speaker and former Florida Assistant State Attorney and constitutional lawyer Kris Anne Hall will be the keynote speaker at the Gilchrist County Tea Party’s first meeting on October 18. Hall is the author of “Not A Living Breathing Document; Reclaiming Our Constitution.”
Mark the calendar now for upcoming meeting days on November 15 and December 20.
To learn more about the Gilchrist County Tea Party visit: www.gilchristcountyteaparty.com or e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com, or firstname.lastname@example.org
Anyone interested in joining the Gilchrist County Tea Party’s e-mail list is encouraged to e-mail one of the above members. Regular updates, weekly newsletters and information on upcoming meetings will be set via e-mail.