The tailgating begins today, at noon, when perhaps thousands of conservative and libertarian activists will walk the halls of Congress in protest of health care reform. Conservative YouTube populist Michele Bachmann described the whole idea on with Fox News’s Gretchen Carlson. (Fun fact: Bachmann used to babysit Carlson in Anoka, Minn.)
Jon Voight is coming!
Politico’s Mike Allen has more details on the planning behind the Don’t-Call-It-A-Rally.
A “House Call” rally/presser will be held at noon today on the House steps of the West Front of the U.S. Capitol. Aides said they expect a large number of vocal “Americans from across the nation,” including a notable Tea Party contingent. AT THE SAME TIME: “Patients First,” a project of Americans for Prosperity, has 25 buses from New York, New Jersey, Penn., MD, VA and North Carolina, bringing 1,000 people to the Capitol steps. In addition, organizers claim nearly 10,000 people will be making “house calls” to protest a dozen or so House Democratic district offices today.
“PLEASE MAKE SURE YOUR BOSS DOES NOT TERM THIS EVENT A ‘RALLY’” — Brendan Buck, Communications Director of the Republican Study Committee, e-mails House GOP aides about the “House Call” on Washington: [T]he event will begin at noon on West front of the Capitol. We fully expect it will bleed beyond one hour, but our stated end time is 1:00. There will be full press and a sound system for the crowd to hear our speakers. Members will gather at 11:50 in the basement of the Capitol, downstairs from the Crypt, so that they can walk together down the West front steps on the House side. Members will begin to walk down just prior to noon. There will be a stage at the bottom of the steps. Some members may stand on the stage, while the rest will fill in on the steps. We hope to have as many members as possible for a strong visual. There will be press and cameras just in front of the stage, and beyond them will be a good size crowd gathered on the Southwest lawn of the Capitol grounds. The event will begin with a prayer and the national anthem. … Please know that this is a ‘press event,’ ‘press conference,’ or ‘House Call on Washington’ but not a ‘rally’ or ‘protest.’”