Initially, organizers of the National Tea Party Convention, set to take place in Nashville, TN next month, garnered significant press attention for featuring headliners like Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), WorldNetDaily founder Joseph Farah, and former Alaska governor Sarah Palin. However, Tea Party loyalists began to balk at the expensive price of tickets and the fact that the venture is for-profit, saying that it smelled “scammy.” Now, both Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and Bachmann have decided to drop out. A statement from Bachmann’s communications director:
Due to conflicting advice on whether Congresswoman Bachmann’s participation in the upcoming Tea Party Nation Convention would be in line with the Committee on Standards, Congresswoman Bachmann has decided not to participate in the event. There is uncertainty about how any proceeds from the event may be used, and we must err on the side of caution. Some will want to portray her withdrawal as a repudiation of the Tea Party Movement, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Congresswoman Bachmann remains encouraged by all Americans, regardless of political party, who are concerned about this nation’s future and dwindling prosperity, and continues to be inspired their passion.
As of this posting, the Tea Party Convention website still has both lawmakers listed on its “speakers” page.