Protesters: Obama rail project doesn’t belong in Florida

January 29th, 2010 by

Tampa, Florida (WTSP)- They called themselves the Tea Party Protestors who are on a mission to stop what they call wasteful government spending.

Their biggest beef right now, the high speed rail system headed to Florida.

Photo Gallery: Obama and Biden visit Tampa

Several hundred people gathered at the corner of Kennedy and North Boulevard in Tampa, lining the streets as they waved signs and flags in protest.

They were hoping that the president would see their message as he traveled in his motorcade.

John Hendrix is the co-founder of the Tea Party Protestors. Armed with a bullhorn and signs, he spoke out as he waited for the President Thursday morning.

“The rail is going be expensive and not used by most of the people paying for it. And, the other thing is it’s ridiculous that they’re selling it as a jobs program,” Hendrix said.

It wasn’t exactly the news they were hoping to hear.

After all, the group has spent months and months protesting this very issue, only to hear the President announce his support during his first State of the Union address on Wednesday night as he prepared to make the support official during his Tampa visit.

Protestor Linda Green-Woodbury said, “We’re not an urban center. This is Florida. We don’t want to make us into Detroit or New York. Leave us alone: states’ rights, limited government. Let the people create jobs.”

The $1.25 billion in stimulus money is earmarked to help Florida break ground on a rail system between the city of Tampa and Orlando in 2011.

Protestor Eddie Adams, Jr. pointed at the problems that Americans are having right now as a reason not to spend stimulus dollars on high speed rail.

“Right now the concern of citizens is how am I going to feed my family. How am I going to pay rent, car payment?”

Those against high speed rail insist that money should be used at the state and local level for other things like healthcare and public safety.

“The reason these people are out here today is that they want the government to stop borrowing money and putting children in debt. They’re not listening to us,” protestor Matthew Falconer pointed out during an interview.

Tea Party co-founder John Hendrix said, “Barack Obama is ruining our country. He is a dictator for the new world!”

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