Sunday, September 26, 2010

Tea Party Express on Face the Nation: We Turn Politics on Its Head


"Where do you get this money?" Schieffer asked. 
"Well, the Tea Party Express is a federal political action committee. We don't have a 501(c)3 or a 527 or any of these other devices. So all of our money has to come from individuals," Russo said. "By law we can't take corporate donations, and our contributions are limited to less than $5,000. So we have about a half-million members around the country. They contribute, I think, about an average of $62, $63 per person. 
"So we're the purist form of democracy, I think, in the Tea Party movement," Russo said, "in the sense that when we want to do something we don't have any money to start with. We have to send an e-mail out to our people and say, 'Hey, we think Sharon Angle will be a great candidate in Nevada. Do you want to get behind her? Here's what we want to do to get on television.' They have to send us money to finance it. 
"We're very responsive to what our people want. If we have good ideas, then they respond by contributing, and we're able to go out and help these campaigns." 
"So are you telling me that you don't get any donation larger than $5,000? No way, no how somebody could give your organization more than that, one single person?" Schieffer asked. 
"That's absolutely correct," Russo replied.