Political right and left take to streets on Tax Day

Political right and left take to streets on Tax Day »Play Video
Tea Party supporters (left) and anti-war activists (right) held Tax Day rallies in Eugene on April 15.

EUGENE, Ore. -- Tea Party supporters rallied Thursday in Eugene, protesting what they call ballooning government spending on both state and federal levels, while a few blocks away anti-war tax activists rallied against the billions spent on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The Tea Party crowd gathered at the federal building in downtown Eugene.

Organizers expected a crowd of 1,000 people, although estimates at the scene ranged from 600 to 1,000 at 6 p.m.

Participants were critical of government spending.

"I'm even more incensed about the taxes this year than I was last year," said Pat Anderson, a Eugene resident.  "I do believe that our politicians do hear us. And I do believe that in November, they'll really hear us."

"I think the government is spending too much of our money and it's just gotten too big and they're not considering what the people want," said Connie, a Springfield resident who did not give her last name.

At the downtown Eugene Post Office, anti-war tax activists conducted a "penny poll" on where people wanted their tax dollars to go. Each participant received 10 pennies to put in jars representing the federal budget.

"What we're seeing is people want to vote for human needs," said Peg Morton of Taxes For Peace Not War. "They want our budget to go to human needs. They also feel that administering the country is important fiscal stuff is important you know having the roads and the railroads and so on and they feel that we're paying much much too much for war."

Half of the votes in the penny poll went to human services. General military and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan combined for only 3 1/2 percent in the poll.