- The Washington Times - Friday, March 19, 2010

Four lawmakers, one movie star, one relative of President Obama and a broad coalition of 30 “tea party” and grassroots interest groups plan a noisy “Code Red” protest rally outside the Capitol on Saturday to call for the defeat of Mr. Obama’s heath care reform package.

The group will gather at noon in Senate Park, just a day before House members will likely take their vote on the lengthy and contentious legislation, which has been as closely chronicled by the press as the March Madness basketball rivalries.

Among the lawmakers planning to protest Saturday will be Republican Reps. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota, Tom Price of Georgia, Joe Wilson of South Carolina and Phil Gingrey of Georgia.

Academy Award-winning actor Jon Voight and Dr. Milton Wolf — Mr. Obama’s second cousin and a physician opposing heath care reform — will also join the fray.

Mr. Voight, who recently signed on with Fox to star in a new primetime drama “Midland”, is not shy about mixing his Hollywood background with his conservative activist instincts.

Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi “will stop at nothing to fulfill her corrupt conquests. She will bring all of the corrupt ACORN liars to try to bully all the Democrats that may be having pangs of guilt knowing quite surely what their votes can and will do. If they’re bullied into saying ‘yes,’ it will destroy America,” Mr. Voight said.

The diverse array of interest groups scheduled to be on hand ranges from the Memphis Tea Party and the Tea Party Express to Let Freedom Ring, Americans for Prosperity and 60-Plus, a conservative seniors advocacy group.

“All of the groups have a mutual goal — to band together to communicate the frustration of the people and demand the termination of this health bill legislation,” said Jennifer Hulsey, co-founder of American Grassroots Coalition, which has organized the event.

The group will linger long enough on the National Mall to stage a candlelight vigil around the Capitol on Saturday night. Leaders say Mrs. Pelosi and her allies have resorted to parliamentary tricks to pass the health bill despite polls showing the legislation is increasingly unpopular with the public.

“The Democratic-led Congress is using procedural and legislative rules to ignore the overwhelming opposition to this,” said Mark Skoda of the Memphis Tea Party.

“The will of the American people is being subverted by these actions and the grassroots activists who make up this coalition are focusing their energy to kill the bill.”

The group has a Web site with updates on its activities at www:americangrassrootscoalition.org

• Jennifer Harper can be reached at jharper@washingtontimes.com.

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