MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - When the Tea Party movement formed three years ago, the looming healthcare bill was one of their big talking points.
In a report filed in 2009, protestors told FOX10 News that they worried the health care reform bill would increase taxes beyond what Americans were able to pay.
One protestor said at the time, "Well, I hope that they will look and see that there are people across the country who are upset and that they want something to change, but they don't want to be taxed into oblivion."
Now for many Tea Party members, that fear has been realized. FOX10 News spoke with some tea party members with different opinions, but the crux was the same - they feel the federal government is getting out of control.
Tea party supporter Pete Riehm said, "The constitution was written to restrain the federal government from becoming all-powerful and tell the people and the citizens what to do."
Supporter Gene Labrato said, "You're mandating a tax. You're telling me I have to buy something."
Dr. Lou Campomenosi from the Common Sense Campaign said, "You can't fundamentally tell people to buy something, to do something. You can't compel them to do that. The fact is, its bad policy."
The Tea Party members we spoke to said it could be a boost to the republican base.
"We're not devastated, we're motivated now," said Labrato.
Campomenosi said, "Obama doesn't want to have to defend this because it's so unpopular. All along they've been saying it's not a tax, but now they have to argue, it is a tax."
The Tea Party members worry this could only be the start.
Riehm said, "The founders knew if you had a federal government that became too powerful, it would become tyrannical by nature."
As one Tea Party member put it, this is more than just an issue of a new tax. The big problem, they said, is big government.
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