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An Independent Voters View | Interview with a TEA Party Activist | Meet Ann Lindholm

Updated on May 13, 2010

There has been much in the news of late about the nature and tone of the TEA Party participants. The news coverage and speculation by the politicians seemed to be way off base from my personal experience, talking with the TEA Party folks at some of their rallies, so I thought I’d help some of you who may not know any of the people rallying out there on the street; calling for change, by introducing you to one of the Savannah Georgia areas TEA Party activists.

I met Ann last August at a town hall meeting, held by our congressman Rep Jack Kingston (R). The auditorium was packed and it was Standing Room only up in the balcony, when questions were being asked some one around us started asking for a chair. Being a gentleman my friend Bill found one and gave it to Ms Lindholm, but instead of sitting down she stood up on the chair so she could be seen (she’s about 5’2”), and started asking her questions from a list she carried with her. Tough pointed questions about what the proposed legislation would do to TRICARE the military health insurance for families. After she stepped down, we (Bill and I ) introduced ourselves and exchanged cards with Ann and later that day I checked her web site, American Soldiers Wife and read about a caring and engaged individual, serving our country along side her husband. Not the plotting radical that the News Media or certain elected representatives would have you believe, so I am proud to introduce you to Ms Ann Lindholm, an American Soldiers Wife..

Ann Lindholm
Ann Lindholm

   1. Ann, I covered the highlights in the Introduction but would you please tell us more about yourself?

I am the wife of an American Soldier, I am foremost, a Christian.  I make my decisions and choices based on my faith in Jesus Christ and His will for me.  I am the mother of four amazing children who have a genuine desire to know God and share Jesus with others.  I am a nationally certified personal trainer, which is how I met my sweet husband; he hired me as a trainer at his gym.  I had just started college when I was pregnant with my first daughter and did not finish.  I have returned to school full time for an Assoc. Degree in Homeland Security.  I have always been interested in politics, the political process, etc. thanks to my wise father.  I have not been actively involved until Obama began campaigning for the Presidency.  So, you have Obama to thank for my involvement.

   2. What got you involved in the TEA Party movement?

I was extremely upset at the large corporate bail outs, frivolous and irresponsible spending habits of our government leaders, and scared to death of the direction our nation was headed.  I heard about the tea parties being planned on Fox News and was told to go a particular web site to find the one nearest me.  I did, and attended my first tea party rally at RousakisPlaza down town in Savannah.  I brought my three youngest children with me.  I was fired up and knew from that moment, I had to get in the middle of it and do something more than just scream.  I joined the Savannah Tea Party Committee.

   3. What would you say are the objectives of the TEA Party? How does that align or differ from your own personal ideas or objectives?

It is difficult to say what the objectives are for “the” tea party.  There are numerous tea party groups, too many to count, all across the nation.  I can only speak for a few that I know the members personally. 

Some Parties have the intentions of getting politically involved, vetting candidates, endorsing candidates, holding fund raisers, etc.  Others have the intentions of solely holding rallies for the purpose to inform and educate the public.  Then, there are yet, other Parties, such as the 13th Colony Patriots, who serve more as watch dog type groups.  They are politically involved, hold debates etc.  They also do a lot of research on candidates and politicians.  They keep a close eye on who votes how and what their actions are. 

They have made many trips to D.C. and have not only rallied on the lawn, but they have actually hand delivered petitions, scheduled appointments with legislators and attended those meetings, they have been involved with training conferences and other important activities to carry the rallies into a much needed new realm of activism.  It is one thing to rally and protest, but it is another thing to actually create the change and be a part of that change.  You will meet resistance along the way, but that is okay if what you are standing for is just, morale, and stands on principle and value.

   4. The loose national organization has been the subject of much derision by the professional politicians; could you explain how the TEA Party is organized?

Again, I cannot explain how every Tea Party is organized.  It truly is a grass roots movement, a revolution.  There is no nationalized organization or cookie cutter plan to follow.  There is no messiah, or one leader.  In fact, when our groups have gone to D.C. and to these other training conferences; such as the one I attended last January hosted by American Majority known as the Post Party Summit, we continue to find out that there are more and more Tea Party groups near us that we had not heard of.  It literally is a grass roots movement.  We pay our own way to get to events.  We raise funds to put on the rallies.  We pay for the buses that charter us to D.C., etc.  We do not have organizations such as ACORN, SEIU,, OFA, or any other organization that pays our way or buses us in and out.  Nor do we want them to. 

We do it because we believe in what we are doing and we love our country.  We do it for the future generations, in hopes that they will not have to.  We do it because our forefathers did it for us.  We do it, because we love our freedom.

   5. Does the organization need a leader? If so who do you think is a likely candidate?

NO.  That is exactly what we are fighting against and protesting against now.  The abundance of government involvement, and the intrusion of bureaucracy in what should be our own business.  We want freedom.  We want free enterprise.  We are smart, intelligent, and independent thinkers who are capable of making decisions for ourselves.   We are capable of uniting with others who are of like mind and creating change without needing an organized leader.

   6. Has the TEA Party started raising ‘structural’ funds say like the DNC or RNC does to support candidates nationwide?

No.  There are a few groups and PACs, such as Americans for Prosperity, American Liberty Alliance, and American Majority who support the movement by providing training conferences, educational materials, on-line classes, network capabilities, etc.  They also unite several groups and go on Tea Party Tours, working in conjunction with other groups and people.

   7. The TEA Party has often criticized the TARP legislation, and Auto industry bailouts, with more and more of the loans being repaid (even by GM), do you still think it was the wrong thing to do? Why?

Yes.  This is the original reason why I showed up at the first rally.  It is not the government’s place to bail corporations out when they cannot follow fiscally responsible standards.  No where in the Constitution is there a provision that states this.  Many say that if they had let them fail that our economy would have plummeted, and we would have gone into a deep recession.  I don’t know that it would have been a bad thing necessarily.  I am not saying I wish that would have or ever will happen.  What I am saying is that learning from our mistakes is appropriate.  We teach our children from a very early age that they will suffer real consequences for their actions.  They can not expect to be bailed out or always carried through.  My parents did this to an extent as well.

 Frankly, I deserved to fail a lot more and probably would have made some harder mistakes as a younger person; but, I would rather make those mistakes then when it counts less.  As an adult the mistakes get bigger and hurt worse.  Same goes for large corporations, you keep bailing them out and they will not learn true fiscal responsibility, nor will their peers.  As a married couple, we have made mistakes.  We have to live on a tighter budget now.  It does hurt that we cannot provide our children with everything that they want.  Honestly, if we could, we still would not give them everything.  They must learn how to help themselves, which is why our 15 year old has a job.  She is not happy about it, but, she wants to buy expensive hair care products, then she will work.

The large corporations want to run a business.  They knew long before they were going bankrupt that they were not doing well.  Going bankrupt does not happen over night, usually.  It usually happens because of bad habits and other misfortunes.  Nonetheless, one can usually see it’s foreshadow.  My point, make plans long before you know you need them.  Was it not odd that so many large corporations all of a sudden needed to be bailed out so quickly or our economy was going to bust.  Why was it that all Americans somehow were going to feel that burden if we did not bail them out?  Who is feeling that burden now?  We are.

Are you aware of what is in the Economic Stimulus Package and the Auto Industry Reinvestment Act?  I will tell you just a few things:

1)  Legal counsel for clearing the credit history of criminals exiting the prison system,

2) Highway construction and pot hole filing,

3) Special teachers and assistance for students in urban areas who are failing to meet the state standards for graduating,

4) Lap top computers and tazers for city and local level police departments,

5) Loans and loan repayment assistance for rural housing,

6) Funding for local community centers of which the funds have not even been used yet.  Might I add that these loans are on a “revolving” account which means that once the loans are repaid, the President and those in positions to make decisions of allocations can reallocate funds again and again.  We are talking over $17 Billion!!!  Does that not bother you?  That is what the tax payers are paying for.  I did not realize that pot holes were such an emergency.  I sure would like to get my credit history cleared, maybe I should commit an offense, get arrested, go to jail, and then I can get it cleared for free, by you, the tax payer.

The other thing to consider is the budget crisis in the public schools massively sweeping across our nation.  In ChathamCounty specifically they are talking about raising the millage rate and property taxes to help “bail them out” of their financial crisis which they created.  Did they seriously not see this coming?  If you look at the 2008 budget for  ChathamCounty you will find how much the school board members were getting paid in 2008.  The superintendent alone had a total combined salary, after fringe benefits and other bonuses, of $837,918.  Wow.  They have at least five financial legal advisors raking in the dough, yet, they are $37.5 million in the tank.  Hmm.  Maybe they should reconsider paying financial advisors who missed the misfortunate debt problem rolling in.  They pay for cell phones and service for numerous staff members.  They only recently lowered that to just 55 members.  Why not use hand held radios?

   8. What do you see as the top three issues in the upcoming congressional campaigns?

Fiscal Responsibility, economy (to include jobs), more power to the state of Georgia, the education (budget is way out of control and leaders are corrupt)

   9. How active is the TEA Party in the local and state wide races?

It depends on the individual group.  Some are very involved and active, others not so much.  The Savannah Tea Party has chosen to not participate, I do not that support that decision.  I wish we would get more involved.  13th Colony Patriots are involved, Golden Isle Tea Party is very involved as well as some others.

  10. What issues are facing Georgians in these races and what are the key issues for Georgia?

Education is losing its credibility fast!  The School Board, even quicker.  The job market, it is hurting way too many people.  I know too many small business people personally who are literally getting four hours of sleep  a night because they cannot afford to hire anyone else and they have to do most of the work themselves.  I also know many who are still looking for work or have accepted jobs way below their expertise just to suffice until they can find something else.  Some people have to move away from Savannah to find work in other thriving areas.  This will hurt Savannah now and in the long run.  Savannah is already behind in many aspects.

  11. Is there anything else you would like to tell our readers?

1.        Vote on candidates based on their values, principles, and integrity.  NOT their personality, your friendship with them, or any loyalties or allegiances.  Vote for who is best for the job and who will represent you and the whole in the best way.

2.       REGISTER to vote.  Educate yourself on all of the candidates before it is time to vote.  Call them if you have to.  VOTE!

3.       Get involved in the political process.  It does not end after you vote.  Your job is not over.  We are the managers.  We are to keep a close watch on our elected officials.  If they are failing to meet our standards, then we must let them know that.  We must stay in contact with them.  Support them when they perform well and Expose them when they do not.

4.       Do not be afraid to talk politics with your family, friends, and neighbors.  Be cordial, but bring it up.  Be knowledgeable, informative, and kind.

5.  Vote for Max Wood GA Attorney General and vote for Ray McKinney Congress 12thDistrictGA

Thank you John for your service to this great nation.  Thank you for wanting to interview me, I hope that I do not scare your audience away!  God bless.

Ann Lindholm

So you see I think that the folks aligned with the TEA Party are not the picture being painted by the mainstream media. It is a group of dedicated Americans working in the realm of civil political discourse to bring the light of day to the problems facing America. You may agree or disagree with them, but you can not discount the commitment and the impact they are likely to have in the coming years. Thank You Ann, keep up your good work, and God Bless you and America!!

Note: Comments are always welcome and I recognize that many who might read this may disagree with me or with Ann, if you do so in a civil way you comment will be displayed and answered by me. Thank you in advance, and God Bless!

Was this info Useful?  Funny? Beautiful? Awesome? If you think so rate it so if you liked it give it a green button push as well. Much Thanks to all who stopped by!!


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    • Hi-Jinks profile image


      8 years ago from Wisconsin

      I hope you are right. If you walk the walk, then you have no need to adverstise the fact. Being a Christian should be obvious to all.

      I like to think that I am a Christian, but seeing that others use Christianity to lie, cheat, and to start wars. Makes me want to be something else.


    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      Habee - Thanks for stopping By!!

      Hi-Jinks - As I had kept track of Ann for a while before this article I can only say that her morale character and her Christian philosophy are a fundamental part of her life.

      Ann has through many positive activities, shown the folks around Savannah that she walks the walk, thus showing the folks around here that she is a 'good and proper person' Had it been otherwise this interview would have been much different.

    • Hi-Jinks profile image


      8 years ago from Wisconsin

      Once a person starts out by saying how much a Christian they happen to be, then I believe all they will say will be a lie.

      Don't tell us you are a Christian, show us that you a proper and good person.

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 

      8 years ago from Georgia

      Thumbs up, John, on a wonderful interview. Has one of the cable news shows hired you yet??

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      Thank You Ann - Keep in the Fight!! Hooah!

    • profile image

      Ann Lindholm 

      8 years ago

      Thank you all for being interested in the Tea Party movement. I would like to touch on a few things. I am a registered Republican voter. I am a committee member of the CCRP and attend the Exec. Meetings as well as the Chairperson for New Media. That being said, just a year ago I was ready to throw in the towel on the GOP. I got involved with the GOP because of some wisdom provided to me by several prominent people that I highly regard. They made me realize that if I truly wanted to see real conservative change take place then I should quit whining and get involved. I did. Deeply. I may go against the grain, often. I may not necessarily play by their rules all the time, or most of the time. I am not satisfied with the status quo. However, you may find that being a new member entering a long-time established organization people may be a little resistant to change. I however, face change head on when it is necessary. The Republican Party needs change. It needs to re-establish itself and its conservative values and principles.

      Secondly, yes, I support and endorse several Republican candidates. However, I will only support and endorse a candidate who stands on integrity, morale character, values, and principle. They have to share the same Christian views as me and support the Constitution. They must also be qualified for the job. I could care less if their speech delivery is dry as toast, or they have a corny personality. I could care less if they are a friend, family member, or saved my life. They must meet those requirements period.

      I not confused about where the Tea Party stands. I am frustrated when groups or individuals do not like something yet do nothing proactive in the way of creating a solution or effective change. I see this with a few of the Tea Parties.

      I am not confined by the Tea Party, nor am I confined by the Republican Party. I am an American who has the right to choose whom I will vote for or not vote for. I can choose what group to work with or not.

      The Tea Party Movement is vital to change. It is important to me be involved with that "hopes" that my children will not have to do this again. However, my children are learning the principles along with me as they attend many of the events and see the way I live my life daily, making calls to Representatives, Senators, Congressmen, etc. They too, in a sense, are making these sacrifices along with me.

      Again, thank you all so much for taking the time to listen and have such an open mind. It is important for us to be able to have these civil debates. God bless. Ann

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      AIM - Just a reminder that there are many, many ways to support and defend the Constitution, both in word and deed, it's a life time project..Hoooah!

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      Gus and CM - Thanks my friends for stopping by and your Kind Words..

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      PAM - Thank you for confirming the info, Keep up the good work and have your voice heard!

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      POP - The more one knows the more I think we all have reason to support these folks, the TEA Party one day will be used as a case study of Democracy in Action..Thanks

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      RTE Thanks for stopping by! Appreciate it..

    • Army Infantry Mom profile image

      Army Infantry Mom 

      8 years ago

      High Five !!! I love the way you involved yourself in finding out the truths regaurding these tea parties and High five for stepping up and getting this Awesome interview !!! Great Work Big John !!!! HOOAH !!!

    • carolina muscle profile image

      carolina muscle 

      8 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina

      good interview!!!!

    • GusTheRedneck profile image

      Gustave Kilthau 

      8 years ago from USA

      Big John - Your article here has deservedly elicited much commentary from readers. Nice work!

      Gus :-)))

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      8 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Hmrjmr, This is really a great hub and I agree with both of you. The interview with Ann answered many questions people have, and I thought she explained her position very well.

      I attended a tea party meeting for about 25 people in someone's home and they had a speaker that explained their purpose and plans which were fairly similar to Ann's. They don't plan to endorse a candidate but, a team of people are researching every candidate so you will know a lot about the person you are voting for. Everyone was polite, well educated, etc. and the rally on 4/15th was great as well.

    • breakfastpop profile image


      8 years ago

      Fantastic, informative and important interview. Ann is representative of an ordinary citizen with extraordinary talent and dedication. Thanks for lifting the veil of idiocy that the mainstream media has imposed upon the Tea Party Movement. One thing, out of many, that Ann said that I really support is the belief that the movement does not need a leader. The beauty of the Tea Party is that it is a grass roots effort that should remain exactly the way it is. The movement, in my view, is the greatest expression of democracy that we have seen in a very long time. Washington and the media should be celebrating its existence.

    • readytoescape profile image


      8 years ago from Central Florida


      Another great interveiw, you're getting really good at this. Well done my friend.

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      50 Cal - Dusty glad you enjoyed the read, If the Mainstream Media won't tell the story it's up to us. Thanks!

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      lorlie - Thank you Ma'am!

    • 50 Caliber profile image

      50 Caliber 

      8 years ago from Arizona

      Hammer, this was/is a job that needed doing as the media loves to run to the bad apple and promote it. They know folks like to watch divisive,and confrontational news. That's sadly going to be hard to over come. 2 thumbs up.

    • lorlie6 profile image

      Laurel Rogers 

      8 years ago from Bishop, Ca

      Fascinating stuff, thanks for this, Hmrjmr!

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      Shelia b - Thanks for the comment stay engaged !!

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      Thevoice - Thanks so much for stopping by!!

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      Tony - You are too kind my friend, glad you liked it though and thanks for stopping by!!

    • sheila b. profile image

      sheila b. 

      8 years ago

      A good interview. Just one thing struck me as probably not so - to be active with Tea Parties so our children won't have to. I think the lesson has been that we all have to be much more active and vigilent. And that is a lesson we must teach our children, because if they slack off, the same thing will happen in their generation.

    • thevoice profile image


      8 years ago from carthage ill

      terrific hub write I will read more thanks

    • tony0724 profile image


      8 years ago from san diego calif

      Hmrjmr you are becoming a regular Larry King type of Interview type of guy. Except younger and way more cool ! I really like Ann. Good job my friend !

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      E&E Glad you enjoyed the read.

    • EyesAndEars profile image


      8 years ago from Somewhere over the rainbow....

      an interesting and informative hub, thanks

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      Tom - Thanks for stopping by, while we may not need parties, we do need folks like her, you, LRC and Sam to be informed and engaged..

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      LRC - Thanks for stopping by, I thought she was pretty clear that the objects and issues vary among them, with some taking a more proactive local view than others, but in a common bond to look at government hard and hold officials accountable for their actions and spending. I don't recall her mentioning any of the specifics you mentioned above.

      As for the candidates those are her choices, based on her evaluation of the candidates. yep they are both Repubs but it's hard to find a Dem that wants to spend less.

    • Tom Whitworth profile image

      Tom Whitworth 

      8 years ago from Moundsville, WV


      Ms. Lindholm is just like all of us. We want the best democritic republic possible, and we want our country back!!!!!!!. It's just as George Washington said,"Organized political parties are not necessary for this republic!!"

    • LRCBlogger profile image


      8 years ago

      I'm still just as confused about the Tea party. I thought it was strange that she was promoting 2 republicans for office when the TEA party is supposedly not aligned with any party.

      I also still have no idea what the TEA party wants? All movements push for legislative change. For Example, womens suffrage movement pushed for legislation to allow woman equal rights, etc. She even admitted that she is confused about the TEA party objectives. What exactly are they trying to accomplish? I've heard less taxes and smaller goverment but when they are in favor of medicare (big govt), social security (big govt) and opposed to increasing the debt (which lowering taxes would most likely do).

      Again, I'm just honestly confused about their purpose.

    • Hmrjmr1 profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Georgia, USA

      Thanks for stopping by Sam.

    • samboiam profile image


      8 years ago from Texas

      Thank you for this informative hub. I rated it up.


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