The Tea Party Express team flew into a Las Vegas Airport from all over the country, arriving at different times, some as early as 9 a.m. Tea Party Express’ Sal Russo and his team had the travel logistics worked out. All we had to do was show up.
“Russo is chief strategist for Tea Party Express, a project of the Our Country Deserves Better political action committee, which he says is funded by thousands of donors who contributed an average $60 each.” – USA Today
Singer Lloyd Marcus and I flew in aboard the same flight out of Orlando FL, and arrived early afternoon, Vegas time. It took us a while to retrieve our luggage, but eventually it came around on the carousel, and not long thereafter we ran into some of the other arriving team members, made introductions, and chatted while waiting for our transportation to the hotel. Many of them knew each other from previous TPX tours. After an hour or so, Tom Studer pulled up in the Gold bus, but there were so many of us, we had to split into two groups, with half the team piling their luggage and themselves onto the Gold bus for the hour-long ride to Laughlin, about 70 miles away. The rest of us waited in the sunshine outside for driver Jerry Ragle with the Red bus, still enroute.
We are Hannah Giles of ACORN video expose fame, Darla DaWald and Mellie Reid of Resistnet.com; David “the rapper Politik” Saucedo; Bryan Barton; David Owens; media communications director Levi Russell and his Mom; singer Diana Nagy; James Lyle; Ron and Key Rivoli; and me.
Once at the hotel, I took pics from my room looking down on all three buses parked below. They were already getting a lot of attention from others at the hotel, many who posed for pics beside them. That first night, we ate dinner together in the hotel’s restaurant, followed by a staff meeting poolside where it was determined that the desert at Searchlight was already filled to capacity with RVs and campers. Joe and some others decided to go out there to make sure everything was secure. I don’t think they got any sleep that night. Traffic in the morning was expected to be heavy. Wheels up for us meant an 8:30 a.m. departure for Searchlight.
The following morning, we rolled our luggage onto the buses, the first of 21 mornings we’d do so, and climbed aboard for what would be the ride of our life. But that’s for the next post. Among those joining us were former talk show host Melanie Morgan. My radio show producer Dave Logan wrote about the tea Party Express adventure on this page.
Here’s the gallery detailing the beginning of our journey, which I’ve titled “Getting there…”