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'Florida Tea Party' crashes press conference to combat charge that it's working for Democrats

The saga of the Florida Tea Party, the third-party ticket that grass-roots activists accuse of being a front for Rep. Alan Grayson (D-Fla.) (who's denied this), escalated yesterday into a shouting match. Independent tea party activists called a press conference to announce the formation of a Central Florida Tea Party Council and demand that Peg Dunmire, the "Florida Tea Party candidate" against* Grayson, drop out of the race. Dunmire and party director Fred O'Neil showed up. Things got ... well, not ugly, but not pretty, either.

"The recently formed Florida Tea Party political party is a Tea Party in name only," grassroots organizer Jason Hoyt said, but his speech was interrupted by a Florida Tea Party member who yelled, "you lie!"

Bob Hazen has video of the anti-"Tea Party" tea party conference; here's video of the "Tea Party" candidates who showed up, fighting back.

And here's the latest on the "Tea Party" versus Tea Party lawsuit.

*I hope you're following this.

By David Weigel  |  June 25, 2010; 8:56 AM ET
Categories:  2010 Election  
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