An estimated few hundred Tea Party movement supporters rallied against long-term government debt, accountability and for increased border security. Meanwhile, across the street, a group of about 50 others, mainly organized out of Ocean Beach, held “witness” to the rally waving signs calling for national healthcare and for higher taxes for the most affluent.
Former San Diego mayor and radio talk show host Roger Hedgecock spoke at the rally. Richard Rider, San Diego Tax Fighters chairman and local blogger, also spoke.
One Tea Party supporter, Paradise Hills resident Marcos Padilla, said he was more concerned about the city’s pension liabilities than state or federal government problems.
“There is disaster right around the corner, I think,” Padilla said.
But while many Tea Party supporters rallied against high taxes at every government level, some on the other side of the road were calling for higher taxes for the rich.
“Everyone should pay his fair share and I think we’re very, very far from it,” said Ocean Beach resident Rick Callejon.
District 5 City Councilman Carl DeMaio also attended the rally, collecting signatures for a ballot measure that would require local government departments to open certain jobs to competition in the private sector. He said competition could help bring down municipal costs.
DeMaio added that he supports civic engagement like that which brought hundreds to North Harbor Drive that day.
“It doesn’t mean you agree all the time, but you want people to be involved,” DeMaio said.