Throngs of Glenn Beck fans greet their ‘savior’ in Tampa
Have you ever seen an impromptu parade for an animated right-wing personality? Want to?
That’s precisely the scene which emerged ahead of Glenn Beck’s book signing in Tampa Bay, Florida on Saturday. As up to 1,000 fans gathered at a Tampa Bay Borders Books to see the Fox News host, a parade of vehicles began circling the parking lot, adorned with signs bearing vague right-wing slogans, the drivers blaring their horns.
“I don’t want to say he’s our savior, but he’s pretty close,” said Bob Antoinette, a Beck fan who spoke with MyFox Tampa Bay. “I don’t think he’s on target. I think he’s on bullseye.”
“When we drove through and I saw [the line] was wrapped around the block, I mean, it’s … It’s a little humbling,” Beck said.
Another of Beck’s fans suggested that President Barack Obama “wasn’t vetted” and that Congress is using emergency powers to push all legislation through. (They are not.)
Beck enthusaist Patty Blackburn added: “We don’t like the White House at this point. We’re taking our country back.”
Beck’s solution to progressive America: “He will hold conventions on education issues, the first at the University of Central Florida in March,” The St. Petersburg Times reported. “He plans to develop a 100-year plan for America, and he will publish a book with action steps called The Plan.”
“I am drafting plans now to bring us back to an America that our founders would understand,” he said before claiming that Americans “need to start thinking like the Chinese.”
Speaking to the SPT, Flor Rodriguez, a 71-year-old Cuban-American, claimed that she has been watching Beck’s show and growing increasingly fearful that President Obama is doing to America what Fidel Castro did to Cuba.
“For the young people of this country, I’m very afraid,” she said. “I never thought I’d see this happening here.” Her sign read, “If you are not outraged, you are not paying attention,” according to the report.
(To those paying attention to media aside from Beck, the right-wing talker is well known for frequently perpetuating false and misleading claims about the Obama administration, among his many other targets.)
The signing went smoothly until a man began yelling for the crowd to stop watching Fox News, calling their brand of right-wing entertainment “brainwashing.” He was quickly escorted out by police.
This video is from MyFox Tampa Bay, broadcast Nov. 21, 2009.
This video is from Media Matters, broadcast Nov. 21, 2009.
David Edwards contributed to this report.