Colorado Conservatives Find Their Inner Activists (And They're Wearing Ties)

February 17 2009, 11:43 AM

When President Barack Obama signs a $787 billion economic stimulus package at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science today, he'll be welcomed with a fairly unfamiliar sight: conservative protesters.

Local conservative leaders will be conducting their protest against the stimulus package on the state Capitol steps at noon, claiming the bill is wasteful and will put future generations in debt.

Not that conservatives don't stage public protests--as most employees at your local Planned Parenthood well know. But, especially during the Democratic National Convention last summer and because of the public backlash against the Iraq War, liberal rallies against Republican and conservative policies have seemed much louder in recent years.

But those were the days when George W. Bush was in power. These days, with Democrats holding the White House, both houses of Congress, the Colorado state Legislature, and every statewide office except attorney general, it's conservatives who are itching to fight the Man.

But why does it seem just a bit odd to see conservatives holding picket signs and chanting protest slogans? Maybe conservatives, as a group, aren't as publicly self-expressive as liberals, who have a tradition of using public protest for social and economic change.

But the biggest difference between conservative and liberal protesters is punctuality, says Independence Institute president Jon Caldara, one of the speakers slated for today's Capitol protest.

"We have very punctual demonstrations," Caldara says. "Lot of people have ties (on)."

A protest with a dress code? ¡Sí se puede!