Many tea party freshmen congressman stay away from Tampa
TAMPA, Fla. — When Mitt Romney accepts the Republican nomination for president Thursday night, Rep. Mo Brooks plans to be in the hall, unlike most of his fellow freshmen in the influential tea party class in the House, who skipped the convention.
The former prosecutor and state lawmaker had considered sticking to the campaign trail in his northern Alabama district, where he is running for reelection, but decided the stakes were too high to stay away.
"It's a historic event, perhaps one of the last chances we have to save our country," Brooks said. "Are we going to be socialist and weak as a nation or are we going to be free enterprise and continue to be the greatest nation the world has ever seen?"
As the convention got underway this week, fewer than half the 89 freshmen had RSVPd to attend, underscoring how the once largely monolithic group has splintered.