Mark Meckler, the co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots, announced Friday that he would be leaving over differences in the group’s direction.
“Mark Meckler’s resignation as an employee and from the Tea Party Patriots board follows months of discussions and good-faith differences on how best TPP can serve the Tea Party movement,” the Tea Party Patriots said in a statement. “He felt it necessary to step aside and pursue other endeavors. We extend our best wishes to him. He has done many good things for the movement.”
“The movement and Tea Party Patriots will continue to grow stronger and to build an enduring grass-roots organization that increases public support for our ideals of fiscal responsibility, limited government and free markets,” the statement said.
Meckler, who founded the group along with Jenny Beth Martin and is a prominent spokesman for the Tea Party movement, reportedly sent an e-mail to the Board of Directors of the TPP saying that he has “fought long and hard” to keep the group “as an organization that is run from the bottom up, with the intent of serving the grassroots.”
“Unfortunately, it is my belief that I have lost this fight,” Meckler said, according to the Daily Caller. “I probably fought the internal fight longer than I should have, but I wanted to give absolutely every possible effort to preserving what I believe was the unique nature of the TPP organization.”
Meckler did not return TPM’s request for comment.
Meckler’s departure is decidedly more amicable than that of Amy Kremer, now the Chairman of the Tea Party Express, who was ousted from the TPP Board of Directors in 2009.
Kremer, who also helped to found the group, joined the Tea Party Express in September 2009, and was canned from the TPP board because of concerns that the TPX was too closely tied to Republicans. Shortly after, TPP sued Kremer over the rights to the Tea Party Patriots name, which they said she was using in activities not affiliated with the group.
In October of last year, Kylie Kremer, apparently Amy’s daughter, sued the TPP and alleged that Jenny Beth Martin and her husband, TPP’s CEO Lee Martin, defamed her on “a public group in Facebook” under the alias “Dale Buttersworth” with a post that she “had been raped, reported the rape to the police and was kicked out of her home by her mother and her mother’s boyfriend as a result of reporting the rape.”
The TPP called the suit is part of Kremer’s “long-standing animosity” against them.