The ultimate goal: defeating President Obama.
"We now have a government by and large staffed with people who are openly contemptuous of the Constitution of the United States," said former House Majority Leader Dick Armey, chairman of FreedomWorks. "They are intent on having their way with America for the purposes of their power and their control, and that means we must rise up and protect the Constitution."
Attendees cited the struggling economy, job growth, burdensome taxes, and failing public education as major concerns in the fight to defeat a president they believe has failed the nation as a leader.
But that doesn’t mean there was a stampede to support Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney.
"We’ll get Romney in, and, hopefully, we’ll get someone more conservative later," said Anna Puig, a FreedomWorks field director and leader of the Kitchen Table Patriots in Doylestown.
Armey argued for the election of conservatives in the U.S. Senate and House, resulting in conservative control of a Republican majority in both chambers to "fence out Obama and fence in Romney," giving conservatives the power no matter who is elected. He also argued for the importance of local elections to affect issues such as school choice.
Outside Spring Mill Manor, supporters of CREDO SuperPac, a Doylestown political group, protested the meeting.
"We think the tea party is too extreme for Bucks County," said Michael Eagle, 30, of Doylestown.
CREDO is waging a national campaign to defeat tea party and tea party-supported candidates, Eagle said. The protesters brandished signs calling for the defeat of Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick, a Republican whose district includes Bucks County and parts of Montgomery County and Northeast Philadelphia.
Inside the country club, a conservative political philosophy was proudly on display.
Marsha Andrews of Fort Washington said she went to the meeting to learn about strategies that will help mobilize the Hispanic vote. Andrews, who is Hispanic, ran unsuccessfully for the Upper Dublin school board this year. She supports school choice, a focal point of a presentation by Lisa Snell of the Reason Education Foundation.
Snell argued that school choice was "winning," citing the adoption of voucher systems in Indiana and Oakland, Calif.
In Pennsylvania, a bill that would provide vouchers for some low-income students and increase the number of charter schools was passed in the state Senate but is stuck in committee in the House.
Contact Kristin E. Holmes at 610-313-8211 or firstname.lastname@example.org.