Palm Beach County Tea Party Director Quits After Chairman Rags on Rep. Paul Ryan

Standing up for what you believe in apparently isn't in the South Florida Tea Party manifest.

Pam Wohlschlegel -- the director of the Palm Beach County chapter of the South Florida Tea Party -- called it quits after Chairman Everett Wilkinson declared House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan's Medicare plan a "public policy nightmare," the Palm Beach Post reports.

Most of the other political nutcases support Ryan's Medicare overhaul, like Sen. Mark Rubio, and Reps. Allen West and Michele Bachmann.

Wilkinson, however, was looking at the 2012 election when he told South Florida Tea Party followers not to put faith into Ryan's plan.

"Republicans will lose if they support the Ryan Medicare plan," Wilkinson said in an email last week. "Americans do not support the Ryan plan ... Expect the GOP to then blame the Tea Party for losses."

That was apparently the last straw for Wohlschlegel, who doesn't think Wilkinson is running the show correctly.

"If it were my organization, I would not speak for the organization without taking a poll and I don't necessarily think that his positions on such things as E-Verify and his latest position on Paul Ryan, I don't think it necessarily reflects the feelings of all the members of the organization," she told the Post.

It'll be interesting to see if more people start to buck the South Florida Tea Party, as the debate over Ryan's Medicare plan seems to have started a rift.

It's probably safe to say many in Florida -- Tea Party followers or not -- don't want Ryan fiddling with their Medicare.

Ryan proposed his budget to cut $5.8 trillion from the federal budget over the next decade, but his Medicare overhaul would force seniors to pay double for out-of-pocket expenses on healthcare.

It would shift toward privatizing health insurance to replace Medicare by 2022 with a voucher system, which the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office predicts it wouldn't be any cheaper, and would cost more to seniors.

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Matthew Hendley
Contact: Matthew Hendley