It wasn’t quite the same scene at a rather subdued gathering at the Cup O Joe coffee shop in downtown Raleigh Saturday. It was one of thousands of “coffee parties” held across the nation as the Coffee Party – a group founded on Facebook just weeks ago by a Maryland woman – tries to get off the ground.
“This is an avenue where people come together to try to get a voice and try to talk over the problems and actually have a solution to them and not just be mad about stuff,” offered participant Marques Thompson.
Thompson, and dozens at the Raleigh event, took the day to come together - coffee in hand - to talk, think, and brainstorm about solutions to the country's problems.
"I believe the current political discourse has been manipulated and dominated by narrow self-interests," said participant Kelly Branson.
Coffee Party members call themselves a quiet majority, diverse and inclusive - and say they share the same concerns as Tea Party members.
They want something done about healthcare reform. They bristle at the idea of corporate lobbyists controlling anything - they just take a different approach to getting that message across.
"You know I wouldn't say that we're trying to be the opposite of the tea party," said Branson.
"People who are members of the coffee parties and people who have been a part of the Tea Party -- when they sit down and actually talk through issues, they'll find that they have a lot of common ground. At the end of the day we're all Americans," said participant Davis Hall.