Nashville's star-studded Tea Party Convention is rapidly falling apart as Congressional right-wing favorites Michele Bachmann (R-MN) and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) announced Thursday they would no longer be in attendance. The event has split tea party groups around the country, with some claiming it is financially mismanaged and that its pricey $550 tickets and $100,000 speaking fee for Sarah Palin are beyond the pale. "There is uncertainty about how any proceeds from the event may be used, and we must err on the side of caution," a spokesman for Bachmann said. "Some will want to portray her withdrawal as repudiation of the tea party movement, but that couldn't be further from the truth." Blackburn said in a statement that many speakers at the event were "in an awkward position."