Published: Mar 08, 2011 9:10 PM EST
Updated: Mar 08, 2011 6:10 PM EST

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A few hundred opposing demonstrators lined either side of the street in front of Florida's Capitol as legislators kicked off their regular 2011 session.

The crowds were enthusiastic on Tuesday, but fewer than expected. On one side, pro-union demonstrators waved signs such as, "Stop the War on the Middle Class." On the other, tea partiers held signs that read, "I Support Governor Rick Scott."

Scott and Lt. Gov Jennifer Carroll made a surprise appearance at the tea party rally in front of the Old Capitol, thanking attendees for their support.

One passer-by sounded disappointed: "This isn't like 2000," he said, referring to the media circus that camped in Tallahassee during the 2000 presidential challenge.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)