Monday, February 13, 2012

First Annual Full Asylum CPAC Awards

Last night, I returned from the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) at the Wardman Park Marriott in Washington DC. It was a great opportunity to network with fellow right-wingers and hear from dozens of leading conservatives. Attending a speech by any one of them would have been a big deal. To hear them all in one place over a period of three days was inspirational. By way of summary, here are my awards for the best and worst of CPAC 2012:


Best Loved Ally: Israel. Those who claim that the Right is anti-Semitic should have seen the standing ovations that occurred every time a speaker praised the Jewish state – which was often.

Mr. Smith Goes to Washington Award for the Speaker Whose Inflection and Mannerisms Most Resembled Jimmy Stewart: Bobby Jindal. My choice for VP.

Don Rickles Award for the Most Insulting Speech: Ann Coulter. “Greetings 1 per centers and welcome to Occupy the Marriott. Did you know that Michael Moore is only one person and yet he controls 33% of the world’s cholesterol? The system is broken I tell you, my friends.” Ann is a truly mean individual, but she’s so good at it one can only stand in awe and admire.

Worst Backdrop for a Speech: Rick Santorum. The latest anti-Romney had members of his family standing behind him as he spoke. Unfortunately, they looked extremely bored, and their boredom was infectious.

Best Line: “We are all Catholics now.” – Baptist Minister and former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, describing the solidarity of conservatives with the Catholic Church in its opposition to the Obamacare contraception mandate.

Most Innovative Product: The Great American Tea Party Game. Trivial Pursuit for the Right. I consider myself reasonably well informed about American History, but I got to say some of the questions were quite challenging.


Hottest Booth Babes:

Best Dressed: Everyone!

Trust Deficit Award: Mitt Romney. The former Massachusetts Governor gave a good speech and checked all the boxes to sound conservative. But the people I talked to afterwards didn’t buy it. Many observed, as did I, that while Mitt’s supporters were vocal during his speech, they were in short supply the rest of the time. The prevailing theory is they were bused in just long enough to make some noise and cast their ballots in the straw poll (which Mitt did win).

Most Pathetic: Occupy Wall Street. OWS promised to “Occupy CPAC” and “Create as much non-violent resistance as possible”, but apparently not very much was possible. Feeble and ineffective.


Biggest Loser: Barack Obama. Although this year’s Republican Presidential primary has been contentious and often bitter, the mood at the Wardman Marriott was cordial and festive. It is was obvious that, regardless of the nominee, conservatives are united in their desire to depose President Obama at the ballot box in November and then, come January, begin the task of turning back his administration’s assault on our liberty.

Biggest Winner: Sarah Palin. “We have a better jobs plan and it's called the Free Market.” The closing speech of the conference, it was received with wild enthusiasm. Afterwards, I happened to talk to Victoria Jackson, of Saturday Night Live fame. Ms. Jackson thought that if Governor Palin showed up at a deadlocked GOP convention and gave a speech like that, she’d walk away with the Presidential nomination. While I’m skeptical that any politician can pull a William Jennings Bryan in the 21st century, it just goes to show you that conservatives love their Sarah.

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