Tag Archives: conservative political action conference

Conservatives voting for 2016 presidential faves. List

UPDATED Sunday, March 17

U.S. Sen. Rand Paul on March 16 won the Conservative Political Action Conference presidential straw poll. U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio placed second.

The poll was announced on the third day of the three-day conference held in Maryland, just outside D.C. that was attended by the nation’s top conservative leaders, including a number from Wisconsin.

Paul, of Kentucky, won 25 percent of the vote and Rubio of Florida had 23 percent.

Former U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum received 8 percent, followed by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie with 7 percent and U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin with 6 percent.

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker followed with 5 percent, then Dr. Ben Carson with 4 percent, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas with 4 percent, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal with 3 percent, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin with 3 percent, undecided with 1 percent and other candidates combined received 14 percent.

The official ballot had 23 names but CPAC attendees also offered write-in candidates, bringing the total number of names on the ballot to more than 60.

In a news release, Al Cardenas, the chair of the American Conservative Union, which presents CPAC, said, “It’s been a long-standing and fun tradition at CPAC National as well as our regional CPACs to poll the attendees and get their opinion on a number of important issues.”

The ACU said the poll provides a benchmark for how conservatives perceive key issues and their preferred candidates heading into the next election.

Early report on March 16:

The annual Conservative Political Action Conference concludes today at a convention center just outside the District of Columbia. Speakers include Sarah Palin and Scott Walker and, on the agenda, is the announcement of the winner of the annual CPAC straw poll for president.

The ballot – for the 2016 presidential election – includes many politicians who’ve been given a platform at the right-wing conference and a few who were not invited to speak, most notably New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie.

Two Wisconsin politicians made the ballot – Gov. Scott Walker and U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan.

The ballot includes:

1. NH Senator Kelly Ayotte
2. Arizona Governor Jan Brewer
3. Kansas Governor Sam Brownback
4. Neurosurgeon Ben Carson
5. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie
6. Texas U.S. Senator Ted Cruz
7. Former Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels
8. South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley
9. Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal
10. Ohio Governor John Kasich
11. New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez
12. Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell
13. Former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin
14. Kentucky U.S. Senator Rand Paul
15. Indiana Governor Mike Pence
16. Texas Governor Rick Perry
17. Ohio Senator Rob Portman
18. Florida U.S. Senator Marco Rubio
19. Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan
20. Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum
21. South Carolina Senator Tim Scott
22. South Dakota U.S. Senator John Thune
23. Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker
24. Other _______________________
25. Undecided



Three-day conservative tea party begins in D.C.

The three-day right-wing tea party known as CPAC began today in Washington, D.C.

The schedule of speakers includes: Kelly Ayotte, John Barrasso, Diane Black, Marsha Blackburn, Jeb Bush, Eric Cantor, Al Cardenas, Ben Carson, Francesca Chambers, Steven Crowder, Ted Cruz, Ken Cuccinelli, Artur Davis, Carly Fiorina, Tom Fitton, Jeff Frazee, Newt Gingrich, Louie Gohmert, Kristan Hawkins, Chelsi Henry, Bobby Jindal, Ron Johnson, Sonnie Johnson, David Keene, Katie Kieffer, Wayne LaPierre, Mike Lee, Art Linares, Dana Loesch, Jenny Beth Martin, Alexander McCobin, Mitch McConnell, Kate Obenshain, Sarah Palin, rand Paul, Katie Pavlich, Rick Perry, Mitt Romney, Wayne Allyn Root, Marco Rubio, Paul Ryan, Rick Santorum, Tim Scott, T.W. Shannon, Pat Toomey, Donald Trump, Scott Walker, Allen West and Crystal Wright.

Among the first speakers at the Conservative Political Action Conference, former U.S. Rep. Allen West compared defeating Barack Obama’s policies to winning the Revolutionary and Civil wars.

He said, “When Barack Obama packs his bags and beats a hasty retreat back to Chicago, we will persevere.”

West also urged conservatives not to compromise on values and policies. “A bended knee is not, nor shall it ever be, a conservative tradition,” he said, adding that he’s tired of “insufferable lectures of progressivism.”

Sen. Pat Toomey also spoke early on at the conference, focusing on spending and taxation issues. He said, “The premise from the left is clear: they think that economic growth depends on a huge, bloated federal government.”

The conference ends on Saturday.

A highlight of the event for the more than 3,000 who attend is typically the straw poll for president.

The only past winners of the poll to win the office are Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush. Romney, who at last year’s conference called himself a “severely conservative Republican governor,” has won the poll four times, Ron Paul has won twice, Jack Kemp has won three times.

Representatives of one gay group, the conservative GOProud, plan to be heard at the conference.

LGBT activists also plan to be heard outside the conference.

“These people will never be anything but our enemies, but we can’t let their hate speech and their hate policies go unchecked,” said D.C. activist Peter Tyrone, who planned to protest CPAC on March 15.

Tyrone recalled in 2007 speaker Ann Coulter called Democrat John Edwards a “faggot.”

Wis. governor to speak at conservative conference

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, R, is slated to join Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper and others scheduled to speak at a meeting of a national conservative lobbying group in March.

Walker is just one of several prominent speakers scheduled to appear at the Conservative Political Action Conference – CPAC – organized by the American Conservative Union March 14-16.

Also scheduled to speak are Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal.

The American Conservative Union says the three-day meeting will include speeches, policy discussions and networking opportunities focused on “smaller government, a strong national defense and traditional American values.”

The group was founded in 1964 by William F. Buckley.

The most prominent sponsors in recent years include the NRA, Human Events and the Young Americans’ Foundation.

Past speakers included Mitt Romney, Ronald Reagan, Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, Ann Coulter, Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck.

In 2012, the ACU board voted not to invite a gay Republican group, GOProud, to the conference. That year, Romney won a presidential straw poll, although there were news reports that the campaign bused students to the conference from the East Coast and also bought registrations.

People For The American Way’s Right Wing Watch describes the ACU as “one of the nation’s oldest lobbying groups on the right. It is best known for its annual ratings of Congress and its sponsorship of the annual Conservative Political Action Convention, a gathering of Washington insiders, right-wing pundits and grassroots activists from across the country.”

The ACU says its strongest efforts have been “fighting to keep OSHA off the backs of small businesses; opposing the Panama Canal giveaway; challenging the SALT treaties; supporting aid to freedom fighters in communist countries; promoting the confirmation of conservative justices to the Supreme Court; advocating near-term deployment of strategic defenses; and battling against higher taxes and wasteful government spending.”

Gay presidential candidate wins early ruling against conservative group

Gay presidential candidate Fred Karger won a preliminary bout in a discrimination complaint against the American Conservative Union Foundation.

The District of Columbia Office of Human Rights recently denied ACUF’s motion to throw out Karger’s complaint alleging that it had discriminated against the Republican candidate on the basis of his sexual orientation. Karger alleges that ACUF deprived him of a booth and speaking spot at the Conservative Political Action Conference because he is gay.

The ACUF argues for a dismissal, claiming that the foundation doesn’t run CPAC and, regardless, it has a First Amendment right to choose speakers at its events.

The ACUF also said its disagreement with Karger is over his support of marriage equality, not his personal sexual orientation.

However, Gustavo Velasquez, the district’s human rights chief, concluded that an investigation of Karger’s exclusion from CPAC is warranted.

Karger describes himself as a political insider who went to outsider status. His campaign biography states:

“Fred Karger was the first to announce his candidacy for the Republican nomination for president of the United States on March 23, 2011.

“Throughout his career, Karger has worked on nine presidential campaigns and served as a senior consultant on campaigns for Presidents Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush and Gerald Ford.

“He retired after 27 years and has since become an activist for gay rights causes, including his organization Californians Against Hate (now Rights Equal Rights) to investigate the LDS Church and the National Organization for Marriage in their campaigns against marriage equality in California and Maine.

“Karger is the first openly gay presidential candidate from a major political party in American history.”

He also has a reputation for a good sense of humor. Take a look at Karger’s “Pee-Wee Romney” ad.

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The website WorldNetDaily reports that GOProud, the gay conservative group, will not be invited back to the Conservative Political Action Conference next year – nor will any other group that engages in “homosexual advocacy.”

An incident in which GOProud’s director Chris Barron referred to one of the event’s organizers as a “nasty bigot” might have been the last straw, according to a conference official.