Friday, March 02, 2007

Viguerie's Controversial Speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC)

[From the Mail Bag]
This week more than 6,000 conservative activists from around the nation are attending the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Washington, D.C. This is the text of the speech delivered to them by Richard A. Viguerie, author of Conservatives Betrayed. His speech was repeatedly interrupted with enthusiastic applause, and he received a standing ovation at the end, suggesting that conservative discontent and even anger over President Bush and the Big Government Republicans in Congress is now widespread and deep.
In his speech (below), Viguerie calls on conservatives to withhold support from all Republican fundraising committees "because they spend our money in primaries to defeat conservatives."

He adds: "I congratulate CPAC for not having the Chairman of the Republican National Committee at CPAC for the first time in memory."

And he urges conservatives, "for the time being, we should withold our support from all of the top tier 2008 presidential wannabees," explaining: "Not a one of them deserves our support today. They all fail the Goldwater/Reagan test" (and he explains what that test consists of).

Here is the text of Viguerie's speech.

Richard A. Viguerie
“Strategies for a Bold Conservative Future”
Conservative Political Action Conference
Regency Ballroom
Omni Shoreham Hotel
Washington, D.C.
Thursday, March 1, 2007

To have a successful future, it helps to understand the past.

First, let’s understand that conservatives and conservatism did not lose last November.

The election loss was a direct result of the Republican Party and its leadership in the White House and Congress moving left.

The Republicans became that which they beheld.

In the late 1980’s and early 1990’s, they beheld the corruption and abuse of power by the Democrats. But a few years after the voters threw the Democrats out of office, the Republicans became that which they beheld-the Republicans became corrupt and abused their power.

When most of the Congressional Republicans first ran for office, they ran against the sewer that Washington had become. But after a few years in Washington most of them act like they’ve discovered that Washington isn’t a sewer after all – it’s a hot tub.

In other words, the Republicans’ real message was: “We didn’t want the Democrats spending the money, but now that we are totally in charge, let’s blow the door off the bank vault, and let’s spend and spend and spend our children and grandchildren’s inheritance.”


And how appropriate that it turned into ashes in their mouth.

In January 2001, for all intents and purposes, the Republicans in the White House and Congress adopted a one-word strategy to govern.

And that one word was BRIBERY.

In essence they said to the voters ‘you’ve got votes-we’ve got money-let’s talk - let’s deal.’

The illegal corruption of Duke Cunningham, Bob Ney, Jack Abramoff, and Mark Foley is not a serious problem for us, our children, or grandchildren’s lives.

They’ve been caught and punished.

But far worse crimes have been committed by the politicians who are still sitting in their Capitol Hill offices. I’m talking about the legalized theft of trillions of dollars these politicians have stolen from the children of tomorrow – in order to buy votes to stay in office today.

Therefore conservatives, our #1 need going forward is for new leaders.

Conservatives are like the Biblical Jews who had to wander through the desert for 40 years until that generation of immoral corrupt leaders had passed away.

As conservatives, we’re not going to get to the political Promised Land until we also get new, uncorrupt, principled leaders.

Dr. Phil, the TV psychiatrist, likes to say: “How’s that working for you?”

And I say: How’s that working for you conservatives – to be an appendage of the Republican Party?

The voters spoke in November, and what was the first thing the Republicans did? They kept in power all the leaders who had led them over the cliff!

Obviously the initials GOP now stands for Go On Partying. Or Give up (G) on (O) principles (P).

Well, the Republican party apparently has a death wish, but that doesn’t mean we conservatives have to go along with it.

My strong recommendation is for conservatives to stop being an arm of the Republican Party and become a 3rd Force, but not a 3rd Party.

The left has had enormous success by building strong 3rd force groups and coalitions.

The left has hundreds of environmental groups, consumer groups, civil rights groups, feminist groups, and homosexual groups, etc., etc.

And these groups have their own agenda, their own members, their own money, and most importantly they operate independent of the Democratic Party

Conservatives must do the same.

No longer think of yourself as a Republican, but as a Reagan conservative.

Let’s re-launch the conservative movement.

Let’s act independently of the Republican Party and their failed big government leadership.

Let’s focus on the conservative movement, not the GOP.

We need to greatly increase the size and number of principled conservative organizations.

Let’s launch a thousand new organizations reaching out to:

1. Small business owners, especially women, Hispanics, and Asians.

2. America’s youth, who know the current Social Security system just won’t be there for them.

3. Independent voters, most of who support a balanced budget, family values, and fiscal restraint.

4. Values voters, who agree with us on same sex marriage and the culture of life and promoting traditional moral values – not Hollywood values.

5. Young married couples, who care about child tax credits and better schools.

6. Senior citizens, who want to stop the politicians’ raid on the Social Security Trust Fund – and don’t trust them to manage their health care, either.

7. Doctors, who are already being hamstrung by red tape – and are scared to death of the prospect of socialized medicine.

8. And all the Americans in the “sensible center” who know deep-down that conservatives really are “right:” We’re right on illegal immigration, right on taxes, right on health care, right on the economy, right on terrorism – and right for America.

Let’s withhold support from all Republican National Committees because they spend our money in primaries to defeat conservatives.

Let’s withhold support from most Republican elected officials, supporting only those few principled conservatives

Let’s challenge in primaries all establishment big government Republicans and Democrats at the National, state, and local levels.

Let’s run principled conservatives for local, state, and national party offices.

I congratulate CPAC for not having the Chairman of the Republican National Committee at CPAC for the first time in memory.

And conservatives—this is important – for the time being, we should withhold our support from all of the top tier 2008 Presidential wannabees.

Not a one of them deserves our support today.

They all fail the Goldwater/Reagan test.

Goldwater became our hero when he and he alone in Washington stood up and criticized the Republicans for their big government policies.

On the floor of the Senate in 1960, he said President Eisenhower was running a dime store New Deal.

He spoke truth to power. Where is the Republican Presidential candidate that has stood up publicly to the big government Republican leaders in the last 6 years?

And if they haven’t stood up for conservative principles in the last 6 years, they won’t start if they become President.

And Reagan regularly criticized Presidents Nixon and Ford.

And the second test is, tell me who you walk with and I’ll tell you who you are.

Reagan walked with conservatives- long before he ran for President in 1976; he was at our meetings, our receptions, and our rallies.

And surrounding Reagan were conservative stars Lyn Nofziger, Marty Anderson, Dick Allen, Ed Meese, Judge Clark, Joe Coors, and many others.

If conservatives have not been around a Republican Presidential candidate before he began asking for our votes, I guarantee you conservatives will not be around him if he moves into the White House.

And I promise you; you will not have conservative policies or conservative programs without conservative personnel.

I don’t know about you, but I’m angry and I feel betrayed, but fortunately there are things we conservatives can do to become a governing majority in America.

However, it’s not likely to happen quickly, certainly not by 2008.

One of the strengths of the conservative movement is we’ve always approached politics as a marathon, not a sprint.

It may take 6-10 years for conservatives to be able to govern America.

But 1st conservatives have to follow the advice that Kevin Costner got in the baseball movie “Field of Dreams.”

If you build it, they will come.

We have to build a whole new conservative movement, independent of the two major parties.

And once we build a large, dynamic powerful conservative movement, the next Ronald Reagan will appear.

Remember the movie, “The Blues Brothers” with Dan Aykroyd and John Belushi.
The idea in the movie was
We’re putting the band back together
And we’re on a mission from God

Well conservatives,
We’re putting the conservative movement back together.
And hopefully we’re on a mission from God.

NOTE to EDITORS: Richard A. Viguerie pioneered ideological and political direct mail and has been called “the funding father of the conservative movement” for his role in helping build dozens of conservative organizations. He is the author of the newly released Conservatives Betrayed: How George W. Bush and Other Big Government Republicans Hijacked the Conservative Cause (Bonus Books, 2006).

For more information:

Richard A. Viguerie

Suite 400, 9625 Surveyor Court

Manassas, VA 20110


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