After a moving speech by Mia Love, encouraging insights from Governor Mike Huckabee, and a profound expose of the left’s moral bankruptcy by Bill Whittle, Colonel Allen West took the stage to bring the fourth annual Western Conservative Summit to a close. The former Florida U.S. Representative touched on the topics that had been echoed throughout the weekend by such speakers as KT McFarland, Jonah Goldberg, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz and others.
“So here we are, on the Lord’s Day, committed to the timeless principles of conservatism that have made us, America, the envy of the world,” West began. His remarks were wide ranging and he touched on a number of themes that had been discussed over the course of the weekend. “You are here because you believe as I do that a government keeps its power restrained within the four corners of the parchment of what we call ‘the United States Constitution.’” Explained West.
West spoke at length about the American west as “America’s great bastion of independence and liberty.” He steadfastly rejected the notion that America had rejected conservative values. He also explained that Liberalism has failed everywhere it has been tried, and it will fail here in the US as well. “Liberals want to set men against women, black against white, rich against poor, north against south, east against west,” He said, arguing that by its very nature Liberalism is unsustainable.
At one point in his address to the WCS crowd, West touched on the topic of race relations in America. “Do you know what conservatives believe?” West asked the audience. “We believe that the colors that matter aren’t on our skin, but on the flag.”
West continued to take shots at the left’s use of race in politics when he said “Nothing spooks liberals more than the idea of a black man, Hispanic female, or young Asian America pulling a lever for freedom, not government.”
Weighing in on immigration matters West proclaimed, “Remember what Reagan said – Latino voters ARE Republicans. They just don’t know it yet.” His comments on immigration reform resulted in numerous standing ovations, and loud cheers from the crowd. Acknowledging that legal immigration is a tedious, and cumbersome, process, West made it clear there is still no excuse for illegally entering the US by saying, “Waving the magic wand of amnesty, rewarding lawbreakers and punishing the long lines of freedom-seekers lined up outside our shores is not the American way.”
Much of Colonel West’s address was focused on the compassion that is intrinsic in Conservative principles. At one point he gave advice to the wing of Conservative movement that is concerned about America’s acceptance of their values. “If we can match our actions to our principles, we’ll have a conservative supermajority for decades.”
The Colonel was not afraid to attack the President’s policies, and comments, directly in his speech. “Here’s a government that tells us what sugary drinks we can buy, what light bulbs we can have in our house, what kind of doctor we’re allowed to visit, what kind of toilet or showerhead we can put in our bathrooms, what type of business – and yes, you did build it – we’re allowed to run. The President says if you oppose all that, you oppose democracy.” The comment was a direct attack on the President’s recent comments to a graduating class.
Some of West’s direct attacks on the President were more comical in nature. In reference to the President’s recent comment regarding the slew of scandals in the news, West said, “The only thing phony in Washington DC, is Barack Obama.”
The Conservative Movement, West argued, can prove to be a large and inclusive tent. He spoke directly to the connection between Libertarian and Conservative beliefs when he said “I believe the introduction and growth of freedom loving libertarians is a great thing for the conservative movement.
Touching on some of the family issues that had been a staple of conversation on Sunday, West said “In 1964 at the inception of LBJ’s Great Society, only 7 percent of American children were born out of wedlock. Now, over 40 percent of American children are.” The family deterioration in American Society, West explained, is an issue Libertarians and Conservatives should be able to connect.
West drew a connection between the deterioration of the Family, and the Federal government’s expanding entitlement programs. He referenced the record numbers of Food Stamp recipients, and took a direct shot at the President’s record. “That’s Barack Obama’s America: One nation, underfed…One nation, under-employed…One nation, under-privileged. And the great lesson of Obama’s two elections, One Nation, under-whelmed. My friends, I say we bring back One Nation, Under God?”
Nothing was off limits as West began touching on Foreign affairs, saying “When Americans were under attack by Islamic extremists in Benghazi, they called for help and no one answered.” In regards to the President’s lack of action on Benghazi, West commented, “President Obama got the phone call at two o’clock in the Morning. He rolled over and went to sleep. He came out here to Colorado, to do a fundraiser.” That’s not leadership, said West.
In closing, West called on the attendees of the 4th annual Western Conservative Summit to take their energy, and push forward for a renewal. Tapping into Ronald Reagans famous “Rendezvous with Destiney” speech, west called today another “time for Choosing.”
“Let’s forge a new generation, a new conservative generation that guarantees the American dream for another 200 years,” West urged. He closed his speech on a note of optimism, and hope, “And when history recalls Barack Obama, let it not remember him, but, remember rather this new generation, a generation that guided us out of his darkness; a generation that will guide us out of his turmoil; a generation that will guide us out of his despair, and reignited that bright, burning light… that we call America.”
[Post updated 7/29/13]