CPAC

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 11/23/10

Newt Gingrich

Government: Claims that Attorney General Eric Holder “endangered national security” and should resign (NewsMax, 11/21).

Media: Says he will refuse to attend a debate hosted by “hostile” and “left-wing” Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann (Mediaite, 11/21).

Mike Huckabee

2012: Warns that GOP takeover of the House will help Obama in 2012 (The Note, 11/22).

Religious Right: Iowa Independent looks at Huckabee’s ties to Vander Plaats, IFPC (Iowa Independent, 11/22).

Iowa: Congratulates voters for ousting judges who backed same-sex marriage rights (AP, 11/21).

Sarah Palin

Obama: In new book says that the President betrays “a stark lack of faith in the American people” (USA Today, 11/23).

Media: Tells Sean Hannity she will only speak to non-biased reporters and shun Katie Couric (CBS News, 11/22).

2012: Conservatives4Palin lists the five top reasons she is qualified to be President, includes PTA volunteering and “Pro-Life Advocacy” (C4P, 11/19).

Tim Pawlenty

Government: Calls on Attorney General Eric Holder to resign (Iowa Independent, 11/22).

Health Care: Writes Op-Ed on how states can stop health care reform (San Diego Union Tribune, 11/18).

Mitt Romney

Poll: New poll has Romney as most competitive Republican, in statistical dead heat with Obama (Quinnipiac, 11/22).

Fundraising: NYT explores Romney’s web of state leadership PACS (NYT, 11/20).

Rick Santorum

2012: Set to address Conservative Political Action Committee (CPAC) meeting in February (Sunshine State News, 11/22).

New Hampshire: Plans on seventh appearance in the Granite State later this month (CNN, 11/17).

Tea Party: After claiming to be only Tea Party presidential hopeful, says that Angle, Miller, and O’Donnell don’t represent movement either (GOP 12, 11/16).

CPAC Board To Decide GOProud's Fate

As we noted yesterday, the American Principles Project and several other Religious Right goups have been threatening to boycott next year's CPAC conference if the gay conservative group GOProud to participate again this year.

Now WorldNetDaily is reporting that the pressure is getting to organizers at the American Conservative Union, which has decided to put to issue to a vote before CPAC's board of directors, and that more groups are planning on boycotting the event if GOProud is not given the boot:

The Conservative Political Action Conference board of directors is voting whether to permit a homosexual activist group, GOProud, to participate in CPAC again this year.

CPAC's organizer, the American Conservative Union, is under pressure after the American Principles Project issued an open letter announcing its withdrawal from the conference over GOProud's participation.

"If someone is tempted to think for a moment that GOProud is a benign force, then they should examine GOProud's insistence that the Republican party abandon social issues entirely. This makes them the friend of the Democratic party, which long ago embraced every radical sexual expression under the sun," said Robert Knight, senior correspondent for Coral Ridge Ministries.

With several more social conservative groups dropping out or threatening to do so behind the scenes, ACU chairman David Keene called on CPAC's board of directors to decide whether GOProud should be welcomed at the conference for a second straight year, according to a source on the board.

The results of the vote will be announced on Monday.

"We've decided to put our resources elsewhere," said Mat Staver, president of Liberty Counsel. "We're going to attend the Values Voters Summit and Awakening 2011."

Staver explained that the latter conferences would both respect all three legs of the conservative "stool" described by President Ronald Reagan: fiscal responsibility, strong national defense and social conservatism.

Religious Right Putting Pressure on CPAC to Drop GOProud

The other day we noted that the American Principles Project had informed the American Conservative Union that they would not be participating in next year's CPAC because of the decision to allow GOProud to serve as a sponsor.

Today, APP's Malia Blom went on CBN News to explain that they would not participate so long as CPAC was going to include groups like GOProud to who "actively work against a fundamental principle of conservatism: faith, family, traditional marriage": 

And the APP is not alone in pressuring CPAC to drop GOProud, as both the American Family Association and the Family Research Council weighing in as well

The American Family Association is also deciding whether to stay away from CPAC again this year over GOProud.

"We didn't send our radio talk show hosts up there last year because of GOProud," said AFA president Tim Wildmon. "We will have to look at their level of participation this year. In the next couple of weeks we'll decide."

The Family Research Council is working with ACU directly about the GOProud issue.

"We have communicated privately with the board with the desire to see this resolved in a way that benefits America's families," Family Research Council vice president for communications JP Duffy told WND.

American Principles Projects Withdraws From CPAC Due To GOProud

As we noted earlier today, GOProud's effort to get the GOP and the conservative movement in general to ignore the social issues at the core of the Religious Right's agenda is not going over very well.

And now comes the news that the American Principles Project, founded by the National Organization for Marriage's Robert George, has told the American Conservative Union that they will not participate in next year's CPAC because of GOProud's sponsorship:

I write to inform you that the American Principles Project has decided not to participate in the 2011 Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) due to the planned participation of the organization known as GOProud.

...

Last year, of course, the American Principles Project participated in CPAC despite the presence of GOProud. That was a mistake, just as it was, in our opinion, a mistake for CPAC to countenance GOProud’s participation. Having now examined closely GOProud’s mission and its behavior since its inception, we can only conclude that the organization’s purposes are fundamentally incompatible with a movement that has long embraced the ideals of family and faith in a thriving civil society. Needless to say, we are deeply persuaded that a thriving civil society is an indispensable bulwark against the relentless expansion of government, a phenomenon that has gripped much of the Western world and helped to fuel the present fiscal and economic crisis.

...

It is also clear that GOProud’s reason-to-be is built around a form of identity politics that conservative thought formally rejects because of its understanding of human nature. Each item on its broadly stated agenda can be pursued, and is being pursued, by groups that do not focus on such identity politics. Rather than join as individuals and be welcomed and respected into these groups, GOProud pursues policy outcomes that are rooted not in the broad conservative principles it claims to support but in the identity – in this case, sexual and behavioral identity – politics it advocates. This politics inevitably leads to outcomes that confront the conservative core, as Christopher Barron, chairman of GOProud, seemed to acknowledge in a statement to The Advocate in July 2010 that underscored his personal support for same-sex marriage and a long-term strategy to impose it.

But GOProud has done more than simply omit a core tenet of conservatism from its agenda. It has demonstrated that its agenda includes assaults on the very conservative leadership that has brought our movement a fresh opportunity to steer our nation once again onto the right course. At a time when the rest of the conservative movement has been focused on how to convert the overwhelming election victory of November 2 into a policy advance that strengthens both the economic and social underpinnings of our republic, GOProud has chosen this very hour to attempt to attack Sen. Jim DeMint and even question his place, and the place of those of us who share his socially conservative views, in the conservative movement ... What is at stake in your decision regarding the partnership of GOProud in next year's CPAC is precisely this: will CPAC embrace a deadening egalitarianism at the expense of marriage and the family as long-established social institutions? This is not a decision merely for one event but  a fundamental question for the integrity of the conservative cause.

The Bitterness Remains: Huckabee Lashes Out At GOP "Elitism"

Among the characteristics that define Mike Huckabee are a willingness to associate with fringe right-wing figures and a remarkable bitterness that fuels his resentment against the GOP "elite" who did not support his presidential campaign last time around.

And both were on display this weekend when he joined WorldNetDaily's Aaron Klein to lash out at the "elitism" of GOP leaders who refuse to support candidates like Christine O'Donnell ... and him

"Unfortunately, there is an elitism within the Republican establishment," Huckabee told Klein. "And it's one of the reasons the Republicans have not been able to solidify not only the tea party movement but solidify conservatives across America."

"It's about, again, to be blunt, the kind of country club attitude that we're not sure there are certain people we really want as members of the club and we're not going to vote them in. And we don't mind showing up to events to put up signs and making phone calls and going door to door making those pesky little trips that we don't like to do, but we really don't want them dining with us in the main dining room," he said.

Huckabee's resentments date back to his 2008 presidential bid, which drew dismissal and even paid attacks from a Wall Street-backed GOP establishment that favored Mitt Romney and others and saw Huckabee as suspect on taxes.

"I've been on the receiving end of some of that when I ran for president. A lot of the establishment types were very contemptuous toward me and treated me like some backwater," Huckabee said. "And that's one of the things that happens when you didn't go to the right school and you're not a regular [attendee] at the proper cocktail parties on the D.C. social circuit."

Right Wing Leftovers

  • GOProud has again signed on to be a sponsor of the next CPAC, so I can't wait to see how the anti-gay Right reacts to this.
  • If there is a case to be made for discriminating against a gay person, you can rest assure that Mat Staver will be there to make it.
  • Joseph Farah and Ann Coulter continue to fight.
  • The New Yorker profiles David and Charles Koch, the ideological billionaires behind so much of today's right-wing movement.
  • Replace "homosexuality" with "Christianity" in this Brad Dacus quote and imagine how the Right would respond.
  • Harry Jackson continues to rail against gay marriage: "We declare that there is coming an unprecedented political backlash against same-sex marriage being forced down our collective throats."
  • Mike Huckabee denies trying to sell his endorsement for $250,000 and also went campaigning with Bill McCollum in church this weekend.
  • Janet Porter's Faith 2 Action organization has been almost non-existent lately ... with the exception of posting things on how "Amazing Animals" like the woodpecker prove that God exists.
  • Finally, is Hunt Downer the Antichrist or something?

Did Hannity Withdraw From CPAC Over GOProud?

Yesterday we noted that Ann Coulter had been dropped from the upcoming Take Back America Conference being organized by WorldNetDaily because Coulter had agreed to speak at a different conference hosted by the gay conservative group GOProud.

And with attention-seekers like Coulter and WND's Joseph Farah involved, you just knew that there was no way that was going to be the last word about it:

Conservative pundit Ann Coulter responded today to the announcement that WorldNetDaily was dropping her as a speaker for one of their events, calling WorldNetDaily Editor Joseph Farah a “publicity whore” and a “swine.”

Coulter was bumped from the speakers list of WND’s September “Taking America Back National Conference” after it was announced that she had accepted a speaking gig at a New York City party hosted by GOProud, a Washington-based group that represents gay conservatives.

“[F]arah is doing this for PUBLICITY and publicity alone,” Coulter wrote in an email to The Daily Caller on Wednesday afternoon.

This, in turn, has set off another round of stories on WorldNetDaily, but I want to highlight this one by David Kupelian, claiming that Sean Hannity pulled out of CPAC and Sarah Palin refused to attend all because of GOProud:

It caused Sean Hannity to pull out of last February's Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, D.C., where he had been slated to appear as keynote speaker. When Hannity withdrew from the CPAC lineup, Glenn Beck stepped in. (Though this has not been previously reported, my source is highly placed and utterly reliable.)

It was also a big reason Gov. Sarah Palin opted not to speak at CPAC, long the nation's largest and most influential annual gathering of conservatives.

It caused WorldNetDaily, as well as major conservative institutions like Liberty University, to drop their planned sponsorship of the event.

"It" … is GOProud, the homosexual activist organization masquerading as a "traditional conservative" group, whose acceptance as official sponsor of CPAC caused many traditionally minded individuals and groups to pull out – on principle.

Now obviously, anything that has never been reported elsewhere that is suddenly being "reported" by WND is immediately suspect. 

I don't buy the Palin claim, since she has skipped CPAC the last two years, apparently because she personal gripes against organizer David Keene, who dared to criticize her, and I don't know that I believe the claim about Hannity either ... but it sure would be interesting to get some non-WND sourced confirmation of this claim. 

Ann Coulter Deemed Too "Gay Friendly" For WorldNetDaily Conference

Earlier this year that gay conservative group GOProud set off a controversy by co-sponsoring the annual CPAC conference, much to the dismay of anti-gay Religious Right groups who threatened to boycott the event if GOProud was not dropped. 

In the end, only Liberty Law School dropped out, but controversy has continued to erupt seemingly with every announcement GOProud makes. 

Earlier this summer, Grover Norquist agreed to join the group's board and he immediately came under fire for betraying the conservative movement and the same thing has been happening to Ann Coulter, who agreed to speak at GOProud's Homocon 2010, leading WorldNetDaily to drop her from its own upcoming Taking Back America conference:

Conservative superstar Ann Coulter today was dropped as a keynote speaker for WND's "Taking America Back National Conference" next month because of her plan to address an event titled "HOMOCON" sponsored by the homosexual Republican group GOProud that promotes same-sex marriage and military service for open homosexuals.

Joseph Farah, editor and chief executive officer of WND, said the decision was a gut-wrenching one for his team because of their fondness for Coulter as both a person and writer-speaker.

"Ultimately, as a matter of principle, it would not make sense for us to have Ann speak to a conference about 'taking America back' when she clearly does not recognize that the ideals to be espoused there simply do not include the radical and very 'unconservative' agenda represented by GOProud," said Farah. "The drift of the conservative movement to a brand of materialistic libertarianism is one of the main reasons we planned this conference from the beginning."

...

"Earlier this year, GOProud was permitted to sponsor the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, the biggest event of its kind," said Farah. "This bad decision resulted in consistently conservative groups dropping sponsorship and withdrawing from participation – much to their credit. GOProud is about infiltration of the conservative movement and dividing it from within with twisted and dangerous ideas way out of the mainstream of American public opinion. Ann Coulter is, I'm afraid, validating this effort for money. I support her speaking to people with whom she disagrees on college campuses. That's a good idea. I do it, too. But if you see the way GOProud is exploiting its coup in getting Ann Coulter to speak to its HOMOCON event, you begin to understand what a mistake this is for a conservative icon like Coulter."

So while Coulter is being dropped for supposedly being too "gay friendly" (which is itself hilariously ironic) WND's conference is still stocked with other virulently anti-gay speakers like Robert Knight, Matt Barber, Gary Cass, Molotov Mitchell, and Gary DeMar:

While DeMar insists that homosexuals wouldn't be rounded up and systematically executed under a "reconstructed" government, he does believe that the occasional execution of "sodomites" would serve society well, because "the law that requires the death penalty for homosexual acts effectively drives the perversion of homosexuality underground, back into the closet."

Another "long-term goal," he writes elsewhere, should be "the execution of abortionists and parents who hire them."

...

In 1993, American Vision helped county commissioners in Cobb County, Ga., pass an anti-gay resolution so strongly worded that it sparked a national controversy. Cobb County Commissioner Gordon Wysong spoke at American Vision's annual fundraising banquet the following year, saying of gay people, "We should blame them for every social failure in America."

Oh, and did I mentioned that Rep. Michele Bachmann is also speaking at the conference

Peter LaBarbera's Warped Understanding of Civility

It seems that Peter LaBarbera is rather upset with me for saying that his upcoming "truth academy" was going to be "the gay-hatingest thing you have ever seen":

Oftentimes when activists on the Left have no evidence that something they disagree with is actually ”hateful,” they just label as such anyway, and then repeat themselves ad nauseam so that we’ll all get the message that said conservative activity is, well, “hateful.” Here is People for the American Way (PFAW) “Senior Fellow” Kyle Mantyla’s trenchant analysis of AFTAH’s Truth Academy curriculum:

“Peter LaBarbera has unveiled the instructor list and official curriculum for his upcoming three day anti-gay hatefest/”truth academy” … and it is pretty much going to be the gay-hatingest thing you have ever seen.”

Wow. “Gay-hatingest.” Reactionary liberals are expanding their smear-term lexicon. Seriously, though, most people on the Left are not quite willing, yet, to define anyone who disagrees with homosexuality as “hateful” — although they might call them “homophobic” (an artificial construct whose elastic definition has evolved to meet the needs of pro-”gay” liberals). I’m sure there are exceptions, but I suspect that most “gay”-affirming people would not automatically label anyone who believes that homosexuality is immoral — or that homosexual sex is unnatural – as “haters.”

LaBarbera apparently operates under the belief that opposition to all things gay which claims to be rooted in Judeo-Christian morality cannot possibly be considered hateful:

Morality is not “hate” and defending the historic Judeo-Christian sexual ethic is not “bigotry.” Homosexuality is wrong, and a controversial moral and religious issue involving behavior ... In a free society, we debate moral issues, and we discuss public health issues arising from dangerous behaviors. Does PFAW hold that it is OK to crusade for acceptance of homosexuality, but “un-American” and ”hateful” to oppose it civilly?

Maybe “Senior Fellow” Kyle, who edits PFAW’s “Right-Wing Watch” blog, and his pro-homosexual allies can explain it for us: Is every American who opposes homosexuality hateful — or just those who defend that position in public? When does moral disagreement become “hate”?

Civilly?  Is that how LaBarbera thinks his hand-picked line-up of "instructors" has engaged in the public debate? 

- Cliff Kincaid claims that gays are out to destory our military with disease-tainted blood.

- Laurie Higgins says Christians have to fight gays just like they fought Nazis.

- Rena Lindevaldsen has worked tirelessly representing a woman who fled the country rather than allow her former lesbian partner to see their daughter.

- Robert Knight comared gay marriage to Pearl Harbor.

- The only reason anyone even knows the name Ryan Sorba is because he launched into an anti-gay rant at CPAC.

- And Matt Barber is the sort of person who says there is nothing acceptable about "one man violently cramming his penis into another man’s lower intestine and calling it 'love'" and whose career, from day one, has been rooted in his virulent animosity toward gays.

And Peter LaBarber is the man who personally invited all of these activists to come a "teach" at his conference - and he chose them specifically because of their unabashed militant hostility toward gays.

Sen. Inhofe: Soldiers Will Be Unwilling To Fight For Gay Comrades

I guess I shouldn't be surprised by the fact that Sen. James Inhofe appeared on "Focal Point" yesterday, the radio program hosted by the American Family Association's Bryan Fischer.

After all, if there was going to be one member of Congress comfortable with someone like Fischer - who has declared that all Muslims should be banned from the military and deported from the US, homosexuality should be illegal and that all gays should be treated like criminals, praised Ryan Sobra for his anti-gay rant at CPAC, called for the stoning of a killer whale at Sea World, and stated that gays are sexually deviant felons and pedophiles who are unqualified to sit on the Supreme Court - it would be Inhofe.

Yesterday, the two discussed Elena Kagan's nomination to the Supreme Court, with Fischer praising Inhofe's immediate opposition on the grounds that Kagan is hostile to our military while Inhofe explained that it was vital to try and keep Kagan off the court because she would most likely vote to strike down Don't Ask, Don't Tell.

The military is organized into men and women and doesn't need this "third group to deal with," Inhofe said, explaining that, as a military man, he knows that soldiers fight not for nation or flag, but for the guy in the next foxhole ... but if the guy in the next foxhole is gay, well, that would dramatically change everything: 

Is It Even Possible For Glenn Beck To Jump The Shark?

Remember a few months ago when Glenn Beck aired his "documentary" entitled "The Revolutionary Holocaust: Live Free ... or Die," which aimed to explain how today's liberals and progressives are just like the Nazis and Communists who murdered millions of people.

Well, apparently that message was a bit too subtle, which is why Beck is back with a new documentary, this one entitled "Progressivism: America's Cancer"

Missed Glenn at CPAC? Now you can get the DVD of the speech that rid Glenn of all 3 friends he had remaining. Tough on Republicans and Democrats, this speech gets right to the heart of what's destroying America: progressivism. Also on the DVD are special features including all access with Scott Baker from the Insider Extreme launch event at the Nokia Theater AND the all new documentary titled: Progressivism: America's Cancer.

For now, you can only get a sneak preview of it by ordering a DVD copy of Beck's CPAC speech (though here it is called "Progressivism: America's Disease"):

Liberty U: Home of Tomorrow's Religious Right Leaders

A while back, Liberty Counsel stated that it was expecting more than 10,000 people to attend the Freedom Federation's upcoming "Awakening" conference to be held next week at Liberty University.

The idea that this new organization could get 10,000 attendees to its very first conference seemed pretty unlikely, considering that events like CPAC, which are extremely influential and have a long history, had a record attendance this year of around 9,000.

But now it is all making sense, as Liberty Counsel's Mat Staver spoke with Concerned Women for America about the event and reported that Liberty University was allowing students out of class in order to attend the event:

The fact that the event is free to everyone, Liberty students and others alike, might also account for the large number of attendees expected. 

But what is most remarkable about this is that it provide further evidence that Liberty University sees itself as, quite literally, a training ground for tomorrow's Religious Right leaders because, as Staver says, Liberty's students are "our replacements ... [who] will be the future leaders of America."

Can Anyone Be Too Radical For Today's GOP?

I just have to ask if there will ever come a time when Republican members of Congress will be held accountable for the Religious Right activists with whom they willingly associate:

On Tuesday, March 16, at 8:30 p.m. EST, Family Research Council's legislative lobbying arm FRC Action will host a live webcast, "National Townhall on Health Care: Stop the Government Takeover." The webcast will mobilize tens of thousands of supporters only days before an expected vote on "The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act," a health care reform bill that the United States Senate passed on Christmas Eve, 2009.

...

Who:

Tony Perkins, President, FRC Action
Rep. Tom Price, M.D. (R-GA)
Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN)
Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN)
Marjorie Dannenfelser, President, Susan B. Anthony List
Kristan Hawkins, Executive Director, Students for Life
Douglas Johnson, Legislative Director, National Right to Life
Bryan Fischer, American Family Association
Tom McClusky, Senior Vice President, FRC Action
More to be announced...

So that is three GOP members of Congress who are going to be joining with the AFA's Bryan Fischer who, in recent months, has declared that all Muslims should be banned from the military, homosexuality should be illegal and all gays should be treated like criminals, praised Ryan Sobra for his anti-gay rant at CPAC, and called for the stoning of a killer whale at Sea World.

Just how utterly radical does a Religious Right activist have to be in order to become toxic to Republican members of Congress, considering that one who openly calls for the criminalization of gays is deemed perfectly acceptable? 

The Religious Right's Fight For The Tea Party Mantle

Ever since Ron Paul won the CPAC straw poll, traditional Religious Right activists have been arguing that the event was overtaken by Libertarians and therefore did not represent "true" conservatives ... a belief that was only reinforced by the fact that Young Americans for Freedom's Ryan Sorba was booed by the audience for his attack from the stage on the conservative gay group GOProud.

For decades, CPAC has been the conservative gathering in Washington, but this year a man who for years had been relegated to the sidelines of the movement suddenly won the event's straw poll thanks largely to the support from Tea Party activists, which re-exposed a basic rift between the economic conservatives and social conservatives that in recent years the movement has been trying hard to bridge ... apparently without much success:

The rise of a new conservative grass roots fueled by a secular revulsion at government spending is stirring fears among leaders of the old conservative grass roots, the evangelical Christian right.

A reeling economy and the massive bank bailout and stimulus plan were the triggers for a resurgence in support for the Republican Party and the rise of the tea party movement. But they’ve also banished the social issues that are the focus of many evangelical Christians to the background.

And while health care legislation has brought social and economic conservatives together to fight government funding of abortion, some social conservative leaders have begun to express concern that tea party leaders don’t care about their issues, while others object to the personal vitriol against President Barack Obama, whose personal conduct many conservative Christians applaud.

“There’s a libertarian streak in the tea party movement that concerns me as a cultural conservative,” said Bryan Fischer, director of Issue Analysis for Government and Public Policy at the American Family Association. “The tea party movement needs to insist that candidates believe in the sanctity of life and the sanctity of marriage.”

...

There’s no centralized tea party organization, and anecdotes suggest that many tea party participants hold socially conservative views. But those views have been little in evidence at movement gatherings or in public statements, and are sometimes deliberately excluded from the political agenda. The groups coordinating them eschew social issues, and a new Contract From America, has become an article of concern on the social right.

The contract, sponsored by the grass-roots Tea Party Patriots as well as Washington groups such as FreedomWorks and Americans for Tax Reform, asks supporters to choose the 10 most important issues from a menu of 21 choices that makes no mention of socially conservative priorities such as gay marriage and abortion.

“They’re free to do it, but they can’t say [the contract] represents America,” said Family Research Council President Tony Perkins, a veteran of the Christian right. “If they do it they’re lying.”

Groups such as FreedomWorks, said Perkins, bring a libertarian bias that doesn’t represent the “true tea parties.”

As we noted a few weeks ago, social conservatives like Perkins have long been at war with Tea Party/economic conservatives like Dick Armey, but had recently swallowed their pride and linked up with Armey's FreedomWorks in an attempt to get in on the Tea Party activism which Armey's activism has come to represent:

Tea party activism is so entirely driving the right-wing movement at the moment that the most influential Religious Right organization is willing to co-host an event with a group lead by a man who publicly and repeatedly insulted them as stupid, shallow demagogues just to get in on the action.

If that doesn't tell you just where the Religious Right fits in to the conservative movement, I don't know what does.

And now you have Perkins claiming that FreedomWorks doesn't represent the "true tea parties," which is laughably pathetic and just goes to prove, as we have been arguing all along, that the Religious Right is desperately trying to co-opt the Tea Party narrative and graft their own religious agenda on to a movement that, from its founding, has had no real interest in such issues.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Pat Robertson wants it known that he did not blame the earthquake in Chile on the persecution of Augusto Pinochet.
  • It's amazing how quickly people go from "I don't care who you are, this is funny" to "I deeply apologize" when they get caught for sending out racist emails.
  • Today, California State Sen. Roy Ashburn admitted he was gay, but also defended his anti-gay voting record.
  • Hannah Giles will be a featured speaker at the Franklin County [PA] Republican Party's Lincoln Day Dinner.
  • Conservatives hit back at Liz Cheney and company over their attacks on Justice Department lawyers.
  • Finally, Joseph Farah declares the death of CPAC.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Sarah Palin is writing another book, one that will "reflect on the key values—both national and spiritual—that have been such a profound part of her life and which continue to inform her vision of the future." I can hardly wait.
  • The Arizona Republic looks at the behind-the-scenes influence the right-wing Center for Arizona Policy has in shaping public policy in the state.
  • Do you ever get the impression that Mat Staver just doesn't like gay people?
  • Thanks to the AFA, the Chairman of the NCAA Division I Board of Directors has been inundated with more than 40,000 emails protesting the NCAA's decision to drop the Focus on the Family ad from its website.
  • The Traditional Values Coalition pretty much loses it over DADT.
  • Finally, the quote of the day from Don Feder in a lengthy attack on CPAC: " Gay rights is about indoctrinating your children in behavior that would make a proctologist gag. It’s about criminalizing dissent via speech codes and hate crimes laws. It’s a frontal assault on First Amendment free speech and religious freedom. This is freedom only in the sense that killing unborn children is choice."

Cliff Kincaid Defends The Conservative Movement's Good Name

Every time I write a post about something Accuracy in Media's Cliff Kincaid as written (which seems to be happening quite frequently lately) I marvel at his consistency.  While most of the people we write about frequently occasionally write uninteresting or irrelevant things that don't really warrant any sort of coverage, Kincaid seems able to produce pieces so chock-full of craziness that they are impossible to ignore.

Case in point is his latest column, which is built around refuting this Politico article by Kenneth Vogel claiming that the conservative establishment is finally trying to distance itself from the "movement’s extremist elements."

Now, I don't buy Vogel's claims for a minute ... and neither does Kincaid, but for completely different reasons.  For instance, Vogel cites as evidence of his premise the fact that Ryan Sorba was jeered at CPAC for attacking GOProud from the stage, but Kincaid sees it differently, claiming that it was those who were booing Sorba who are extremists who don't represent the conservative movement:

What he ignores is the evidence that the "jeering" came mostly from non-conservatives, many of them libertarians, and that the "anti-gay activist," Ryan Sorba of Young Americans for Freedom, was rebutting a pro-gay speaker, a leader of a group who told me he wasn't a conservative in the first place.

To clear things up for Kenneth Vogel and others in the media, let us make it clear that a true conservative like Howard Phillips, who has been a leader in the conservative movement for several decades, understands that conservatism means traditional moral and religious values, a strong national defense, and economic freedom. There is nothing complicated or confusing about it. The homosexual movement, founded by a member of the Communist Party by the name of Harry Hay, simply doesn't qualify for admission, no matter how many libertarians in the CPAC audience may applaud for GOProud or jeer Ryan Sorba.

In order to purge the conservative movement of its extremists, CPAC will have to remove its own organizers who let them in.

The story ignores the real problem of how the "conservative establishment"-in the form of the CPAC organizers--picked actual and real extremists to co-sponsor their event. And those were the self-described "gay conservatives" who reject the social conservatism that has been an essential part of the conservative movement. The well-established and well-known Family Research Council pulled out of CPAC because CPAC organizer David Keene decided to allow GOProud, a relatively new organization that works for the election of "centrist" and liberal Republicans, into the event. But this mistake is overlooked by Vogel.

[Does anybody have any idea what Kincaid is talking about when he says that the Family Research Council pulled out of CPAC?  I know the Liberty University Law School did so, but I don't recall FRC ever following suit.]

Kincaid then goes on to dispute Vogel's claim that some conservatives were uneasy about the fact that the John Birch Society was allowed to co-host CPAC ... and does so by defending the John Birch Society:

Communism was and is a conspiracy. Without commenting on every charge made by the JBS or its leaders over the years, its central claim--that U.S. leaders are working with the communists and others to lay the groundwork for world government--cannot be dismissed out of hand. Objectively speaking, one has to admit that talk of global taxes and world government is frequently in the news and cannot be said to be the fantasies of the "black helicopter" crowd. Even the Pope has stated his belief in a "World Political Authority." His own Vatican newspaper published a favorable review of Marxist theory.

At this late date, no one can seriously doubt that a "New World Order" of some kind is coming into being. The real questions are to what extent it is being deliberately designed to subvert America's standing in the world and the American way of life, and what role President Obama is playing in it.

Critics of the JBS have to concede the organization has been on the right track about an emerging world government.

Kincaid finally wraps up his piece by defending the Birthers and attacking the "so-called 'conservatives'" who spoke to Vogel for his Politico piece, accusing them of giving the conservative movement a bad name.

I can hardly wait for Part II of Kincaid's piece, which he promises will focus on the conservative movement's relationship with "Alex Jones, Russian Television, and the Oath Keepers."

Right Wing Round-Up

  • Good As You makes a convincing case that Ryan Sorba get into anti-gay activism thanks to Scott Lively.
  • Also, if you missed the right-wing anti-DADT repeal press conference at CPAC, Good As You has all the video.
  • Speaking of DADT, Media Matters examines all the myths and falsehoods conservative media figures have pushed in their efforts to prevent repeal.
  • John McCain is whacking his Republican primary challenger for his Birtherism with a new ad.
  • Allow me to quote Steve Benen: "So, let me get this straight. Prominent conservative voices don't mind [Glenn] Beck's deranged conspiracy theories, his humiliating ignorance, and his hatred for those who don't think as he does. But these conservative voices mind a great deal if Beck notes that Republicans have an embarrassing record when it comes to deficit reduction, the national debt, government spending, and increasing the size and scope of the federal government's powers -- an observation that happens to be true. What an odd movement."
  • Finally, in the annals of idiotic right-wing lying hypocrisy, this is hard to beat.

Staver: Real Conservatives Wouldn't Have Booed Ryan Sorba's Anti-Gay CPAC Rant

CBS has an article on GOProud and CPAC that revolves mostly around Ryan Sorba's attack on the group from the stage and the boos it elicited from the audience which quotes Liberty Counsel's Mat Staver saying that GOProud free to be part of the conservative movement so long as they don't expect the movement to actually support their agenda. How kind of him.

But he  was also asked about his views regarding the negative reaction Sorba elicited with his attack, and Staver said that this year's CPAC was dominated by libertarian Ron Paul supporters, suggesting that if it had been dominated by social conservatives, Sorba would not have been booed

Mathew Staver, dean of the evangelical Liberty University School of Law and founder and chair of the Liberty Counsel, says that he and his allies "certainly don't support the idea that anybody would be eliminated from the political process because of their sexual orientation."

But he said Liberty University School of Law felt compelled to pull its sponsorship from CPAC over GOProud's support for the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" and other policies.

"Those are not conservative policies, and they are not supported by the Republican Party," he said, noting that the GOP continues to oppose a "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" repeal as well as same-sex marriage and hate crimes protections based on gender identity. "I welcome all people being part of the conversation, but I also think that just because of your individual orientation, it does not mean that we change the values that conservatives support."

Asked if he was disappointed with Sorba's reception, Staver noted that Ron Paul won the CPAC straw poll of 2012 presidential candidates - evidence, he suggested, that those in the room were not "reflective of the conservative movement or the Republican Party."

Really!? So if those who booed Sorba "are not reflective of the conservative movement or the Republican party," then isn't Staver saying that "real" conservatives wouldn't have booed Sorba for his anti-gay rant? 

Right Wing Round-Up

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CPAC Posts Archive

Brian Tashman, Tuesday 04/12/2011, 10:13am
After speaking alongside Newt Gingrich at Liberty University’s Awakening 2011, Joseph Farah of WorldNetDaily is now praising Donald Trump for casting doubts on President Obama’s birth certificate. WorldNetDaily is a bastion for conspiracy theories about Obama and other issues, and most recently the website blatantly photoshopped a picture of Obama and his grandparents to try to find a “missing year” in his biography. Farah is one of the most vocal advocates of the discredited conspiracy that Obama is not a naturally-born citizen and consequently ineligible to serve as... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Monday 04/11/2011, 5:40pm
Rep. Michele Bachmann won the straw poll at this weekend's Awakening 2011. On a related note, Mitt Romney has officially launched an exploratory committee. CBN's David Brody is actually dedicating an entire episode of his half-hour TV program to Donald Trump's presidential campaign. Did you know that Trump is a lunatic? Finally, I am really getting the feeling that GOProud will not be back at CPAC next year. MORE >
Brian Tashman, Monday 04/11/2011, 4:36pm
Frank Gaffney of the Center for Security Policy has repeatedly called for the conservative movement to purge Grover Norquist from the ranks, and even accused Norquist of “credentialing the perpetrators of this Muslim Brotherhood influence operation” during the controversy over CPAC. Norquist, the head of the highly influential Americans for Tax Reform, was a speaker at The Awakening despite his membership on the board of GOProud, a gay conservative group, and Gaffney’s charges of promoting Sharia law. In fact, Gaffney spoke during “Sharia Law and the Constitution... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Friday 03/25/2011, 10:59am
After an openly gay Republican, Greg Gandrud, was elected to the board of directors of the California Republican Party at their convention, anti-gay organizations were obviously displeased. Similar to the debate over GOProud’s inclusion in the Conservative Political Action Conference, when right-wing groups blasted GOProud because it represents gay and lesbian conservatives, the head of the California Republican Assembly has taken issue with Gandrud’s sexual orientation. Celeste Greig of the California Republican Assembly said that Gandrud shouldn’t “bring his personal... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Wednesday 03/16/2011, 11:57am
Ever since various Religious Right groups boycotted CPAC over the inclusion of the gay conservative group GOProud, there have been a lot of questions about what direction the conference would take in the years to come.  New new American Conservative Union Chairman Al Cardenas has already been suggesting that he is going to do what he can to bring the offended Religious Right groups back into the fold by limiting GOProud's involvement.  And now comes word that Cardenas has now hired the executive director of Ralph Reed's Faith and Freedom Coalition to undertake the task of... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Monday 03/14/2011, 2:48pm
Appearing on the television program of ACT! for America, Frank Gaffney called on the US to arrest and prosecute anyone for practicing Sharia law, the legal code of Islam. Gaffney of the far-right Center for Security Policy previously suggested that President Obama is a secret Muslim and that radical Muslims are engineering a takeover of the conservative movement. The Conservative Political Action Conference refused to give Gaffney a platform “because they didn’t want to be associated with a crazy bigot,” according to a CPAC organizer. Speaking to ACT! for America’s... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Friday 03/04/2011, 3:06pm
There are few "mainstream" anti-gay activists operating today that can match Matt Barber for shear anti-gay vitriol.  In fact, it was his attacks on gays that turned Barber into a Religious Right celebrity in the first place, eventually landing him a job with Concerned Women for America before Mat Staver of Liberty Counsel lured him away and gave him a position as Associate Dean at Liberty University and Director of Cultural Affairs with Liberty Counsel. And Staver snapped up Barber because he shares his anti-gay views and because of their endless anti-gay attacks, Liberty... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Friday 03/04/2011, 10:40am
Writing for the Wall Street Journal, Richard Land took a preemptive strike against Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels, who raised eyebrows after calling for a “truce” on social issues and is considering a run for president. Land writes just one day after a WSJ poll found that the majority of GOP primary voters would be sympathetic to the “truce” offered by Daniels, who believes that the nation should be focusing on economic issues instead of fighting the “culture war.” Land, like many other Religious Right leaders, has come out swinging against Daniels’s... MORE >