Ralph Reed: Man of Action

Say what you will about Ralph Reed, but the man loves his military metaphors.

According to Nina Easton’s book “Gang of Five: Leaders at the Center of the Conservative Ascendacy,” Reed developed a penchant for tough-talking bravado back when he was running the College Republicans with Grover Norquist and Jack Abramoff.

Easton reports that Reed and Norquist required new recruits to memorize passages from the movie “Patton” with the word “Democrats” replacing references to “Nazis”:  “The Democrats are the enemy.  Wade into them!  Spill their blood! Shoot them in the belly!”

Later, during his years at the Christian Coalition, he honed his military rhetoric even further, such as in 1991 when he stated

I want to be invisible. I do guerrilla warfare. I paint my face and travel at night. You don’t know it’s over until you’re in a body bag.

A year after that, he bragged that this mentality played a key role in the Coalition’s effectiveness

It’s like guerrilla warfare.  If you reveal your location, all it does is allow your opponent to improve his artillery bearings. It’s better to move quietly, with stealth, under cover of night. You’ve got two choices: You can wear cammies and shimmy along on your belly, or you can put on a red coat and stand up for everyone to see.

Another quote can now be added to this collection, courtesy of the recent Senate Indian Affairs Committee report [PDF] on Jack Abramoff, which quotes Reed bragging that he was going all out to fight a gambling expansion in Alabama that would have threatened the interests of Abramoff’s client, the Mississippi Band of Choctaws

We are opening the bomb bay doors and holding nothing back. If victory is possible, we will achieve it.

Hopefully, Reed’s gung-ho attitude has prepared him for all the flak he’s taking for his work for Abramoff.