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What’s CPAC? Everything You Wanted To Know But Were (Rightly) Afraid To Ask

by David Badash on February 10, 2011

in Bigotry Watch,News,Politics

Post image for What’s CPAC? Everything You Wanted To Know But Were (Rightly) Afraid To Ask

CPAC, the Conservative Political Action Conference, is an event held annually by a group of American right-wing conservative extremists, hell-bent on taking down Barack Obama and the Democratic Party, instilling fear in America, “taking their country back” to the stone age, and propagating so-called “American values” of selfishness, ignorance, and Christian bible-centric governing.

CPAC Hallmarks

The hallmark culmination of each CPAC are the results of the straw poll, in which the CPAC attendees vote for whom they want the Republican presidential nominee to be, and the closing speech.

Read: “Who Will CPAC Nominate As GOP 2012 Presidential Nominee?” for a full list of this year’s straw poll nominees.

Watch: Glenn Beck- Keynote Speech at CPAC 2010

Winners of the CPAC straw poll in years past have rarely won the GOP presidential nomination, much less the presidency. Last year’s winner was Ron Paul, who interrupted Mitt Romney’s three-year streak. George W. Bush did win in 2000, and Ronald Reagan won in 1976, 1980, and 1984.

CPAC closing speakers of recent years past have included right wing extremist icons such as Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Ann Coulter, and Newt Gingrich. Often, the speakers mention the Republican deity, Ronald Reagan, who himself spoke at CPAC a dozen times.

Waning Importance Of CPAC

Despite the fact that this year’s CPAC has drawn its largest crowd ever, an estimated 11,000 attendees, an obvious indicator of the waning importance of CPAC, organized by the American Conservative Union, the oldest conservative lobbying organization in the country, is this year’s closing speaker, Rep. Allen West. An extreme right-wing freshman Republican politician, West is best known for falsely claiming, “I have a clearance that even the president of the United States cannot obtain because of my background.” The closing speaker, by comparison, last year was Glenn Beck, and the year prior, Rush Limbaugh.

This year’s CPAC, which began today and runs through Saturday evening, boasts the following list of confirmed speakers, most of whom represent the GOP of the 20th Century. A few notable exeptions are the Tea Party favorites, such as fraudulent journalist Andrew Breitbart and Rep. Michele Bachmann.

Another obvious indicator of the waning importance of CPAC is that the most-well-known GOP member, Sarah Palin, along with Marco Rubio, Senator Jim DeMint, will not be attending this year’s CPAC. (The Atlantic asks today, “CPAC Begins, but Does It Still Matter?“)

This year’s confirmed speakers include:

Rep. Michele Bachmann
Gov. Haley Barbour
Hon. John Bolton
Andrew Breitbart
Arthur Brooks
Herman Cain
Ann Coulter
Gov. Mitch Daniels
Hon. Newt Gingrich
David Horowitz
Wayne LaPierre
Sen. Mike Lee
Sen. Mitch McConnell
Rep. Ron Paul
Sen. Rand Paul
Hon. Tim Pawlenty
Gov. Rick Perry
Hon. Mitt Romney
Hon. Donald Rumsfeld
Rep. Paul Ryan
Hon. Rick Santorum
Phyllis Schlafly
Sen. John Thune
Rep. Allen West

Events, Panel Discussion, Speeches

Some of the events during this year’s CPAC include panel discussions and presentations, such as, “The Left’s Campaign to Reshape the Judiciary,” “How Political Correctness is Harming America’s Military,” “Why The Conservative Party Is The Next Step For The Tea Party,” “Lawlessness, Racialism and Terror at Obama’s Department of Justice,” “Reagan at 100: Role Model for the Next Generation,” “Repealing Obamacare: In The States, In Courts, and In Congress,” and “Traditional Marriage and Society.”

Controversaries: God and The Gays

Several large controversies have plagued this year’s event. First, Muslims. As you know, Islamophobia is a big social issue gripping Fox News-based Americans. So, a panel discussion, “The Importance of Faith & Religious Liberty in the US & Abroad,” sponsored by Muslims for America, surely will draw strong reactions, especially as there is another presentation, “The Ground Zero Mosque: The Second Wave of the 9/11 Attacks,” sponsored by the American Freedom Defense Initiative. This event features bigot extraordinaire Pamela Geller, and is the worldwide “special screening” of a trailer for the new AFDI documentary, “The Ground Zero Mosque: The Second Wave of the 9/11.” Talk about a conflict!

But wait, there’s more!

Another Islamophobia event, “The Sharia Challenge in the West,” takes place on Saturday.

Hopefully there’s strong security at these events.

Then there’s the “problem” of “the gays.”

GOProud, a gay Republican organization, is attending this year’s event, and as a result, many right-wing bigots and their organizations, such as the Heritage Foundation and the Family Research Council, Senator Jim DeMint, and other Republican heavyweights decided to not attend.

Read: “In CPAC’s Conservative Circus, Are Gays The High-Wire Act At CPAC 2010?

Erick Erickson, possibly America’s least self-aware citizen, and a CNN contributor and founder of RedState, a right-wing blog, today wrote, “GOProud is not a conservative organization.”

He adds, “GOProud has taken one of the favorite leftist bullet points and brought it straight into CPAC. You oppose affirmative action? You’re a racist. You oppose gay marriage? You’re a bigot.”

“Those groups and people who have sat out CPAC this year have done so not because they hate the gays, as Grover Norquist and GOProud would have you believe, but because GOProud is not a conservative organization and its agenda is not a conservative agenda.”

More anti-gay controversary at CPAC: Politico reports, “A POLITICO reporter just got handed a flier telling parents and young people that “radical homosexual front groups and their supporters will be in attendance to push their perversion on you.” This comes as some social conservative groups are boycotting CPAC in protest of the gay Republican group GOProud’s attendance.

So, does CPAC matter? Yes and no. Yes, because it propagates and celebrates anti-American extremism, and no, because it propagates and celebrates anti-American extremism.

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{ 5 comments }

Tovah February 13, 2011 at 10:15 am

Taking our country back to the stone age??? Are you kidding? If your progressive bullshit means allowing the government to control many aspects of my life, and putting their hands in my pockets to give what I've earned to those who have not earned it, then HELL YEAH!! I'll go back to what you call the stone age and fight alongside others who share my beliefs. Why don't all of you go to some country that is already doing the things you are so enamoured with and leave us alone. We reject your progressive image for ourselves and our descendants.

Glenn February 23, 2011 at 9:57 pm

These republicans have their way giant corporations will be your government. Think you have to much regulation now, just wait until all the news not just fox is backed by special interest groups lining the pockets and keeping true journalism out of our hands. Heaven forbid they ever tell the truth. If they did these large corporations would pull the plug on millions in advertising. Thus most of our media is lying to us on a daily basis. or just talk about how many hookers Tiger woods had .

Anthony April 30, 2011 at 10:45 pm

You are absolutely correct. There is truly an mental illness in Liberalism. Firstly, only "they" refer to themselves-Self-Certifying, arrogant morons that they are–who believe "we missed it-" and "they–Of course–got it"; and when they cannot stand up to the truth about their continuous sidition, they begin to become the cave-man themselves, and attack with name-calling, just to divert from answering directly our enquiries. They side with the enemy every time.
They believe they can "fast-track" evolution by sharpening the antagonisms–but which direction? Theirs, of course.
Who cares about the Constituion. "Constitution"? "Oh, yeah–that Pesky thing-"
In the world of the Liberal, the "enghtened ones" Brilliant Appointees to our State and Federal Supreme Courts should MAKE all our laws; and render the Legislature Null and Void–
So our voting for them means nothing-
(Shhhh-we're too stupid to know what is best for us; aren't we?)

guest February 13, 2011 at 2:48 pm

You sir fail at life!

cstmbldr May 17, 2011 at 10:51 am

Why does the left insist on calling conservatives bigots, racists, selfish, etc.? I don't hate anyone, especially Barry. I just believe he and the Dems are driving our great country into a ditch that will be difficult to get out of.

What's really sad is how one sided the media is. If you are not left leaning your ignorant, stupid and don’t know anything! If it wasn't for Fox News we would never hear opposing views, just continued self serving biased opinion and misinformation.

Does wanting fiscal responsibility make me a bad person? I think not being responsible is selfish.

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