It’s 12:29am Saturday morning as I sit at my computer in the Batcave here in Washington DC attempting to recapture a day at CPAC 2015. Once again, it just warms my heart and reignites my flame to see the young people at the event who are stepping up to embrace and advocate for Constitutional Conservative principles and values.
They’re starting to realize their future and the future of the American dream is threatened. I participated in many interviews along the infamous CPAC “radio row” and for me, this is where we need to reach out to the grassroots base and Americans.
I have to confess, one of the fellas I enjoy seeing at CPAC is Democrat strategist Rick Unger — cohost of the Sirius/XM Radio show “Steele and Unger.” Rick is a guy with whom you can talk about finding a common ground from which to build better solutions. I have great mutual respect for Rick and look forward to being on his show with another fella for whom I have great respect, former RNC Chairman Michael Steele.
I also had the pleasure to reconnect with one of my oldest Army buddies, COL(Ret) Valerie Jircitano with her husband and her sister who is also a former Soldier and has a son who has been accepted to United States Military Academy, West Point. And there were many folks that I only get to see once a year at CPAC whom I was happy to see — especially those college kids who always tell me they’ve seen me x-amount of years in a row. And a real pleasure was taking pictures with the Citadel Cadets and seeing the students from Liberty and Cornell University where I spoke last year.
But back to CPAC, nope, I didn’t get into the main hall to hear any of the speeches but there was a prevailing question asked by everyone.
Who are you backing?
I had to tell one interviewer that I don’t cheerlead any person but rather rally to my country. As well it’s far too early to start fawning over any one person. But what I told most interviewers was that I am not focused on the individual but rather I am looking through a certain prism.
I want find the person who can be seated in a room with very dangerous dictators, despots, autocrats, and theocrats and stare them down. I’m looking for that leader who can sit across from Vladimir Putin and non-verbally send a message. I’m looking for the leader that can send a message of strength, exceptionalism, and resolve without uttering a word — a commanding presence.
Anyone can rehearse a speech, but leadership is far more than giving a prepared speech or a well-crafted stump speech – doggone, that’s the lesson we should have learned from the past six years. The point is that anyone can hire the best advisors on the economy, healthcare oe energy, but only one person wears the title of commander-in-chief. Constitutional Conservatives must raise up a charismatic champion that rallies us to the American flag. We must realize there are two phases to a national level election: image and message. The image phase has to be won or we’ll never be able to get to the message phase.
And when it comes to the message phase, we must have someone willing to deliver one that clearly delineates between the failure of progressive socialism and its collective vision of shared misery by way of the dependency society.
We must make the liberal progressives defend their ideology. We need a leader who goes on the offense — not against another individual but rather against a belief system that is antithetical to this Constitutional Republic and the opportunity society.
I seek the person who can effectively articulate what a fundamental transformation of America means and why it’s detrimental to the future of our nation — Americans feel it, but many just cannot explain it. And that explanation has to be delivered from someone who is the embodiment of all that is great about America. Someone who can tell the story of America and the legacy it has generated — regardless of where it began or from whence it came.
What I saw at CPAC 2015 was people looking for that paradigm of leadership. They’re looking for someone courageous and relentless, a fearless fighter who doesn’t evaluate him- or herself based on “likeability” polls but rather on the simple understanding that at the end of the day, it’s all about integrity and character — the ability to look yourself in the mirror and know you upheld the oath taken to the rule of law for this Republic. We need someone who can look Americans in the eye and tell them they can lay their heads down at night and rest assured their individual prosperity, safety and security were of the utmost responsibility and concern.
Bottom line, this cannot be about identity politics and the insidious gimmicks that ensue. And we need someone who will look into the eyes of the liberal progressive media and with a smile crush them with ease and comfort — never cowering, never surrendering, never compromising their principles just to have favorable press.
We are a long way from knowing exactly who that person may be — lots can happen between now and the summer of 2015. What we do know is that weakness is enticing and has been a sweet aroma for our enemies. We do know that our allies no longer trust us.
We do know that we today have a Chamberlain. And we surely need a Churchill — or maybe a Thatcher. That’s whom I’d back.