(Jim Clark) – Every year, on or about the anniversary of Abraham Lincoln’s birthday, Republican Party organizations in each county hold a Lincoln Day Dinner and Fundraiser to honor the first Republican US President and support their grassroots efforts. Last week the Washoe County GOP held its Lincoln Day event at the Peppermill Hotel and Casino in Reno.
Among the 400+ in attendance were Congressman Mark Amodei and as many elected Republican officials as could break loose from the legislative session in Carson City including Secretary of State Barbara Cegavske, Assembly Speaker John Hambrick and Incline/Crystal Bay’s Assemblyman Randy Kirner. The featured speaker was nationally known African-American conservative Allen West.
Readers may recall that West, a US Army lt. colonel and trained paratroop infantryman, was stationed in Iraq when he discovered a planned ambush of his unit. An Iraqi policeman was alleged to be one of the ambush conspirators so West interrogated him. The accused refused to reveal any information so West pulled out his service weapon, fired it into a barrel of sand, and told the accused he would be next. The policeman disclosed the plot details and it was foiled.
Having saved his troops from harm West then came under fire by the Army for mistreatment of a prisoner. The matter was disposed of administratively with West paying a fine and retiring from the Army. He then was elected to Congress representing a district in Florida. West told a rapt audience that a black conservative was such a threat to liberals that Nancy Pelosi and George Soros respectfully contributed $2 and $5 million to unseat him in the most expensive congressional race in American history. He lost by a narrow margin and has since served as a spokesman for the theme that conservative principles trump racial differences.
West was born in Atlanta in 1961. His father was a career military officer and his mother a civilian employee of the US Marine Corps. Both were Democrats. West graduated from the University of Tennessee in 1983 and joined the Army. He was awarded the Bronze Star among other combat decorations. He later earned master’s degree from Kansas State University.
West was in his element in Washoe County. He did not mince words. Having previously called President Obama “an abject failure”, opined that drivers with Obama bumper stickers are “a threat to the gene pool” and castigated Democrats for trying to keep African Americans “on the plantation” his audience expected a show. And they got it.
He said that the way to deal with ISIS is to kill them all. He dwelt extensively on Lincoln quotes saying that the man who wrote: “Our forefathers brought forth upon this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal” struggled with the concept of “liberty”. West said that Lincoln told others at the time that “some men define ‘liberty’ as being able to enjoy the fruit of your own wages; others define it as being able to enjoy the wages earned by others”, a clear reference to the evils of slave masters and slavery.
West repeated Lincoln’s words several times and said that in the present “equal” still means the opportunity to enjoy the fruits of one’s own wages but the Democratic Party with its redistributionist policies, nanny-state government and welfare programs has now taken the place of the 19th century plantation owner. He condemned Obama’s “hand out” policies and suggested that African Americans would be infinitely better off if that same money were spent on blacks’ education.
When he ended his talk the crowd delivered a 5 minute standing ovation.
Jim Clark is President of Republican Advocates. He has served on the Washoe County and State of Nevada GOP Central Committees.