NATIONAL HARBOR, MD: On the opening morning of the CPAC conference, it seems as though the organizers didn’t closely coordinate the messages. However, one could discern an overall theme for CPAC 2019.
The successes of President Donald J. Trump.
The President’s successes are the campaign promises he keeps. From decreasing regulation, appointing Constitutional originalists to the courts, tax and criminal justice reform, and the result of these policies. The effects include a roaring economy, soaring employment opportunities, and the country becoming not only energy self-sufficient but also a net exporter.
In one panel discussion, Secretary of Energy Rick Perry said our natural gas (LNG) exports will increase significantly in the next few years and will allow us geopolitically to support our allies and wean them from Russian gas.
Along similar lines, Sebastian Gorka said that Russia is in trouble because the president has driven gas prices so low and that Russia’s economy is highly dependent on oil and gas. The situation is reminiscent of the way President Reagan defeated the USSR economically. He said that our geopolitical rival is China, not Russia.
However, he said, “America is back, and we know how to deal with bullies.”
American energy independence is a tremendous turn-around from OPEC’s monopoly on oil and gas production and the resulting 1973 oil crisis. Secretary Perry could have credited the Department of Energy—created in the wake of that crisis—with the turn-around, but he did not.
Instead, he attributed it to the technical innovations that allowed for horizontal drilling.
The Failures of Socialism
In contrast with the success of free-market capitalism unleashed under President Trump, many speakers spoke of the failures of socialism. Two repeated Trump’s pledge from his State of the Union speech: The United States will never be a socialist nation.
Ronna McDaniel, RNC Chair, says that the coming election would be a stark choice. A choice between capitalism, America as we know it, and socialism. She says the RNC has staff on the ground in battleground states, failing to elaborate on which battleground states.
Transportation Secretary Chu talked briefly about the California high-speed train issue. Chu notes to attendees that the contract to California is a gift of the Obama administration. Among those the former President was signing in the days before his departure.
Such is the case with the California train, initially projected to cost $40 billion. Since then, the footprint has shrunk while the cost has ballooned from $40 to $77 billion. California’s governor has said they won’t repay the federal government for the wasted money.
Secretary Chu says that $929 million of federal money has yet to be sent to California. And that there is a good chance it will not be sent.
One the first day of CPAC 2019 the message is liberty. And that limiting government allows for personal liberty to flourish.
Ten years after the beginning of the Tea Party movement, that’s a pretty good message.