Last time Sarah Palin was in Washington D.C. she was riding on the back of a Harley Davidson motorcycle with the Rolling Thunder. Saturday evening, Palin addressed thousands of CPAC attendants to close out a busy weekend jam packed full of conservative ideas. She was welcomed to the stage by a standing crowd of activists and raucous applause.
"To me the conservative movement has never been stronger or smarter,” Palin said. “We’ve been waving a bold banner that shouts ‘Don’t Tread on Me.’”
Although she touched on topics ranging from energy policy, the economy, unemployment, foreign policy, pro-life issues, troops overseas and the GOP presidential primary race, she kept the focus on President Obama’s failures during his time in Washington D.C. She pointed out that during his State of the Union Address, Obama hardly mentioned unemployment or out of control entitlement spending.
“We want your administration to end,” she said. “We believe real recovery can’t get underway until government gets out of the way.”
Palin said Obama has a skewed view of America as a politician from Chicago now tucked away in Washington, scratching the backs of his friends through “capitalism of connections” while Americans outside of the beltway suffer. Congressmen become “plutocrats,” she said, adding that they don’t just benefit off the of the government themselves, but spread the wealth around to their friends too. Palin charged that crony capitalism is at the root of American’s economic problems.
“This [Washington D.C.] is the playground for the government rich and they’re hoping that you work really really hard to keep her going.” She said. “Life around here is really good materially, our permanent political class is content. They are immune from the realities the rest of us face.”
She painted Washington D.C. as a wetland, rather than a swamp, and said it’s time to drain the corruption in order to regain a strong American economy, making it clear government spending will not create jobs.
“They [government] don’t mine, they don’t drill, they don’t harvest, they produce nothing,” she said. “The President wants to raise taxes so he can redistribute wealth. We want to cut taxes to create more wealth.”
She credited the tea party for being outside of the status quo in Washington and praised them for be being willing go to Congress and fight for small government ideas.
“This government isn’t too big too fail, it’s too big to succeed,” she said. “We can’t wait, we must come together as constitutional conservatives to save our Republic.”
Palin commented briefly on the 2012 GOP race for the White House, encouraging healthy competition and a long primary, stating Republicans should avoid eating their own in the process.
“We must stand united, whoever our nominee is,” she said. “We believe that it’s time to return power to the people, that’s where the Founders intended it.”
The room was packed, the applause was loud and she repeatedly brought people to their feet.
In case you missed it, here is our interview with Palin from CPAC.