Well folks, we are at the halfway point for Americans for Prosperity’s Defending the American Dream Conference in our nation’s capitol. Breakouts and exhibits started early as over 2500 participants descended on the Washington Convention Center. There were several small sessions on subjects ranging from blogging to health care to how to testify before a committee! Heavy hitters such as Virginia Attorney General Vince Cuccinelli, former Lt. Governor of New York Betsy McCaughey, Congressmen Mike Pompeo, Andy Harris and Marsha Blackburn.
The first general session kicked off right after lunch, giving none a chance to properly digest before the frenzy began. The top two GOP candidates for President took to the stage for 30 minutes a piece, with Mitt Romney laying out a three point plan to reduce the deficit and reign in government spending and Herman Cain charging the audience with his straight forward rhetoric, including a memorable line about he and the Koch brothers being “brothers from another mother.”
Sandwiched between the two candidates was Jonah Goldberg from National Review who delivered a few hilarious lines combined with brilliant insight. Ann McElhinney, director of the documentary, “Not Evil, Just Wrong” gave a ringing speech, rife with passion laced with her piercing Irish accent on her love and passion for her adopted country. John Fund of the American Spectator talked of his new book on voter fraud and gave a stirring call to arms for the common citizen to watch out for dishonesty in our democratic system. Phil Kerpen and Tim Phillips of American for Prosperity also kept the crowd fired up between the other speakers.
The afternoon showcased even more breakouts and some downtime to hob-nob with the other participants before an exquisite dinner tribune to Ronald Reagan featuring Fox News favorite Judge Andrew Napolitano and best-selling author and Reagan expert, Dinesh D’Sousa.
To cap off the evening, the AFP attendees we honored by a visit from the Occupy D.C. protesters. Participants, with the curious attention one would have at looking at caged animals at the zoo, looked down on the protesters from the 3rd floor of the convention center. AFP Vice President Tracy Henke, who encouraged people all day to go forth from the convention and help educate the masses on the message said at the close of the night, “don’t try to educate tonight”, and encouraged the folks to avoid any confrontations.
As if this is not enough, tomorrow promises even more fun with the “Cut Spending Now” rally in the morning featuring former CEO of Hewlett Packard Carly Fiorina, biggovernment.com founder Andrew Breitbart and, the great one, radio talk host Mark Levin.
We will keep you posted on the fun. In the meantime you can follow the action on twitter (#dream11) or on the Defending the American Dream website.