The crowd here at the Conservative Political Action Conference gleefully embraces the political figures Democrats and the media love to hate, and it is full of adoration for Sarah Palin.
“You love her because she drives liberals crazy,” the National Rifle Association’s Chris Cox said as he introduced the former Alaska governor and 2008 vice presidential nominee.
Palin delivered the closing remarks at this year’s conference and, in a speech that touched on topics ranging from Obamacare to the Republican establishment to Ted Cruz to the war on women, she brought the audience of approximately 11,000 to its feet repeatedly with the sassiness and attitude that has become her calling card.
“The age of Obama is almost over,” she announced. “This is the end of an error, he is the lamest of lame ducks.”
Palin also launched an assault on the party establishment, which she said is urging Republicans to law low while Obamacare and the president’s feckless foreign policy create problems for Democrats.
“You do interrupt when they are in the process of destroying your country, and that’s what we’re gonna do in 2014,” she said. Audience members interrupted to exclaim, “Run, Sarah, run!” (She garnered just 2 percent in the conference’s annual presidential straw poll.)
Palin’s message to President Obama, who is in the midst of a stand off with Russian president Vladimir Putin over his incursion into Ukraine: ”Mr. President,” she said, “the only thing that stops a bad guy with a nuke is a good guy with a nuke.” Then she acknowledged she should be more understanding in the face of the president’s troubles. “After all, who could have seen this one coming?” she quipped, referring to her 2008 prediction that American inaction in the face of Putin’s invasion of Georgia would encourage him to invade Ukraine.
“I love coming back here because there are always so many young people or, as you’re known by the folks across the river, Obamacare suckers,” she said. “Turns out, you have the change that they were waiting for: You have the $5s, the $10s, and the $20s.”
“They said the train of history was roaring to the left,” she said, “but then, something happened. That ‘Hope and Change’ went from a catchy campaign slogan to a reality and along the way, ‘Hope and Change,’ ‘Yes we can,’ it became ‘No You Can’t’: No you can’t log on to the website. No, you can’t keep your health care. No, you can’t make a phone call without Michelle Obama knowing this is the third time you dialed Pizza Hut delivery.”
Pushing back against the Democrats’ claim that the Republican party’s pro-life stance constitutes a war on women, she told the women in today’s audience, of the Democratic party, “Don’t let them use you unless you choose to be their political pawn or just their accessory on their arm. Honey, that’s not liberation, that’s subjugation, and this sisterhood fights against that.”
Palin electrified the audience at last year’s conference by tacitly rebuking New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg, pulling a Big Gulp soda from beneath the podium and taking a big sip. “Shoot, it’s just pop with lo-cal ice cubes in it!” she shrugged, and pumped the cup over her head when she left the stage.
Moments before Palin took the stage, Rand Paul claimed a victory in the conference’s annual presidential straw poll for the second year in a row.
Palin, who heads a political action committee dedicated to backing candidates that she supports, and who will host the show “Amazing America” on the Sportsman Channel starting next month, has not backed a 2016 presidential candidate yet, but did give a special shout out to freshman senator Ted Cruz. “Liberty needs a Congress on Cruz control,” she said, praising Cruz’s all-night filibuster and his attempt to defund Obamacare, which she said had helped to wake people up to the horrors of Obamacare.
Palin offered her own version of “Green Eggs and Ham” after offering praise for Cruz, who read the book on the Senate floor during his filibuster against Obamacare last fall.
“I do not like this Uncle Sam, I do not like this health care scam. I do not like these dirty crooks, or how they lie and cook the books,” she said. The audience laughed and cheered.
“I do not like this spyin’ man, I do not like ‘Oh, yes we can,” she continued. “I do not like this kind of hope, and we won’t take it nope, nope, nope.”