Monday, March 24, 2014

GOP Women Want to Flip the House

Former U.S. Ambassador to Latvia Cathy Bailey hosted 70 women today to hear speeches by Kelley Paul and Peggy Grande that made us determined to elect Republicans this fall. Bailey's ability to gather, motivate and then mobilize conservative women is the key to Republicans flipping the house and reelecting Sen. McConnell. Now she has a PCA, Kentucky Rise PAC, to help do just that.

Former President Ronald Reagan's Special Assistant, Peggy Grande, gave us a glimpse on her view of Reagan in his last last ten years, up to planning and attending his funeral. As Reagan's personal photographer, she sat in on Reagan's personal meetings with world leaders such as Margaret Thatcher. Grande used her vantage point to observe the attributes that made Reagan not just a great president, but a great person.  She highlighted his authenticity, respect and optimism.  Reagan's life was organized around his love for his God, his wife and his country, Grande told the packed room.  She shared one of her favorite Reagan sayings:  "Live simply, love generously, care deeply, speak kindly. Leave the rest to God."

Just when Grande had moved us to tears and had us missing Reagan unbearably, she reminded us of these words from his farewell address:

The lesson of all this was, of course, that because we're a great nation, our challenges seem complex. It will always be this way. But as long as we remember our first principles and believe in ourselves, the future will always be ours.

And something else we learned: once you begin a great movement, there's no telling where it'll end. We meant to change a nation, and instead, we changed a world.

After Grande made us nostalgic for one of the greatest leaders of conservatism who accomplished so much, Kelley Paul reminded us of the pressing needs our country faces today -- most urgently, the need to repeal Obamacare.  Whereas Grande spoke of the past successes of conservatism, Paul evoked the future.  It made me grateful for her husband's bold and courageous leadership, and a little less bereft about Reagan's absence.

Paul (Kelley, that is) seems to get better with each speaking engagement.  A few months ago, she gave a tremendous speech to the Jefferson County Republican Party in which she essentially illustrated conservative principles -- faith, hard work, family, humility -- by telling stories about her grandmother.  It was a masterful example of showing without simply telling.

Today, Kelley focused explicitly on policy.  The speech was every bit as substantive as what Sen. Paul would give.  She blew off the "window dressing" on the supposed war on women, item by item, refuting issues like the Lilly Ledbetter "Fair Pay" Act, Obamacare, the glass ceiling. Citing her own extensive experience in advertising and the telecommunications industry -- as well as the fact that law schools and medical schools are now 50 percent female -- Paul put the lie to the Democrat fairy tale that women are victims in need of Big Government to save us from the Misogynists. She quoted her husband's observation that if there was a war on women, those number suggest women won.

Paul gave an anecdote to remind us that in stead of looking to save a $10 co-pay on birth control, women should look to see if their insurance will cover the hospitals that could save a life:  it may no longer, thanks to Obamacare.

Paul told us that Sen. Tom Coburn has lost his doctor due to Obamacare.  I knew Sen. Coburn was retiring; I did not realize that it was because his cancer has returned.  Paul pointed out that Coburn, as a member of Congress,  was forced to sign up for Obamacare.  However, M.D. Anderson -- which saved Coburn's life the first time he had cancer -- does not accept Obamacare.  Consequently, those doctors who know Coburn's history and treated him successfully before, cannot do so under his new and supposedly improved Obamacare insurance (unless Coburn wants to pay out of network, $60,000).

 It is little comfort to Coburn, Paul noted, that Coburn now has an "approved" plant that gives free birth control and diet counseling.

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