Saturday, May 30, 2015

Bevin Unifies Party

Matt Bevin apparently surpassed expectations at tonight's Republican Party Lincoln Day Dinner, unofficially billed as the unity dinner.

Although I did not attend, I am told by a long-time party activist -- who donated to a Bevin rival in the primary -- that Bevin's performance was so good, it made him green with envy.

Bevin began with a video that made the crowd roar with laughter. Importantly, however, the humor was tasteful and respectful of McConnell, while poking fun at Bevin's perceived lack of support for McConnell.

 The self-deprecating video began with Bevin in bed, waking up to his alarm . . . wearing his Team Mitch shirt.  When his wife asks him to take it off so she can wash it, he peels it off to reveal . . . another Team Mitch shirt in a different color. The video also included a vignette on Bevin, like a besotted teenager, talking to McConnell on the phone, saying "No, you hang up." I am told people were laughing so hard they were crying.

At the video's conclusion, the crowd gave a standing ovation.  More importantly, this crowd of Republicans, two thirds of whom voted for someone else, were surprised and delighted. Many had not expected to actually like Bevin or be enthusiastic about his candidacy to this extent

Bevin then followed up with a speech strong on conservative policy solutions for Kentucky's problems.. He underscored the consequences of Republicans failing to win the governor's mansion.  As Bevin put it, there is the Right Way, and there is the Con-way.  It's a little corny, but Bevin made people excited about his candidacy who had not contemplated that as a possibility. This was a crowd who would have shown up in the polls in November to vote for the Republican nominee, Bevin or not.  He had their vote, but now, he has their support, and that means manpower, expertise, connections and maybe donations.

You can view the video below:

"Happy Together" from Steven Reese on Vimeo.

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