“Socialism Sucks, Eat More Pork, and Use Ethanol”
The last two weekends have been incomparable. Two weekends ago, I attended many of the pre-celebrations rallies for the democratic candidates and then the Liberty and Justice Celebration with 13,000 other people. This past weekend, I went to the Lincoln Reagan Dinner, the annual fundraiser dinner for the Republican Party of Iowa. These two political events could not have been more different. The LJ Celebration took place in the Wells Fargo Arena with a huge stage complete with lights and a smoke machine and everyone around them in the bleachers shouting for their candidate of choice. The scene for the Lincoln Reagan Dinner was quite different. There were about fifty tables in the dimly lit ballroom of the Downtown Marriott and nicely-dressed people milling about talking to other important state party people.
Jeff Kaufmann opened the event with the usual speech about the success of the party and hopes for reelection in 2020. He threw in a bit about how “crazy Bernie” and the democrats want to eliminate the Electoral College and make Iowa irrelevant in the presidential election, which received multiple boos from the crowd. After he was finished, he introduced the next speaker Senator Chuck Grassley by simply stating, “Chuck Grassley, two words – Supreme Court.”
Senator Chuck Grassley took the stage surrounded by a standing ovation. He first expressed pride for his grandson Pat Grassley who now serves as the Iowa Speaker of the House and commended Governor Reynolds for her work thus far. He stated that President Trump has good policies and “ran for what he ran for and stands on that platform” which he could appreciate. He also told about the recent time that he and fellow Senator Lindsey Graham went to the White House to celebrate that President Trump has put more judges on federal courts than any president in thirty years. Near the end of his speech, he took a jab at former Vice President Joe Biden for saying that he only has one more thing to say and then talking for ten more minutes. He ended his time by expressing his hopes that about a year from now Senator Joni Ernst will be reelected and President Trump will serve his second term.
After Iowa’s senior senator spoke to the crowd, junior Senator Joni Ernst addressed the people. She began by thanking Senator Grassley for being “the best mentor God could have given” her, which received a thumbs up from Grassley. She spent her time talking about President Trump and his accessibility as a president and how lucky we are to be Americans. She concluded her speech and introduced the night’s keynote speaker, South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham.
Senator Graham was on fire all night. He cracked joke after joke, beginning with “I hope you are all enjoying the drinks because the more you drink the better I sound” and thanking Senator Grassley for picking up the bill. He started his speech with what he said was the most important takeaway from the night: “Socialism sucks, eat more pork, and use ethanol.” He told stories and cracked jokes about Grassley, Ernst, and President Trump. He talked about the frugality of Grassley and said that the White House staff searches him on the way out rather than the way in. He had nothing but the highest praise for Senator Ernst, saying “Joni Ernst is a role model for every young woman in this country.” He addressed the rocky start that he and President Trump had at the beginning of his time in office but said they finally found something in common: “I like him and he likes him, so we have plenty to talk about.” He ended his time by talking about democrats and the future. He said, “the other side just seems angry, I have never been more proud to be an American than right now.” Graham wrapped up the night saying, “We are going to kick their [Democrats’] a** and not hand our country over to socialists.”