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Transcript of John McCain’s Speech at CPAC

February 7th, 2008 . by TexasFred
Transcript of John McCain’s Speech at CPAC - February 7th, 2008.

Thank you. Thank you for inviting me. It’s been a little while since I’ve had the honor of addressing you, and I appreciate very much your courtesy to me today. We should do this more often. I hope you will pardon my absence last year, and understand that I intended no personal insult to any of you. I was merely pre-occupied with the business of trying to escape the distinction of pre-season frontrunner for the Republican nomination, which, I’m sure some of you observed, I managed to do in fairly short order. But, now, I again have the privilege of that distinction, and this time I would prefer to hold on to it for a while.

I know I have a responsibility, if I am, as I hope to be, the Republican nominee for President, to unite the party and prepare for the great contest in November. And I am acutely aware that I cannot succeed in that endeavor, nor can our party prevail over the challenge we will face from either Senator Clinton or Senator Obama, without the support of dedicated conservatives, whose convictions, creativity and energy have been indispensible to the success our party has had over the last quarter century. Many of you have disagreed strongly with some positions I have taken in recent years. I understand that. I might not agree with it, but I respect it for the principled position it is. And it is my sincere hope that even if you believe I have occasionally erred in my reasoning as a fellow conservative, you will still allow that I have, in many ways important to all of us, maintained the record of a conservative. Further, I hope you will grant that I have defended many positions we share just as ardently as I have made my case for positions that have provoked your opposition. If not, thank you for this opportunity to make my case today.

I am proud to be a conservative, and I make that claim because I share with you that most basic of conservative principles: that liberty is a right conferred by our Creator, not by governments, and that the proper object of justice and the rule of law in our country is not to aggregate power to the state but to protect the liberty and property of its citizens. And like you, I understand, as Edmund Burke observed, that “whenever a separation is made between liberty and justice, neither . . . is safe.”

While I have long worked to help grow a public majority of support for Republican candidates and principles, I have also always believed, like you, in the wisdom of Ronald Reagan, who warned in an address to this conference in 1975, that “a political party cannot be all things to all people. It must represent certain fundamental beliefs which must not be compromised to political expediency or simply to swell its numbers.”

I attended my first CPAC conference as the invited guest of Ronald Reagan, not long after I had returned from overseas, when I heard him deliver his “shining city upon a hill” speech. I was still a naval officer then, but his words inspired and helped form my own political views, just as Ronald Reagan’s defense of America’s cause in Vietnam and his evident concern for American prisoners of war in that conflict inspired and were a great comfort to those of us who, in my friend Jerry Denton’s words, had the honor of serving “our country under difficult circumstances.” I am proud, very proud, to have come to public office as a foot soldier in the Reagan Revolution. And if a few of my positions have raised your concern that I have forgotten my political heritage, I want to assure you that I have not, and I am as proud of that association today as I was then. My record in public office taken as a whole is the record of a mainstr eam conservative. I believe today, as I believed twenty-five years ago, in small government; fiscal discipline; low taxes; a strong defense, judges who enforce, and not make, our laws; the social values that are the true source of our strength; and, generally, the steadfast defense of our rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, which I have defended my entire career as God-given to the born and unborn.

My big question is this: Can he be believed and can we TRUST him?? Or is this more pandering??

Full Transcript Here:
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8 Responses to “Transcript of John McCain’s Speech at CPAC”

  1. comment number 1 by: Top Gun

    Conservatives “do not” write bills that take away your freedom of speech. Traitors do.

    Conservatives “do not” write bills that give illegal invaders amnesty. Traitors do.

    Conservatives “do not” ignore their sworn oaths to defend and protect the Constitution of the USA. Traitors do.

    John McCain is a TRAITOR to the USA and should be brought up on charges of treason and given the highest sentence as allowed by our laws.

  2. comment number 2 by: Longstreet


  3. comment number 3 by: BobF

    The cry for submission during the Cold War by Liberals was “Better Red than Dead”. The cry for submission during the election of 2008 by the RNC is “Better McCain than Hillary (or Obama)”.

    We didn’t give in then and were not giving in now.

  4. comment number 4 by: Bloviating Zeppelin

    You just beat me to the punch because, dammit, you’re retired and I still have to work. I heard the speech on Hugh Hewitt. I too was going to post the complete text. I may still. . .

    And my point precisely. Is he cognizant of the fact that he really DOES need to be conciliatory? Or is he blowing smoke up national Conservative asses?

    And second: why the FUCK didn’t Romney make his departure speech, say, at least TWO DAMNED MONTHS AGO??


  5. comment number 5 by: Kate

    John McFeingold is talking the talk, but he hasn’t walked the walk for quite a while. What makes him think we’ll believe the pretty words, and forget all about the ugly actions?

  6. comment number 6 by: jo

    Pandering. He will not get my vote,nor will the animal hating Huckabee.
    Damn..I’m fresh out of candidates.

  7. comment number 7 by: Carl

    Trust him? Not just no but HELL NO!!!

    McCain’s stabbed his own in the back before after making conciliatory remarks like those in his speech.

    Today’s “Day By Day” comic strip nails it:

    “I can vote for the candidate that supports illegal aliens, higher taxes, restricts free speech, & gives U.S. citizen rights to terrorists…or…I can vote for the candidate that supports illegal aliens, higher taxes, restricts free speech, & gives U.S. citizen rights to terrorists.”

    To focus now should be to vote in as many real conservative Republicans into Congress as possible to counteract what’s going to turn out to be at least 4 years of liberalism via the POTUS.

  8. comment number 8 by: ablur

    I said a long time ago that are only hope is to set the agenda. There are no conservative candidates. I blogged today that all we have is liberals to choose from.
    Looks like Hitlery is the best choice of the field. Better the devil you know. At least she has built up enough hate to slow down her ability to destroy America. Obama and McCain may cause irreversible damage.