Video and thoughts on the 2012 NY Annual Republican Dinner with Newt Gingrich and Gov. Bobby Jindal

The New York Annual Republican Dinner featured two particullary important speakers this year. The first was Newt Gingrich, who is continuing with his challenge to get the Republican nomination versus frontrunner and presumed nominee Mitt Romney. The other was Louisianna Governor Bobby Jindal, who is among the top contenders for the Vice President slot alongside Mitt Romney in facing incumbent President Obama and VP Biden.

The $1000 a plate event was held at the New York Sheraton, on 53rd and 7th Ave. It was a packed house in the Sheraton’s ballroom, with our rough headcount placing some 700 attendees at the event. It is worth noting that the event included no less than 50 African Americans, as well as representation from the diversity of New York City. We note this because the common image of the GOP is one that would have the public believe that only old White men would be at the event. Such a biased view of any organization should be debunked whenever possible.

The evening started with comments from NY Republican Party Chairman Edward Cox. This was followed by an innvocation by Rev. Canon Andrew J. W. Mullins. Immediately after that Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich began to speak. It was a clockwork order that was on-time, because due to severe transportation issues and mechanical difficulty we began taping after Gingrich had gone half way through his speach. So much for inefficiency and the delay normally noted with politics and politicians.

While we will present only half of what Gingrich stated, what we did get was very clear. He highlighted the path to the Presidency from his view. He clarified why he is continuing to be in the race versus Mitt Romney. He emphasized the need for Party unity and that the singular goal was ensuring that President Obama did not get a second term, which would allow for the restoration of America.

The message was not filled with the urgency of a candidate seeking to win the upcomming NY Primary. It was not the rally call to raise up funds for his political campaign. Rather it was an intense pursuit of the need to define the vision of the Republican Party for 2012, and to predict a seachange in the lopsided balance of power in New York State.

{Due to technical difficaulties a visual edit was done to the video, we do appologize}

After Former Speaker Gingrich finished speaking, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal took the podium. The event included the book, Leadership and Crisis, written by the keynote speaker recounting parts of his life, his conservative views and how he gained them, and his observations on Government (both run well and poorly) with particular emphasis on the Gulf oil spill.

Gov. Jindal is a very interesting individual. He is considered one of the top choices to be the runningmate of Mitt Romney. The combination does make sense. With the Romney-Jindal matchup Republicans present 2 Governors, each with experience and success at running States. Gov. Jindal is very well-eduacated (Brown and Oxford), even arguably more academically that President Obama. Gov. Jindal as spent decades defending his conservative principles to liberals that outnumbered him, and initially found him misguided or wrong-headed. He is intimately aware of the impact and neccessity of domestic oil and energy independance, as well as the need for education reform that is effective.

Though few will speak about it, Gov. Jindal also is important for the things that Democrats either assume they have a lock on, or find unimportant. Gov. Jindal is the first generation son of an immigrant family. He is a devout Christian. He is one of a few politicians of color to have acheived a Governorship for more than 1 term in the Deep South. He grew up in a working-class family. He has appeal for fiscal conservatives as well as addressing the concern for job growth.

Ultimately Gov. Jindal provide his own reasons why President Obama should be a 1 term President, even though he considers the President a likeable guy. Perhaps the most telling item was the manner in which Gov. Jndal, through his experience came to see that the President is a very booksmart man, surrounded by equally booksmart individuals – and the weakness of being such.

Thus his speech is not only a rally for Republicans in New York, it is an outreach for moderates and Independants that will surely see the soundbites of the event if not our video. It may also be the first glimpse into a Vice President campaign.

There were other speakers later in the dinner event, and we will cover them shortly. But we are left with an interestig thought. Could the NY GOP Dinner be in indicator of the 2012 Republican Presidential candidates (Mitt Romney was the keynote speaker in 2011)? It is possible.

The real conclusion to be drawn from the event is that politics in New York, like the rest of the country, is hardly as cookie-cutter simplistic as many in the media would like it to seem. As “blue” as New York is dismissively considered by pundits and pollsters, there is no doubt that a Republican presence not only exists but is growing. The Annual Republican Dinner, though not a media draw on any major scale, provides a real insight to the divesity of the NY GOP, as well as the foothold of conservatism across the country.

**if there are news organizations that would like to get a copy of the orignal video of the event, please contact us directly**

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About the Author

Michael Vass
Born in 1968, a political commentator for over a decade. Has traveled the U.S. and lived in Moscow and Tsblisi, A former stockbroker and 2014 Congressional candidate. Passionate about politics with emphasis on 1st and 2nd Amendments.

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