Friday, July 18, 2008

The Next Ronald Reagan is Running for Congress. Did Al Jazeera Just Try to Kidnap Him?

As readers know, I’ve written before about the national importance of Lt. Col. Allen West’s congressional race in FL-22. The seat is one of the most likely GOP pickups anywhere in the nation and Lt. Col. West is the most high profile minority Republican running anywhere in 2008. But that’s not why electing Allen West is so important.

What makes West’s election so crucial is his profound ability to communicate, a trait that is sorely missing among most GOP leaders. At event after event, I’ve personally seen long time Republicans walk away wondering why such a sincere and effective speaker isn’t on national television. All share one thought openly; we need this candidate to run on a national level.

Simply put, anyone who’s heard Allen West speak live is sure of one thing: Here stands the next Ronald Reagan. Unfortunately, al-Jazeera has realized this as well.

Two nights ago the West campaign received an interesting phone call. A national TV network wanted to interview the candidate that very night at 9, with no time to spare. The network? You guessed it, al-Jazeera.

When asked the details of the interview, the station coordinator said “well, we need West’s home address and we’ll pick him up and take him to the interview tonight (essentially to an undisclosed location).” At this point West told his communications director to emphatically pass up the “opportunity.” It’s a good thing he did, as he may have become a propaganda piece, arranged by the network most famous for showing video statements of terrorists and the like.

I would assume that this stunt was not planned by higher-ups at al-Jazeera. It may have been the work of a low level operative working out of there. But one thing is clear. Someone there recognizes the effectiveness, the powerhouse, that Allen West represents. And on this point they are quite correct.

The people who orchestrated this were first class buffoons. If anything happened to Allen West it would ensure that a slew of conservative writers would continue to write about him and his work for decades. Only a fool would make a legend out of an enemy. But what happened also demonstrates the opportunity that Republicans have with Allen West and what a unique, unparalleled and simply tremendous candidate we have in him.

The power that Allen West derives stems directly from his sincerity. Having recognized FL-22 as a key race, I decided that most of my volunteer time this cycle would be spent where it counts (and I’d encourage readers to do as well and get involved in West’s race, no matter where you are in the nation). As such, I can attest first hand to the profoundness of his authenticity.

There was one time that I was able to arrange a speaking event for West on a Sunday morning. It was an opportunity for him to meet new people, voters and potential supporters. He appreciated the offer but declined because it conflicted with his attending services. When I found that out I agreed with him that all matters are up to the Ultimate Decider and that connecting with the Almighty is what’s most important and what will help all other things. But I didn’t expect that someone running for Congress would share such a view, to the point of taking action. And indeed, it is his truthfulness, sincerity and dedication to public service, the last of these qualities being the most intertwined with humility, that make Allen West who he is.

In speech after speech, conservatives have gone home saying, almost in unison, how we need someone like Allen to represent our side on Sunday shows. At the same time, without Allen detracting from his conservative principles by one iota (and indeed, after he’d spent the past hour doing nothing other than present the most compelling cases for conservatism), the reaction of liberal Democrats is that they’ve found a Republican who they trust and who they’d be proud to support.

Allen West is possibly the only candidate who says things the way they are. For one, he’s the only congressional candidate who talks of an American fifth column. On energy independence he rightly tags opponents of drilling and exploration (of oil as well as alternatives) as “advancing an environmental agenda disguised as energy policy.” On national security he can launch into a clear, concise dissertation, citing numerous examples from both medieval and modern history, as he makes compelling cases for the need to strengthen our resolve. On every other issue Allen West is the quintessential conservative, yet, like Reagan, one who liberals come to realize is on to the truth.

Rush Limbaugh is right when he says that conservatives need to be conservatives and to educate and explain the reasons for our positions to others. But this is not where Allen West derives his strength from. Allen’s ability to communicate stems from a much more time tested principal; that words spoken in truth and with sincerity are words that penetrate.

Lastly, a word to the fiends who tried to pull off what most certainly seems to be a heinous stunt. Allen West’s career thus far has been one of outstanding and rarely seen honor and service. Many patriotic writers and columnists from across the political spectrum have come to acquire a profound respect for the man. I’d caution you against so much as threatening this man again, as the result would be a torrent of articles and books highlighting his exemplary nature and service. More writers than you care to know of have made this pact out of admiration for Allen and for what he stands for, those being values and characteristics that transcend political affiliations.

And a word to Republicans everywhere: If you plan on doing anything for a congressional race this year, do the nation a favor and get involved in FL-22. Allen’s website is and a brief overview of why this seat and this candidate have national implications can be found here: Lifting Up the House – If There’s One Race Republicans Should Focus On, It’s This One.

Those who wish this country no well recognize what a force Allen West is. The question is whether we Americans, of all political stripes, will do so as well.

1 comment:

Yomin Postelnik said...

See also Palm Beach Post:


... New on this year’s campaign trail: the politician who refuses free TV time. Congressional hopeful Allen West, a veteran who served in Afghanistan and is taking on incumbent Ron Klein, was invited on a news show the other night and nixed the appearance. Why? The former U.S. Army lieutenant colonel won’t appear on the Arab network Al-Jazeera. “They wanted to pick him up in a car and take him somewhere for a live interview,” said his campaign manager, Donna Brosemer. “There’s no way I’ll let him in a car with strangers from Al-Jazeera. Plus, how would we explain his appearance to Jewish voters?”