A bit less than 100 showed up for a Palm Beach County Tea Party event at Boca Greens tonight. The event included a nice buffet dinner.
In the audience were two GOP candidates headed for a primary for State Senate, for the new 25th district. The two are Geoff Sommers and Melanie Peterson. Both are impressive. Their primary will be on August 14th, and we hope to do at least a couple stories on them. I was pleased to see Sommers carrying a copy of The Road to Serfdom.
During dinner there was a presentation by “Tice” about socialism and Marxism in US politics, connecting that history to the current occupant of the White House. I heard members of the audience expressing disapproval of this approach – “it’s not about his past. It’s about what he’s done as President.”
Local chair Alex Berry spoke about the county organization and its focus on fiscal responsibility, limited government and free markets. He also spoke humorously about how upside down our world.
Slade O’Brien was the main speaker. He is Florida State Director for Americans for Prosperity, and a resident of Boca Raton. Before he spoke he handed out cards titled “It’s the Spending, Stupid!”
AFP is focused on fiscal and economic issues and not on social issues.
“Compromise got us $15 Trillion in debt. We don’t need to compromise. We need to win.”
O’Brien spoke about the general election and the challenge of beating Barack Obama. Obama is well liked among independents, but they do not like his policies.
Judicial elections are also coming up, and no Florida judge has ever lost a “merit retention” election. Three judges on the state Supreme Court are up and AFP is working on educating voters on these elections. Three new faces on the court would be a major change.
The Florida legislature is not doing enough to support Gov. Scott’s efforts to bring jobs to Florida, even though both houses are majority Republican.
O’Brien also criticized corporate tax credits that favor cronies and out of state businesses that move here over businesses that are already here. He also spoke about public employee pensions, calling to end defined benefit plans for new government hires. He does not favor altering pensions for existing employees.
Other topics included eliminating state corporate tax (only 2% of state budget); improving school choice education options for families; transparency in local government regulations and permitting; transparency in state contracts, which are a large component of state spending; and removing more state regulations and licensing.
Specific areas where the legislature failed to support Gov. Scott on cutting corporate taxes and eliminating cronyism, among other issues.
Another candidate, James Ryan O’Hara, mentioned that he is having a fundraiser on June 23rd.