Sarah Palin speaks to hundreds at Patriots in the Park event
By Rich Jenkins
Hundreds of tea party sympathizers gathered at Wayne County Fair Grounds Saturday for the “Patriots in the Park” event that featured former Republican Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin. The event, sponsored by the Willow Run Tea Party Caucus and Americans for Prosperity – Michigan, featured a variety of local and national conservative speakers. The event began with a tribute to the patriots of America’s past, present and future featuring State Sen. Patrick Colbeck (R-7th District) and Willow Run Tea Party Director Dennis Moore.
After the tribute, several local tea party speakers addressed the crowd. One of the speakers, Bill Bigler announced that he was launching a Van Buren Township Tea Party organization.
The speakers addressed the audience on topics such as the dangers of President Obama’s healthcare law, the need to oppose Governor Snyder’s plan to build a second bridge to Canada, and various initiatives that will soon appear on the ballot. Mixed in with local speakers were more well known conservatives including Janice Daniels, the controversial Mayor of Troy, and the Speaker of the Wisconsin Assembly, Jeff Fitzgerald.
Fitzgerald received one of the loudest audience reactions for his part in restricting the collective bargaining abilities of Wisconsin’s public unions.
All the speakers touched on the general theme that conservatives needed to have a large voter turnout in order to prevent Obama from winning a second term. “We have to fire Barack Hussein Obama. We are going to elect Mitt Romney in spite of himself,” said Thayrone X, a host and owner of WAAM 1600 and the master of ceremonies for the event. “We are firing Barack Hussein Obama, that is the only task at hand. Don’t get caught up in whether somebody is a Mormon or if they aren’t conservative enough. We fire Barack Hussein Obama come November.”
The crowd’s enthusiasm wasn’t dampened by the heat when Palin took the stage shortly before 4 p.m.
Palin spoke for roughly 40 minutes and talked about the need to invest in American energy and fix the economy.
Calling Obama’s alternate energy policy a “fairy tale”, Palin said that the country needed to stop talking about “drill baby drill” and “mine baby mine” and implement those policies.
“I don’t know what they are thinking, unicorns are prancing and crossing their fingers hoping that glitter and lollipops will fill up their Ford pick-up trucks some day,” said Palin about green energy advocates. At one point – mocking the traditional “four more years” chant used by presidents running for re-election – Palin led the crowd in a “four more months” chant.
She also outlined the differences between the Republican and Democratic parties.
“2012 is a race between the party of big government and the party of big freedom,” Palin said. “The radical left’s fundamentally different vision is for a fundamentally transformed America at odds with everything that made this country great…our vision, though, is for a fundamental restoration of all that is good and strong and free in America.” After telling an anecdote about someone sending her youngest son, Trig, a shirt that said “I’m a little tea pot”, Palin extended the metaphor to the crowd saying that they were ready to boil.
“We’re tea pots and we’re getting steamed up because Obama is tipping us over…and draining that entrepreneurial spirit from us. That (spirit) which grew American into the most exceptional nation ever known,” said Palin.
The crowd, which organizers estimated was between 1,800 and 2,000 people, seemed energized by Palin’s visit. “I thought it was very well run,” said Gayle Adams of Livonia. “Sarah Palin had probably the best speech I’ve ever heard.” The event was also a fundraiser for the Fallen and Wounded Soldier’s Fund, a charity that helps Michigan veterans with needs that the government hasn’t met.