Monday, June 2, 2014

After Action Report: Americans for Prosperity's #TXO summit

"not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching."
Hebrews 10:25

The greatest compliment this website can give a conference is that we didn't post anything during it because we were too busy enjoying it; on a scale of 1-10, this past weekend's Americans for Prosperity "Texas Online" conference deserves a rating higher than Barack Obama's national debt.

Dana Loesch kicked off the conference with an opening blitzkrieg.  Stating that "I don't believe in an objective media," Loesch explained she shows "no courtesy to people I don't respect."  Shannon Watts of Mom's Demand Boxed Wine Action would agree:

That being said, Loesch explained "I don't target someone unless I have a file on someone."  She spends at least an hour researching anyone she debates.  The purpose is to know you opponent better than they know themselves.

Avik Roy of Forbes magazine explained how to make policy arguments in an engaging manner.  His primary suggestion was specialization.  Your value, as an advocate, is the area that you know better than anyone else.  This website had to laugh hearing Avik Roy state that, considering that we cite his work on Medicaid all the time.  In addition, Roy explained that "when you use numbers with rigor, your political opponents can't ignore it."

At the end of the day Saturday, Steven Kruiser, Tony Katz, and Kurt Schlichter performed their hilarious new political humor show "tracked and targeted."  Because it's better to laugh that to cry at the current landscape, the show's value is obvious.  Also featured a long discussion about the sexual orientation of Larry O'Connor, which reached the obvious conclusion that Larry O'Connor's lack of fashion sense makes him
"the straightest man in America."

On Sunday, Lawerence Billy Jones spoke on a panel about how to appeal to minority groups.  He ripped the RNC's photo op approach; if conservatives are serious about engagement with groups that share our values but don't vote for our candidates, we have to understand that it will be a long, slow process.  We couldn't agree more.

Thanks also to Melissa Clouthier for opening her home for a party Friday night and to AFP for sponsoring an open bar on Saturday; that's all we're going to say on that topic.

Finally, although it wasn't part of the conference, on Sunday we also attended a service at the phenomenal Grace Church of the Woodlands with Texas Senate candidate Steve Toth.  Jonathan Cahn, who wrote the Harbinger, was the guest pastor.  He spoke about signs from the book that have continued to be filled since the book was published two years ago.  The fact that President Obama signed the beam with the relevant scripture is wild.  Kudos also to Pastor Steve Riggle, a stand-up guy who challenged his congregation to support efforts to challenge Houston's new censorship ordinance at the ballot box.

This was an unreal weekend.  We took in so much new information and met so many people that it's going to take a few days to absorb the whole thing.  But Americans for Prosperity (and Grace Church) did a phenomenal job!!!  We were incredibly blessed to participate in this weekend's activities.  Their next event is labor day weekend in Dallas.

Update: Bryan Preston has a lot more here.

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